Microsoft Lands Significant Ad Deal With Discovery

With display ads out of favor, Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) has been making a push to do more cross-platform ad sales, and the company has now landed its first sizeable account: the entire seven-figure ad budget for the Discovery (NSDQ: DISAB) Channel’s “Deadliest Catch” television series. Microsoft beat out Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) and YouTube by offering to do show’s online, mobile, and video-game ads, according to Bloomberg News. “Deadliest Catch” ads will start running Tuesday on the MSN.com home page, MSNBC, the MSN Mobile home page, Xbox Live, Windows Live Hotmail, Live Search, as well as inside several video games using Microsoft’s in-game advertising platform, according to a Microsoft press release.

Bloomberg News quotes Keith Lorizio, a Microsoft ad sales vp, as saying that the cross-platform approach would have not worked before, because Microsoft has separate teams for each of the properties that didn’t work together. Advertisers had to deal with multiple bills and multiple account reps. Last fall, the company hired Robin Domeniconi, a former executive at Time Inc., as its vice president of U.S. advertising sales, to help change that. The centralization is not all by choice. As the article points out, Microsoft is now having to fight to get display ads that it once would have gotten with little work.

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