Marketing / Advertising: 9 Stories to Know from Last Week

On Monday mornings I send out an e-newsletter, IGNITION, that contains information and insights about things I’ve seen that are relevant and of interest to the marketing/advertising/digital communities. Below is a copy of the contents of this weeks report. If you’d like to receive it directly, fill out the form just to the right and it will be in your inbox first thing Monday morning.

What’s Reddit, and why did President Obama go on it?

On Thursday of last week, President Obama participated in an AMA on Reddit. What’s an AMA, and for that matter, what’s Reddit? AMA stands for ‘Ask Me Anything,’ it’s sort of an open forum Q&A. Reddit is an online content aggregator that is a very powerful online force. Reddit’s strength comes from the intense online community it has built. Back when the SOPA and PIPA Bills were being bandied about, it was Reddit that mobilized the online movement, picked up by dozens of major sites, that helped to stop those pieces of legislation in their tracks. Reddit is often a major website traffic driver and when people talk about ‘viral videos’ that magically attract millions of views, it’s often the case that the video has been pinging around Reddit.

President Obama’s 30 minute AMA session attracted more than 24,ooo comments from community members. Read this New York Times piece for more on Reddit. Just like Buzzfeed has turned itself into an Internet juggernaut, look for Reddit to possibly become more brand friendly in the future.


Content: Strategic and Creative Considerations

For planners and creatives, understanding the underlying structures of content consumption is critical (and apparentally alliterative [oops, did it again]).  Here’s a great piece, How We Consume Content Now that breaks down content consumption into four discrete segments: Focused use; Dual input; Time shift; Info snack. Each has its own behavioral and temporal distinctions. The trick is not just in understanding how to make a certain type of content, but rather how to make all the different types of content and strategically integrate them all into a program of consumer engagement.

For another interesting take on content, watch this interview by Brian Solis of Mike Rosenstein, producer at Red Hour Films (a Ben Stiller company).  Great insight on their ‘test and learn’ process for creating content that users want to watch.


More on Content

TechCrunch reports on a new Google study that looks at multi-screen usage. Yes, content drives the world, and increasingly it is content that is being accessed across multiple screens, often simultaneously. This piece offers terrific insight on how consumers jump from one device to another for such things as search, shopping, finance and watching online video. These are the types of considerations that must be factored in, whether creating long-form video, :30 TV spots or driving people to commerce sites.

The Nieman Journalism Lab has more on the growing trend of video news content. This is the type of piece you read and say, “We need to re-think how we’re communicating as a brand.” When every brand is a publisher (they are), the question becomes – how are they creating/producing that content? Who is actually going to do that? What agency partners are in the best position to provide strategic guidance and creative support?


IGNITE NYC Welcomes IconMobile’s Thomas Fellger

This week IGNITE NYC returns for episode 4, featuring Thomas Fellger of IconMobile. IconMobile Group is one of the leading international design agencies and technology suppliers in the mobile world – bridging design and technology. Thomas is a frequent speaker at many global, mobile focused conferences such as the GSMA’s Mobile World Congress, CTIA, and Mobile Marketing Association events; amongst many others. He also serves as advisor to many new start up technology companies. Also joining us will be Caleb Lubarsky, CSpire Account Manager here at Y&R New York. It should make for an excellent show, as we talk about the future of mobile. The live show will take place on Friday, September 7 at 3pm, in the Ney Center.


Social Gaming & the App Ecosystem

Trey Smith takes a look at the economics of social gaming and discovers that ‘free to play’ rules the kingdom. Social gaming is a significant cultural behavior shift and a serious money-making opportunity. This five minute read has some eye-popping figures. How does the game CSR Racing make $400,000 per day? In-app purchases (in real dollars) ranging from $3-$60.


Your Facebook Page Sucks…

Inane babble and desperate pleas for validation – it’s not just for Snooki. Brands have been acting that way on Facebook for years, and now someone has put together a site on Facebook (how meta) to expose the charade of “authentic communication.” Check out theCondescending Corporate Brand Page and ask yourself if it looks like your page at all.


… and Your Product is Offensive

The only thing worse than having your Facebook page mocked? Having your product ruthlessly (and deservedly) mocked in the reviews section on Amazon. Inexplicably, Bic thought women needed and/or wanted pens just for them. What does the public think? Read the reviews here. Perfect when you need a dose of hilarity in your day.  The lesson here (and above) is that consumers simply will not let you get away with it anymore.  The necessity for brands to employ a Chief Culture Officer has never been greater.


Cookbook / Comic Book

The evidence is overwhelming: Content is King. So, the question then is ‘how does my content stand out?’  NYC restaurant Dirt Candy has created acookbook that looks and reads like a comic book. Genius.


Subway Goes The Content Route

Subway restaurants is taking the content route, producing an original scripted series to be aired on Hulu. Plans call for six weekly online episodes, or webisodes, each running 10 or so minutes, with a new episode to begin streaming each Tuesday.