LETTERS TO THE EDITOR;APPLES AND ORANGES;WEB DOESN'T DELIVER;SPORTS CAN PAY OFF;WHAT GOES AROUND...

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Procter & Gamble's quest to evaluate "how well print works" versus TV (AA, Jan. 29) sounds on the surface of it about as sensible to me as sending researchers to the Louvre to see how well canvas works versus marble. They're not only different media, it's the wrong question.

And the most important issue isn't the talent of the artist, either. It's the purpose of the communication. How well print works for P&G or any other advertiser depends almost wholly on what the marketer is trying to accomplish. Exactly whose behavior is the marketer trying to affect, in exactly what way? How does that person interact not only with print but with the spectrum of media he or she uses over a given buying cycle? Which brand contacts matter most, and which messages, delivered how and when, most efficiently motivate that person's behavior?

Marketers are slow to benefit from the concepts of integrated marketing communication precisely because they approach the subject tactically (e.g., "how well print works") rather than strategically, from the standpoint of customer behavior.

Prof. Bob Lauterborn

School of Journalism

& Mass Communication

University of North Carolina

at Chapel Hill

With four computers, online service and a two-year subscription to Ad Age, I entitle myself to jump out of cyberspace with the growing hordes of disappointed surfers.

Slow and unimaginative, overburdened and over-hyped, the Web delivers but a minute image of what is promised-when and if you can get on and in.

The fragmented information and images, cast in a complicated maze that tests patience and intelligence, is consummate testimony to technology struggling to justify its existence.

For now it is merely a toy waiting to play in the real game, primitive, cumbersome and lacking focus.

Despite proclamations of "hits" in the zillions and users in raging millions, the real-world test is whether this ultimate unmeasured medium can be anything more than a user-fee cash cow for the service providers. So far, not.

Bruno A. Sniders

President, Alexander Communications

Webster, N.Y.

It seems that Thomas Amshay (Letters, AA, Jan. 22) has failed to do his homework or has personally been involved in poorly executed and failed sports marketing ventures.

Our sponsors know that their $10,000 investment in a billboard does not garner them $200,000-plus in objective-driven advertising. It quite simply gains them $200,000-plus in national television exposure for a very minor investment. They are not led to believe that this is the end-all and be-all for their company's entire marketing plans, only one small piece of the total puzzle.

Sports marketing can and should be held accountable for providing the desired results of the companies involved. Smart, well planned and fully executed sports marketing campaigns sell products every day. Just ask a company involved in any level of Nascar's many racing series.

Marc Olson

Marketing director

I-70 and Lakeside Speedways

Kansas City, Mo.

Regarding your great four-color shot on Page 14 in your Jan. 8 issue: What planet are these guys racing on? On earth, they always, always race counterclockwise when they run on ovals.

Give your photo editor a good slap for flopping a transparency. Then send him/her to a race to find out what's really going on in the world's biggest spectator sport!

(By the way, we like your new look).

Mike McFarland

Gossage/McFarland Sports Marketing

Harrisburg, N.C.

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