• Three Surefire Ways To Get Yourself Fired This Week
    It's spring, the time to clean and start anew. Perhaps you have been contemplating a new direction for your career, or perhaps you have been looking for an excuse to engage with that headhunter who called you the other day. But you're probably lacking that last little push to take that step. So let me offer you some help by sharing three things you could do that will absolutely get you fired, forcing you to take action and make that change. And none of them involve excessive use of alcohol, drugs or displays of public nudity -- so there should ...
  • For Digital Marketing, Targeting Can Be Deadly
    As it is no doubt for you, much of the content I consume online is surfaced by algorithms. These algorithms consider things like what I've read, what I've watched and clicked on, and who my friends are to find content they think I'll like. And because they're looking to match my existing preferences, they often provide material that reinforces what I already know or believe -- what Eli Pariser called "filter bubbles." On the one hand, this seems like a good thing: why should I waste my time with articles I'm not interested in, or videos I'm not keen to ...
  • Are Timesheets Killing Innovation?
    Advertising agencies have long used calculating their employees' time as an imperfect but acceptable way to measure effort expended, a roughly correlated proxy to value. The biggest problem I have with this practice: It means we consciously or unconsciously focus on being busy and present, rather than on the quality of our thought and the scale of our ideas -- and, above all else, the contribution we make to a business.
  • Three Truths About Fraud
    There are some dirty truths about fraud. I'm really starting to agree that it's beyond time that our industry addresses the topic. I latched onto viewability almost immediately when the topic was brought up, but I'll admit I didn't attach my passion to the fraud topic quite as readily, because I found it hard to believe. I now know the error of my ways.
  • The Messy Part Of Marketing
    Marketing is hard. That's because marketing reflects real life -- and real life is hard. But here's the thing: It's just going to get harder. Life is messy and squishy and filled with nasty little organic things like emotions and human beings. Personally, the thing that attracted me to marketing was its messiness.
  • Why $5 Million Is The Same As $5 Billion
    In the past week, articles about billion-dollar transactions were flying around as if money meant nothing. For example, Comcast launched an entrepreneurial venture with $4 billion to play with. Both SC Johnson Global and L'Oreal USA put their respective media budgets up for review, each reported at $1 billion. All this makes Ello's raising a fresh $5 million dollars pale in comparison. What we should not forget, however, is that the "tiny" $5 million for Ello or the $1 billion media budget must all be managed by dedicated and steady hands.
  • Fight For Women's Rights Goes From Social Media To Frontiers Of Foreign Policy
    I haven't made much mention of feminism in this column. The last time I tried was three years ago, and it was actually a decidedly imperfect attempt at a conversation beyond feminism. But it's been a rough couple of weeks for women on the Internet -- so much so, that I feel compelled to wade back into the fray with a wild and dangerous opinion of my own.
  • The Real Game Of Thrones: The Seven Screens Of Consumer Experience
    In "Game of Thrones" there's an epic quest to unite the Seven Kingdoms. In marketing, it's quickly becoming the same kind of conversation as we look to unite the Seven Screens of Consumer Experience.
  • To The Graduating Class Of 2015: Don't Rely On Planning
    My oldest daughter is graduating from university in a few short weeks. She's planning for the future. Her mother and I, being practical parents, have instilled this need for planning in her. It's what practical people do. They make plans. Thirty-two years ago, on my own graduation date, I also made plans. According to my plan, I should now be a senior producer on a national Canadian TV drama. This is, of course, after working my way up as a production assistant, writer and possibly a director. But as German Field Marshal Helmuth von Moltke said, "No battle plan survives ...
  • The Start-Up Revolution Is NOT A Media Revolution
    When I speak with marketers about their innovation and start-up ambitions, the conversation inevitably veers towards digital media forms, data, content creation and consumer reach and engagement. This is driven, of course, by the fact that "media" is a language that marketers traditionally speak very well, and also by the fact that the first wave of digital innovation had a large media component. But VCs and start-ups have never been exclusively digital-media-focused. Whether you read news and commentary about start-ups, or just look around at the scene, you will quickly realize that only a small percentage of start-up innovation is ...
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