No wonder Digg, the nerdly news-discussion site, is dumping Federated Media, John Battelle's online-ad network, as the source of its ads. Lately, FM has outdone itself in precisely targeting its clients' demographics. First, it delivered a $15 off coupon for midpriced casual clothing chain Fashion Bug for Michael Arrington's tech news site TechCrunch, perfect for that blog's target audience of middle-aged Midwestern moms. Now FM is displaying banner ads promoting the American Girl line of books and dolls whenever I visit Digg, as pictured in the screenshot above. John Battelle, how did you know I was completely obsessed with those books ... in fifth grade?
Like, seriously obsessed. The way that Apple geeks are obsessed with Steve Jobs dolls, except with more hair-braiding.
American Girl follows a specific formula — create a plucky pre-teen character and set her in a romanticized historical setting. Model a matching doll with pretty hair, clothes, and accessories, sit back and profit. If you're unfamiliar with the brand, then you've never known, or been, a 9-year-old girl. Federated Media, brilliant job on serving up these ads to someone who might appreciate them. Too bad you delivered them about 20 years too late.