INTERACTIVE: GALLERY REVIEWED BY PAUL WOOLMINGTON

Financial Times

Financial Times



Topical prize this month must go to those clever people at the Financial

Times. Not only do they have ‘the pink one’ online, with its business

news and world stock market indices (updated throughout the day), but

they are currently in the final week of their comprehensive Budget 95

report, which went up early on the evening of 29 November (the same day

Kenneth Clarke waxed lyrical).



Top marks should also go to Unisys, which used this opportunity to run

cross-referenced advertising and sponsorship links between print and the

Net site with hyper-links to its own Web site. Brown-nose prize of the

week must also go to me - as both of these brands are clients of 20/20

Media client.



Client Josie Roberts, development director, online publishing

Brief Promote the FT’s content internationally and to gain experience of

the new medium

Created by the FT

Graphics design The Media Factory

Systems design User Interface Technologies

Electronic publishing Paul Maidment

Address www.ft.com/



Time out



As magazine Web brand extensions go, this is probably the best exampleof

its kind. It really has incorporated the Time Out brand values, which

are reflected in design, editorial and attitude.



The site is also interactive in the true sense of the word. It gives the

readers the opportunity to comment on the reviews and participate in a

reader poll. The Merrydown Cider-sponsored ‘dark side’ areas are

masterfully put together -with an intriguing game to win a case of cider

(surprise, surprise).



Current US evidence proves that the Internet complements the printed

word, with circulation actually growing among the 31 titles researched

by MRI. Maybe this says as much about enterprise and proactivity.



Client Peter Fines, managing editor (Guides)

Brief Be an advertisement for Time Out, but also to be of added value to

the print version

Created by Time Out and Webmedia

Designers Chris Turner and John Oakey, Time Out

Technical consultant Ivan Pope, Webmedia

Address www.time out.co.uk



Commercial Union



The financial category lends itself best to this medium. However, most

of the sites are awful. They really need to excite, integrate and

reward.



Commercial Union’s site does just this. Moreover, it is also fully

integrated with the client’s broader communications activities, using

the ‘We won’t make a drama out of a crisis’ line cleverly throughout.

Good graphics and well-placed navigation buttons make downloading and

moving around fast and easy.



The content is excellent, imparting useful advice such as why never to

accept liability after a car accident. I was also impressed by the

clever use of the site as a recruitment vehicle for graduate trainee

intake.



A special mention must go to the genuinely interesting London’s Burning

tie-in, which allows CU’s sponsorship of the LWT show to go the extra

mile.



Client Ray Morley, marketing services manager, Commercial Union

Brief Disseminate information and learn about how best to use the system

with a view to business development in 1996

Copywriter Ray Morley

Designers Chris Meaney of Commercial Union with help

from Pipex

Address www.commercial-union.co.uk/cu/



Barclaysquare



This is a great-looking site with a well-designed and easy-to-use

interface. I guess it is not a place to browse with the graphics turned

off, as many currently do, because the site depends on encouraging your

mouse to scamper around a ‘virtual mall’.



It has an interesting approach to registering: you are encouraged to do

so, but if you don’t want to go through the hassle, there is also a ‘go

right in without registering’ button.



As a shopping facility, it looks like a Harvey Nichols shop window, but

at present it has few concessions in it.



Toys R Us makes much of its site, with plenty of information, but

Interflora doesn’t even display a telephone number.



I only hope that the content will soon develop to encourage not only

one-shot browsers, but repeat-visit shoppers.



Client Roger Alexander, managing director, Barclays emerging markets

unit

Brief Be intuitive, easy to navigate and quick to download. To take

account of the brand values of different stores. To be fun and

entertaining

Designers Colman Graff Interactive

Systems design Interactive Telephony

Address www.itl.net/barclaysquare/



Cyberia Cafe



Cyberia is a fabulous success story that provides tangible evidence of

‘cyberenterprise’ at its white-hot best.



As you might expect, the site does not disappoint. The cafe theme

pervades, with image maps on full-screen graphics serving to link all

the elements of the site.



A great promotional tool for Cyberia and its sister organisation,

Easynet, it also contains some amusing content - I was particularly

intrigued by a section entitled ‘couples looking for expansion’. Screens

of simple blue text on white backgrounds are not what one might expect,

but, on reflection, the simple layouts are often the most effective.



Client Gene Teare and Eva Pascoe, directors of the Cyberia cafe

Brief Explain what Cyberia is, advertise its events, report on Web news

and promote digital artists

Created by Rene Martin

Graphics design Brian Maloney

Systems design Easynet

Address www.easynet.co.uk/cyberia/



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