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Advertising Roundup: Apple Attacks Microsoft, Pepsi Prepares for Turnaround, and More

Apple's new ads designed to get under Ballmer's skin -- Apple fired back a new round of commercials that make fun of Microsoft's expensive attempts to turn around consumers' impressions of its Vista operating system. CNET's Tom Krazit admits that while the ads are clever, the negative tone could lose its appeal in an election year. [Source: CNET]

Pepsi prepares for a turnaround -- PepsiCo Chairman-CEO Indra Nooyi says the company is on the verge of a huge, 3-year, $1.2 billion makeover for all of its key soft drink brands. Nooyi blames the economic downturn in part for the decline in the company's North American volume. [Source: Ad Age]

New insights on marketing to 'tweens' -- According to a recent report by Dubit Research, if marketers want to catch the attention of 7- to 12-year olds, the best bet is to catch them in the virtual worlds where they're spending increasingly more time. The most interesting data point: Forty-five percent of kids in virtual worlds like Habbo Hotel and Disney's Club Penguin notice the ads -- and the majority of those kids even like seeing them. [Source: AdFreak]

Bad news for agencies -- At the Association of National Advertisers conference over the weekend, CMOs at companies like HP and Charles Schwab said that ad agencies and ad networks aren't living up to their promises. Even worse -- agencies are often in the way. Both companies are considering bypassing them completely and forming more direct relationships with media companies. [Source: Ad Age]

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