Bunchball’s Nitro Fuels Hearst’s eSPIN.com

2008-08-19 11:15:00

     Engagement Platform Increases Return Visits and Time Spent on Site



    REDWOOD CITY, Calif., Aug. 19 /EMWNews/ -- Bunchball, whose Nitro

platform is enabling websites to drive behavior and increase engagement,

today announced a partnership with Hearst Magazines Digital Media to

provide an incentive and rewards platform for its profile-based site for

teens, eSPIN.com, a part of the eCRUSH Teen Network.



    eSPIN is using Nitro to implement a virtual currency, virtual goods,

leaderboards, and other features commonly used in the gaming industry to

encourage desirable behaviors. As a result of their Nitro deployment,

Hearst has realized an increase in user engagement and time spent on

eSPIN.com.



    "It's just a month into our partnership with Bunchball and already

we've witnessed a significant bump in the length of each site visit," said

Amy Gibby, President of eSPIN. "Clearly our community is responding to the

added utility provided by Nitro, and the more time they spend on the site

the more opportunities we have to generate revenue during each visit."



    "We are happy to see another successful deployment of the Nitro

platform on a site like eSPIN," said Rajat Paharia, CEO of Bunchball. "The

early results are impressive and validate that the principles of game

mechanics and behavioral economics extend into all aspects of online user

engagement. By applying these principles, site developers can offer a

compelling user experience that encourages users to spend more time on a

site, which translates directly into revenue-generating opportunities."



    Nitro combines the best in game mechanics with the latest research in

behavioral economics to drive user behavior on websites. It accomplishes

this by leveraging the fundamental human desires for reward, competition,

achievement and status to incent users to act. Key Nitro components

include:



    -- Event Tracking: Track and reward all desired user behaviors



    -- Experience Tracking/Leveling: Enable users to gain status in a

community



    -- Virtual Currency: Establish a virtual economy that assigns value to

behaviors



    -- Leaderboards: Drive competition with persistent statistics and high-

score tables



    -- Challenges: Give users goals & missions, with rewards, to encourage

site usage



    -- News Feed: Expose site activity to users and drive traffic to fresh

content



    -- Notifier: Provide immediate feedback to users that reinforces

desired behaviors



    Hearst's eSPIN.com is using Nitro to drive a variety of behaviors,

including:




-- Inviting friends -- Submitting and reviewing photos -- Watching videos -- Making and taking quizzes -- Reading and commenting on articles -- Sending notes and gifts -- Completing sponsored offers

    About Bunchball



    Bunchball is a Web services company dedicated to driving user behavior

and increasing engagement on websites. Customers include NBC, Takkle and

Hearst's eSPIN. Based in Redwood City, California, and founded in February

2005, Bunchball is privately held with funding from Granite Ventures and

Adobe Ventures. For more information visit Bunchball online at

http://www.bunchball.com.



    About eSPIN



    eSPIN(R) (eSPIN.com) is a profile-based site that offers the old

junior-high game with a modern twist. Designed with safety in mind (all

youth submissions are screened to remove any personally identifiable

information and inappropriate content before they can be posted), this is

the premier way for gen-Y to connect, flirt and make new friends online.

Launched in 2001, eSPIN-the-Bottle(TM) has over 3,500,000 users and is

growing rapidly. eSPIN is part of the Hearst Teen Network, currently ranked

in the top 10 trafficked entertainment sites on the Web, according to

Comscore. The Hearst Teen Network includes Seventeen.com, CosmoGirl.com,

TeenMag.com, eCRUSH.com, eSPIN.com, MisQuinceMag.com, MyPromStyle.com and

DonateMyDress.org.




PR Contacts for Bunchball: Susan Lusty 206-331-4659 pr@bunchball.com Theresa Maloney 925-287-1509 pr@bunchball.com PR Contact for eSPIN: Andrew Palladino 212-843-8482 apalladino@rubenstein.com This release was issued through eReleases(TM). For more information, visit http://www.ereleases.com.

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