Browsing all articles from December, 2010

Job Opportunity — Internet Developer

Junior Web Developer – Mobile Marketing Company (Wayne, PA)

Advanced Telecom Services, an established technology company in Wayne PA, seeks an Entry Level Web Designer on a contract to hire basis. In this role, the Entry Level Web Designer will design graphics, write code, and develop the layout for multiple affiliate web sites including and The candidate will interact closely with marketing and design according to requirements developed by the marketing team.

This is an excellent opportunity for a recent graduate to work in a start-up environment and work closely with some established entrepreneurs.

While basic web programming skills are required, this position requires a high level of creativity and requires excellent graphic design skills.
Required Qualifications:

Demonstrated programing and design aptitude
Experience with image manipulation programs such as Photoshop
Experience with XML, HTML, XHTML and CSS
Demonstrated ability to multi-task and produce results on a predefined timeframe
Good communication skills with partners, co-workers and customers
PHP, Javascript or other scripting experience a plus

Other prefered qualifications

Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or Graphic Design
Social media experience
Good writing skills
Knowledge of Search Engine Optimization techniques

Compensation based on experience and skill level. We will consider full time, part time, or contract level work.



The Crossword Puzzle 900 Line

In the early days of 900 numbers in 1989, Advanced Telecom Services was a start-up company funded by 20-somethings with second mortgages on their first homes.  So, there wasn’t a lot of extra money to go around.

The very first 900 number program that ATS did was a 900 number television commercial for CD rates.  In 1989, CD’s were not something that you listened to music with, they were an investment for certificates of deposit.  Back then, you could actually get a decent rate on your money at the bank, not like today when I receive 0.17% on my bank deposits.

“It soon became obvious, however, that we couldn’t survive too many failures when we were buying advertising,” said Bob Bentz, president of Advanced Telecom Services.  “Plus, there was the problem of cash flow from guys that quite frankly didn’t have a lot of it.”  Advertising required pre-payment and the return from AT&T on the 900 numbers did not happen until 30 days after the end of the month.

One night, the employees were looking at the newspaper for a win-win-win solution for everybody when they noticed the crossword puzzle.  Why not offer a 900 number for people to cheat on the crossword puzzle rather than wait for the next day when the solution is printed in the newspaper?

The team took the concept to The New York Times and the other major daily newspapers in New York City.  A few months later, all of the major New York newspapers had signed up for the crossword puzzle answer line and the concept of having a 900 number cheat line in the crossword puzzle became national and ultimately international when ATS took the same concept to its London office–an office that still thrives today.

Here’s a look at Merl Reagle’s crossword puzzle answer line from the Sunday Philadelphia Inquirer.

crossword puzzle 900 number answer line


Santa Needs Mobile Marketing

North Pole – Who’s the greatest businessman of all-time?

No, it’s not Henry Ford, nor is it John D. Rockefeller. Bill Gates? Donald Trump? Richard Branson? Mark Zuckerberg?

Give me a break.

The greatest businessman of all time is, without a doubt, Santa Claus.

Think about it. His customers return year after year. He has a factory that churns out toys 24/7 with little overhead. He has loyal employees; of course, there aren’t a lot of jobs in the world in this tough economy, so imagine how hard it is for elves these days.

Santa Claus has a promotions department that secures prime visibility in crowded malls and gets him grand marshal positions in parades all over the world. He also has a public relations staff that writes songs, poems, and even produces movies and television shows with him as the star. His stamina is amazing and there are no banned substances in his body, unless you count thousands of chocolate chip cookies!

He’s an advertising genius. Just watch TV in December and see how many commercials he’s on. I’ve seen him drinking Coca-Cola for years now and am still amazed how he can balance himself on that Norelco razor after all the junk food he eats!

And talk about customer service. It’s the best in the world. No waiting on hold to talk to his telemarketers that are actually “Bob” from India. He knows what you want, often without your even telling him.

But, sometimes I think Santa Claus is slipping a bit the past few years. He hasn’t really embraced html5, smartphones, social networking, or any new technology very well. I think he’s one of only about 15 Americans that don’t have a Facebook account.

His workers still use basic tools from the pre-Industrial Revolution. His mode of transportation still involves harnessed livestock that takes a treacherous route around the world. Call the ASPCA!

And, don’t tell me one animal with a light bulb on his nose is innovative. His ordering process is downright archaic. I mean, who writes letters any more?

What Santa Claus needs is mobile marketing. Worldwide, 5 trillion text messages are sent each year, but how many of you have ever received one, or sent one, to the North Pole? Even Verizon can’t hear you now at the North Pole.

Did you know that 18% of those 5 trillion text messages are considered commercial text messages? Don’t you think a broadcast text message would be a great way for Santa to get rid of some of his closeout inventory? I hear there’s a warehouse at the North Pole that still has half a million eight-tracks and cassette tapes in it!

Did you ever watch the late news on television on Christmas Eve? There’s usually some cheesy graphic there with a picture of Santa flying over some other country. In the eastern United States, I think he’s usually in the Czech Republic during our 11 o’clock newscast.

Well, I’m an insomniac and I often stay up late multi-tasking on my laptop while watching the History Channel or ESPN—even on Christmas Eve. I would love to get a text message to know when Santa is getting close to my hometown so I can get to bed on time. If Southwest can notify me of its flight arrivals by text message, I would think Santa could announce the progress of his reindeer with all those clever little engineers he has on staff.

Ordering is another issue. How many of you still have envelopes and stamps in your house? It’s been so long since I sent a letter that I have no idea how much it costs to send a letter. How much postage do you need to put on a letter to the North Pole anyway? It’s not even on the web site; I checked. Plus, there’s the issue of the post office losing your snail mail which happens an awful lot this time of year.

By the way Santa, I’m still waiting for the Benz I asked for last year. I knew I should have sent my Christmas list by Fed Ex.

With text messages, we could send in our Christmas lists to Santa Claus through a short code, say 72682 (S-A-N-T-A). With an easy-to-use mobile marketing solution like this, Santa could confirm receipt and even tell you if you’ve been…bad or good.

Maybe that’s what happened to my Benz.

Bob Bentz is president of Advanced Telecom Services which provides a do-it-yourself mobile marketing network to advertising agencies. He is a father with two children and he still believed in Santa Claus until last year when his Benz never arrived.


Online Advertising Now Bigger than Newspaper Ads

In 2010, for the first time ever, advertising online has surpassed advertising in newspapers. In 2011, online advertising is anticipated to be $25.8 billion versus $22.8 billion for newspapers.

Total advertising in the USA is expected to rise 3% this year to a total of $168.5 billion. Spending on newspaper print ads will decline by 8.2% in 2010 and is anticipated to decline by another 6% in 2011. While it was a bad year for advertising, it was not nearly as bad as the advertising statistics for 2009.

Online Advertising Exceeds Newspaper Advertising
Online Advertising Exceeds Newspaper Advertising

Advanced Telecom Services offers its MatchLink online dating solution as a new source of NTR for newspapers. Newspapers can simply link its online news sites to the community building online dating site and immediately begin receiving additional revenue.


Merry Christmas from






Merry TXmas from

Drive more customers to your store this year with text message marketing solutions from Advanced Telecom Services and  Merry TXmas.


Operation Game 800 Voteline

Hasbro created buzz for its Operation game by having the public vote for Sam’s newest ailment via an 800 number provided by ATS.

As the Christmas toy shopping holiday season is here, we thought we’d bring back one from the archives that show how an 800 number vote program can generate significant interest in a product such as the mainstay game OPERATION.  In 2003, Hasbro wanted a way to generate interest in the aging OPERATION game so it turned to Advanced Telecom Services for an 800 number voting program on what the new ailment should be for Sam, the patient in the game.


The public voted and voted often and the new ailment for Sam can still be found today as BRAIN FREEZE was the winner.  I mean who hasn’t suffered with brain freeze?  I know I have.

Readers beware:  the phone number used for the Operation game is now a completely different type of phone line (not owned by us) so please don’t call expecting to vote.

WAYNE, Pa., Dec. 2 /PRNewswire/ — Advanced Telecom Services (ATS), a
world leader in interactive telephone services, has teamed with Hasbro Toys to
promote a new twist on an old favorite.  ATS is handling calls for an instant
win sweepstakes that allows callers to vote on a new “ailment” for Hasbro’s
“Operation” game.  By calling 1-866-SAM-VOTE highlighting, callers can decide on one of
three new ailments:  Brain Freeze, Tennis Elbow or Growling Stomach.  The
winning ailment will be added to the next version of “Operation” to be
released for sale.  Winners will be chosen randomly among the callers.  The
grand prize winner will receive a $5000 toy shopping spree.  The three first
prize winners will be awarded a $1000 toy shopping spree and 300 second prize
winners will get a “I Voted, Did You?” t-shirt.
“Operation,” originally developed by The Milton Bradley Company in 1965,
has maintained its popularity into the 21st century.  Marketed as a game of
skill, players pretend they are operating on a man drawn on an operating table
with little compartments scattered around his body housing ailing body parts.
Players take turns removing the parts with electric tweezers that buzz if they
touch the sides of the compartments.  Hasbro, Inc. acquired The Milton Bradley
Company in 1984.
Since October 1, 2003 when the instant win sweepstakes began, ATS has
taken over 100,000 calls from voters.  The vote line, 1-866-SAM-VOTE , is being
promoted on the Nickelodeon network, through Nickelodeon magazine, and various retailers throughout the U.S.  ATS will continue
accepting calls until December 31, 2003, the last day to cast a vote.
Advanced Telecom Services, founded in 1989, is a full-service
telecommunications company specializing in interactive promotional services
for the telephone.  With business operations in the United States, the United
Kingdom, Dublin, Prague and Vancouver, ATS processes thousands of calls each
day through its network facilities.


Thanksgiving Spurs App Downloads

Apparently, there is more to Thanksgiving than just eating a lot of turkey.  There was a significant surge in mobile app download and usage over Thanksgiving weekend, with mobile app downloads increasing 25 percent over the four-day holiday weekend compared to the previous week.

Drilling down further, app downloads surged 54 percent on Thanksgiving Day compared to Thursday, with downloads growing 39 percent on Black Friday.  The company said new devices detected on Black Friday jumped by over 57% over the previous week’s Friday.

Total new device growth for the holiday weekend, compared to the same four-day period from the prior week, was 31%.  Interestingly, this surge demonstrates that consumers appear to be buying and activating smartphones early in the season for personal use.  This early indicator suggests that strong spending on smartphones as gifts throughout the season should continue.  Not surprisingly, the bulk of growth is driven by Apple iOS devices and a number of recent break-out Android devices, including the Samsung Galaxy S, Motorola Droid 2 and LG Optimus S.

It should be interesting to see Flurry-derived data after Christmas day, once droves of new smartphones and tablet devices are given as gifts and put to use.

(Source – Flurry mobile analytics)

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