Wiley Designs, a Westlake Village advertising firm, has created an Internet web site to promote the Media City Center shopping mall in Burbank.
The web site, which provides graphics-heavy descriptions of businesses at the 2.5 million-square-foot shopping center, also features its own virtual art gallery and an interactive coffeehouse/literary corner. Media Center's more than 140 tenants include Ikea, Circuit City, The Gap, California Pizza Kitchen and the Sports Chalet.
Debra Silbar, Wiley's creative director and vice president, said the high-tech marketing campaign is part of a growing trend in shopping center advertising toward mixing computer marketing with more traditional modes of advertising such as newspaper, broadcast, outdoor billboards and direct mail.
"You're reaching people all over the world with this. People in Egypt are looking at you," she said. "It's instant information--store hours, the different restaurants, what's at the movie theaters, events going on that week, so people can really plan ahead."
Stefanie Elkins, spokeswoman for the Chicago-based International Council of Shopping Centers, said web sites for shopping centers began popping up about a year ago and continue to increase in popularity.
"We are hearing more and more about them," she said. "It's a very cost-effective way to reach a lot of people."
Elkins said it is too early to determine how successful the Internet advertising has been.