Media Advisor taps MasterCard purchasing data

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Transactional Data Solutions, a joint venture between MasterCard International and Symmetrical Resources, announced the release of Media Advisor, the Purchase, N.Y., company's first consumer research. The product combines anonymous purchasing information from MasterCard's data warehouse with Simmons' National Consumer Study to examine consumers' buying habits and preferences in "shopper clusters." Media Advisor can examine the shopper clusters to determine which consumer groups are driving sales in more than 30 retail categories. The research is being marketed to ad agencies, media companies and retailers. The report will be delivered quarterly to subscribers interested in keeping up with the new data analysis. Discovery Communications also announced last week that it has become a charter subscriber of Media Advisor to gain concrete data about viewer spending potential.

Lexmark International launched an interactive marketing campaign backing its Home Printing Center. The marketer of printers turned to Internet direct marketing agency NetMarquee, Needham, Mass., to enhance its online ability to inform customers about printers, printing and how to choose products, said Brett Butler, Lexmark's general manager of worldwide Internet marketing. The project includes: creating a Web site with detailed articles about saving money and printer features; managing an e-mail distribution campaign including newsletters and reminders to change printer cartridges; and using a NetMarquee reporting system to track customers.

U-Access, Chicago, turned the traditional telemarketing scenario inside out by providing consumers with an 800-number to call and hear sales and promotional messages. Consumers can use the number to create personal mailboxes that then receive a variety of marketing messages including offers to purchase discount movie tickets. A Chicago area launch to 15,000 consumers provided access to messages from 30 national marketers; U-Access discovered that participants who can choose categories they are interested in listened to an average of 17 phone messages a month. The company expects to launch the program nationally next spring.

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