Execs and Accounts for October 30, 2002

The Smithsonian Institution’s Center for Education and Museum Studies (SCEMS) has awarded AKQA the contract to redesign its Web site.

AKQA said it will create a new brand for Smithsonian’s online educational initiatives, as well as develop online promotions to drive traffic to the site. Set to launch in January 2003, the new site will also increase the level of interactivity with content on existing SCEMS sites.

Additionally, the relaunched Web presence will present learning programs and professional development workshops, rich online learning modules, and a large variety of educational publications and guides, the agency said.

The Institute’s Center for Education and Museum Studies is the central education office of the Smithsonian Institution. It produces publications and Web sites and offers professional development for educators and museum professionals.

Alexander & Tom, an interactive sports marketing agency, has developed a digital marketing program for golf ball maker Pinnacle Golf. The program consists of a site redesign, an interactive game including, and a CD-ROM.

“Pinnacle Distance Challenge,” named after the golf event sponsored by Pinnacle, is a Shockwave game that invites visitors to participate in individual or team competition. Users have the option of building their own leagues or joining an existing one, and league members are able to invite others to join in a weekly competition. Pinnacle said the game is an ideal viral marketing tool that will allow it to expand its database.

“The online game along with the registration process serves as a foundation for a customer relationship management system,” said Dean Carter, Alexander & Tom’s CTO. “The system allows Pinnacle to easily touch individuals multiple times with targeted information and messages. The backend reporting mechanisms we developed provide valuable, immediate information and results.”

Agency.com has been named agency of record for Sallie Mae, following its launch of a new Web site for the student loan provider. The site features a new look, enhanced search features, new cross-selling capabilities, and traffic measurement capabilities.

“In helping Sallie Mae increase personalized customer service options and foster improved cross-selling of its products and services, we are helping the company effectively expand its brand franchise through the use of digital technologies,” said Priya Iyer, vice president client partner for Agency.com.

Groove Networks has hired David Fowler as vice president of marketing. Fowler, most recently executive VP of marketing at CRM software provider KANA, will develop marketing strategies for the maker of desktop collaboration software, manage product marketing and oversee the company’s corporate positioning and strategic partnership with Microsoft. He has also held senior management positions with Silknet, Sun Microsystems, FTP Software and Chipcom.

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