IDG Announces First Social Media Marketing Services in Technology Media ; IDG Media Brands Serve as Platforms for Tech Conversations

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. – May 15, 2009 – IDG Communications in the U.S. has licensed Socialmedia.com’s proprietary social ad serving platform to launch new social marketing services within IDG’s media brands. The strategic partnership with Socialmedia.com supports IDG Amplify(TM)services( )(www.amplifybyidg.com), IDG’s new suite of offerings that enable marketers to spark dialogue about their products within IDG communities.

The IDG Amplify capabilities stimulate conversations about an advertiser by asking users to voice their opinions and then share those opinions within the appropriate community. IDG Amplify services leverage the passion and expertise within IDG’s existing communities while incorporating social platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. For example, a tech company may want to know what IT professionals like most about a mobile device. The sponsored ad unit will prompt responses that will be tabulated into aggregated results; additionally, users can opt in to share their “vote” with other site visitors, with Facebook friends, or with followers on Twitter.

“IDG’s Amplify services take advantage of three key trends: IT advertisers increasing their spending on social media by 20% in 2009; staying agile by partnering with emerging market specialists; and providing the metrics that fuel advertisers’ heightened focus on ROI and analytics,” said Chuck Richard, vice president and lead analyst at information industry research and advisory firm, Outsell, Inc.

IDG Research Supports Importance of Social Media

In a survey of IT buyers (http://tinyurl.com/dcyc3g), 50 percent of the respondents said they participated in at least two social networking activities a month. Two-thirds of the decision makers spent slightly more than one hour per week on professional networking sites such as LinkedIn while almost half spent just under one hour per week on Facebook. The online survey attracted more than 300 responses last November.

“The buyer research matches the growing interest in social media among marketers,” said Matthew Yorke, senior vice president, Sales and Marketing, IDG Communications. Yorke added: “We have credible, trusted media sites where the conversations can begin and spread. Paid media brings people to a place while social media prompts interaction that leads to accumulated value over time.”

IDG and Socialmedia.com

IDG’s Amplify services enable marketers to execute social marketing campaigns that can grow and generate word-of-mouth messages across multiple IDG media brands and within social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The ad units utilize three types of online relationships: friend-to-friend, peer-to-peer, and community-based. Marketers can stimulate conversations, obtain important feedback, and be closely aligned with a topic or event. IDG Amplify-based campaigns can also extend advertisers’ social marketing programs, enhance a brand’s equity through positive word of mouth, and deepen a consumer’s interaction with the brands and conversations they care about. IDG has developed tools to measure these interactions including audience engagement, viral distribution, and participants’ sentiments about topics and brands.

“Our agreement with IDG leverages our proprietary ad serving platform and enables our Word of Mouth Impression (WOMI) technology to drive brand conversations across the Web and social networks,” said Gedioen Aloula, vice president, socialmedia.com. “Based on the tech orientation and passion of the IDG user communities, we expect a very positive reaction to IDG Amplify services.”

The IDG Amplify program is available now on cio.com, computerworld.com, csoonline.com, gamepro.com, IDG TechNetwork, infoworld.com, macworld.com, networkworld.com, and pcworld.com. To see a demonstration of the social marketing capabilities of IDG Amplify services go to www.amplifybyidg.com. For more information, contact Matthew Yorke, http://twitter.com/matt_yorke, matthew_yorke@idg.com, 508-988-6828.

About SocialMedia.com

SocialMedia.com invents products that make advertising social. The company enables ”People Powered Ads.” Socialmedia.com’s social ad server allows publishers to connect their ads to their social graphs. Socialmedia.com creates a social ad solution that works for the publisher, generates positive word of mouth for advertisers and enhances the consumer experience.

About International Data Group (IDG)

International Data Group (IDG) is the world's leading technology media, events, and research company. IDG’s online network includes more than 450 web sites spanning business technology, consumer technology, digital entertainment and video games worldwide. IDG also publishes more than 300 magazines and newspapers. Media brands are in more than 90 countries and include CIO, CSO, Computerworld, GamePro, InfoWorld/TechWorld/TecChannel, Macworld, Network World, and PC World. The company’s lead-generation service, IDG Connect, matches technology companies with an audience of engaged, high-quality IT professionals, influencers, and decision makers.

IDG is a leading producer of more than 750 technology-related events including Macworld Conference & Expo, OpenSource World, E3 Expo, DEMO, Storage Networking World, and IDC Directions. IDC, a subsidiary of IDG, is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events. Over 1,000 IDC analysts in more than 100 countries provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends.

Additional information about IDG, a privately held company, is available at http://www.idg.com

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