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Forrester, Information Resources Join For Big Brand Effort

Consumer packaged goods makers have long been hotly sought after by the online advertising industry, simply because of the major dollars they command, and now Forrester Research Inc. and Information Resources Inc. (IRI) have teamed to provide analysis about Internet marketing strategies to brand managers at these powerhouses.

The two companies are forming a joint venture called Netquity, which combines Forrester's Internet research with IRI's experience with the CPG industry. IRI has made its reputation by providing of UPC scanner-based business solutions to the consumer packaged goods industry.

While these companies -- like Nestle, Proctor & Gamble, and Unilever -- have experimented with marketing on the Web, a lack of data about branding effectiveness may have been a barrier to more full-blown adoption of the medium. After all, dishwashing detergent and spaghetti sauce aren't the types of things people are likely to buy online, so data about click-through isn't as meaningful as it might be to an online retailer or content provider.

The partnership uses IRI's sales channels and database resources, and Forrester contributes its Internet and online marketing capabilities.

"CPG companies are struggling to analyze how the Internet impacts their business at the brand level," said William Bluestein, president and chief operating officer at Forrester.

"It is exciting to work with IRI to provide these companies with a solution to this growing need."