What is the value of a brand? Why is easier for me to buy t-shirts at The Gap than elsewhere? Why, when I want to buy something online, do I go straight to Amazon -- even if it's a specialty product that I know is only offered by one of its stores, rather than Amazon itself?
Many folks think that throwing acronyms around makes them sound smart, sophisticated, tech-savvy and plugged-in. How wrong they are. The assumptive use of acronyms is a bad habit practiced by way too many people in our industry, and most don't seem to be in any hurry to kick it. Well, it's time that we all unite to help them go cold turkey -- and improve the quality and clarity of the communication in our industry at the same time.
Allow me to demystify a monumental shift that is underway, hidden behind the buzzword of "the cloud." For those who don't care about the minor details (most people), for practical purposes the cloud is just the Internet. You use the cloud every day by accessing various websites and web-based services and don't even realize it - because the nomenclature is unimportant. The benefit is what matters, and the experience should be seamless. You don't really care about the exact broadcast technology that allows your favorite TV program to appear on your TV screen, you're just happy that it's there.
Nothing in life comes for free, but you can get everything at a discount. It's now a fact of life that everything, and I mean everything, can be purchased at a discount! It started way back in the day with Amazon giving away free shipping to incentivize consumers to give them a try, but in the last couple of years the trend has spread like wildfire.
In the realm of marketing, media and publishing, business relationships now extend way beyond advertiser, agency and publisher, and well into the realm of the "third party." So we may get asked for our blunt opinion on: third-party ad serving solutions; rich-media providers; campaign management systems; bid management systems; campaign optimization solutions; cross-media management and measurement tools; data management platforms; analytics providers; social media buying options; social media monitoring dashboards; tag management whatchama-callits -- the list goes on and on.
I work in a start-up.
By definition, a start-up begins as an idea. At its most basic level, the job of a start-up is to take that idea and turn it into something "real": preferably, something with a product, customers and revenue.
But, long before you get to that stage, your start-up has to become "real" at a variety of other levels.
I attended the Social TV Summit in Los Angeles yesterday. As the summit's title suggests, it was a day spent listening and talking about how social media is intersecting, enhancing and altering television viewing, media and advertising. It was a great conference and hit a hot topic at exactly the right time.
I want to be the first person to write an article touting the demise of Google+, and I want to write it just two short weeks after it launched.
All research leads to smartphones reaching or exceeding 50% of the market by the end of the year. The prospect of engaging consumers with rich brand or product experiences that provide utility, facilitate discovery, commerce and social sharing on demand, while on the go or near point-of-sale, is powerful. QR codes are appearing everywhere from product tags in retail, to out-of-home ads, direct mail and catalogs, and the windows of local businesses on Main Street USA.
By any standard, 10 million users in the first month of a new service -- not to mention a $20 billion uptick in valuation -- is an accomplishment worthy of admiration. The folks at Mountain View are doubtless delighted with the reaction of the public and the press: finally, they got it right! They "get" social! Facebook, watch out!
Perhaps we should be a bit less hasty.