As much of the Northern hemisphere gears up for summer holidays, “out of office” email autoreplies are enjoying a seasonal surge in use. While such messages are typically purely informational in nature, Swedish ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi Stockholm recently created Out Of Office Ad — a way to monetize automatic email responses through sponsorship.
Saatchi & Saatchi hit upon the idea while planning for the paternity leave of art director Gustav Egerstedt, and tried out the concept by selling Egerstedt’s out of office reply to digital production company B-Reel. “This out of office autoreply is brought to you by B-Reel,” the message begins. “Gustav Egerstedt is on paternity leave and has sold his out of office ad space to B-Reel, the world’s leading digital production company.” The message then goes on to provide contact information at B-Reel along with Egerstedt’s own return date. Buoyed by the success of that first effort, the company is now getting ready to launch a service that provides the same capabilities to others. Using Out of Office Ad Systems, companies large and small will be able to earn extra revenue by accepting ad sponsorship on their vacation autoreplies, or they’ll be able to donate such advertising space to the charity of their choice.
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