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Articles by John All articles by John

  • Foursquare's Mobile Second Act in Media Magazine on 09/28/2012

    For a company that had just rolled out what was touted as a dramatic new plan, there seems to be a dearth of activity at the mothership. But Foursquare has always been the duck of the digital start-up world - kicking furiously beneath the water while co-founder Dennis Crowley maintains an air of millennial nu-slacker tranquility.

  • What We Talk About When We Talk About Ad Agencies in OMMA Magazine on 09/28/2012

    The future of advertising isn't advertising," says Rei Inamoto, chief creative officer of AKQA. It's a funny thing for one of the most decorated advertising executives of the decade - a guy whose life revolves around selling products - to say. Or is it? Then again, it's the sort of Zen koan admen have been lobbing since David Ogilvy tread Madison Avenue. Before you shout, "Explain yourself, Rei!" be sure of two things: He isn't really going to, and he's got another one for you: "We live in a world where change is the only constant," says Inamoto. "That's the only certain thing that we have."

  • Online All Star, Creative: Rei Inamoto in OMMA Magazine Supplement on 09/21/2012

    "I don't really like advertising," Rei Inamoto will tell you. His celebrated work in the field is marked by the very same thing that brought him to the industry: his belief that there must be better ways. Many accolades and happy clients can testify that Inamoto is among the best at finding them. Some of his most lauded and successful work doesn't look very much like advertising at all, but more like products. And Inamoto's background has an awful lot to do with that.

  • Online All Star, Creative: Executive Creative Director and co-founder, Digitaria in OMMA Magazine Supplement on 09/21/2012

    When Daiga Atvara left her native Latvia more than 18 years ago to head for California, she had few plans beyond making art amidst the giant redwoods of Humboldt County. She had been studying at The Academy of Arts in Riga, Latvia, when she won a scholarship to explore whatever discipline she liked at Humboldt State University. Enamored with the ideas of making things - very big things, as it turns out - Atvara chose sculpture. She spent the year mastering welding, bronze pouring and metal work, producing, among other objects, some gigantic metal birds that she says are probably still out there somewhere in the Humboldt woods.

  • Is Google Unstoppable? in OMMA Magazine on 07/18/2012

    Google is Goliath, and in many people's eyes, Facebook (especially after the drubbing it took following its lackluster IPO), David, despite that fact that Facebook passed Yahoo in U.S. display ad revenue in 2011 to become the top ad-selling company, according to eMarketer. A February 2012 report from eMarketer found that Google had also passed Yahoo to settle in at the No. 2 spot at $1.71 billion in revenue to Facebook's $1.73 billion. And by 2013, the projections indicate Google will begin to leave Facebook and the rest in the dust, with Google's revenue from u.s. display predicted to reach $4.76 billion.

  • Can Pins Build Brands? in Media Magazine on 06/06/2012

    Some marketers have vented their frustrations with a seemingly fickle audience constantly chasing its own (long) tail. Fatigue sets in. "It looks like every couple of weeks, some new social media channel tackles the world, and is rewriting history," wrote Danny Devriendt, executive vice president and digital & social media strategist, EMEA at Porter Novelli back in March, before ticking off the exhausting list: "MySpace. Google Wave. Facebook. Twitter. Google+. Foursquare. Gowalla. Quora. Pinterest. Yammer. Path. Heatmap. Instagram. Yelp."

  • King Arthur Flour: Connecting the Dots Between Search, Social and Sincerity in OMMA Magazine on 03/02/2012

    When King Arthur Flour sold its first bag of flour to its first baker customer, George Washington was president. But it's learned how to do business and grow globally, using digital tools. "Our approach is to listen, hear what people are saying about us and our brand, and respond," says Halley Silver, director of online services for King Arthur Flour. And when the brand does respond, no matter what the form, it gives what Silver quite accurately terms "an honest, personal answer." In short, the brand's digital personas act the way you would expect (or at least hope) a 220-year-old Vermont-based company would. That's not all though. The people, such as bakers who work for the company and others who interact with customers, may respond with a personal touch because they aren't from some outfit hired to gin up the company's social media presence. They're the owners.

  • Heinz Rewards Fans with Something Special in OMMA Magazine on 03/02/2012

    Sure, you can send a get-well card to a sick friend. And, yes, you could bring soup. But what if you could send both at the same time? When Heinz and We Are Social asked this question, the result was Heinz's uk-only "Get Well" effort on Facebook. Heinz and We Are Social had built a following for Heinz on Facebook through promotions such as rewarding fans with the opportunity to purchase limited edition and exclusive products such as balsamic ketchup (yeah, must be a British thing), and wanted to continue its momentum. Fortuitously (or not, depending on your point of view), cold and flu season reared its head. Loads of sick people meant loads of people sending those sick people wishes to get well soon.

  • Social Standouts: Intro in OMMA Magazine on 03/02/2012

    Consider the crowd. Brands have spent a considerable amount of time and effort doing just that, but they are still often way off. Social media platforms seem to all follow a similar trajectory, whether they are email lists, influencer-marketing programs or Facebook itself. The platform begins in a collection phase, growing an audience to critical mass. Then, as with a poorly planned party, there are a bunch of people looking around at each other waiting for the beer and the DJ to arrive (or, in marketing speak, they're ready to be "activated"). Brands know what they want, for the most part, from consumers: to buy products or services. Brands even think they know what the crowd wants from them. Well, they've made some assumptions. And, you know how that saying about assumptions goes. According to a CMO Council study, polling 132 senior marketing execs and 1,300 ordinary, average Joe and Jane consumers, there is a disconnect between why brands think consumers do something and why they actually do it. For example, the top reason consumers gave for liking a brand on Facebook was "I'm a loyal customer" with 49 percent of those polled saying so. That response ranked sixth out of eight when the marketers were asked to guess why consumers like their brands on Facebook. And the responses continue in a similar vein for the remainder of the questions. It's as though brands and consumers are an especially mismatched couple losing badly on an episode of The Newlywed Game.

  • Buick: Making Brand Chatter Work for Millennials in OMMA Magazine on 03/02/2012

    Buick, long the solid and staid choice of those who wanted to seem professional without looking ostentatious, had watched its market share slip slowly away as its core drivers aged. The brand had once been the perfect car for, say, a doctor who made house calls. He wanted to look like he was doing well (but not too well). The problem, though, was that the brand's image was, to most people, about as relevant as doctors who made house calls. However, in a harsh economic climate, the idea of luxury that didn't bask in ostentation was as timely as ever, especially to the new generation of millennials. refers not just to the moment when a consumer realizes what car they want to buy, but the brand's journey, as well. "Basically this was our moment of truth," says Craig Bierley, director of advertising and promotions for Buick/GMC, who points to the brand's renaissance as starting with the release of the Enclave about two-and-a-half years ago. "We've had some success with the brand, and in many ways this was the moment of truth to see if we could continue this trajectory."

Comments by John All comments by John

  • P.R. Genius Kim Jong-un Hijacks Olympics by Adam Buckman (TVBlog on 02/13/2018)

    Kenny, not sure how Pence at the Olympics can be seen as anything better than completely tone deaf. Pence is who the administration sends when it wants to troll. Not sure about his having increased tensions with North Korea, but he certainly has increased them within his own country and between the government and the athletes representing the country it purports to serve. Pence’s very public anti-gay agenda and repudiation of out Olympic athletes. Pence is a coward and a bully, not some cowboy in some neclear-age western. Come back down to earth. 

  • Bots, Don't Fail Me Now! A Letter From Facebook Prison by (Mad Blog on 06/10/2016)

    I'm really at a loss here in witnessing this chorus of nodding heads. Talk about a Brave New World.    Appreciate the hyperbole in the essay, but an automated Facebook failsafe to monitor abusive language among a billion users is hardly evidence of a police state. The panting about a facsist state is really overblown and insulting to anyone who lives in a place where they actually struggle against the threats of real violence for their words.    Barabra wasn't being censored for the sentiment she wrote about, she triggered a bot meant to protect users from bullying and abusive language and was quickly reinstated.    Imagine things were different and the post had been posted by a high school student directed at a classmate or the like. Would you all rush to string up the totalitarian dictator who so deemed to censor that lad's free speech?

  • Once Again, Starbucks Gets All Preachy by Erik Sass (The Daily Blog on 03/24/2016)

    It's not always easy to hate on someone spreading a seemingly positve message, but when it's as calloused, lazy and pandering as this effort from Starbucks, it makes the cynical work of loathing it much easier. 

  • The Future For Brands In The OTT Space by Mike Bloxham (MediaDailyNews on 03/03/2016)

    I thought immediately of Red Bull, and of course you mentioned and nearly verbized it (it's a short leap to they Red Bulled their content marketing). Another couple of brands that spring to mind are Levis and Converse. Whereas Red Bull has created it's own content channel destinations (websites chock full of original video, concerts and events, magazine). Converse and Levi have done a remarkable job of following the distributed model. Converse, most recently, branded a short doc series about iconic recording studios that is very on brand (but not so much that its distracting, in kieeping with the brand integration dilemma. And Levis has been forward thinking in this regard in tons of ways; one example that springs to mind is the set of filters it created for the camera app and community VCSO (while not OTT, this does suggest some interesting directions). Red Bull though, remains the master at this, leaving a trail of bread crumbs for GoPro (with its video editing software aquisitions) to follow.

  • Sorry, Guy, Everyone Knows Your Restaurant Sucks by Catharine P. Taylor (Social Media Insider on 11/19/2012)

    Jonathan, sounds like the restaurant already is "everything that people would expect from a Guy Fieri experience," and Wells knew this full well. He's just going after low-hanging fruit. It was a hack job by Wells and beneath the Times.

  • Print: The Original Multi-Medium by Mike Bloxham (MediaDailyNews on 09/12/2012)

    With regards to how people use print, well, just try house training a puppy with an iPad. Though I fully appreciate and embrace that "print" no longer means printed.

  • It's The Last Two Minutes Again In America by Joe Mandese (TV Watch on 08/31/2012)

    Or maybe he is both a skilled actor and storyteller AND senile. The only part that really made me sad was when he led the crowd in a hearty round of "Make my day" after someone shouted it out like it was "Freebird." He seemed so resigned at that point.

  • It's The Last Two Minutes Again In America by Joe Mandese (TV Watch on 08/31/2012)

    Great piece, Joe. I think what happened is pretty simple though. Eastwood is hardly a died-in-the-wool Neo-con. He endorsed McCain, but publicly supported Obama after the election. Then there's that Super Bowl spot. Eastwood seems to go his own way. He even held fundraisers for Gray Davis when the Republicans were dismantling the Governor in California. It's my opinion that he just got up there and said what he pleased and acted how he pleased and gave a lukewarm endorsement of Mitt, and well, he's 82. It came off, as you said, kind of weird.

  • Amazon, Bic and the Humor of Crowds by Mike Bloxham (MediaDailyNews on 08/29/2012)

    @paul "A great managing manager" would never have let this product go to market. Agree that the best thing the brand could do right now is try to ride the wave though.

  • Are Apps the New Music Video? by Steve Smith (VidBlog on 01/25/2011)

    Keith Richard's opening riffs in "Street Fighting Man" has never stopped being cool, and it never will.

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