Services & Software

AOL to launch broadband ad blitz

The country's biggest Internet provider will try to cover the ground it has lost to high-speed rivals through a two-month branding blitz.

America Online said Monday that it would launch a new ad campaign from June 1 to promote the premium service.

The online branding exercise, which will run through July, is a forerunner of a much more vigorous campaign involving print and broadcast media, the company said.

AOL, which has the highest number of dial-up subscribers, has lagged in luring broadband subscribers. It recently axed a plan to sell broadband directly, instead trying to win customers with a "bring your own access" strategy that touts the premium content as an add-on to customers who already have broadband service. In a double whammy for the world's biggest interactive services company, there has been a substantial drop in growth of its dial-up subscriber base of late.

The new ad campaign, created by digital marketing firm Atmosphere BBDO, pushes the idea that speed is just one part of the broadband story and that content is equally as important.

The series of "Speed Meet..." ads will run on Web sites operated by The New York Times, The Washington Post, Rolling Stone, MTV and ABC News.

In an effort to push its broadband services, AOL last month

Early this month, for the first time, the number of U.S. broadband