Stand Up and Stand Out: A Lesson from SXSW

In March, M/C/C sent a team of five to SXSW Interactive. We showed up in Austin, Texas on Friday afternoon wide-eyed with anticipation. From the moment we hit traffic, we could sense what was in store. As we inched along the highway, we pointed out a giant buffalo, tents packed into every corner, people walking around with totes we just had to find.

We made our way through registration, countless sessions and a plethora of brand activations. It was a four-day-whirlwind, filled to the brim with as much as we could possibly experience.

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The Oscars 2017: The Winners of the Biggest Night in Hollywood

If I’mnatalieblogphoto being completely candid, every year when the Oscars comes around, I find myself more interested in the red carpet than the actual awards. Although I believe Emma Stone needs to be recognized for her breathtaking gold dress, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson should retire his blue velvet jacket, I’m here to talk about the biggest moments of the night. Viola Davis’ words made your whole family cry, Jennifer Aniston reminded us that we will never look that good at 48, and of course there was that epically awkward moment during the biggest award of the night. Congrats, “Moonlight.” Ouch, “La La Land.”

However, while the stars shined, there were some big names that did not receive any accolades. I’m talking about the sponsors of the Oscars. Fortunately for them and in the spirit of the award show season, I’ve decided to make some awards of my own.

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Reaching Millennials on YouTube

YouTube is addictive. It’s a magical place where you can watch endless hours of games, cats, pranks, vlogs or whatever else tickles your fancy. Millions of people view videos on YouTube every day, so it’s no surprise it has become one of millennials’ main sources for entertainment and information. Google research shows that YouTube reaches more 18-34 and 18-49 year-olds than any cable network in the U.S.

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Holiday Marketing is at a Fever Pitch but What’s Next?

Keeping the momentum with post-holiday marketing programs

Businesses, particularly retailers, have been planning for this holiday season since the last one ended – and with good reason. According to the National Retail Federation, the holiday season can represent as much as 30 percent of annual sales. We’re in the peak season for holiday marketing fueled by long hours, endless cups of coffee and a thousand moving parts from the best-laid plans.

Businesses are working furiously to get their piece of the holiday spending pie but what happens when that spending frenzy dies down? How can retailers and business-to-business (B2B) companies continue the momentum?

Holiday Marketing

For retailers, there are some fundamental and proven strategies for extending revenue opportunities on the heels of the holidays.

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A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Election Day

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Now that November 8 has passed, and one of recent history’s ugliest campaign seasons is behind us, we can all let out a “yuge” sigh of relief. That’s what we all wanted, right? No more politics in our daily lives?

Wrong. As much as we all bellyache about the campaign cycle, political ads and robocalls, we apparently can’t get enough. Voter turnout for both parties was higher than ever. Television ratings for the presidential debates broke records left and right. And political contributions continue their upward trajectory. Politics is the American tradition that we all hate to love.

Even the advertising industry was not immune to the political bug this year. Normally, we and the brands we serve try to steer clear of politics at all costs. We’re supposed to put brands in their best light without risk of alienating consumers on any side. After all, it’s a tricky thing to tiptoe through the mud slinging and come out clean, which is why most marketers attach themselves to less divisive current events or just connect more broadly to a political look and feel.

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Maintaining Marketing Focus in an ADD Environment

Choices, choices, choices. We’re all bombarded everyday with an ever-growing number of choices for how we spend our time and attention. It seems as if every second of every day is occupied with a thousand different things. Evidently, it’s even hard to stay focused on ordering something as simple as a sandwich – earlier this week at Subway, I saw a sign posted asking customers to “refrain from using your cell phone while ordering.” I only saw it after I looked up from my phone. In my mind, it’s neither good nor bad – it’s just the world we live in, where the new norm is to have our attention on 10 things at once.

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As marketers, the challenge is the same. The choices about how we spend our professional time are highly fragmented in a hyper world. We’re bombarded with data and marketing intelligence at every turn, we’re evaluating new and existing market platforms, media outlets and tools, and we’re studying our audiences and their sub-segments and sub-sub-segments. It can be overwhelming at times, and it can dilute our focus.

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Advertisers, Let’s Mobilize!

I love my phone. I take it everywhere with me: meetings, the grocery store, the bathroom, everywhere! For many, our phones are part of our identities – so much so that we spend an average of 4.7 hours a day on them, according to Informate Mobile Intelligence. This might sound alarming to some (like my mother), but to marketers this should sound more like an opportunity to reach millions of people at just about any moment in their lives.

Mobile ad spends are expected to exceed $101 billion and make up half of digital ad spends in 2016, according to eMarketer. That means if you aren’t in the mobile game, your competitor probably is. And if you’re not top of mind, you’re not top of wallet. So where do you start?

Get to know the basics with a quick overview of the top mobile advertising opportunities:

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Getting the Most from Your Media Relationships

When I say I work in advertising, people always ask where they have seen my work and what products I advertise; but when I mention I work in media, their enthusiasm fades and their eyes glaze over. Media buying is a misunderstood occupation that requires personal relationships as well as negotiations to ensure success for your clients.

Negotiation Negotiation is an art with the top prize culminating in the greatest benefits for your clients. In the fifth season of “Mad Men,” Roger Sterling said, “The only thing worse than not getting what you want is someone else getting it.” How you achieve these goals for your clients is a spirited contest played by those in media. Here are some key insights which will lead you down the path to success.
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Pay No Attention to That man Behind the Curtain! Uncovering the Mysteries of Programmatic Advertising

The digital media world is ever-evolving; and Yellow Brick Road sometimes we as marketers feel like we’re clamoring to keep up with the latest tools and technologies. The current discussions around programmatic media and theories about how it will alter the media landscape are hot topics. We’re on an epic journey down the yellow brick road, but what’s behind that great green curtain of Oz (or in this case, programmatic media)?

In a recent study by eConsultancy, 62 percent of marketers are using programmatic buying for brand objectives with an expectation to increase over the next two years. It seems that programmatic is quickly becoming the norm for digital media buying in display, mobile, video and sometimes TV.

Arming ourselves with the Lion’s courage, the Tin Man’s heart and the Scarecrow’s brain Continue reading “Pay No Attention to That man Behind the Curtain! Uncovering the Mysteries of Programmatic Advertising” »