• Media Metrics: Something You Can Trust
    Consumers don't trust marketing and brands the way they used to. With product placement, outlandish reality tv plotlines, and event sponsorship and promotion now pushed to the limit, it's no wonder consumers have rather jaundiced views of marketers and advertising. "Give us a break, will ya?," they seem to say. Flogged by overt and surreptitious messages, many people are not only tuning out tv, but becoming increasingly numb to other media as well.

    Consumers don't trust the media, but can you blame them? The scandal that rocked the world's greatest newspaper sparked a wave of similar imbroglios and deepened ...

  • Column: Being Reasonable - Breaking Through the Clutter Myth
    By Marc Babej

    Clutter is the great media boogeyman of our time. With so many advertisers vying for the attention of consumers in so many places, how can any particular message get noticed? As advertising expert John Hopkins Adams puts it: "There is no hour of waking life in which we are not besought, incited, or commanded to buy something of somebody." Sound familiar?

    Well, there's a catch: Hopkins made this remark in 1909. Even in the relatively uncluttered infancy of advertising, it was the same refrain: How to get a hearing amidst all the hubbub. When an ...

  • Column: Out There - Porn Again
    By Jane Lacher

    Last month, when media editors asked me to sound off on the influence of pornography on the mainstream media business, i went all out. My Vox Pop quote referenced belly shirts and blow jobs. The thing is, I'm still mulling over the question: Why is porn such a touchy subject? No pun intended.

    I conducted an informal poll among my colleagues, friends, and family and the one thing that came through loud and clear is that pornography really gets people excited. Again, no pun intended.

    Everyone I spoke to or e-mailed with my porn ...

  • Column: The Department - Unlearning Media for Dummies
    By Lisa Seward

    Recently I had the opportunity to address a group of fallon account executives on how they can better support their media counterparts' efforts. To be honest, I'm sorry I didn't initiate the conversation; after all, much can be gained by changing how those in other disciplines work with media, now that our role has fundamentally changed from budget conservator to idea contributor.

    But the truth is that I was asked by a particularly forward-thinking account director what his staff should learn, and unlearn, and relearn in the world of media.

    Having given my little ...

  • Column: The Consumer - Does Size Matter?
    By Paul Parton

    Mall media properties with targeted content are widely regarded as the most engaging, at least from a consumer standpoint. But William McPhee, a researcher and an unsung hero of media and marketing, disagrees. And McPhee bases his research on one simple observation: popular radio programs also tend to be the ones listened to most often and for the longest amount of time.

    The results of his studies were published in 1963 and seemed counterintuitive at the time (and in many ways, still do). One would imagine, for example, that many people might not listen to ...

  • Column: Branded - Media Shops Join the Party
    By Hank Kim and Richard Linnett

    As this column goes to bed, many leading lights in the ad industry will also finally hit the hay after a week of nonstop glad-handing, back-slapping, and carousing 'til the wee hours on La Croisette at Cannes, yet another International Advertising Festival tucked tightly under their heaving belts.

    As we all know, the Cannes ad fest celebrates creative advertising agencies for the excellence of their 30-second commercials. Over the past decade, however, the rise of unbundled media agencies and the emergence of new digital platforms have forced the creative community to share ...

  • Column: Gestalt - The Ship at the Bottom of the Sea
    Leafing through a history book recently, I saw a marvelous photograph from 1915 of a large ship docked in New York City. At the pier was a line of taxis  all horse and carriages, of course. Emblazoned on the ship's bow, in stately letters, was the name "Lusitania."

    The photo jumped out at me because it captured a world that would disappear within a few years. It would, almost overnight, become impossible to find a horse-drawn cab. And the Lusitania, as we all know, would lie at the bottom of the sea.

    I recently attended an advertising ...

  • Column: The New Next - Dog Daze of Summer
    By Paul Woolmington

    As we enjoy our summer reading, I thought it would be good to have some fun this month in my topic for "the new next." By now, we know all the winners from Cannes and The Clios. So for this column, I would like to turn our attention to a not-so-well-known awards competition  The Webbys. The Webbys are the Oscars of the Internet world and celebrate all that's great in the interactive field.

    I wanted to feature one winner that was definitely an underdog. Just like a Jack Russell terrier, it had more bark ...

  • Column: Measurement - How to Find Actionable Consumer DNA
    By Mark Green

    Finding consumers and figuring out how to market goods to them is a task that's becoming more and more complicated these days. Typical marketers use four or more data sources to profile consumers. Then, they use 10 or more media measurement sources to figure out how to communicate to their targets. Analysis and execution become messy and generalized when you try to coordinate information across these more than a dozen independent sources with assorted, non-unified measurements.

    Good consumer profiling demands a variety of information, from purchasing data to advanced target area models and loyalty vendors. ...

  • Column: Econometrics - The Future of Modeling
    By John Nardone

    With so much of the ad world's attention currently focused on marketing accountability, you might expect a widespread use of marketing econometrics to measure and manage return on investment. Unfortunately, depending on the industry being served, this is not always the case.

    Marketing econometric modeling is well established in the packaged goods industry. After the technique was pioneered in the early '90s by Marketing Management Analytics (working with General Foods, Nabisco, and Kraft), packaged goods marketers throughout the industry adopted the approach for marketing mix and price/promotion analysis. In the last few years, as marketers ...

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