• What's Next? Where My Bets Are
    What will the future of media, advertising and marketing look like? It is one thing to speculate and make predictions that in general you are never held accountable for. But is it altogether a different approach when you put your money where your mouth is. Over the past few years, I've been a pretty active angel investor in tech start-ups across several sectors in our industry. In the spirit of "publicness" -- which I hope will make Jeff Jarvis proud -- I've decided that there is no better way for you to understand where my head is on the future ...
  • Time For Facebook To Face The Music
    Last week Facebook made some minor news by announcing it would be discontinuing its conversion-tracking tool for performance advertising. I was a bit surprised by how few people read between the lines of this announcement: the only reason Facebook would discontinue this effort must be that it found its users don't convert!
  • Why Advertising Is Really NOT Content
    Dave, Dave, Dave, you got me all wrong with your rebuttal column "Advertising Is Content." I give a lot of terrible advice to the industry to be sure :), but my column last week, "Advertising is NOT Content," was not advice to the industry, it is the state of the industry. I am not suggesting that publishers develop methods for people to pay to avoid advertising; I am saying that publishers already are developing methods for consumers to pay to avoid ads. Have you signed up for Pandora's premium service? Do you rent a DVR from your cable company? Then ...
  • Riffing Off The Familiar
    Most of us have accepted that our media environment is in a constant state of change -- not always in positive progress, but certainly always on the move. I think about this a lot when working with clients venturing into new territory in their marketing and media mix. Intrigued by emerging media options, but looking to balance experimentation with the tried and true, it's often too easy too fool oneself into a false sense of mastery. Right now some of the areas deemed most reliable by marketers are those in which we see some of the most useful change. We ...
  • You're Hopeless If You're Not Good At Email
    Despite hype over every new social media channel, I'm more convinced than ever that email is the mother of all digital communications channels, especially when it comes to interpersonal exchange. It is reliable for mission-critical communications, while also acceptable for casual and marketing purposes. In business and marketing, I take my own persuasive email messages seriously. While different situations call for different techniques, following are 11 core guidelines I always try to consider:
  • Advertising IS Content
    I'm going to have some fun today and, hopefully, stir up a bit of controversy. Fellow Online Spin writer Joe Marchese wrote a provoking column on Tuesday entitled "Advertising is NOT Content." In his column, Joe charges that advertisers, marketers and agencies are too one-dimensional in their obsession with making ads that people like. Joe argues that industry folks should recognize that in this "attention economy" age they would be better served spending their time developing new business models where people could pay to avoid ads, rather than making them more attractive. While I generally love Joe's columns, I absolutely ...
  • Simple Ways To Rethink Your Agency Business
    "Maybe we're coming at it from all the wrong ways." Have you ever uttered that sentence, or one like it? Have you ever had the nerve to completely deconstruct what you're doing -- and admit that you might be doing it wrong? It takes nerve and courage. It's hard for someone to debunk their own internal mythology, the set of "tried and true" guidelines that have driven lives and careers to date, in order to start over -- but that scenario is on the agenda for many right now.
  • Advertising Is NOT Content
    With apologies to soap operas, advertising is not content. How can I be so sure of this? Because given the choice, a vast majority of consumers would prefer to consume actual content without advertising. Yes, even the really good advertising like Super Bowl commercials.
  • Sparking The Industry
    On personal levels, many things fuel the dynamism of life: by whom and how you were raised; physical surroundings; social fabric and settings; intentional pursuits and happenstance; your adventures and exposures; the company you keep. Personal life relies on the tensions, textures, and contradictions within all that to thrive. And so, it follows, does our business.
  • Who's The General Manager Of Your Homepage?
    This week AOL appointed former NBC Universal exec Chris Grosso to the newly created post of "general manager of the Homepage." I was intrigued by this announcement. Not because of AOL's decision to appoint Grosso, but because his title underscores the respect and authority that any homepage deserves.Homepages are the virtual storefronts and front desks to so many businesses. It won't be long before no business can survive without a meaningful homepage.
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