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Coming soon: A Monster ad campaign

The job listings site plans to spend $125 million in TV, radio, print and online ads in 2004, as it fights to retain its position as the most popular online career board.

Job listings site Monster is launching a new marketing campaign, as it fights to retain its position as the most popular online career board.

The company on Wednesday said it plans to invest $125 million in marketing and advertising during 2004, including increased spending on television, radio, print and online ad campaigns. As part of the effort, Maynard, Mass.-based Monster announced a new brand and tagline, "today's the day," which replaces the company's current slogan of "never settle."

Monster, which claims some 40 million members worldwide, continues to look for new ways to boost traffic and offset the recent loss of some of its largest partners to rivals. In August, the job site lost exclusive deals to provide listings for two of the most heavily visited destinations on the Web: Time Warner's America Online service and Microsoft's MSN Web portal. Both AOL and MSN subsequently signed deals with Monster rival CareerBuilder.com. Web search giant Yahoo also joined the job classifieds market last year through its $436 million acquisition of HotJobs.com.

To burn its new marketing message into job seekers' minds, Monster said it will start with a new 30-second TV ad set to debut Dec. 26 during broadcasts of the College Bowl Championship Series. The campaign will feature people beginning their day wondering if they might see their professional prospects improve.

Monster said that it is already working on an ad to be featured during Super Bowl XXXVIII on Feb. 1. The National Football League championship game TV broadcast typically includes the debut of some of the year's most memorable--and most expensive--commercials. AOL is another company that has already committed to launching several ads during the broadcast. Monster has introduced commercials during the Super Bowl for the last few years.

The company also announced plans to sponsor the National Collegiate Athletic Association and 2004 U.S. Olympic Team as part of its marketing push.

In addition, Monster announced a partnership with Web portal operator Terra Lycos to become the career content provider for Lycos.com, Wired.com and several other sites. The two companies are creating a job search tool for Lycos.com and Wired.com that directs site visitors to a co-branded career page featuring job listings and other resources.