RealTime IT News

Genuity Ads Aim to Evoke Past

E-business infrastructure player Genuity is commencing a new $30 million marketing and advertising campaign, designed to position it as a venerable "old hand" when it comes to Internet infrastructure and e-business.

Burlington, Mass.-based Genuity, which last year launched a campaign to promote its Black Rocket e-business network platform, hopes its new campaign will tell the story of its 30-year Internet heritage -- which began as BBN, changed to GTE Internetworking, and in 2000, became Genuity.

GTE spun off Genuity last year when it merged with Bell Atlantic to form Verizon.

In the new campaign, network and cable TV spots will tout Genuity's long involvement with the Internet, beginning with its work with the U.S. government in the late 1960s to develop ARPANET, the Net's precursor. Additional ads will promote Black Rocket by showcasing the range of e-business services Black Rocket can perform.

The campaign was designed by Wenham, Mass.-based Mullen, which designed the previous Black Rocket ads and has also done work for Monster.com, Northern Light and LendingTree.com.

"With our new Genuity ads, we're rightfully taking credit for the innovations our company ... developed over the past 30 years," Joseph Farina, Genuity's president and chief executive, said. "Most people think that Internet infrastructure services have been around for only a few years, but at Genuity we know that's not the case. Who better to be your Internet outsourcer than the company that's been there since the beginning?"

Slated to begin this week, the spots will run on NBC, CBS, CNBC, CNNfn, MSNBC, ESPN and Fox News. Additionally, Genuity is sponsoring the Doral-Ryder Open (now the Genuity Championship) in Miami, which will be covered by NBC Sports.

Print ads will run in business publications, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and Fortune, while outdoor ads will run in markets including Boston, New York and San Francisco. Banner ads will run on major portals and business sites.

The new campaign breaks just after Genuity's fourth-quarter report, in which the firm posted a 23 cent per-share loss that met analysts' expectations -- but nevertheless provoked a rash of downgrades amid worries about a sector-wide slowdown.

Genuity closed Thursday up 0.0625, or 2 percent, at 2.7813. That's just above its 52-week low of 2.625, which it hit last week after the fourth-quarter report.

Christopher Saunders writes for Internet Advertising Report, an internet.com news site.