August 2, 2007, 12:00 AM

XLNTads reaches out to consumers to produce advertising videos

A new service launched this week from marketing services provider XLNTads offers a network of hundreds of independent videographers who compete to produce brand marketing videos for distribution over the Internet.

Paul Demery

Managing Editor, B2B E-commerce

A new service launched this week from marketing services provider XLNTads offers a network of hundreds of independent videographers who compete to produce brand marketing videos for distribution over the Internet.

Neil Perry, acting CEO of XLNTads who previously served as an interactive marketing executive at Monster.com and McDonald’s Corp., says the service opens up a brand company’s marketing video-development campaigns to the general public as well as to a core group of skilled videographers retained by XLNTads. The goal, he adds, is to gain insight from consumers about their views of a company’s brand while also searching for an effective marketing video from a broad base of video producers. “One retailer told us they’re not happy with their current video work from an ad agency, so they want to open up the campaign to consumers,” Perry says. “That way they can see if consumers feel differently about their brand and can express it in a different way in a video.”

XLNTads plans to launch video-generation contests later this month for two retailers, one in footwear and the other in diet products, Perry says, adding that he wasn’t free to name the clients.

Brand company clients of XLNTads pay $25,000 per month for a three-month subscription. That provides a client with a designated page on XLNTads.com where it can post information and image content related to the product or brand it wants to promote in a video marketing campaign. Members of the general public as well as members of XLNTads’ core group of videographers can then submit proposed videos. After the three-month period, the client picks the winning video and pays its developer $20,000, for a total cost of $95,000 including the three-month subscription, Perry says.

For each campaign contest, XLNTads will pay $500 to each participating member of its core group of videographers to cover expenses, but it does not offer any compensation to contributors from the general public. XLNTads, which has about 200 videographers in its network, plans to kick off a $1 million advertising campaign this fall with Philadelphia ad agency The Star Group in an effort to attract more skilled videographers and expand its network to 500, Perry says.

XLNTads, which presented its service at the ad:tech interactive advertising conference in Chicago this week, prefers to work with its network of videographers because they use better technology and produce higher-quality videos than the general public, he adds.

As XLNTads hosts online contests to produce marketing videos for its clients, it also lets videographers and other visitors rate each submitted video on a scale of one to five stars. The rating system gives clients another factor to consider in deciding which video may be most popular with consumers, Perry says.

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