REDMOND, Wash., March 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) today announced it has begun testing display advertisements across Microsoft(R) Office Live, Windows Live(TM) Mail and MSN(R) Spaces. The multimarket tests include advertisements from such global companies as Coca-Cola Brazil, JCPenney Co. Inc. and Monster Worldwide Inc. and mark the beginning of providing advertisers with broader access to Microsoft's valuable online audience. This effort will help generate revenue to provide consumers with a wide array of free and low-cost online services such as Web hosting, e-mail and Web services. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO ) "Advertising is a very important business model for Microsoft worldwide because an increasing number of advertisers are becoming more global," said Joanne Bradford, corporate vice president for Global Sales and Marketing at Microsoft. "With ad-supported software opportunities, we're able to offer great services at low or no cost for our consumers and a vast ecosystem for advertisers." Top Brands Test Ads With Microsoft Worldwide Coca-Cola Brazil, JCPenney and Monster Worldwide are among the 20 global marketers participating in the initial ad tests. The results of the multiple ad formats being tested will help determine which ad offerings provide the best return on investment for marketers while adding value to the consumer experience. "Taking part in the Windows Live Mail beta program is something that perfectly matches Coca-Cola's day-by-day attitude," said Monica Horcades, marketing director for Coca-Cola Brazil. "We understand that one of the most important roles of a global brand like us is to believe, support and stimulate innovation in communication of all kinds, especially on the Web. Coca-Cola has always been a pioneer on talking to young people wherever and whenever they are. It's in our brand's DNA. And we believe that Windows Live Mail is going to be a great way to do that." Windows Live display ads are currently being tested in MSN Spaces in Australia and Italy, and Windows Live Mail display ads are being tested in various markets across the world including Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. Office Live display ads are initially being tested in the U.S. and immediately sold out of their available openings for beta advertisers. Tests will continue on these and other Microsoft sites and services throughout 2006, while additional research is underway with approximately 100 advertisers in nine markets to verify advertisers' needs and best practice advertising solutions for Windows Live. Taking the Next Step In November 2005, Microsoft outlined its Windows Live and Office Live online services vision and highlighted an advertising network in which marketers would be able to create more meaningful connections with customers while providing advertisers with the unique opportunity to connect with a new and highly coveted audience, which includes small-business owners. Microsoft will continue to invest heavily in MSN.com, as well as continue to explore new advertising opportunities on Live.com, OfficeLive.com, Microsoft.com, the Xbox Live(R) service, Internet Protocol television (IPTV), mobile devices and other Microsoft properties. About Microsoft Office Live Microsoft Office Live offerings range from free domain name, Web site and company e-mail accounts that are advertising-supported to more comprehensive services available on a subscription-fee basis. The offerings can be especially attractive to companies with 10 or fewer employees, which typically lack in-house technical resources or the budget to keep an IT person on staff. Microsoft Office Live Basics, Microsoft Office Live Essentials and Microsoft Office Live Collaboration are being offered free of charge to customers during the beta program. Customers interested in participating in the beta program are invited to register online at http://www.OfficeLive.com . Microsoft expects to release final public versions of all three Microsoft Office Live services in late 2006. The beta program is currently only available to U.S. businesses. About MSN and Windows Live MSN attracts more than 465 million unique users worldwide per month. With localized versions available globally in 42 markets and 21 languages, MSN is a world leader in delivering compelling programmed content experiences to consumers and online advertising opportunities to businesses worldwide. Windows Live, a new set of personal Internet services and software, is designed to bring together in one place all the relationships, information and interests people care about most, with enhanced safety and security features across their PC, devices and the Web. MSN and Windows Live will be offered alongside each other as complementary services. Some Windows Live services entered an early beta phase on Nov. 1, 2005; these and future beta updates can be found at http://ideas.live.com . MSN is located on the Web at http://www.msn.com . MSN worldwide sites are located at http://www.msn.com/worldwide.ashx . About Microsoft Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential. NOTE: Microsoft, Windows Live, MSN and Xbox Live are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
SOURCE Microsoft Corp.