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LEGO Launches Online Holiday Effort

Building blocks toy maker LEGO will begin promoting its products and online store across the Web, aiming to drive direct sales during the holiday season.

The campaign, designed by the New York office of Web shop Organic , seeks to get LEGO and LEGO.com in front of consumers -- specifically, pre-teens and adult gift-buyers.

Organic said it had planned, bought media and developed creative with a strictly "non-banner" mindset. The result involved non-standard static and rich media ad units, as well as mini-sites that promoted specific LEGO product lines -- such as its "Star Wars" and "Bionicles" kits.

A two-week buy on Web content portal About.com includes a home page "takeover" ad, in which visitors to an About site will see LEGO characters running around the screen, directing users to a co-branded mini-site.

In addition to About, Disney.com, Nickelodeon.com and CartoonNetwork.com will host similar co-branded mini-sites. LEGO also will launch special shopping areas on Warner Bros.' Harry Potter site, FoxKids.com, and NickJr.com.

Interactive Advertising Bureau-style "large rectangle" ads also are running with rich media creative on Sony sites, CartoonNetwork.com, Nickelodeon.com, FoxKids.com and Disney.com. Shockwave.com also features ads in Unicast's Superstitial interstitial format.

Through a special deal with Sony Corp. , LEGO will tie-in its "Star Wars" set with the release of "Star Wars Galaxies," an upcoming video game published by the consumer electronics giant. In addition to LEGO sponsorship buttons throughout the site, rich media ads also appear in five- and 10-second "bumpers" before and after QuickTime movies on the site.

"LEGO provided Organic an opportunity to build an innovative campaign that fuses LEGO's core brand values with our passion for the medium," said an Organic spokesperson. "After all, the LEGO brand is all about innovation and imagination."

According to Organic, the two-month-long campaign has already generated more clicks and sales than all of LEGO's online marketing during 2000. That's of course well above the 423,000 clicks and 5,271 transactions that LEGO saw in fourth quarter, 2000 -- which Organic has specifically been asked to top.

Spending was not disclosed on the effort, though Organic said LEGO dropped less than $500,000 on media.