Thursday, December 20, 2007

Another key point forgotten in keeping Gen Y happy in the ad industry

Tara Lamberson, AdAge: How to Hang on to Digital Talent
What's Going on in Their Heads as They Decide Whether to Stick With You
Anyone on the hiring end knows that digital agencies are suffering from a worsening talent drought. You can probably bank on the fact that some of your sharpest talent has one foot out the door. For that reason, you've got to be sure you're tuned in to what your employees are thinking, what they want and what might be driving their dissatisfaction.

Tara, VP, come out of your Ivory Tower
Listen Tara, this is a great list. But, it turns to crap when you forget to value your employees accordingly and remunerate them sufficiently. Even thinking about them from time to time and giving them a small bonus doesn't hurt.

I don't know who you spoke to, but I think you may have spoken to some people who didn't want to tell you the real truth.
I have seen so many cases and even experienced scenarios where Junior to Mid level employees are treated like crap, just because they can be. They are young, still getting their feel for the industry. What they don't realise is they are in a shortage.
Most people are smart and don't want to succumb to the bad hours, low wages and mistreatment incurred at most ad agencies so they choose another profession. And those who do, well, they sometimes feel at the mercy to their employers without realising the small amount of power that they do have. You can't get much work done without support staff, can you?

Hmm, it appears I may have some baggage....

So to all those people who have taken my advice and decided to walk out that door for the crap treatment, I applaud you. You don't deserve this lack of respect, these undervalued sentiments. If you add value, you should be recognised for that and they have been. Elsewhere!

dedicated to pie

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

My own Top 10 trends list of B.S.

Seeing trends is the flavour of the week, I thought I would add my 2 cents

1. Advertising dinosaurs continue to throw their weight around
Execs with vast amounts of experience who enjoy the phrases 'laying down the law' and 'in my experience'. They also continually reject new ways of doing things and frown upon giving any control to the consumer. Watch these guys, because in 2008 they will continue to try and stifle or maim, any exciting idea that anybody has.

2. Boring clients will still be boring
These guys go nicely with the dinosaurs. These are the guys who say "What's blogging?" or "I read an article on X, why aren't we doing that?"
They also don't know an idea if it hit them in the face and they are stuck using marketing methodologies that were all the rage back in the 80s. Except long binging lunches don't exist any more, so I don't know why the boring part is still on the agenda.

3. Those Reps who will not be able to differentiate between their face and their asshole
These guys actually entertain me. Reps who continue to miss your target, are unsure of your client and think an integrated offering is your brand in every single banner on every page.
This picture is a doozie. We should print them some business cards.

4. Conferences, seminars and showcases will continue to show the same old shit
I don't know how many talks I went to this last year and at most of them, I walked away with maybe only one nugget of goodness.
When are the speakers going to get juicy? Better yet, when are we all going to start putting our money where our mouth is??

5. Trend lists which tell you what you already know
Trends lists which try and tell you what is going to happen in the following year, but, hey you already know everything they have put in the list.
And if you don't know it, it's implausible and you're unsure whether it's a joke or not.
Examples 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6. Although 6 is actually pretty good.

6. Facebook appears in media news EVERY SINGLE DAY
The little Media whore gets referenced for its nothingness, creates some scandal or makes people happy.

7. There is no new media news
I don't know if it's just a slow season because of all the holidays, but there is seriously no media news, AT ALL. I'm getting tired of hearing the words 'new hot thing', and I certainly know that other people are as well. People are getting used to hype engines and they are desensitised to the affect. The wear out time factor is getting shorter and shorter.

8. Some new HOT media tool, NOT
For every new social/technology tool that launches, 17 launch behind it and every so often only one of them is successful or gets a bit of attention. Something is going to burst soon.

9. Advertisers under estimate consumers
Advertisers forget that consumers are people and have an auto detect for ad campaigns. Consumers continue to reject shitty and boring attempts at trying to entice them into obvious 'no value add' advertising activities.

10. Ratings taken with a grain of salt
I thought I heard someone mention, could have been a few people, that technology is advancing in great leaps and bounds. Ad tracking and television ratings are still guesstimates on a small proportion of the population. There continues to be talk of better tracking, better rating systems but we're yet to see the culmination of those efforts. I predict the trend of still more talk and no action.

That was fun. I shall be doing this again.

Monday, December 17, 2007

This is going to get boring real quick

Heinz is going through their second iteration of 'Top This'.
My god, they've even called it 'Take Two'!
Article link

I'm glad that it worked for them, but come on, get a little more creative!
I'd never expect a band to come back with the response:
"We had such a great album last year. The sales went through the roof. Let's do the exact same thing this album. We'll keep the same cover and everything!"

We've reached destination: Loserville; population: Heinz!

It's social networking bashing day

CNET: Social networking may be over-hyped
Companies should think twice before developing their own social-networking applications, as the movement has yet to prove itself as solid an investment for businesses as other online communications technologies such as instant messaging, according to a report by information and technology research firm Gartner.

More like: Who wants to be a member of 5,000 different networks???
It isn't a bad idea to create a social network, I think the problems deal with the barriers of entry. How many networks, user ID and passwords do people need before they are going to go crazy?
Not only that, I hate it when people have nicked my User ID. I just register to any new network so someone else can't take my moniker! Case in point- my Gmail account.
Another issue with the social network is how to use them effectively. No one really knows. You have this great idea for a network and how do you drive traffic to it in the first place? Then how do you get people interested in product once they're there??
Apparently the experts are getting paid top dollar for their opinions. Bottom line is, they don't know either. No one really does. It's also a problem when the networks are quoting their best case studies are from 3 years ago.

Top 10 ass!

I've just read a barrage of articles for the top 10 trends for, it seems, the past, now and the rest of the future because all this crap can't be for 2008.

The first one was written by Bob Liodice, the one and only CEO of the ANA!!!! Well here I was thinking he was some mid level journalist given the unfortunate task of writing this article. He seems to have thrown the same crap around that everyone has been throwing around for the last 2 years.
  • Marketers hit a rough patch
    This is a trend? This is old news.
  • Innovation and creativity rule
    We work in advertising. When has creativity not been a part of the equation. Where's the creative department?
  • Digital Digital Digital
    What planet are you from????? Did you miss the boat?
  • Emergence of the Renaissance Marketer
    Well he got one thing right. I fit that. It's like I read my own horoscope!
  • The power of Strategic alignment
    Ahh, the 'if only' in an ideal world. He suggests alignment across all media channels. I've been trying to get this accomplished for a while. Do you know how hard it is to get media providers to cooperate with one another?? The other problem is buyers deal with sales reps on too low a level and the reps just don't get it. All the reps focus on is making budget, they don't give a shit about strategy. And even if you do get that far in negotiation, once it's done the next battle is getting the client to finally let go of the ledge and take a leap.
This guy sounds like a dinosaur! I'm sick of these advertising types who have been entrenched in the industry for so long and "they know because they've been it for so long". But, bub, the industry has changed. This isn't that old playing field any more. Consumers are smarter than you are. These 'trends' are old news...

Then some doof, Richard Laermer, whacks his article together. He has apparently written two books (one on trends!!), and is CEO RLM PR. I don't even know what all those letters mean next to each other! They just look like a mess.
  • Geeks are out
    Straight off the bat, this guy walks right into my danger zone. He quotes some study saying that "when asked, "Who were you in high school?" 40% said nerds. The other 60% are That Guy". Dude...did you go to high school?? Not everyone can be the popular guy. What he failed to mention was that this study was done online and high school kids, if given the chance will say they are cool. Who would honestly admit to saying that they're of the geek population?!!
  • And the rest
    I can't be bothered, it's all crap really.
On a better note....
And I watched a silly but fun movie last night- "Man of the Year". I love Robin Williams, he is a top kind of funny. The most brilliant line sequence in that movie:
Walken: And I thought AC Nielsen ratings were the biggest bunch of bullshit
Williams: I'd always wonder when they say JAG got the biggest ratings last night, you'd never hear anyone saying the next day "Did you see what happened on JAG last night??!"

This requires no explanation....

Friday, December 14, 2007

Sprint offers free web

by Mark Walsh: Sprint First To Provide Free MySpace Mobile Link For Subscribers
Sprint will be the first wireless operator to allow subscribers to link directly to the MySpace Mobile Web site at no extra cost. Starting early next year, users will be able to click a MySpace link on the Sprint portal instead of typing in a URL address to access the social networking site.The partnership follows the September beta launch of the free, ad-supported version of MySpace Mobile.

Well, I wasn't predicting this development...
Well, not for a while yet. I guess the marketers are finally starting to move forward with the people. It will be an interesting trial and a large proportion of the Sprint audience must be using mySpace for them to sign off on this.
This is a great indication on my hopes for pricing plans of the future.
Maybe, just maybe, this might really be the year for mobile!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

We now have Flickrvision

From the people who invented Twittervision, sweet mother of God...


It's a fantastic day today on the Facebook

There is uproarious cheer today on Facebook.
Someone, god bless them, has removed the "is" from users' Facebook statuses.

I can't be happier.

I no longer have to be something, I can want, need, hate, love anything and everything.

This is a day that will go down in history.

...although, this has been an annoyance for a while. I think Facebook has been saving this for when they needed a redemption card. After all the Beacon stuff for example.

I wonder if they'll be articles about the biggest is there is?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Facebook, don't act so innocent

PC World: Facebook Quiet On Beacon Fallout
Facebook's Beacon advertising program has drawn the ire of analysts, columnists, bloggers, advertisers and its own users. Despite such widespread criticism, Beacon's ad partners have remained surprisingly mum on the issue. Which probably means they're betting the controversy will simply go away. Or maybe they feel the onus is on Facebook for giving them access to so much user data. After all, advertisers always take what they can get, right?

They may not be able to dodge the issue so easily. Their lack of comment is in striking contrast to Beacon's media news blast one month ago, when many came out in vocal support of the "revolutionary" peer recommendation program. More than 30 companies, including Blockbuster, Sony, STA Travel, eBay, The New York Times Co. and IAC, have implemented Beacon on their Web sites -- 44 in total.

When grilled by the press, companies were asked: If they implemented the program, what actions do they track; has the controversy changed things? If so, are they comfortable with the program's extensive tracking? and do they alert users that their actions are transmitted back to Facebook. Most did not respond, those that did expressed anything from "cautious optimism to open disappointment."

Well, well, well...
Facebook, don't get all excited just because I'm giving you attention again. I'm only bringing up this article, because Boing Boing pointed me to the fact that Beacon is illegal!
Not only that, but the case they mention involves Blockbuster in 1988, prohibiting video stores telling people what customers rented. If they did, they were subject to a fine.
BLOCKBUSTER!! You did this in 1988 and now you're repeating your mistakes. You should have known better.
And are in a grown up world. Just because you are run by a 3 year old doesn't mean it's a 'practice', this is for reals!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The culture of the "blogger"

I'm in it, but I don't fit.

I'm not hard core and I don't want to be.

These bloggers, tweeters, 2nd Lifers and AIMers (2 out of 4 ain't bad for my own tally), whisper under their breath when they meet someone "Are the a blogger? An A lister?"
When they find out the daily hits only measure in the 40s there are two things that go through the once outcast, now pro blogger:

A. Loser, if they are only a B-lister. I'm not far behind
B. Ohhh, I'm in the presence of an A-lister blogger. With a multitude of fans, commenters, readers and followers.

I also don't whip out my laptop in presentations and conferences because I can't not Twitter for half an hour. This I really don't get. The self importance to constantly have laptop open...

Sometimes I worry about these people. They are getting more and more removed from reality. More excited about the next 'hot' thing that's a storm in a teacup.
Yes, the time we live in is a very exciting one for marketers, technology and the general evolution of society as a whole.

Today I went to a really nice breakfast for social media folk, sponsored by Text100. They gave us food (bonus) and a speaker (also a bonus). His name is Eric Reuters in Second Life. He loves it, a little too much that he is losing sight of the big picture. He got over excited about the numbers, the stats and the fit with the general population.
He was adamant that Second Life users are early adopters. This may be true in the realms of technology and those involved in the social media uptake, but my belief is that early adopters exist in every type of field. Ranging from gardening, to cars to a fine chamois. You can't be an early adopter in everything, therefore not everything fits for the early adopter who lives in Second Life.
It is a great platform and can be extremely beneficial, but only when used in the right way.

My advice, keep things in check and don't salivate over code.

Friday, December 7, 2007

AT&T gets on the "open" bandwagon

GigaOm: AT&T Opens its Doors, or Does It?
AT&T has followed Verizon Wireless in opening up its cellular network, but the big announcement is much ado about nothing. AT&T is allowing customers to join on a month-to-month basis; existing customers will have to see out their contracts. Like Verizon, the telecom giant will allow any unlocked GSM phones to run on its network (as long as it supports AT&T's frequencies. Customers will also be able to choose any operating system-Windows Mobile, Symbian, Opera, Android, whatever.
Most of this information was revealed (or at least hinted at) when Google unveiled Android several weeks ago. The bigger issue is what the big telecoms actually mean when they say "open," because there's no uniform definition. It could mean open handsets, open networks, open applications, open operating systems, a combination of these or all of the above. In this case, no mention was made of AT&T opening its platform to software developers.

AT&T: Step off
AT&T, I don't care what you do, I don't trust you. All your prior actions indicate you only care about the bottom line.
Yes, you're a business, but what about making your consumers happy? What about creating a reasonable service with no hidden addendums or set backs? What about creating service offerings where everybody wins??

Well, that's never going to happen. However, at least it shows that AT&T is on the bandwagon. That means Verizon could do something crazy cool and AT&T will probably do it too.

I love adapted music videos

Especially these kinds!


Thursday, December 6, 2007

Virals that work for kids

I was just watching some kid's video and all the comments below went like this:

THIS ACCUALLY WORKS!!!!!!! !!!!!! 1.)say the name of the boy/girl u like 2 times 2.)now say the name of your bestfriend 5 times to urself 3.)now post this onto 5 videos in 146 minutes and then press f8 and then ur crushes name will APPEAR ON THE SCREEN

If we want to target kids, we should just give them some crazy device (with spelling mistakes) which will tell them who has a crush on them, as long as the post it in different places and pass it on to all their friends in 146 minutes.


Who comes up with this crap?? What if you don't have a best friend?!
And why do the kids always fall for it? The same is true for strange adult women who pass on some chain email to their 10 best friends so their wishes will come true or better yet, they will meet their soul mate in the next phase of the moon.
I don't get those women.

Ooh, I just found this one, this is much better:
PLEASE DON'T READ THIS you will die in seven days if you don't post this comment on 10 videos in the next hour. if you do, tomorrow will be the best day of your life

Go on, post it!

Sorrell's turn at the chopping block

Joe Mandese: WPP's Sorrell Hails Dell As New Agency Model, Acknowledges Fear Of Google's Mobile Plans
Shifts in media technology - and the way advertisers and agencies apply it - a reordering in the dominance of global markets, and the volatility of the economy, are all chief issues for the advertising industry, but the No. 1 problem facing Madison Avenue and its clients is "internal communications," Martin Sorrell, chairman-CEO of WPP Group, the largest buyer of media worldwide said Wednesday during a presentation at the UBS media conference in New York.

Oh, Sir Sorrell.... why did you open your big mouth??
I'm reading this article, trying to find something to take a stab at, but Sorrell just talks in circles. There is nothing concrete he actually says. And it's nice talking about the shoulds/woulds/coulds, however it's better to see a little action.

It's also great that he instilled fear in agencies by saying "companies like Google, eBay and Yahoo represent real potential for "disintermediating" traditional advertising agencies." ...Umm, clients will still need to manage all their different relationships with publishers. I wouldn't recommend having an ad campaign within one portal.

At least one thing is certain; Sorrell is trapped in the past. Thinking that Google is an enemy?? They are the purveyors of change. Sorrell is stuck in a world where corporations were king. I did think Sorrell is smarter than that. If you want to do well in the world today, you have to get in line with the Consumers way of doing things.

Whilst were on the topic of you, Sorrell, don't you think it's time you changed your Wire and Plastics Products "WPP" to another name??? It really grinds my gears that you have nothing to do with producing plastic anymore.

And watch this one in your own time

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

I've changed my mind about the Honeyshed

I change my mind. It is awful!!

It is completely youth oriented full of words like "like", "totally" and the worst bunch of presenters I have ever seen. They all talk over one another. A complete showcase of D-grade quality.
One segment even involved warped muppet like creatures and a girl flashing her thighs and crotch. Even if you're a guy, I don't think that's something you want to see. It wasn't pleasant. The girl was completely annoying and the whole combination of words coming out of her mouth and violent movement of thigh was shocking. Muppets and thighs definitely don't work together.

Even the inital chat that opens on the homepage looks manufactured.
It didn't update once after the initial pop-up! If you're going to stick to a lie, you may as well follow through.
This whole experience reminds me of those late night call-in quiz shows that are full of uninteresting people trying to create any form of banal conversation. They don't maintain any flow or interest level and it just flops.
I'm not saying that there isn't a market for this crap out there. I think youth will love it but, it's awful that this type of product is available for younger demographics to view. It enforces a grotesque consumerist/gratuitous/ridiculous behaviour that youth should be avoiding. Go and read a book!
At least all those actors without jobs have found something to do.
Enter at your own risk.

Is it over for Facebook?

Fortune: Unflattering Eulogy For Facebook
The early death of Facebook has been forecast, following widespread criticism and a backlash from its own customers over a new advertising system. If Facebook's not careful, a rival is bound to come along and finish it off. It's a first in the annals of fast-rising tech companies that fail.

The funny thing is: the site is attracting more users than ever before and has all but solidified itself as the Web media darling of 2007. However, the majority of its 60 million-plus users are no doubt unaware of the privacy invasion nightmare that is the Beacon advertising system.

Facebook may have changed the peer recommendation system to opt-in, but Beacon still tracks people's Web surfing habits -- even when they're not on Facebook. And if user backlash doesn't undo Zuckerberg's social empire, then whatever's next certainly will. Delphi's errors begat Prodigy and its errors begat AOL, which was crushed by the Web. Facebook's notoriously bad PR will only accelerate its inevitable downfall.

Facebook has the life of a bad slutty over-acting actress on Bold and The Beautiful.
One day the Facebook is great, the media darling. The next they have problems and fix themselves up, bowing to public pressure. By the end of the season, the gossip mags are envisioning Facebook's demise!

Just look at her!

In all honesty, I don't care. Something else will happen next week. And if I miss whatever happens next week and come back in 2 weeks, I won't have actually missed anything. Because just like a bad soap opera, even though things happen, every scenario seems to be a rumour or nothing and we're back to the beginning again. Thank you Brooke Forrester for educating me to the world of bad soap operas.

The fact of the matter is that users will remain on the social network where all their friends are. Unless some great new network comes on the scene and everyone migrates, Facebook will have something to worry about. But, knowing people, they are lazy, I can't imagine mass migration happening to a network with vastly similar features. Maybe in 20 years it could, but not today.

Nokia views the world as social

Mobile Crunch: Nokia- 25% of All Media Will be Social By 2012
Time might have been a little premature in proclaiming "You" its Person of the Year in 2006. According to a new report from Nokia, one-quarter of all entertainment will be created, edited and shared within peer groups by 2012. The consumer electronics giant reached its conclusion after surveying so-called "trend-setting" consumers about their digital consumption habits. Nokia picked users from its massive 900 million-customer base across 17 countries for the study.
"The trends we are seeing show us that people will have a genuine desire not only to create and share their own content, but also to remix it, mash it up and pass it on within their peer groups," said Mark Selby, Nokia's vice president of multimedia.
The report identified four emerging trends as facilitating the transfer to so-called Circular Entertainment. The first, "immersive living," refers to a complete blurring of the lines between online and offline living. The second is "Greek culture," which says that consumers will steadily increase the demand for more sophisticated forms of entertainment. The third principle, "G tech," refers to the change in social media in Asia, becoming more emotional, community-oriented and customizable. That will bring about the fourth trend, "localism," more local entertainment creation and consumption within peer groups.

Social...? Put the cynical and sarcastic hat back on.
Firstly, the hat is always on. Never comes off.

However, it's interesting that Nokia views the world as social. I'm not a linguist but I think the words society and social are interlinked.
The world is a society, works on being social, people are social. Unless you're a social retard.

It's sad a company like Nokia has to dumb it down. I just have to be happy that they're trying.

Google has its eye on the ball

Adweek: Google struggles with traditional media
Tim Armstrong, Google's president for North American advertising and commerce, told an audience at the UBS Global Media Conference that it will take time for the search giant to successfully execute its offline advertising initiatives.

Google has it going on

They know the hole Nielsen has created through its inaccurate data. Pairing that with Google's flair to gather and use data, Google is poised for victory.

Watermarking takes its first steps

Mediaweek: Nielsen offers protection to copyright holders
Nielsen is expected to introduce a digital watermarking service to protect copyrighted video content from being pirated online. While other companies have ventured into video copyright protection, Nielsen has a leg up on potential rivals because it is responsible for encoding almost all network TV programs as part of its ratings service.

Watermarking fun
Good one Nielsen.
As long as you only track information and don't damage the user experience, I'll love you even more.
My chipmunk might even write a rap for you.

To all the prehistoric ad people out there

by Fern Siegel: Nielsen- Younger Viewers Scramble To Catch TV
The young work harder--at least when it comes to watching TV. According to a Nielsen study, 56% of 18- to-34-year-old adults make a concerted effort to watch TV. Rather than forfeit an episode of a favorite show, they rely on DVRs, the Web, VOD and MP3 players, versus 21% of those over 55.

Is it sinking in yet?
I don't know how many articles we have to read before you dinasours get what's going on. This type of information is a no brainer.

Here is a quote of the day "Steve McGowan, Nielsen senior vice president, client research initiatives, the study is a glimpse into the future. He says the findings will have tremendous implications on how networks schedule and distribute their programming."

Thanks Steve. I don't know about the schedule and distribute part, but the glimpse into the future is bang on the money. Users are taking up these new behaviours and they're liking them and adopting them. Anything which facilitates an easier way of life gets a big tick. That's what the future is all about.

Writers get down to business end of strike- revenge of the nerds

by Wayne Friedman
Writer and producers went back to the negotiating table Tuesday to discuss the gap between their two Internet TV proposals--the difference being some $21 million. The difference doesn't sound like much, especially considering the total $1.3 billion contract over three years producers are proposing. But writers are digging in, given the expectation that revenue from the streaming of Internet episodes will rise dramatically over the next several years.

I've got your back writers
Good. Everyone should be compensated accordingly.
I'm so sick of big corporations trying to screw little guys. Little guys are fighting back and we're winning.
So if you're a little guy, don't give up. Ask to speak to the manager and don't take no for an answer.

And yes, we're all as good as each other!

Analysis of piracy and Social Networks by the EU

Wendy Davis: EU Calls for Closer Look at Privacy and Social Networks
An arm of the European Union Tuesday called for a closer look at whether practices at social networking sites violate users' privacy. In a 32-page report, "Security Issues and Recommendations for Online Social Networks," the EU's European Network and Information Security Agency highlighted a number of potential privacy pitfalls for users of social networking sites.

They look at a couple of interesting things. Primarily our little media whore, Facebook.

If Facebook is legislated to change within the EU, I can't imagine why they wouldn't change their infrastructure to change globally. It seems logical to me that if the EU gets the ball rolling, a lot of other countries will step into line too.

If Facebook doesn't choose to go the user friendly approach, I think we'll begin to see surges in the populations of Bulgaria and Latvia.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Verizon Embraces Google's Android

Business Week: Open Verizon Aligns With Google
A week after announcing the decision to open its platform to mobile software developers, Verizon Wireless said it plans to support Google's new platform for cell phones and other mobile devices. The move represents a significant business strategy shift for the telecom giant. Indeed, Verizon's support was conspicuously absent when Google announced its Open Handset Alliance in early November, but in an abrupt about-face, Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam says: "We're planning on using Android...Android is an enabler of what we do."

So how did this come to pass? McAdam says that Verizon has been planning the change for some time, mostly due to his own cheerleading. McAdam and co. feel that opening the Verizon Wireless to handset and software developers will help spur subscriber growth, while eliminating the costly overhead of maintaining a closed network.

An open-access model will eliminate the need for having so many stores and so many customer-service representatives, as the burden of handset sales and customer relations shifts to handset makers. In turn, niche and lower-cost handset makers and will enter the market, expanding the total universe of subscribers

Someone has been reading my blog!
I think I'm going to go out next week and get a Verizon wireless subscription. This is great news.
With better access, free ease of use and hopefully better pricing plans, consumers will lap up the new technology.

It's more of a sampling phase, once people try it, they'll get hooked. Once people see how easy it is to use mobile web (if speeds are good enough), they'll have every reason to continue to use it.

Viral campaigns are big hits

Adweek: Consumers want in on viral campaigns
Marketers are finding that consumers respond with enthusiasm to viral campaigns that allow them to mash up their photos or voices with promotional content. For instance, a promotion running on allows users to superimpose their own likeness over the image of a football player celebrating a touchdown.

Fun for everyone
I love these things. I even made my own.

Despite what the article said, the campaigns that do really well seem to only work for entertainment related categories- Sports, movies, tv shows, music. Remember Crash this Wedding for Wedding Crashers? That was great. But it got taken down a long time ago.

Although there was a a great one for BMW Mini Cooper, but it got taken down too :(

More smoke, no fire

The New York Times: Analysts trim ad industry forecasts
The ad industry, despite signs of a slowdown, should be able to avoid a recession next year, due to an influx of revenue from the Web, the presidential election and the Beijing Olympics, according to several top forecasters. "The U.S. ad climate is tiptoeing toward the edge of recession, but staying slightly positive," said Lee Westerfield, a senior analyst at BMO Capital Markets.

Ignore this article
With the exception of online, most media platforms are in decline because users aren't utilising those platforms anymore. If users aren't going there, advertisers will follow the trend. I don't think it has much to do with a recession.

Stop blowing smoke.

Nielsen releases study: Teen and Tweens have different mobile web habits

Study: Teens, tweens have different mobile Web habits
Tweens tend to spend less than an hour each day accessing the Web through their mobile phones and to use most of that time for gaming as opposed to Web surfing, while most teens spend an hour or more online daily, with e-mailing being the predominate activity during that time, according to a study conducted by Nielsen Mobile and BASES

Amusing, considering my previous post
Thanks Nielsen. Even though TV ratings from Nielsen need to reviewed, this mobile survey confirms a thought of mine. Users amongst the different age groups have different habits. Even though we're going through a massive transition now of user behaviours, I believe that every 5 years for the next 20 (maybe even 30), there is going to be a new transition as each age group matures into adulthood.

Hulu has worked shizz out, what about Nielsen?

NBCU's Web Video Portal 'Hulu' Impresses Critics
by Mark Walsh
Six weeks after rolling out a preliminary version of NBC Universal's Web video portal, company President and CEO Jeff Zucker described the response to Hulu so far as "fantastic." Speaking at the UBS 35th Annual Global Media and Communications conference on Monday, Zucker said online critics who had initially mocked Hulu as "Clown Co." had been forced to eat crow after being impressed with the site's user-friendliness and picture quality following its beta launch in October.

Screw this
This article was completely boring until I read the last paragraph, the most important:
"But a big hurdle to reaping benefits from the converging digital landscape is the lack of comparable measurement across different media platforms. Zucker blamed Nielsen in part for failing so far to devise a mechanism "to adequately and accurately measure" media consumption across platforms from VCRs to the Internet. For the amount NBC pays Nielsen, "we feel we should get better service," he said."

Mark Walsh, what is wrong with you? We all know Hulu works, you had the chance to give a proper Nielsen bashing and you wasted it! Shame on you.

Nielsen has some massive problems. Measurement is only based on a small proportion of users, not the whole population. Accuracy can not be counted upon. Ratings in my opinion don't count for much.

With the onset of Digital capabilities and the new fantastic people metre kicks in we should be able to see accurate usage data for entire populations. It's all coming, it's only a matter of time. I see a lot of talk from Nielsen and not a lot of doing.

So come on Nielsen, Walsh, step up to the plate and show me what you've got.

Monday, December 3, 2007

A recession in our midst?

Reuters: New Media Could Suffer In Recession
Goldman Sachs' Anthony Noto issued bad news for the media sector in a recent analyst report, saying that a U.S. recession-a 50/50 chance, he says, would lead to a downturn in advertising by as much as 10 percent. Of course, that doesn't include Web advertising, which many expect to rise more than 20 percent next year--but it may include more experimental forms of new media advertising, such as cell phones and perhaps, Web 2.0 sites like YouTube and Facebook.
"Clearly, the fringe areas would be much more impacted [by a recession]... the newer areas that have less of a track record in terms of their ability to have a direct marketing impact," Rino Scanzoni, an executive at WPP Group media-buyer GroupM, said. For example, online video--considered a risky investment for advertisers due to content and copyright concerns--attracts .01 percent of the audience generated by traditional television.
Nevertheless, Peter Levinsohn, CEO of Fox Interactive Media, owner of the social network MySpace, isn't worried. In a recession, "advertisers tend to move more toward accountability," he explains. "We still feel pretty good about our prospects."

Too much wacky tobaccy
What are these people thinking??
Firstly, they aren't people, they're news-crazed analysts with theiry eye on creating hoopla and fanfare on their crazy information.

First off 50/50 chance?? 50/50?! Everything is a chance of happening or not happening. Probability was a retarded subject. What difference does it make if there is a third of a chance of something happening, vs an 8th? If it happens in the end, it still was or wasn't going to happen!

Secondly, don't people realise that majority of the population is simplistic? They lead simple lives with common families and common mass market needs. ie. They watch TV, they use the internet and they listen to the radio when dropping the kids off at school. Most people are lazy, they'll do anything they can to sit on their asses. People like passive entertainment and entertainment is going nuts online. The only problem is too much fragmentation so all the little companies are trying to get pieces of the pie. There isn't enough pie for everyone, obviosuly. Some won't make it.

The whole article is just a mess, full of contradictions and conditions for certain market conditions. I also don't think many things will crash. Maybe Facebook's $15B valuation but that was ridiculous to begin with.

Facebook: The Media whore

I'm only blogging about Facebook, because there is nothing else in the news. I feel if I don't blog I'll lose my momentum. Such pressure.

Facebook Turnaround On Privacy Could Signal Wave of Change
by Wendy Davis
Facebook's U-turn late last week on publishing information about members' purchases could mark the beginning of a wave of changes to online ad techniques. European regulators are expected to announce on Tuesday the commencement of a two-year investigation into online advertising and privacy, with a focus on behavioral targeting, or sending ads to people based on their Web-surfing activity and presumed interests.

I don't know about a 'wave of change', more of recognition by the advertising population that consumers are people and have rights. It is the right way to go.
I'm still seething a little bit from David Levy's comments the other day that "marketers don't want" less ads on TV. Who cares?! If all that's available is fewer ads at higher cost then that is all that they have to choose from.
It will actually turn out that everyone wins. Consumers have less ads, so they are less pissed off and they'll actually enjoy the less is more type scenario. Networks still make just as much cash as they did before and marketers win because more people watch their ads.
I maybe being a little too idealistic, but more freedom actually seems to create more advocacy.