Five Online Publishers Form Consortium

NEW YORK — Five online publishers have joined forces to sell daytime ad space across each other’s sites, and AT&T Wireless has signed on as the network’s first advertiser.

Known as the At-Work Brand Network, the advertising sales consortium includes CBS MarketWatch, CNET Networks, NYTimes.com, USAToday.com and Weather.com. The goal of the network is to give advertisers access to a largely unduplicated audience of Internet users who are using the Web at work.

“The at-work audience is an attractive demographic for advertisers,” said Jeff Lanctot, chief media strategist at Avenue A, one of the interactive agencies responsible for AT&T Wireless’ online efforts. That audience is predominately made up of white-collar, high-income, 18- to 34-year-olds, he said.

“From an agency perspective, daytime hours are seen as the primetime of online advertising,” Lanctot continued. “We see dayparting as the no. 1 trend in online advertising. That eight-hour period at work has been an untapped period for advertisers up until know.”

The At-Work Brand Network plans to provide a one-order, one-report system for advertisers, so they won’t have to deal with five separate publishers. The agency or client will only need to submit their creative advertising units to one party for distribution across the entire network, said Scot McLernon, evp of sales and marketing at CBS MarketWatch.

“It’s coop-itition,” said McLernon, alluding to the cooperative spirit of the network, but competitive nature of the sites. “We want to offer a creative solution for advertisers across a consortium of sites that they would have not been able to do in a series of one-offs.”

The 4-week, online-only AT&T Wireless promotion, which launched Monday across the five sites, offers a free Panasonic Versio mobile phone or a $150 discount on a Motorola V60. The campaign, developed by Seattle-based Avenue A and Portland-based Whitehorse, consists of full-page takeover ads, banners, skyscrapers and flash ads.