As I get ready to head out to the UK for ad:tech in about 72 hours, I've been asked by a couple folks why I make the trip so far from California (where I live) when there are ad:tech versions right here in San Francisco and New York? The reason is simple; to get away from the Americans.
Don't get me wrong. I'm proud to be an American. I served my country, lost friends and think that this nation is the greatest in the world. My day job today though is that as a marketer, on the advertising agency side, specializing in providing executive level guidance in the areas of Social and other Emerging Media executions (as part of our client partners marketing plans). That, my friends is a global consideration, and as Americans, we can certainly be rightly accused of thinking that the Sun revolves around these United States. I love the UK and Europe. There are many similarities to our own culture, which makes it fairly easy to navigate, yet, I can attend conferences and here many different ideas, and solutions to those ideas. There are different considerations, different issues, laws, customs and 'best practices' that are being used... Read more
iMedia Breakthough is right around the corner, and over 350 of us are probably feeling excitement and anticipation for the event. At the very least, it's a fun, well organized event that gives you a chance to network with the most amazing people in our industry.
In addition to the fun, we're all there to advance our businesses forward by taking away actionable insight. With the incredible content and the smartest minds in our industry attending to network with, I can't think of a better place to gain such insight. What I'm wondering is, how do you pre-plan for the event itself?
Here's a little checklist I use personally: - Identify your key business challenges, the tactics / strategy you've used to overcome them along with outcomes, and where you need an outside view or set of ideas to break through your block. - Identify your objectives from the event - Take the attendee list found in the People Connection and export the entire thing to Excel. Color code the list and take notes next to the people who you specifically want to talk with. - Reach out to people ahead of time. - Go into the event with focus on... Read more
Last week I dutifully logged onto TweetDeck on the day of the OPA conference, set up a search column for #opa, and waited for the tweets to flow. I couldn't make the live conference but I knew I could count on my colleagues to share the highlights. The attendees tweeted about two main topics - the value of display for branding purposes and 'the demise of the click' - and were quick to note how 'old news' these topics are. In fact, the last tweet of the day said, "what a let down, let's get to the networking." I'm not picking on OPA, because the truth is that I've heard this (or seen it tweeted) from numerous conferences lately. We're talking about things that are old, rehashed, and not beneficial for those in attendance. So, is there nothing left to talk about in our industry that is worthy of a conference? Absolutely not. Here are just a few topics that I personally believe would generate real interest:
Is Data the New Bubble? We all saw the network bubble form and now it's starting to decompress. Data companies (BlueKai, Exelate, etc.) are now popping up faster than can be tested. Is this the new... Read more
I produce, attend, speak at and moderate panels at conferences many times each year, and while nothing is quite as bad as a failed keynote address, time and again panel discussions prove the most challenging, bouncing-on-the-high-wire-without-a-net piece of each day.
Here are 3 things that make a successful panel: 1. Conflict. Just like you learned in high school drama class, all stories require conflict. This means different points of view, different objectives, and different ways of approaching them. And by difference I mean actual opposition rather than gentle nuances of inflection. If you have presidents of different ad networks and a moderator onstage, there is NO conflict because while the networks may be competitors they all share a methodology and general business objective, and they'll work together to have the rising tide lift all the surfboards. Put an ad network and a publisher who doesn't sell inventory on networks head to head and then you might have something.
2. Fear. For trade conferences in particular you're talking about trade, about money, and about somebody potentially losing business that they already have. We're living in the middle of a global economic collapse with businesses closing and folks out... Read more
I attended my second Argyle CMO Leadership Forum (in NYC) yesterday. Last year’s conference (as I remember it) seemed to be focused around building the “feel” of a brand, including a long discussion with the CMO of Timex on how Timex-wearers feel about their watches, and a presentation on getting just the right music for your message.
This year was something different entirely. The conversation focused on how to do more with less (not surprising)—and focused on the Internet as an efficient marketing channel to do so. Much attention went to online social media and search (both paid and organic).
A few highlights:
IBM’s head of search discussed evangelizing search within the organization—and trying to help her colleagues pull spend from other areas to focus more on search.
The CMO of Century 21 Real Estate discussed her decision to pull out of TV, and to put the newly-freed funds online.
The CMO of Hyatt’s presentation was on how marketing and IT are closer ... Read more