Technology File

IT PAYS TO SURF THE NET An Irvine, Calif.-based Web portal site is paying members to shop, browse or refer new users. EPilot, developed by eLiberation.com, tracks users and rewards them with cash each time they click an HTML link or...

IT PAYS TO SURF THE NET

An Irvine, Calif.-based Web portal site is paying members to shop, browse or refer new users. EPilot, developed by eLiberation.com, tracks users and rewards them with cash each time they click an HTML link or an ad. The portal’s pay-for-placement text links and clickthrough advertising model also rewards advertisers, enabling them to outbid industry heavyweights for advertising placement. The patent-pending auction-style ad technology allows advertisers to bid for priority placement for highly targeted demographics and user clickthroughs. A portion of the money generated by the ad auction is used to reward ePilot members who click through.

BIG SOLUTIONS FOR SMALL CALL CENTRES

Small to mid-sized Canadian businesses can now employ call centre solutions – such as computer telephony integration (CTI) and integrated voice response (IVR) – on an outsourced, pay-per-use basis. AT&T Canada, in partnership with IBM Canada, recently launched a national call centre solution combining IBM’s NetCallCentre solution and AT&T’s local and long distance voice and data services. With this system, the principals say, advanced applications typically used in large call centres, such as routing off-hours calls via a computer system to the call centre and deploying customer relationship management tools, can now be in the hands of medium- and small-sized businesses at an affordable rate.

From Karen Howe’s dining table: Creativity, COVID and Cannes

ICYMI, The Township's founder gathers the best of the best campaigns and trends so far.

Cannes Base Camp

By Karen Howe

I’m attending Cannes from the glory of my dining room table. There’s not a palm tree in sight, yet inspiration and intel are present in abundance.

Cannes Lions is a global cultural pulse check. The social course correction in the wake of the murder of George Floyd and BLM has delivered far greater diversity in the judging panels as well as the work. And we are all better for it.

I’m proud to say that creativity defeated COVID, which speaks to its power. Great work and big ideas flourished, despite unimaginable odds.

The work from the past two years spans a vast emotional range. From the profundity of Dove’s “Courage is Beautiful” to the hyper exuberance of Burberry’s “Festive,” they are opposite ends of the spectrum, but each answered a need in us.

Take note, the ascendency of gaming cannot be understated. Smart brands have embraced the channel. It makes sense, because gamers participate to meet others around the world, not just to play. And they represent a huge and powerful community. That’s why QSR Wendy’s gamified their iconic gal in RPG’s Feast of Legends.

Burger King sponsored the unknown Stevenage Football Club, transforming the team into online heroes and vaulting BK into the fray at the same time. Once again, the brand embedded itself in culture.

The birth of gaming tourism arrived when Xbox snuggled up to travel guides and created a brilliant baby: a travel guide for gaming worlds. It, too, embedded itself in culture.

From the standpoint of social good, Reporter Without Borders showed how it worked with Mindcraft for its “Uncensored Library” to bypass press censorship, with Minecraft providing a loophole to a space where young people could be educated. It provided youth with a powerful tool to fight oppression: truth.

COVID changed us in unexpected ways. We learned how to pay attention again and there was a notable lack of 30-second commercials. Instead, longer format content thrived. Apple’s WFH was seven minutes long. Entertainment reigned king, so we find ourselves returning to our advertising roots.

Seeing competitive brands form partnerships was one of this year’s other great surprises. The brilliantly simple “Beer Cap Project” by Aguila to reduce binge-drinking saw the brand reach out to competitive beers to join in. Aguila put incentivizing (keyword: free) reminders to drink water, eat food and get home safely on its bottle caps from all sorts of fast food chains, ride-share co’s and H2O brands.

On a personal level, I’m so proud of Canada again this year. Given that it was two years of work from all over the world being judged, even making the Cannes shortlist was an accomplishment. Canada is herding in the Lions in tremendous numbers – and it’s not even over. Fingers are crossed.

KAREN-HOWE-PIC-higher-rez-300x263Karen Howe is a Canadian Cannes Advisory Board Member and founder of The Township Group