IQ News: ‘Bolt’ Aims for Teens With Channel Surfer Syndrome


Concrete Media’s Bolt picks up where Jane Pratt’s Sassy left off. The new site is aimed at teenagers aged 15-19 and will feature Sassy-esque stunts like Celebrity Prank Phone Calls and Naked College Counselor. Launching today at, the site is a next-generation Web venture, with advanced graphics and a hyperactive, multi-screen presentation format.

When users log on to Bolt, rather than appearing as a single Web page, the site pops up as two side-by-side mini-windows. The navigation window runs ongoing previews of Bolt articles and shows. The other is the community window, where users can chat, exchange E-mail, access bulletin boards and put up home pages. By clicking on the previews, a third window pops up to display the content.

Concrete Media president Dan Pelson said the site cost $1-2 million to develop. The advertising budget for Bolt and Concrete’s other site,, is $700,000 for the rest of 1997. Bolt will be promoted through on-line banner buys and a partnership with The Princeton Review, the college test prep service. About 1 million of The Princeton Review’s “Apply” CD-ROMs shipped to students this fall will contain Bolt promotional material. A national high-school newspaper on Bolt is in the works, and Bolt direct mail will be sent to college campuses. Sony Station has signed on as a charter advertiser.

Bolt is designed to engage the attention span of kids raised on TV channel surfing. Accessing content is more like clicking the remote than reading through pages of a Webzine; Bolt elements veer from Confessions of an Eco-Guerrilla (an editorial on environmental activism) to Debut Disks, which reviews new bands. “It’s accessible content to this audience,” said Lee Morgenroth, executive producer for Bolt, who produced and directed The East Village site. “They way they get at it meshes with their style of media consumption.” °

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