Archive for September, 2008

Location, Location, Location!

Posted by Adam Broitman on September 30th, 2008 at 12:00 am

A number of years back I recall hearing an incredibly prescient quote from Morgan Stanley analyst, Mary Meeker. The quote spoke about localization and personalization—and how these elements would be key drivers in the growth of the web as a commercial platform. While these concepts are fairly obvious today—at the time (I believe it was around 2003) it was not as obvious. Needless to say Meeker’s statement had a profound effect on my work. Years later these notions have become fundamental elements of online marketing and are ingrained in my day-to-day operations (both professional and personal).
Localization Is Personal
With the onslaught of social networks, collaborative filters and search engines—there is no shortage of personalized content online. Localized content and services however are still fairly primitive, but remain one of the largest opportunities in digital commerce and communications. A bevy of new services aim to solve this problem, and it should come as no surprise that mobile phones are at the core of many of these services.
Back in April Michael Arrington posted an epiphany he had about mobile social networks. This concept is one that I have been interested in for a while and could not have agreed with... Read more

More on What the Credit Crisis May Mean for Interactive Media

Posted by Mark Naples on September 30th, 2008 at 12:00 am

We all know that spending will be down in the coming months, not just in our markets but in most all other markets.  Even Microsoft's Steve Balmer went on the record today to dampen expectations about MSFT's software revenue moving forward.  But, I keep hearing people in our industry wax bullish, saying that interactive is immune from the credit crisis since our medium is so much more accountable than others.
This credit crisis is different than other dips in our economy during the past generation, however.  While interactive may not see the kinds of declining budgets that other media may, the overall projections already are beginning to show a decline.  The big fallout may reside in the M&A field, however.  Companies that have been looking for their $100M payday will have to reassess their expectations downward.  Perhaps considerably downward.  That sort of thing is going to become far more rare in the next 18 months than it has been during the past 36.  As credit markets dry up, so will speculation.  After all, each requires capital, and only one is regarded as more disposable than the other by those holding the purse strings. 
Our industry - thanks largely to Search -... Read more

The economy is busted….Is branded display a bust as well?

Posted by Brian Fitzgerald on September 30th, 2008 at 12:00 am

POP!  Did another bubble just pop?  The last time we saw an equity market meltdown, online ad spending dried up.  Brands ran for their TV sets, magazines and radios.  Are we heading for $.05 CPMs and the resurrgence of CPA marketing?  Will brands run for the analog hills? 
My ego, my hubris, hell my desire to pay the mortgage all mandate that I say "Never...branded display is here to stay."    But on quiet introspection and deliberation, I really whole-heartedly belive it.    Corporate America and Madison Avenue were slow to rebound following "The Great Meltdown of 2002-2003," but after years of measured experimentation, countless studies and billions spent, we have proven that digital advertising is here to stay.  But more importantly, we have proven that branded display advertising works. 
In hard economic times, companies look to tighten belts and push for the ROI in the spend.  So naturally, CPC and even CPA/affiliate marketing may see a bit of a resurrgence.  BUT, not at the expense of branded display.  There won't be a pure performance focused re-entrechment.  It is the offline mediums that will pay the biggest price in this economic slowdown.  Brands will not change their spots.  They want to see their ads.  They want to see them... Read more

And we thought the economy was bad for us…

Posted by Gretchen Hyman on September 30th, 2008 at 12:00 am

Despite the horrifying rollercoaster ride going on right now in the world economy, it gave me pause (and an inkling of comfort) to read a story on about how some of the wealthiest individuals and corporations have fared over the last 12 months -- and the news wasn't good, as we all know.
The Forbes piece, written by Matthew Kirdahy, stated that among some of the richest Americans, a group of them had lost an average of $1,000 every 1.6 seconds, or $633.78 per second.
News Corp. CEO and legendary grump Rupert Murdoch saw his fortune take a $2 billion hit, reduced to a meager to $6.8 billion, which tallies out to losing $1,000 every 15.78 seconds, or $1.5 million every hour.
Big ouch!
Financial baron Warren Buffett saw his fortune decline by $2 billion in the last year to $50 billion. Kirdahy calculates that loss to be $1,000 every 15.78 seconds.
Other honorable mentions included Charles Ergen, CEO of DISH Network, who in the last year lost $1,000 every 15.03 seconds, or roughly $66.55 every second.
And Sheldon Adelson, CEO of the Las Vegas Sands, saw his company shares fall 65 percent from a year ago, averaging out to a loss... Read more

What Do You Keep Open All Day?

Posted by Tom Hespos on September 30th, 2008 at 12:00 am

In the past year, my web habits have changed more than in any year in recent memory.  Whereas just a few years ago my web surfing consisted of visiting certain sites of interest at certain times of the day, I now have several tabs open all day in Firefox in which information is being constantly refreshed (either through the browser refresh button or AJAX).  I think this has a lot to do with the web's move toward the functional utility and away from mere content.
When I look at what's so compelling about these particular sites and applications that makes me want to keep them in front of me all day, I notice they fall pretty neatly into three categories:

Business applications
Niche content

Some of them straddle lines, but mostly they're pretty clear cut.  Let's look at what I keep open in my browser tabs all day:

Wordpress Dashboard at (social) - This is the main command center for my blog at  If I want to type out a quick missive, or if a comment comes in from a reader, this is where it all happens.
Message Boards (social) - I actually have two tabs open that... Read more