Geffen’s Boy-Band Promo Gets ‘Around’

NEW YORK If you haven’t heard of NLT, maybe you’re not playing the right video games.

The boy band, whose initials stand for Not Like Them, is signed to Geffen Records and has an album slated to drop early next year. Seeking to promote the group, Geffen has turned to a medium it never used before: around-game advertising.

Around game involves showing ads before, during or after video games. The games are generally free and found on sites such as and

Geffen handled the creative in-house but teamed with San Francisco-based Mochi Media for placement.

The music label sought out games that targeted the band’s demographic: pre-teenage girls. Genres with gunplay and auto racing were out, while puzzles and board-game-based fare were in.

As the games began, and between various playing levels, soulful pictures of the band appeared, inviting users to click to view a music video, “She Said, I Said.”

Geffen declined to disclose how often the video was viewed, but “the click-through rates were exceptionally high,” said Daniel Cho, new media manger, Geffen, which is based in Santa Monica, Calif. “We got about 10 times what we would normally get with online banner ads” for the campaign which ended last week after a 30-day run.

“I’d played a lot of games and noticed it was a market that had been untapped so far. Around game ads resonate much better than a skyscraper ad [running along the sides of Web pages],” said Cho.

Geffen plans to devote more of its interactive budget to around-game ads where it’s appropriate, said Cho. However, “we’re not going to advertise the Counting Crows in around-games ads” because their fan base would not be among the players, he said.

In addition to Geffen, Mochi Media works with clients such as Red Bull and Wrigley. CPM rates range from $5-50 and the company has an inventory of about 1,500 titles.

“With this content, we’re going to where the consumers are,” said Tim Kelly, director of sales, Mochi Media. “We’re pushing these brands’ messages out to the people.”