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MSNBC Launching Big Web Ad Campaign

MSNBC cable will launch its “largest concentrated online pitch” to date on Wednesday, “running advertising on hundreds of Web sites and blogs” (including TVNewser), the New York Times reports. The campaign will promote Countdown with Keith Olbermann, Live & Direct with Rita Cosby, and Scarborough Country, at a cost estimated at just under $1 million.

“Some ads will promote segments on the shows about life online, like how marketers sponsor ‘viral’ video clips that consumers can forward to each other,” the paper says. “MSNBC is also using search engine marketing, buying keywords on Google, like ‘viral videos.’ Computer users searching for articles with such words will see ads alongside their search results with links to MSNBC.com.”

“We want to find out something we haven’t known before,” said Frank Radice, senior vice president for the East Coast office of the NBC Agency. “Can we drive traffic from the Internet to the cable channel?”

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