A baby at the helm of a fighter jet may be an apt metaphor for many dot-com companies. But Asher/Gal & Partners is using the unlikely image to make an entirely different point on behalf of a new Web-based client.
At a time when many West Coast ad shops are having a bumpy ride with e-businesses, Asher/Gal in Los Angeles says the addition of NetLedger will further strengthen its tech-oriented I-Group. The agency maintains it has been careful to avoid dot-com duds and has built a solid e-roster by focusing on companies that have staying power and offer an important point of difference.
"Like many agencies, we have a certain amount of concern about the dot-coms," said Lori MacMurray, vp and director of the I-Group. "It's important that both sides do their homework before they proceed. NetLedger is a good example of a solid company that can help small and midsized businesses grow."
MacMurray said the agency won the account based on its past dot-com work as well as a thumbs up from a former client. She noted that NetLedger, based in San Mateo, Calif., stands out due to its unique service and the alliances it has built. The company's key product is an application service provider Net Ledger touts as the first Web-based accounting platform.
Asher/Gal broke a $5 million print campaign in late October for the client, MacMurray said. Some $7 million is earmarked for next year. The work positions NetLedger as a powerful resource for businesses, even those still in the cradle. One ad features an image of a fresh-faced toddler soaring through the clouds in a jet. The tagline reads, "Who cares about size when you've got power."
The ad is running in The Wall Street Journal and eWeek and is due to appear in BusinessWeek and elsewhere.
While the agency is closely associated with anti-smoking efforts and other public interest concerns, it established the I-Group two years ago in an effort to reel in e-business. MacMurray said the I-Group now accounts for about one-third of the agency's $100 million in billings.