• Why We Are (And Are Not) In A Startup Bubble
    I'm old enough to remember the first Internet bubble, and lately I've been having a feeling of dj vu. While most entrepreneurs and investors seem more disciplined this time around, there are some worrying signs. They include:
  • The Definition Of An Entrepreneur
    A few months ago, Inc. magazine taught me that the classic definition of an entrepreneur was coined 37 years ago, by Harvard Business School professor Howard Stevenson. An entrepreneur, he said, is someone who pursues opportunities without regard of the resources currently under control. I repeated that definition to someone else. "In other words, a fantasist," he said.
  • The Ad Market As It Is
    This is a special time in the ad industry. What happens in the second quarter's upfronts will go a long way toward determining industry economics for the rest of the year. What will have happened when this week and quarter play out? To answer that, I will borrow a Jack Welchism and try to look "at the market as it is, not just as we would like it to be.
  • Creating Your Best Display Campaign
    Online marketers have a so many options in display advertising -- contextual targeting, data targeting, behavioral targeting, retargeting, dynamic creative -- that they can quickly become overwhelmed. However, there are some simple considerations you can use to evaluate, prioritize properly, and engage in a successful display campaign.
  • Smartphone Cameras Are Destroying 'The Moment'
    Last weekend I accompanied my five-year-old son to his little-league team photo shoot. The professional photo studio and "baseball field backdrop" in the elementary-school gym made for a strange scene -- specially considering there was a real baseball field a few feet outside, and it was a sunny day with beautiful light. But things got really strange when 10 parents urgently whipped out their smartphones to capture their own shots of the professional photographer taking the official team photo.
  • Tumblr, AOL And Google Become More Brand-Friendly
    There were clear signals last week that the digital media industry is growing up and yielding to the norms and metrics of the broader media advertising industry. The goal of these actions is to capture more brand ad dollars -- the surest path to revenue growth. Here are three examples:
  • Key To Web Advertising's Future: Comparability To TV Ads
    TV advertising is not going away, and much of the future success of Web and digital advertising will be determined in large part by its ability to establish comparability to TV advertising. That was one of the top takeaways from my spending the first part of this week at the well-attended Festival of Media, Global 2012 in Montreux, Switzerland.
  • Andreessen's Market Focus Pays Off For Instagram
    The importance of being market-ready was first driven home to me back in 2009, when Marc Andreessen was busy writing the best business blog in the world. In a post titled "The Only Thing That Matters," he said, "market is the most important factor in a startup's success or failure,"
  • Don't Suffer From Overreaction Syndrome (ORS)
    Are you an Overreaction Syndrome sufferer? Client service can be a difficult business, but it can be even harder if you overreact to everything that comes your way, especially when it comes from the clients! Overreaction Syndrome -- or ORS, as I like to call it -- comes when you fail to have a roadmap for your business, so everything that comes your way can seem like a priority.
  • CMOs: How To Cheat A Quick Death
    The marketing industry loves gossiping about the short tenures of chief marketing officers (CMOs). An over-cited backdrop is a stat from a 2004 study by recruiting firm Spencer Stuart, which reported that CMO tenure among top-advertised brands was 23.6 months. While that number has become folklore, Spenser Stuart's updated study suggests that CMO tenure has actually skyrocketed to 42.0 months in 2010. That's a huge improvement and nearly on par with the length of a U.S. presidential term. Still, it's far below the average tenure of CEOs of the top 100 advertised brands, which is 111 months.
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