New Ad Group Formed at P&G’s FAST Summit

Four advertising trade groups, all represented at Procter & Gamble’s FAST Summit meeting in Cincinnati on new
media, will team up to create a consensus for the future of online
advertising.


The meeting of industry bigs was called by the consumer products giant to help
resolve a host of issues that the company said needs to be addressed before
online advertising can really move into the mainstream of American business.


Tentatively entitled FAST Forward, the new group is a joint effort of the
Association of National Advertisers, the American Association of Advertising
Agencies, the Internet Advertising Bureau and the Advertising Research
Foundation.


P&G, which has an advertising budget of more than $3 billion annually, has
been frustrated about what it sees as a lack of standards in online
advertising and reportedly budgeted only about $12 million for online this
year.


“Although participants have different interests and goals, they share a basic
overall objective, which is to develop online advertising so that the medium
can be made more widely available and highly desirable for consumers,” the
company said in promoting the event.


Advertising Age said FAST Forward will establish four industry task forces
that are also the topics of breakout sessions at the FAST summit. They will address key
issues facing the online ad industry: measurement, ad models, consumer
acceptance and online media buying.


Opening the summit, P&G vice president for advertising Denis Beausejour was
quoted as saying, “this feels like it could be a seminal moment in the
advancement of online advertising,” pointing to the various industries represented at the
gathering. Attendees include 40 major advertisers, 40 content providers and
publishers, 30 agencies (traditional and interactive), 24 technology companies
and 12 associations.


Certainly the online ad types seem receptive.


“Check your agendas at the door and focus on what’s best overall for the
industry,” said Rich LeFurgy, chairman of the Internet Advertising Bureau, at the
meeting on Thursday. “It’s time for us to link arms and say ‘the medium is good and it’s going to
get better. . . ,'”Reuters quoted him as saying.


In a panel discussion, Ad Age quoted moderator Chuck Martin, chairman of
@dtech, as saying: “This event signals the beginning of real money getting
involved [in online advertising].”

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