Puzzle fans play for online prizes

By Published on .

Play4Prizes is making a play for Web marketers that want to solve the puzzle of generating more site traffic.

Following the model of Interactive Imaginations' Riddler, New York, Oakland, Calif.-based Play4Prizes signed Berkeley Systems, Match.com, Women's Wire and WhoWhere? as advertisers on a site offering online puzzles in which sponsor sites provide clues.

Advertisers that sign on to Play4Prizes before Sept. 22 pay $0.15 for each visit to their site; after that, rates are $0.25 per visit.

Play4Prizes' system "gets people to come in and look around," said Lenore Tuttle-Wilkas, director of advertising for WhoWhere?, an Internet e-mail address directory.

Registered players who correctly solve at least one puzzle are entered in a weekly drawing for cash prizes that currently range from $25 to $250. "The more traffic we get, the larger the prizes," said Sharon Vinick, Play4Prizes' president-chief operating officer.

Riddler, which has been running contests for more than a year, takes a different approach: Sponsors including Toyota Motor Sales USA and Quaker Oats Co.'s Snapple provide the prizes. Riddler has more than 125,000 registered users.

Copyright August 1996 Crain Communications Inc.

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