“What is more interactive: a coloring-in sheet on a McDonald’s tray table or a Web banner?” That was the (rhetorical) question a planner I used to work with once posed and it really stuck with me, especially when looking at the utterly dismal portfolio of online creative back in the day.

Digital coupon events on leading retailer websites monitored by Marx, a Kantar Media solution, increased 50 percent in CY 2012 compared to CY 2011.

Kantar Media reports that more than 274 billion Free Standing Insert (FSI) coupons were distributed in 2012 which represents a 0.8 percent increase in activity versus 2011.

SYNERGY Direct Response announced that Shayne Walters has joined there New Business Development team. He will be based out of their corporate offices in Santa Ana, CA.

Valpak Direct Marketing Systems, Inc. announced that it will partner with YaSabe.com to enter the expanding US Hispanic market.

Coupons.com and well-known scientist and prolific author, Dr. Paul J. Zak, a Professor of Neuroeconomics at Claremont Graduate University, announced the results of the first known research study on the physiological and psychological effects of coupons.

The Cisneros Group of Companies teamed up with Cuponidad to launch its online couponing company in Venezuela, tapping into one of the fastest growing territories in Latin America‚s $70 billion e-commerce market.

Explosive growth in call-based advertising, driven in part by mobile proliferation, will lead to major advances in call analytics and call quality, according to a new report by BIA/Kelsey titled, "Call-Based Ads: Eliminating the Unknown From Advertising."

The U.S. Postal Service recently hosted the 2012 USPS Sampling Innovation Symposium, an information forum featuring consumer packaged goods (CPGs) and advertising agency leaders from across the nation to develop creative strategies on growing a home-delivery product sampling program.

VoodooVox Inc. announce that it has teamed up with Espacios Media LLC, a Miami-based media representation company to bring direct response marketers a cost efficient, quality lead generation platform that addresses the Hispanic marketplace.

The battered US economy has driven price-conscious consumers online to do research before making a purchase, and eMarketer estimates that there will be 92.5 million online coupon users by the end of 2012. Those savings-savvy consumers will no doubt be helped by electronic circulars, which now rival their print counterparts in penetration, according to a November 2011 study of US internet users by Yahoo! and Ipsos.

Kantar Media reports that retailer advertising expenditures increased 1.6 percent and retailer participation in Free Standing Insert (FSI) coupon promotion pages increased 30.7 percent in CY 2011 versus CY 2010.

Once just a sliver of all online dollars, US online ad spending on branding-based objectives now accounts for a significant—and growing—percentage of total online ad spending.

The number of digital coupon events increased by 12.3 percent in 2011, as compared to 2010, across key websites tracked by Kantar Media .

Direct-response marketing may soon be taking a backseat to online brand advertising initiatives. According to a DIGIDAY and Vizu “State of the Industry Survey,” more marketers plan to increase their online branding initiatives in 2012 than they do their direct response tactics.