You, Me, and the Medicis


Ever notice that people always thank “the Academy” when they win an Oscar?

I happen to know someone who is a member of the Academy — my brother Nathan. He created the technology for characters like Shrek, Dragon, Donkey, Kung Fu Panda, and many others at Dreamworks. A thoughtful observer of culture, art, and technology, he recently wrote something to me that got me thinking:

“The pace at which our culture is absorbing and building on new technology for artistic and cultural expression makes the Renaissance look like a knitting circle. And advertising is inseparable from that today, just as the great masters of the arts of the past depended on their benefactors.”

He’s right. We live in a time of dizzying change in journalism, art, and cultural expression, and of dizzying change in the advertising technologies that support and enable our means of expression. Continue reading “You, Me, and the Medicis” »

5 Ways to Nail Your Digital Video Advertising Strategy


According to eMarketer, digital video ad spending topped $10 billion in 2016 and is on track to approach $18 billion by 2020. This anticipated growth shows that video is a popular medium among marketers. But, it’s still somewhat of a new frontier.

Issues like ad blocking and fraud complicate the space, and marketers are still working to keep up with this quickly-evolving industry and develop their play books for success.

Luckily, some initial best practices have emerged. Use these tips below to shape your digital video advertising strategy: Continue reading “5 Ways to Nail Your Digital Video Advertising Strategy” »

How to Build a Customer Journey With Video

Video enables brands to tell a captivating story. Combine this with the power of paid amplification and real-time feedback from viewers, and your brand has the opportunity to achieve massive ROI through this compelling content format.

The trends driving digital video advertising growth align with a surge in digital video consumption.

eMarketer estimates that the global digital video audience will grow 8.2% in 2017. Corresponding with an increase in video consumption is growth in advertising consumption, leading to a distracted consumer base and fragmented customer journey.

Between all of the distractions cluttering the customer experience today, some say the traditional customer journey is broken, or irrelevant. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. It is because of these distractions that it’s never been more important to guide potential customers through the buying journey with relevant messaging. Continue reading “How to Build a Customer Journey With Video” »

7 Best Practices for Live Advertising Campaigns

According to eMarketer, US digital video ad spending surged to $10 billion in 2016 and is on track to top $18 billion by 2020. With this type of growth, video is proving itself to be a core part of the marketing toolkit. For many reasons, live video is a format brands should consider.

Adweek reports that live video has 76% better brand recall than other commercials, and according to Facebook, users watch live videos more than three times longer than other types of video content. People also prove to be more engaged when watching live videos, commenting ten times more than they would on regular video content.

Live video enables brands to connect with viewers human-to-human. It allows consumers to participate in brand storytelling, which enhances the customer experience. With such a variety of options to choose from—everything from product tours to red carpet events—there is no shortage of offerings to create a touchpoint with consumers along their paths to purchase.

As marketers continue to learn how to use live video, here are seven tips that should kept in mind: Continue reading “7 Best Practices for Live Advertising Campaigns” »

A School For Digital Marketers In The Era Of ‘Surveillance Capitalism’

This original appeared on Huffington Post.

Shortly before Christmas, I posted a short screed about the moral mess that digital marketers have gotten themselves in. In this new era of big content and fake news, we’ve lost our moral authority—if not just our moral compass—to counsel brands on what to do. Why? Because for years before the dark Fall of 2016, the ad tech industry had been already eroding trust among people on the Internet by finding more and more clever ways to stalk people. I asked if the time had come for a new Cluetrain Manifesto, the popular 1999 treatise that admonished marketers that a new day would soon arrive when the customer would be in control.

My question got an answer—from Doc Searls, one of the authors of the Cluetrain. But the answer was not what I expected. According to Doc, who is still fighting the good fight, the work of the first Cluetrain is not yet done. Continue reading “A School For Digital Marketers In The Era Of ‘Surveillance Capitalism’” »