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It’s all about strategy these days.  Non targeted massive media buys don’t fly anymore.  More cross platform planning and strategy = less waste and greater return.

As the author points out local and targeted advertising is anecdotally where the biggest ROI is but “Measuring brand impact locally remains a challenge: 25% of advertisers in North America reported an inability to track ROI at the local level. Though the majority were able to track their local efforts, 58% of national brands nonetheless neglected to calculate the ROI of their local programs, a decision that may hamper their ability to further justify and grow local investment.”


Your predictions are very smart and this is very insightful post.  My background is iTV technology and not specifically digital, I hope you don’t mind me piggy backing off your post to offer some additional perspective.  I’m going to type in bold in response to your 12 predictions.


What will happen next?

1. Internet of things - the ‘smart’ internet, device agnostic internet. Whatever name ends up sticking, it is emerging, next, now.

My version of the ‘internet of things’ concept is called ‘the connected toaster.’  I call it this because I think the world of connected objects will coalesce around the home- where most of our things are.  Pretty soon everything from our fridge, thermostat, and yes even our toasters will be connected to each other.  The home will serve as the mother ship of people’s connected lives, yes we will have incredible mobile capabilities as well but at the end of the day it will be our little slices of heaven we return to every night.

2. Shift in how people use the internet - lean back, different formats of communications (expanding and evolving from social network use).

Are you saying people’s use of the internet will become more passive, lean back?  Have to disagree with you on this one.  Right now all media is forcing us to lean forward and participate.

3. Increased government interest, involvement, control - including some walling off the platform to their own borders, oppressing citizens with it, etc. as well as legislation.

Oh how privacy rears its ugly head yet again.  You’re right, privacy conversations continue to escalate in virtually every sector.  It’s clear this topic isn’t going away but this magical connected world everyone is dreaming of cannot exist without massive amounts of private, behavioral data.  Today people willing give up unprecedented amounts of private data on social networks and in most cases they don’t realize that pretty much anytime they touch a keyboard (smart phones) someone is recording that action somewhere.  Much of this data today is used for advertising and that’s bad right?  Through the emergence of new business models (point #11 below) and disruptive connected devices personal data could be used to greatly enhance and streamline our lives.  If your fridge knows what you love to eat but you don’t have all the ingredients it can order all that stuff for you automatically before you get home from work.  From this simple example companies will know what food you purchase and how often, where you shop, when you come from work, the makes and models of your appliances, and if you’re on diet or not.  This is pretty scary stuff and the questions are:  will consumers trade privacy for The Jetson’s lifestyle?  Will there be a tipping point and are we already desensitized to big brother?

4. The expansion of the platform into its broader functionality beyond information delivery and communications — utility management and control, digital money and increased digital payments, digital identity, access control and security beyond the devices to larger things like buildings, cities, etc.

Connected homes and cities, these innovations will not be groundbreaking until average Joe consumer is using them.  Breaking into the psyche’s of consumers will happen through the home.

5. Cyberterrorism, cyberwarfare, etc. 

I don’t know where to put some of my comments since so much of this stuff is inter-related.  On the topic of privacy and cyberterrorism though, let’s talk about implanted computer chips.  Would you ever allow a computer chip to be surgically implanted into you?  My immediate reaction is HELL NO!  I don’t want to be a connected device like my toaster!  I sure as hell don’t want to open my biological body to hacking! But after thinking about the idea if you told me this chip could immediately notify emergency personal if I was in an accident, was having a heart attack, or could notice the signs of a stroke days before I got one?  That HELL NO becomes a little less definitive.  This is all pretty heavy and it’s going to take enormous cultural and social shifts to get people on board.  Again, what kinds of benefits would create the necessary tipping points?

6. Increased consumer issue with privacy, control and access. As more people start to see what can be done with the internet, and how they’re privacy is out of their hands, etc. they’ll likely start to care more about this.

7. General cybersecurity issues but broader range — building, energy grids, etc.

8. Increased availability of the ‘mobile’ internet but hardly limited to smart phones, tablets and laptops (including cars, motorcycles, airplanes, and other movable objects of all types and sizes).

First we had Web 1.0, now we’re coming to the close of Web 2.0 but will there be a Web 3.0?  Don’t think so.  If we are talking in terms of websites, social networks, youtube in 10 years then we have screwed up terribly.  The next ‘version of the internet’ is all mobile apps.  Think about it, Instagram never built a website…  this billion dollar company never even had a homepage.

9. Shift from the two communications/telephone platforms (PSTN/landline and mobile) to voice calls via the internet.

10. Increased decline in use of broadcast TV platform and print media platform — but increased use of both over the internet instead (as the internet has been born to do all along).

This is one of my favorite topics actually.  Yes audiences are fragmented, yes new platforms (tablets) are replacing older ones (newspapers), but Television is different.  That big screen in the center of your living room will never go away.  What you watch through it might change but traditional Television is still here and it’s stronger than ever.  Just today it was announced that this year’s cable upfronts alone will pass the $10 billion mark and that “a lot of advertisers and buyers look to cable as the foundation on which to build their annual media plan.”  Cross-platform marketing exists because people are adding screen to their worlds not replacing them.

Beyond just ad spend though, imagine you could talk to your house.  It’s much closer than you think.  The nucleus of ‘the connected toaster’ will actually be comprised of all the Televisions in your home.  All we need are connected TV’s (done) and Siri (done).  Combine Siri 3.0 with a connected TV linked to your world of connected devices and now the home really does have an ‘artificial intelligence.’  “Good morning home, please begin running my bath, tell me today’s weather, and tell me my itinerary through lunch.  Oh yeah, can you also turn all the lights on in the kids rooms and tell them to get up.”

11. Increased shift in monetization and models to what has always worked in various formats of platform business versus ad-only models that are prominent now.

12. Entrance of the carriers in the market - on all fronts. Which has the potential to be very disruptive as they can do what all can do on the platform, and likely will, but moreso because they own the infrastructure itself — with exception to Google, no other companies on the software side (websites, apps, social networks, etc.) do. This will likely create a disruption of the software side of the platform. Though only in a shift of its position from one place to another, it will likely have the potential to knock some parts of the market (and companies) off their game. Only time will tell.

The Sweet Spot | May 18, 2012

David Carr and A. O. Scott wonder whether TV is still TV — and where it is going.

Very interesting video from The New York Times examines the current state of television.  Some of the topics covered:

1) Upfronts are bigger than ever because for advertisers there is still no better place to assemble a large group of people at the same time.

2) Streaming may be the future of Television because you can dynamically insert and maneuver advertisements.  DVR is an interim technology and streaming will take over.

3) ‘Campfire’ network TV models are dead.  TV viewing is fragmented.

4) Live TV is Dead, Long live TV

Multi-Screen Media Usage


A few takeaways:
- More than 80% of respondents reported watching video on a computer (84%) or on television (83%)
- 74% of Asia Pacific and 72% of Middle Eastern / African respondents watch video on mobile phones once a month (almost 40% watch content on their device daily)

Chalk this one up to Nielsen’s blog.  This site is proving to be a valuable resource to anyone looking for some great digital articles.  Check out the blog here http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/

Think Digital do iTV: Campaign Planning Hitlist for Interactive Television

When planning an iTV campaign of any kind you need to think like a consumer and do like a digital (cross-platform) marketer.  No sweat right?

Digital marketers live and breathe page views, visits, uniques, impressions, clicks, click-throughs, and conversions.  They’ve been doing so for several iterations of the internet already and now television must become part of this dialogue.  Television folks need to join the conversation and learn the digital language to stay relevant. 

Over the past 12 years online click-through rates plummeted to around 0.1% and while that might be okay in the overcrowded digital world of low CPM, it sure as hell is not enough to warrant investment on Television.

To further complicate the matter, people engage with Television very differently than all other media and those habits are changing faster than we can measure them.  However there’s hope. Regardless of platform, the most successful interactive campaigns share the following characteristics:

I. They exchange value with the consumer and reward them for their attention

II. They invite rather than interrupt the audience

III. They have the look and feel of an “experience” versus an “advertisement“

If you use this small, efficient, and encompassing list as a philosophical guide all other iTV components should fall into place.

In the future, marketing will be like sex: Only the losers pay for it.

Awesome article from FastCompany

Agencies need to get their shit together and start being really creative.  If 70% of the top brass in your company doesn’t have a twitter account you will probably fail.


I’m not downplaying the power of television especially as a part of an interactive and engaging marketing campaign through the multi-screen (4-screen) ecosystem.  But, if all you’re doing is still placing expensive media buys your probably not going to be around much longer as a company.  Also, let’s face it, you need engaging and high quality content to be successful in the interactive world.  At a bare minimum you need to reward consumers for their attention with nice content.  How many agencies are really willing to take that extra initiative and actually act as advisors to clients?  That’s for another post though.

Below is a small excerpt from the article about the bloated industry.  I’m actually beginning to see this at my own company.  Finally the industry will get the enema it’s needed for a long time.

"There’s never been a better time to be in advertising," says Aaron Reitkopf, North American CEO of digital agency Profero, referring to the unbound possibilities of digital, "and there’s never been a worse time." Reitkopf left his CEO post at Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners a year ago and spent some time visiting agency heads while figuring out a next step. "At the beginning of our conversations, they would put on a brave face, but once you began to quiz them about the future, the door would close in the office," he says. "They’d look at you and say, ‘I can’t possibly know what the future looks like.’ " There’s only one thing everyone agrees on, Reitkopf says, and that’s that there is too much excess: too many people, too many of the wrong kinds of people, too much bloat, too much inefficiency. And this in an industry that has laid off more than 160,000 people in the past two years. "Ohhhh," nods Reitkopf, "the carnage is going to be awesome."

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