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Former TV Anchor Looks to Cash in on Cyber Monday

Former NBC 7/39 news anchor Vic Salazar has launched a Web site, Cybermondaydiscountcodes.com, which he says provides one-stop shopping for retail discount coupons.

Salazar left the station at the end of July and started Vic Salazar Communications, based in El Cajon. Aside from being a publicist, he describes himself an “Internet publisher.”

Cybermondaydiscountcodes.com went live in mid-October, and Salazar says he’s signed up 130 stores, including major chain and Internet retailers, as well as mom-and-pop enterprises. The large operations outnumber small ones by a 20-1 ratio.

The site includes discounts from Amazon.com, Wal-Mart, Target, Dell Computers and Macy’s.

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The advantage to retailers is that it offers another avenue to make a sale in tough economic times when shoppers are tightening their purse strings. The advantage to consumers is it helps them stretch a buck.

While he signed up major retailers via clearinghouses that act as their third-party Internet marketing managers, some stores approached him on their own. Payments to Cybermondaydiscountcodes.com varies. They’re based on a percentage of each sale.

Salazar declined to say how much revenue he has generated from the site, but says the response has been overwhelming.

Though he expects the biggest spike to occur, appropriately, on Cyber Monday , which falls on the first Monday after Thanksgiving and is considered to be the No. 1 online shopping day of the year , he plans to operate the site year-round.

“People are always looking for deals. It’s the smart way to shop and that’s proven, so it will continue to grow,” he said.

According to comScore, online spending was up in the third quarter compared with the same quarter last year, despite the sudden stock market slump, and the National Retail Federation has predicted that while holiday sales will be up a mere 2.2 percent this year compared with last, online sales should fare better.

However, comScore recently reported sales on e-commerce sites slowed to 1 percent in October compared with the same month in 2007.

Since he designed the Web site and maintains it himself, Salazar says his costs are minimal , just monthly Web hosting and registering the domain.

In addition to Cybermondaydiscountcodes.com, he operates Petbirthdayparty

.com, which aims pet products and coupons at owners who pamper their pets, and helped his 13-year-old daughter launch a site, Magsforteens.com.

Internet publishing is nothing new. But the beauty is that it enables small entrepreneurs to compete on a grand stage, he says.

“They need me because they’re trying to move product and reach consumers, and people like me need to be able to play on a field with the big boys,” he added.

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