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Wednesday, May 30, 2001
ESPN.COM'S BIG IMPRESSION AD FOR UNIVERSAL PICTURES' THE MUMMY RETURNS THREE TIMES MORE IMPACTFUL THAN TRADITIONAL BANNER AD, ACCORDING TO MILLWARD BROWN INTELLIQUEST


A recent online BrandImpact study conducted by Millward Brown IntelliQuest for ESPN.com and Universal Pictures shows that ESPN.com's Big Impression ad unit, the Internet's first oversized ad unit that was introduced by ESPN.com last September, was three times more effective in generating an impact than traditional banner advertising when promoting Universal's upcoming movie, The Mummy Returns. While both the traditional banner and the Big Impression ad performed well, the Big Impression, 30% bigger, outperformed the banner ad on Millward Brown IntelliQuest's key brand health measures, including awareness, imagery and future consideration. ESPN.com is part of the Walt Disney Internet Group. The BrandImpact? study compared a Big Impression ad for the upcoming Universal Pictures movie The Mummy Returns with a traditional banner ad for the same movie on ESPN.com the week before and during Super Bowl weekend (January 23 through January 30). Randomly selected ESPN.com users were asked to participate in the short survey via a pop-up window. Among the findings: ESPN.com's Big Impression ad unit for The Mummy Returns had three times the impact of the traditional banner ad for the same movie; Millward Brown IntelliQuest's advertising effectiveness tests showed that respondents exposed to the Big Impression ad were more involved in the larger format; Big Impression ads also improved the image of The Mummy Returns on key attributes such as "worth paying the money for" (10% increase) and "better digital effects" (13% increase); Critically, significantly more people exposed to the Big Impression ad said they wanted to see the movie.

"Not only are we pleased to be the first to introduce these larger ads to the Internet community, we're also excited to be the first with hard results proving these ads work," said Riley McDonough, vice president of advertising sales, ESPN Internet Group. "Universal Pictures has been a great business to team up with in this discovery, and it's great to be a part of the success of The Mummy Returns." "We are always looking for innovative advertising solutions to help us cut through the Internet clutter," said Kevin Campbell, vice president of new media, Universal Pictures Marketing. "Our partnership with ESPN.com on The Mummy Returns was the perfect marriage of advertising concept and cutting edge creative. It drove unprecedented traffic to our website (www.themummy.com) and jumped started our online marketing campaign for The Mummy Returns." The Big Impression is a Flash-enabled oversized ad unit that measures a full 30 percent bigger than traditional banners. Sold on a daily basis and positioned "above the fold," the Big Impression enables a client to "own" the home page of a particular Walt Disney Internet Group site. The Big Impression's atypical size and shape provides maximum creative freedom and can ultimately translate into enhanced brand impact. "This case study has shown that the Big Impression format has the ability to generate much greater brand appeal and motivation than banners", said Duncan Southgate, Account Group Director at Millward Brown IntelliQuest. Millward Brown has a history of conducting groundbreaking online research studies under the name Millward Brown Interactive (which was recently merged with Millward Brown IntelliQuest). They were the first to test the branding effect of online ad banners in 1996, the first to test the effectiveness of superstitials and interstitials and are now the first to conduct a study on this new advertising format. About WDIG Walt Disney Internet Group is one of five business units of The Walt Disney Company and manages many of the most popular Web sites and services, including Disney.com, ESPN.com, ABC.com and ABCNEWS.com. Additional properties include Family.com, Mr.Showbiz, Movies.com, Wall of Sound, DisneyAuctions.com, DisneyStore.com, DisneyVacations.com, Soccernet.com and NFL.com. Walt Disney Internet Group also produces Enhanced TV telecasts in conjunction with select ABC Television and ESPN programming and includes the catalog operations of The Walt Disney Company and 19 Disney-branded international properties. Steve Wadsworth is president of Walt Disney Internet Group, which is headquartered in North Hollywood, CA, and has operations in Bristol, CT; Seattle; New York; Tokyo and London. The Mummy Returns Universal Pictures' The Mummy Returns was released on May 4th with a record-breaking $68.1 million at the domestic box office its first weekend. The opening, the highest ever three-day non-holiday opening in history, is the second biggest opening of all time, following "Jurassic Park: The Lost World" ($74.6 million). The Mummy Returns also remained the number one film in the marketplace in its second weekend of release with a three-day gross of $33.7 million. To date, the effects-laden action-adventure The Mummy Returns has grossed a total of over $147 million domestically.

The Mummy Returns is written and directed by Stephen Sommers, reunites original cast members from The Mummy including Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, Arnold Vosloo, Oded Fehr and Patricia Velasquez, and also stars newcomer Freddie Boath and WWF sensation The Rock as The Scorpion King. James Jacks and Sean Daniel produced the sequel and its predecessor.

About BrandImpact? BrandImpact? is a cutting-edge proprietary research solution that measures the effectiveness of online advertising. It incorporates Millward Brown's 25 years of brand and advertising research expertise to analyze how online ads are performing, and reports results in real time on the Web. It measures all types of online ads, from banners to rich media to streaming media, and uses a comprehensive consumer survey to pinpoint exactly how the brand is impacted, and how the advertising is perceived.

About Millward Brown IntelliQuest Millward Brown IntelliQuest is the technology and online research center of the Millward Brown Group. A leading provider of marketing research to Internet and technology companies and online advertisers, Millward Brown IntelliQuest provides marketing research services enabling clients to understand and improve the strategic position of their brands, products, media or channels. It offers custom research solutions, market and brand tracking, media research, business-to-consumer and business-to-business online marketplace tracking. For more information, visit www.intelliquest.com, or www.millwardbrown.com.

Ashley Swadel, ESPN.com (212) 456-7890 or ashley.c.swadel@dig.com