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John Billett

Member since June 2004Contact John

Chairman of media consultancy ID Comms

Articles by John All articles by John

  • Advertiser Beware: You Need A Contract With Your Media Shop And Separately One With Its Holding Company in MAD on 07/07/2015

    Media agency holding company deals with media owners generate discounts of which their own media agencies are unaware. These deals never enter the media agency trading systems. So the media auditor data never embraces them and hence the average prices recorded are inflated. That's why no one gets a bad audit these days. The media agency holding companies use these discounts any way they chose.

  • U.S. Media: The price is high and the spread is wide. in MAD on 03/25/2014

    Advertisers in the U.S. are paying the widest spread of media pricing in the developed world. In part, the reason is that two elements dominate the U.S. trading market - a focus on both the average and relative prices as value measures - factors that do not occur elsewhere in the world. It's time to get tough on absolute value and returns.

  • U.S. Advertisers Need To Take Action On Rebates in MAD on 02/18/2014

    Media owner rebates are now a fact of life in the U.S. but advertisers can take specific measures to protect themselves, like requiring a contract with both their media holding company as well as their media agency that specifies access to all media deals with key media suppliers. Also, build direct trading contracts with your five major media partners and demand access on an ad hoc basis to invoices from other media suppliers.

  • New Bedfellows: Research And Laughter in TV Board on 04/24/2008

    Two action-packed days at the Venice Festival of Media brought us not only wonderful insights and imaginative ideas on the future of commercial communications, but also total confusion and uncertainty in equal measure -- and a lot of laughs.

  • Television: The Fastest-Growing Advertising Medium in TV Board on 03/21/2008

    If you are one who believes the future of commercial communications is just about digital, interactive new media, your thinking is already out of date. It's time to go back to basics and reexamine the evidence for conventional television.

  • The Spread  in Marketing Daily on 03/20/2008

    Two recent news stories from the world of medical research hold significant omens for the less scientific world of advertising media effectiveness.

  • Dump The Thrill Of The New If The Old Still Works Best in TV Board on 02/11/2008

    When advertisers set out "to boldly go where no one has gone before," my attention increases and I watch with eager anticipation. I accept that the thrill of the new opportunity is most attractive. Maintaining the conventional rarely holds attention. But what possesses advertisers to announce proudly that the revolution must continue, when the evidence mounts that it isn't working?

  • The Spread: New World Order in TV Board on 10/18/2007

    Recently, I was asked to give a presentation on the "New World Order" for advertisers and media owners. What a daunting challenge. New means it's fresh, different and up to date.mOrder means there are things in their place; logical and systematic. World means wide scale, outside the boundaries and all inclusive and embracing. It sounds utopian, with lambs gamboling across Elysian Fields with bucolic joy. It's just wonderful, and it's perfection. But it's not a reality; a new world order is a pipe dream.

  • The Spread: Return On Investment Is More Noise Than Substance in MediaDailyNews on 08/27/2007

    The media industry proposition to be able to measure advertising and marketing ROI looks to be more noise than substance. Despite voices to the contrary, an assessment of our actions, evidenced in marketing and advertising campaigns, plans, empirical tests and validations, reveals that finance directors, CEOs and company boards are right in concluding that marketing and advertising effectiveness measures just don't stand up to scrutiny.

  • The Spread: Drowning In A Three-Inch-Deep Pond in TV Board on 07/16/2007

    The TV upfront is virtually over and done with for another year. The process worked again. The tried-and-tested approach delivered for all. Money got traded. The anticipated death of the 30-second spot was again disproved. Everyone seems at worst very happy and at best absolutely delighted. The truth is, the TV emperor has walked around with no clothes on. Yet his fan club -- media buyers -- compliment him on his stylish clothes of many colors.

Comments by John All comments by John

  • Advertiser Beware: You Need A Contract With Your Media Shop And Separately One With Its Holding Company by John Billett (MAD on 07/07/2015)

    Edi agree with you 100% about the need for real hard evidence rather than unsubstantiated rumour and comment. And hopefully this is exactly what should emerge from the investigation the ANA are setting up and for which they have issued an RFP. On the general point, media agencies may well be "free" to decide what to do with their holding company additional discounts. But if I were a valued advertiser using their services I would want to get an unfair proportion of those deals rebated to me. After all the media holiding company has no advertising budget of its own and it's scale comes exclusively from the advertisers.

  • U.S. Advertisers Need To Take Action On Rebates by John Billett (MAD on 02/18/2014)

    Apologies to Fraser Elliott for getting his name wrong and also to Fraser Nelson the journalist for inadvertently referring to him in this item

  • U.S. Advertisers Need To Take Action On Rebates by John Billett (MAD on 02/18/2014)

    Fraser Nelson invites me to name names. I shall refrain from naming media owners in public preferring to do so for advertisers who request my services. But I am ready to highlight and identify the forthcoming merger of Publicis and Omnicom to create a massive media buying group POGS. Does Fraser imagines this will be solely for the benefit of their advertiser customers? If so he is living in cloud cuckoo land.

  • U.S. Advertisers Need To Take Action On Rebates by John Billett (MAD on 02/18/2014)

    It's remarkable that such a senior media agency Director should claim first not to be convinced that media owners rebates exist but then second go on to explain the outcome of rebates. Having his cake and eating it is bad enough but then to put the blame for his difficulties firmly on his customers, the advertisers, compounds his misfortune. Doubtless the Zenith Optimedia clients are taking note and will vote to consider going elsewhere with their budgets

  • Obit: Media Planning Guru Erwin Ephron, Dead At 79 by Joe Mandese (MediaDailyNews on 10/14/2013)

    Erwin Ephron was the most innovative, imaginative,creative free thinker I ever knew. Yet he combined those rare skills with a humility, approachability and supportive nature that allowed everyone regardless of their expertise to identify and empathise with him. Without his encouragement and support I could never have launched MPMA America, which became Billett's America and now called Ebiquity. He created the environment in which we were able to bring to the US a media evaluation service pioneered in Europe, and then launch it as the all American service. He was of enormous help in devising the service, creating the brand, introducing us to key people and was a shareholder we demanded. Without his knowledge we could not have overcome the inevitable initial scepticism and some downright hostility from those, some with vested interests who tried to deny the benefits of media pricing transparency. That media evaluation in the US is now an established success owes a little to me John Billett and a hell of a lot to Erwin Ephron. His presence may now be denied us but his spirit lives on the Ebiquity service led so outstandingly by PJ Leary as an inheritor of what Erwin helped create.

  • The Future of TV Advertising is ... Data by Charlene Weisler (TV Board on 06/01/2011)

    In the apparent feeding frenzy for data, the pressure seems to be exclusively on establishing the best metrics. But before that we need to know if the data we are being invited to use is appropriate, valid, representative, relevant and fit for purpose. Just because the new data comes in large, dynamic and digital delivery doesn'tt mean we can abandon these well established, proven principles. We must avoid the fate of the data provider who drowned in a pond 3 inches deep on average.

  • 4As, ANA, IAB Band Together To Create Digital Metrics by Wayne Friedman (MediaDailyNews on 02/28/2011)

    This coming together of the IAB, ANA & AAAA is terrfiic news. Commonly acceptable digital metric standards are welcome and long overdue. But can any commentators advise (a) why it's taken so long to get to this common sense approach & (b) for how much longer we shall have to wait for useable acceptable data? I do trust this development will not be another triumph of hope over reality

  • Email Opens & Clicks Climbing by Jack Loechner (Research Brief on 01/01/2010)

    Email opening rates may be increasing but we should be worried that the absolute rates are very low. If four in five remain unopened we should spend more time finding out why so many remain unopened.

  • Media Planners Take On Challenges Of Digital TV by Courtenay Harry (TV Board on 11/13/2009)

    A good stimulating read and right in all respects but twoFirst media planning came out of the closet not 10 years ago but 25 years ago when media independents broke away from full service agencies to be followed by agency media operations becoming stand alone businesses.Second the article makes no mention of measurement and the planning revolution underway in relating comms input to business output and on a more frequesnt basis whilst campaigns are happening. Without measuurement and response built in planning is just a game and not a business John billett

  • Resetting The TV Ad Market: Is This What A Troubled Economy Will Bring? by Wayne Friedman (TV Watch on 12/23/2008)

    Media prices are falling world wide as supply outstrips demand. What's so special about US Network TV? If advertisers continue to pay premium prices for discounted inventory, then hurry on the day when marketers get out of the kitchen and leave investment to those who understand what value is all about. Put those marketers in front of the shareholders at the company agm and get them to justify premium prices to shareholders who have seen their stock fall into oblivion. They would be sacked without trace

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