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Marketing 50


By Published on .

Harold Bluetooth, a Danish king who hadn't been heard of much since medieval times, reigns today as the namesake of a ubiquitous wireless technology standard thanks to Eric Schneider.

Mr. Schneider is the senior marketing manager for the trade group Bluetooth Special Interest Group, which unites eight rival tech companies: Ericsson, IBM Corp., Microsoft Corp., Intel Corp., Nokia, Motorola, Toshiba and Agere Systems. Over the past two years he has been putting the organization's house in order. His achievements range from the technical, such as orchestrating trademarks and relaunching its Web site, to the theatrical, such as sending 300 actors dressed like characters from the "Matrix" sci-fi films onto the floor at the top electronics trade show. A key decision was to keep the name Bluetooth, the initial in-house name, instead of going with letter or number names.

"We haven't spent $1 on advertising, and I don't think we will," Mr. Schneider says.

Other marketers, from wireless services company Cingular to auto marketer Acura, however, have been beating the Bluetooth drum in advertising for their products, to the tune of about $25 million, he estimates. Bluetooth is now available on phones from the top five cellular service providers and is embedded in 2 million products shipped each week, Mr. Schneider says.

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