• Is Email Strategic? Or Dead?
    The recent WSJ article "Why Email No Longer Rules," by Jessica E. Vascellaro, made the case that communicating through social media like Facebook and Twitter is so much more "for the way we live" -- which just didn't make sense, and drew many objections and comments. So I am writing this because really smart email strategies may be publishers' single most important distribution strategy. Email may also be your most important advertising strategy. And I don't want you to be distracted from focusing on what is important.
  • Woe The Digital Sale: Selling Media Buyers On Your Innovative Product
    Question from the mailbag: I represent a new, emerging media company and am making the rounds to media agencies. The sales cycle is much longer than I anticipated, and I'm left wondering why. Are agency folks really motivated to find and test new vendors? Are they happy to fill out plans with their usual "preferred" vendors, or do they want to try/test new, innovative things for their clients? What is the deal? I thought agencies wanted to be leaders.
  • Flash-Forward
    My favorite new TV drama this fall centers around a global incident in which every person on earth dropped into a state of unconsciousness for exactly 2 minutes and 17 seconds. During that time, everyone mentally "flashed forward" to the exact same time, six months into the future. The characters see a variety of different experiences ranging from joyful and serene to horrific and terrifying. That got me to thinking. What if we could all see six months into the future? Aside from a huge ratings spike that ABC is hoping for with the season finale of "FlashForward," what else …
  • Don't Drop The Egg
    Every business and nearly every businessperson can be neatly put into one of three buckets. While we all hate being categorized, most of us fit better than we would care to admit. In business, there are three buckets: 1s, 2s and 3s. Ones are start-up types that are trying to go from zero-to-interesting. Twos are growth company folks that are attempting to build a scalable business. Threes are large, mature company people.
  • Woe The Digital Sale: Going Over The Media Director's Head
    Question from the mailbag: I am now a VP-level media director. A premium site I have done A LOT of buying with for many successful branding campaigns over the years recently gave me the hard sell to become part of a client's direct-response campaign. I verbally informed them that their site was recommended as part of the plan at the negotiated rate for a pretty healthy budget amount, but couldn't sign an insertion order until the client approved the plan and the authorization was signed. Based on our history, I thought that would be enough assurance. Apparently it wasn't. The …
  • The Ad Network Cleanse
    I attended a formal gathering of the MPA (Magazine Publishers of America) here in New York last week dedicated to the topic of ad networks. The panel was made up of six top-level executives representing various ad network plays. The audience was filled with executives from major magazine publishers. The session turned quickly into six separately prepared sales pitches. Listening to all of the presentations in a row provided some side-by-side clarity.
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