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January 21, 2003

Written by Bob Meyer, Editor of BarterNews

Two Barter Offices Receive Consumers' Choice Award

International Monetary Systems Cited For Excellence

The Consumers' Choice Awards uses independent research firms to conduct surveys of the public and the business communities across North America.

Sponsored by Consumers' Choice Institute (USA) and Consumers' Choice Institute (Canada) two Continental Trade Exchange barter offices of International Monetary Systems (OTCBB:INLM) were recognized for excellence through the surveys: Columbus, Ohio, and Orangeville, Ontario.

"Empty Seat Budget" Thinking Inks Deal Between Cayman Airways & Travel Media Barter Firm

Georgetown, a privately held barter company, is providing Cayman Airways billboards and radio ads in Houston and Tampa, and radio and bus-shelter ads in the Fort Lauderdale market.

This agreement comes on the heels of another deal made earlier with Aviacsa Airlines, according to Georgetown President George Beaudet. "2003 is shaping up to be a good year for barter advertising," he noted. "Many airlines no longer have the cash to purchase the advertising needed, so they work with us and use their perishable inventory.

NATE Convention Scheduled For Atlanta

The National Association of Trade Exchanges (NATE) will be holding its annual convention April 10-12 at the Atlanta Capitol Plaza Hotel. Rates for this year's convention are $650 BANC, $250 cash. Early payment by January 31 earns a discount.

NATE also has announced a new service for members after concluding an agreement with Directories USA, an online service that lists all businesses in the U.S. by area or category. Such information (company name, phone number, owner name, number of employees, etc.) will enable the trade exchanges (members of NATE who use this service) to obtain information about their prospects before contacting them.

NATE's Board of Directors voted unanimously to absorb the cost of accessing this information for all NATE members. For more information on the convention and new Directories USA service, call: (440) 205-5378.

PR Moves Up In Eyes Of Marketers

The Patrick Marketing Group, a California-based marketing and research firm, says companies will spend more this year marketing their products and services than they did last year.

"The outlook for 2003 appears to be completely different, almost diametrically opposed," according to Craig Shields, a Patrick Marketing Group partner.

Nationally, almost 49% of the executives who responded to the recent survey said their company plans to increase spending on marketing this year. Thirty-one percent expected their spending to remain the same as it was in 2002, and 19% expected to spend less.

Public relations is the most popular choice for that money, according to the survey, with about 71% of the respondents naming it as a priority this year. Traditional advertising will continue to languish with only 56% listing it as a priority this year, ranking it fifth on the list of top choices behind direct mail at 67%. Internet and e-mail marketing came in at 63%, and trade shows at 61%.

The largest PR markets in the U.S. are: Washington (DC), New York, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Denver, and Detroit.

Bartercard Revisits The Internet

Bartercard International is building an online presence with a fully transactional and integrated members portal. The auction section of the site has over 5,000 listings per month and is doing $2.5 million in trading activity every month.

Bartercard says the key difference of their internet effort is that it has been designed as complimentary to the existing broker-client interface. They do not see it as a replacement tool, but rather one that enhances the barter experience for the client.

The site does not aim to replace off-line services, but rather to layer new services on top of existing functions. Bartercard transactions are now being facilitated throughout 100 offices in 13 countries,

CEO's Current Thinking

From a national survey of more than 1,100 chief executives by TEC International, an organization for leader of small to mid-sized U.S. companies, here's a quick look at what the country's business leaders are thinking:

Three out of five chief executives expect the U.S. economy to rebound by the second quarter. Given the current state of the economy, 47% of respondents have reduced operating expenses, 47% have modified their business strategy, and 38% have reduced capital spending. (Numbers totaled over 100% because multiple answers were allowed).

Greatest concern regarding the economic future? 41% said another major terrorist attack in the U.S., 17% were concerned about losing jobs to lower-cost countries, 14% said a lack of skilled labor, 14% named higher taxes, and 7% said higher energy prices were their major concern.

Growth of economy this year? Of the CEOs surveyed, 55% expect the U.S. economy to grow 2% to 4%, and 36% predicted 3% to 4%. Only 2% of the chief executives expected economy to grow 5% or more.

Get New Money-Making Ideas, and Valuable Contacts!

You can obtain these ideas and contacts in every every available back-issue of BarterNews.

Here And There. . .
  • Bartercard Australia won the sponsorship "strategy" category in Australia's most prestigious sponsorship awards. Judged by the Australian Sponsorship and Marketing Association, and the Public Relations Institute of Australia, Bartercard topped major international corporations in winning the award.
  • The Cruise Lines International Association reports that it is full speed ahead for the cruise industry. The association expects about 8 million North Americans to sail in 2003, compared with 7.4 million last year. (In 1980 the number was just 1.4 million.)
  • Have you signed up to receive a summary via e-mail of the Tuesday Report every week? If not, go to the top of this issue (right hand corner) to sign up!
  • The latest casualty in the hard-hit publishing industry is the 400,000 circulated Bloomberg Personal Finance magazine. The magazine was 72% owned by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

  • The use of scrip, gift certificates, due bills, etc. are a way of trading that we've covered from time to time. Now the online game community has come up with the ultimate...where people trade real money (using their credit cards) to acquire additional "fictitious currency" beyond that which they earn playing the game, or that which comes with their subscriptions.

    Some users in popular role-playing games (Ultima Online and EverQuest) make real money by auctioning off characters, weapons and other objects. The trading of game currency for real dollars is a touchy topic, partly because it could give affluent players an advantage, i.e. "then the experience would start seeming like a bad copy of real life," exclaimed one game company chief executive.

We welcome your comments, questions, and observations.
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