WALTHAM, Mass. – November 5, 2001 – – Terra Lycos (NASDAQ: TRLY and Madrid Exchange: TRR), the largest global Internet network, today announced the launch of its new media-driven network architecture that delivers advertisers a highly targeted emotionally connected audience through visually enriched page design and standardized navigation. New life stages pages designed to function as magnets for key audience groups have been launched. New large, time-based interruptive ad products across the network and scrolling personalized ad feeds on My Lycos give advertisers an impactful opportunity to reach their target audiences. Search results on Lycos.com have been simplified as part of the new architecture, and now return the freshest results on the Web by updating the catalog more often than competitors.
“To provide outstanding value to both users and advertisers, Terra Lycos conducted extensive user testing and then created an entirely new advertising platform that delivers dramatically improved ad performance,” said Stephen Killeen, president of Terra Lycos U.S. “As we strengthen the emotional bond with our customers through rich content presentation and aggregation, we can then offer our advertisers the opportunity to contextually target key demographic groups in ways that benefit both advertisers and users.”
The new network architecture takes advantage of a flexible publishing structure and shares many design elements and navigational features with Terra’s site architecture, leveraging the combined strengths of Terra and Lycos following the combination of the two companies. The resources of the combined Terra and Lycos Networks have enabled the company to create this new model rapidly, and to realize the economies of scale of a truly global Internet company to build a product once, and deploy it many times around the world.
Life Stages Sites Merchandise Traffic and Content
Terra Lycos has introduced new traffic-merchandising tools for advertisers with the launch of a new Angelfire, Family Zone and Lycos Holidays sites, the first three in a larger series of new destinations. The sites aggregate content for teens, family and holiday planners at http://www.angelfire.com, http://familyzone.lycos.com, and http://holidays.lycos.com. The new sites let advertisers target highly desirable life stages groups by putting their messages in front of users who are drawn to the “magazine cover” formats that aggregate the hottest news, tips and other content drawn from sites across the Terra Lycos Network, as well as content partners from around the globe, including the 160 Terra Lycos sites.
Users will enjoy a new media experience across the network with image-packed pages and striking graphics creating a common visual language among the diverse sites while maintaining their individual identities. The new publishing system is anchored with uniform navigational tools on the left side and across the top of the page. The universal navigation system fosters familiarity and comfort in users’ online experiences, and should result in more frequent and longer visits to the network. Rapid movement from Matchmaker.com or Lycos Entertainment to Lycos.com for search or Wired News is intuitive using the new tools, and is designed to build user affinity for the network sites and increase duration of visits.
Studies Indicate Ad Awareness Soars
Extensive user behavior testing of the effects of ad positioning led Terra Lycos to adopt a flexible publishing system that empowers advertisers to create rich ads in a variety of sizes and formats. The new page designs efficiently accept virtually all IAB ad sizes as well as all interactive/rich media vehicles. The new design also reduces ad clutter — limiting the number of ads per page to increase the prominence of the remaining ads. Sophisticated user eyetracking studies have demonstrated that the optimized placement of ads improves awareness and message retention.
“Terra Lycos partners with our advertisers to create an uncluttered environment where innovative ad products are encouraged and deliver better performance,” said Rich Gotham, vice president of sales for Terra Lycos U.S. “The new network architecture and the creation of our new life stages sites provide advertisers with a medium for contextually relevant placement of ads, where they behave as a natural extension of the site content delivering the right ad to the right audience at the right time.”
Optimizing page layout has dramatically elevated the performance of the conventional banner to the point where it performs on par with a skyscraper ad as evidenced by sophisticated eye-tracking studies conducted for Terra Lycos by Eyetracking, Inc. In their new location, below the top navigational bar, banners realize a 200% increase in the percentage of users who view the ad when compared to previous locations at the top of the page, as is the norm for competitive sites. Specific ad performance improvements include:
- Three times as many users view a banner in its new position below the top navigational bar, providing advertisers with a greater audience.
- Users spend seven times longer viewing banners, which are now located below the top navigational bar in the new design, providing advertisers with more exposure to the larger audience.
- Internet messaging units, the large mid-page 300×250 ads, now easily inserted into Network pages, command the highest visibility and user attention span of the most popular standard ad sizes.
Scrolling ads at the bottom of the screen will now be delivered to the highly loyal users of the personalized My Lycos site. My Lycos users will see alternating targeted ad messages and personalized up-to-the-minute news driven by the user’s programmed preferences.
About Terra Lycos
Terra Lycos is a global Internet network operating in 43 countries in 20 languages, reaching 103 million unique monthly visitors worldwide. Created by the combination of Terra Networks, S.A. and Lycos, Inc., in October 2000, Terra Lycos is one of the most popular Internet networks in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia and Latin America, and is the largest Internet access provider in Spain and Latin America. The Terra Lycos network of sites includes Lycos.com, Terra.com, Angelfire.com, ATuHora.com, Gamesville.com, HotBot.com, Invertia.com, Lycos Zone, Matchmaker.com, Quote.com, Rumbo.com, Sonique, Tripod.com, RagingBull.com and Wired News (Wired.com). The company’s headquarters are in Barcelona and it has major offices in Boston, Buenos Aires, Madrid, Miami, Monterrey and Sao Paulo among others. It is listed on the Madrid stock exchange (TRR) and on the Nasdaq electronic market (TRLY). For more information, please visit our corporate Web site at http://www.terralycos.com.