It's been eye-opening to have conversations with thought leaders in advertising and marketing regarding the future of the industry. The conversations always start on how one could advertise effectively in social media, but more often than not it turns into a discussion of the bigger question: What's the purpose of advertising/marketing?
It's no coincidence that I picked today to discuss what I feel is the most impressive digitally led, integrated marketing and social media campaign out there right now. Today is key to the narrative -- it's Stonewall 40, the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, a historical touchstone in the movement toward gay rights. With Stonewall 40 as punctuation, an online organizing network known as The Power today will officially launch a movement to expand the 1964 Civil Rights Act to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
Inspired by Fred Wilson , my colleagues and I decided to test Bing, Microsoft's new search engine, for a week and then report our results. The bottom line? We were impressed. Bing is interesting and may develop a stronger position, but it's got a long way to go to catch up to Google -- presuming that's its intention.
It's hard -- if not impossible -- to escape Twitter these days. Not only has it been in the spotlight for its role in the aftermath of the election in Iran, but it's on magazine covers, CNN and trade publications virtually every day. Is it overhyped? I don't think so. I started using Twitter several months ago and now believe that it is a critical tool for senior execs in emerging markets -- certainly for those working in the media and marketing world. So, you're ready to jump in and use Twitter, or ready to go from lurking to participating. ...
The question for the day is this: Is online best served to provide awareness and drive reach, or is it best used as a frequency and support vehicle within a traditional media mix? The question popped up recently during a debate regarding the strategic allocation of media dollars. I wrote it down because it struck me as a fundamental question that needed to be addressed -- one I thought had already been addressed adequately, but maybe not.
Advertisers want to reach people and social networks want to make money from their audience, so all the two parties need is a fair way to exchange. But, creating a marketplace between advertisers and social networks based on selling "clicks" is sure to leave both sides very unhappy. The social networks will be unhappy because they will not be receiving full value for their inventory, as people have a tendency to avoid clicking on advertisements. Advertisers are likely to be unhappy with the quality of the traffic generated by those clicks that eventually occur simply by delivering a massive volume ...
There is a certain importance to keeping an open field on curiosity. I've often said that mastery is overrated. It is also elusive. In many ways, within what we do, if we expect to keep up real progress -- it should be. It will always be OK to have a new and daunting something not to know.
I recently had breakfast with a wise friend who's the head of digital marketing at a large computer and electronics manufacturer. He left me with a zinger quote that stuck to my brain like Super Glue: "Details and presentation matter. I just sat through a crowded public presentation from a senior brand manager at XYZ company. But you know, for all the glory and savvy of XYZ company, one of the world's largest data-driven marketers, the glaring typo on one of his slides made him look sloppy -- like a supermodel with a giant, oozing zit."
I'm in Washington, D.C. today, and privacy is on my mind. Not only are important Congressional hearings on privacy and the online ad industry being held today, but recently a number of important U.S. regulators and legislators have made it clear that if the industry is not going to get serious about adopting a self-regulatory framework that provides meaningful privacy protection for consumers, a regulatory framework will be imposed on it.
If you examine the undercurrents of discussion, you'll notice an evolutionary change in how brands are approaching their digital media strategy. We hear lots of talk concerning the shift from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0, but a similar shift is taking place in the sub-component of the Web: media strategy. There is a very clean line being drawn that designates the shift from 1.0, to 2.0 and into the 3.0 stage of media strategy, which revolves around the differences between placements, analysis and optimization.