– Google to advertisers: let’s talk about Yahoo deal: Following the Association of National Advertisers’ criticism of Google’s (NSDQ: GOOG) search ad pact with Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) — which is currently on hold in the face of Justice Department scrutiny — Tim Armstrong, the search giant’s president of advertising and commerce, is calling for a “town hall meeting” to discuss marketers’ concerns. Armstrong’s remarks were made during a Q&A at the Search Marketing Expo this week.
– Google’s Schmidt: brands supply sites with trust: If Armstrong was serving as Google’s good cop in responding to the ANA, Google CEO Eric Schmidt played the bad cop. Speaking at the American Magazine Conference, Schmidt dismissed the ANA’s complaint that the Yahoo deal would lead to higher ad prices and less competition: “If you’re going to criticize us, criticize us correctly. We’re guilty of many things, but that’s not one of them.” Separately, his tone softened towards marketers, when he said that websites need the imprimatur of major brand advertising, which serves as a beacon of trusted content. Schmidt: “Brands are how you sort out the cesspool.“
– Federated Media revamps self-serve ads: The blog network’s updated self-serve ad platform promises more control over their ad buys. In particular, they can purchase placement on a site-specific basis, across categories, or more targeted demos. FM is also selling ads can also be selected on a CPM basis or with a flat rate.
– Glam unveils luxury fashion network: As it preps its male-focused version, female focused Glam Media has formed a luxury ad and content network. Glam Luxury launches with 35 sites and several high end advertisers including crystal glass marketer Swarovski.
– Doritos gears up for user-gen Super Bowl spots: Doritos is back with its “Crash the Super Bowl” user-gen video promotion. Same as last year, users will create and upload their own Doritos commercials for voting on the dedicated website. There’s one new twist this time out. Perhaps in response to the economic downturn, the chips marketer will award $1 million to the winning video if their commercial beats professionally-created spots to become the first-ever user-gen piece that takes the No. 1 spot in USA Today’s annual Ad Meter — a pretty big if.
– Levi website scores attention for raunchy campaign: When doesn’t this sort of thing draw attention? The jeans company’s raunchy — or coarse, depending on your sensibilities — Unbuttonyourbeast.com has succeeded in drawing buzz, having made it into Jay Leno’s Tonight Show monologue and was a lead item on the Drudge Report.