Ben Shepherd writes: So says IABs Randall Rothenberg in this excellent blog post – http://www.iab.net/iablog/2008/12/a-services-strategy-for-intera.html
It’s worth a read – basically Rothenberg talks about a lot of digital’s ad growth coming from ‘low hanging fruit’ and not enough of it coming from the top 50 brand advertisers in the US.
He also talks about the danger of pigeonholing digital into DR type metric areas … as it devalues the medium and what it can truly achieve (the number of marketers saying they use the Internet to “generate sales” leaped 50 percent in that two-year period. The number saying they deployed interactive media to “influence purchase decisions” rose by one-third) in the areas of sales, site visits (ie post view) and e-commerce transactions.
He also talks through issues with measurement. He should be thankful he doesn’t live here …
Anyway, towards the end he gets to this point.
“… advanced publishers aren’t waiting for a set of magic metrics to instantaneously ignite a brand-advertising renaissance online. Instead, they have determined to build multiple paths to customer value and their own prosperity”
Personally I think agencies are in the same boat as publishers in this respect and one of the things I think the IAB does well in the US is think about the wider members of the digital marketing ecosystem and what they will need to do moving forward to remain competitive and innovative.
Just like publishers can’t really rely on selling banners to keep the growth alive, neither can an agency rely on buying banners and search campaigns and expect to keep its masters happy.
He mentions a company like Microsoft purchasing AvenueA and aQuantive … as well as CNet/CBS Interactive Content Solutions services direct to technology companies. Cars.com in the US has a CRM solution direct to dealers.
I often rant about the issue of publishers not telling advertisers enough about their audience and audience insight being too narrow in AU. Surely there is potential in this area for publishers – especially those with large, loyal, regular audiences.
The same with branded content. My attempts at talking about branded content with some ‘big 5 publishers’ has been awkward and clunky … dictated by a culture of saying ‘no’ … personally I think it’s possible but the sales resource on it now isn’t educated enough.
On a side note, I think publishers like Private Media, Kidspot and Allure Media should be setting up branded content arms right now and proactively creating a market (there are easier ways to monetise words and images than selling ads next to them) around custom publishing.
DMGs Nova are doing some excellent competitions and initiatives around the web that take what clever things they do on radio and making them come to life on the web. Amanda Good from Nova Melbourne has sent a stack through to me (including an excellent one for Trance Energy) that are really great and seem a far easier experience than dealing with the regular players.
iinet have teamed up with ninemsn to create a new consumer destination for iinet subscribers. It’s win/win – better content for iinet subscribers and a chance for iinet to add more value to consumers, for ninemsn it gives them advertising access to a credible, high end audience. (and one that has high numbers in a competitive market, Perth)
There’s also potential around sampling, research, CRM and content management.
I think times like this require a little bit of out of the box thinking (within reason) to fuel growth. One thing that excites me is agencies and publishers working together moving forward to create this. With the right (and adequate) resource some amazing things are possible.
And something that should excite us semi skilled (TM Liam Walsh 2009) web workers is the medium we specialise in can be the driver for these wider initiatives across all media.
Again, the key is making these out of the box thoughts added value not added cost. This will come with smart selling and positioning.