Location is Not a Fad

Matt Gillian, cofounder of Simple Geo, discusses the increasingly important role of location-based services in apps.


The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

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Location is more than just a check-in. Taking full advantage of location can change the way people interact with brands by moving the conversation to a physical location and, it’s hoped, a purchase.

The data that can be applied to applications’ geo-sensitive components runs deep. Matt Gillian, cofounder of Simple Geo, discusses how his company is striving to provide app developers with the data tools they seek to serve more precisely targeted information.

Putting consumers’ location and intentions into context can be aided by neighborhood data, such as demographics, population density and business with offers that may supplement the initial inquiry. Gillian describes promos that take consumers along the final mile, perhaps enhancing their experience with the augmented reality of virtual things in the real world displayed on the mobile device.

Brands and agencies hunger for technologies that provide data at every point in the consumer experience to achieve improved individualization and conversion. Location-based service layers feed that hunger and can do so while addressing the consumer appetite for discovery and convenience.

Keeping Consumers from Hitting the Mute Button

How can content marketing engage consumers when they are in control of their media? Interview with John McCarus, from The Third Act unit of Digitas.


The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

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“If you’re a brand, are you going to police or release? Are you going to control or participate?”

John McCarus, SVP, Group Director, Brand Content for The Third Act unit of Digitas, acknowledges that the correct answers are more easily said than done. “Organizations can take a long time to saddle up from legal and cultural standpoints to the real opportunity,” he observes. Yet he does see clients who are addressing this issue starting to see some real success.

Brands, according to McCarus, are being driven to the gates of publishing. They should be thinking about a content strategy encompassing entertainment, information and utility that reaches across paid, owned and earned channels to offer value to consumers where they are.

McCarus suggests that a brand can no more go to Facebook intending to aggregate a big audience without content, than one would invite people over for a big dinner party without a menu.

Online Advertising Compliance Has Its Rewards

Scott Meyer, CEO of Evidon, discusses how compliance with the self-regulatory principles of behavior advertising is good business.


The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

Sponsored by
brands, webtv, webisodic series, content marketing, consumers, eyeballs, display advertising, ana, association of national advertisers, iab, 4as

Approximately one in every 700,000 consumers exposed to Evidon’s “Advertising Option Icon” goes fully through the process of opting-out. According to Evidon CEO Scott Meyer, that’s just a fraction of those who click the icon to learn more about the interest-based ad they’ve been served. Evidence, it appears, that given transparency and control, consumers will accept the use of their personal information for ad targeting and, says Meyer, reward disclosing brands with their business.

With the constellation of privacy issues — including those related to Facebook, location-based services and high-profile security breaches — it’s not surprising that many consumers are confused about what types of data are being collected and applied by behavioral advertising. Meyer sees the data used in large part by the ads is straightforward and innocuous.

Self-regulation by the online advertising industry may satisfy both consumers and government officials to staunch greater regulation. Meyer reports significant growth at Evidon. It served up over 10 billion impressions in a recent month, is expanding into the EU and is talking about a late summer release of a mobile implementation.

According to Meyer, “Compliance with self-regulatory principles is not just about things you have to do. It’s about building a brand, which is something you want to do.”

5 Challenges to Accelerating Marketing to Real Time

Shiv Singh of Pepsi discusses the power and challenges of real time marketing.

The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

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Brand promotion. In the moment and within the context of real life activities.

Shiv Singh, head of digital for Pepsico beverages, sees great potential for consumer engagement when marketing goes from strategy to execution, to deliver valuable and resonant content, in a matter of moments.

He cites five challenges ahead for real time marketing.

1. The marketing ecosystem limits celebrities and intellectual asset owners from full participation. For example, if a “fan” shoots a photo of Lady Gaga with a beverage can, she’s likely to want to be compensated for allowing her image to be used should that fan push out a real time brand promotion. Singh sees this constraint easing as celebrities recognize the value of participating in those conversations.

2. Organizations are planning now for quite a while out, say 2012 and 2013. Changes need to be made so that they are instead addressing just a few minutes from now.

3. As powerful as listening online and social tools may be today, they are capturing just a fraction of all the conversations. More is needed.

4. Television distribution has a long way to go before it’s in real time.

5. Stronger, tighter ties are needed between brands and content creators to produce branded content. Singh makes it clear he is not speak of trying to displace existing media companies — as they have strengths and capabilities that branded content may complement.

When asked about content discovery, Singh felt this was not a problem for his large brand. Smaller brands? Well, content discovery is likely to be number six on this list for you.

Going from “In Your Face” to “In Your Brain”

Brian Mayer discusses the University of Phoenix’s transition to content marketing.

The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

Sponsored by

brands, webtv, webisodic series, content marketing, consumers, eyeballs, display advertising, ana, association of national advertisers, iab, 4as

Many marketers are reporting an increasingly hard time with the hard sell. To address this element of the evolving consumer landscape, Vice President Website & Social Media, Brian Mayer, describes University of Phoenix’s transition to content marketing.

Associated by many with its direct response marketing leveraging affiliate channels and heavy display advertising, the institution has been good at delivering advertising when prospective students are specifically searching for online degree programs. Now, it’s attempting to introduce itself to searchers higher up in their consideration set, by providing information about their industries of interest to help inform their career choices.

University of Phoenix is leveraging a community of faculty, alumni and other experienced contributors working on its behalf to provide relevant, valuable information. Rather than the first touchpoint being a display or affiliate ad, it can be information about industries that career seekers are hoping to enter.

According to Mayer, the process of increasing the discovery of this new content combines SEO, content syndication services and social media, such as Facebook and Twitter. Themed content, such as articles and points of pride for students, is published three to four times a day on Facebook.

In process now, says Mayer, is encapsulating article, blog, video and other content into an online magazine format.

Turbocharging Brands with Crowd Sourcing

Liz Boone, Global Director for Digital and Social Engagements at General Motors, on social media engagement.

The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

Sponsored by

brands, webtv, webisodic series, content marketing, consumers, eyeballs, display advertising, ana, association of national advertisers, iab, 4as

As brands move from broadcasting their messages to marketing approaches with increased consumer participation, they need to uncover values that can be shared with communities in authentic conversations. Established brands are fortunate to have positive lifestyle associations upon which to build more social relationships with their customers.

Chevrolet is partnering with another iconic American brand, Major League Baseball (MLB), in a program that can best be described — pun intended — as grassroots.

Liz Boone, Global Director for Digital and Social Engagements at General Motors, describes Diamonds and Dreams. The program seeks pitches via Facebook from communities to have Chevrolet and MLB, with whom it has a long-time relationship, rebuild decayed baseball diamonds. Successful communities are promoted on Chevolet’s Facebook Page, as well as on TV commercials, amplifying the voices of consumers as a means to enhance brand associations.

Inside the Vault is another initiative using crowd sourcing. Teaming with content creators, bloggers and others, GM has developed video magazines around programs in which its brands are involved, such as the MTV video awards and racing. With the intention of creating destinations for consumer outreach, the video magazines are then pushed out across blogs, microsites, Twitter and Facebook.

Using Employee Perspectives to Improve Consumer Engagement

Susan Jurevics, Sr. Director of Marketing at Sony on turning employees into brand evangelists.

The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

Sponsored by

brands, webtv, webisodic series, content marketing, consumers, eyeballs, display advertising, ana, association of national advertisers, iab, 4as

We hear a great deal about the need to break down our corporate silos as essential to achieve brand success in the socially connected world. Susan Jurevics, Senior Director of Marketing at Sony, describes going one step deeper — acknowledging employees as proxies for consumers and guiding them into service as brand advocates.

The way that media is now consumed makes it difficult to reach consumers through traditional print advertising. Employee engagement is informing Sony’s move from traditional, 12-week campaign structure to “always on” marketing with consumer conversations and co-creation.

Jurevics, who runs brand marketing for Sony in North America, speaks about conducting deep research with employees — formal quantitive and qualitative studies, ethnographies and home visits to explore how they are consuming media.

When Sony launched its Make. Believe branding, it sensed that if its own employees could not go beyond simple understanding of the message, it could not successfully get it out to consumers. Employees were given language they could use on their Facebook pages, LinkedIn profiles and other social identities.

The company also conducted a contest asking employees to put their Make. Believe moment into 150 words. The winning entrants had their stories about how Sony helped their dreams become reality filmed and streamed at CES.

Consumers are starting to understand the concept behind Make. Believe. Putting employees and consumers in the same, virtual environment, Sony is inviting consumers to join collaborate with the company in the development of short-form videos and narrations to create a steady stream of talk around the theme.

Change if this kind, Jurevics acknowledges, takes time to get through her big, global, diverse and heavily matrixed company. Initiatives that pull employee activities through to the consumer may just be the means to make Sony a bit smaller and simpler.

Pumping Up Web Image Interactivity

Interview with Chas Edwards, CRO of Pixazza

The above video interview is from Internet Week in NYC.

Sponsored by

brands, webtv, webisodic series, content marketing, consumers, eyeballs, display advertising, ana, association of national advertisers, iab, 4as

An increasing amount of content is being built around photos to enhance stories and increase engagement. Pixazza has looked through the eyes of consumers viewing your images and see they want more than just a limited, static experience.

Knowing that publishers can’t just slap a rich media ad on top of images, the company presents a way to attach relevant content that’s revealed when the image is moused over. On celebrity entertainment sites, for example, consumers may want to know more about what a favorite celebrity is wearing and Pixazza will surface information on where the attire can be purchased.

How much of an opportunity does this create for brand advertisers? Chas Edwards, CRO of Pixazza, states that 20% of those presented with interactive images engage with that additional content. He reports 100 million daily interactions by 150 million monthly uniques, with 100 publishers signing up daily for Pixazza.
social media, photo sharing, facebook, fans, API, twitter, images, ecommerce, shopping
Under the hood, Pixazza uses machine image recognition algorithms supplemented by a freelance team to identify objects inside of images for connection to relevant content.

When asked in the second half of the interview for tips for startups, Edwards advises them to play in as big a sandbox as they can find. No matter what, he warned, once they start taking their idea to customers, publishers and brand advertisers, they’ll be pressed to make changes.

On the hiring front, Edwards states he seeks people who offer more than a single expertise, who can evolve with the company. Perhaps someone is developing Pixazza for HR that reveals more about candidates than initially meets the eye.