Cogitum Announces Pre-Release of New Language for Creating Descriptions of Internet Banner Products
Reston, VA, USA. January 24, 2001.
Cogitum LC, a leading developer of software for personal Internet information capture (PIIC), announced today the pre-release of BannerML, a new language for creating user-friendly descriptions of products advertised in Internet banners. BannerML would allow advertisers to attach additional text information to banners. It is targeted to the end-user, and it describes recommended fields (tags) of information about the advertised product. Text marked using BannerML would be delivered directly to the user's computer without any serious changes in current banner delivery technology.
BannerML is based on the XML format, so it is similar to many industries' mark-up languages. However, it is not intended for marking up banners, per se, but rather for marking up new text information associated with a banner. BannerML would provide significant benefits to advertisers and users alike. It increases business opportunities for all companies in the Internet advertisement business, yet it is technically extremely easy to support and handle, and it is ready for wide-scale use after just minor adaptations of existing software. Support of this language does not require any changes at the ad delivering sites, but full utilization of BannerML opportunities will require some software components on the end-user's side.
Cogitum is developing BannerML in response to the challenges that face the Internet advertising market -- banner ads have a short life span, are generally intrusive (i.e., to click on an ad means the user must abandon whatever he was doing previously), and they provide extremely limited information. The quickly dropping click-though rate experienced by banner advertisers is only a symptom of these limitations.
Cogitum has been a leader in developing "banner management tools" that allow the end-user to clip, store, and search banner ads. The first such tool was launched in 2000, under the name Image Co-Tracker. Within only a few months, over 11,000 users downloaded this product from the Cogitum Web site (http://www.cogitum.com). BannerML takes banner management one step further by adding well-structured additional text information which would automatically fill fields associated with a banner in the user's database. Such additional information associated with banners could become a powerful marketing tool for advertising companies, but it needs industry-wide support.
Cogitum's goal is to attract the attention of the advertisement and software industries to this opportunity and to invite all interested companies and organizations to cooperate in the quick development and adaptation of this language as the de facto standard. The current pre-release of BannerML is available to all comments and calls for industry cooperation.
Leonid Malkov, President of Cogitum, says, 'BannerML has the potential to revolutionize banner advertisement, making it more comfortable and practical for users, and effective for advertisers. This pre-release version of BannerML includes the absolutely necessary components, whose benefits are quite obvious. Nevertheless, there are many ways to make this language more sophisticated and apply it to B2B businesses, including such classifications as industry' and interests,' so that advertisers and banner ad hosts' could choose the most relevant banner for a given user."
Alla Polegenkaya, Cogitum CEO, says, "In essence, BannerML bundles text information with a banner. For years now, bundling software with computers has helped to promote both the hardware and software, and has made personal computers more accessible and user-friendly for all types of users. Bundling banners with additional descriptions will work the same way -- increasing the usability of banners, thereby increasing both the click-through rate and the conversion rate. Users will be able to manage banner ads effectively, saving them time and encouraging sales." A detailed description of the proposed BannerML language, a demonstration of its utility, and explanations of its advantages are available at http://www.cogitum.com/BannerML.
Cogitum is the leading developer of software for personal Internet information capture. Cogitum currently has two main products: Image Co-Tracker, a clipping tool and visual database for Internet images, and Cogitum Co-Citer, a clipping tool and text database for fragments of Internet text. Both products are very popular and have received professional awards. Both are are available from the company Web site (http://www.cogitum.com).
Additional information about Cogitum and its products can be obtained by contacting President Leonid Malkov at 703-478-3050 (e-mail: Lmalkov@cogitum.com).