I’ve just come out of great session at Google HQ down-under. I’ve been one of the lucky few to see the first study in Australia around the effectiveness of pre-roll and their impact on lowering CPAs.  And I’m not talking CPA as in Cost Per Action, I’m talking the holy grail of Cost Per Acquisition; real buyable things, people who’ve been actively influenced to go and purchase items, expressly because they’ve seen an ad on youtube in the last 30 days.

The study has been conducted in the US a number of times, and we’ve seen broad benchmarks of 5-25% increased probability to purchase after seeing a pre-roll. Interestingly the Australian results are starting to show even higher results of 25-30%^.  As this is the first study, it is impossible for us to conclude higher de-facto effectiveness of pre-rolls in Australia.  But, at the very least we can confirm a positive impact on the consumer journey – another clear win for video!

We also saw that a greater frequency than one proved to be more effective (naturally! who listens the first time around anyway?). But we are yet to see where that tipping point of diminishing returns is; it will be interesting to see if it follows the golden rule of 3 we see across TV.

Speaking of TV, we know that digital is not a silo. We know it amplifies the effect of more tradition medias of  television, print, direct mail, and word of mouth.^^ We also know that the consumer journey is no longer a linear path, but more of a flight map.  Where people jump back and forth between different sources before landing on a purchase decision.  The question is, which sources can we effectively influence?  And, what is the most effective Read More

(Atari: hitting targets and giving people what they want)


+++I had a great training session recently on Human Centered Design, it was great for many reasons, but among the top was that the audience was filled with Gen-Yers who thought it was all bloody obvious. The general Y-consensus seemed to be: of course you should design with the end-user in mind and arguments from the audience members burst out on why companies bothered employing people who didn’t already “get it”. The arguments seemed to centre on one idea: if people needed to have this drilled into them then they were lazy fools and shouldn’t have a job.

+++This wholehearted embracing of Human Centered Design (HCD) was as abrupt and brutal as it was refreshing. Yes, HCD is a great framework. And the concepts that sit behind it are so simple and straight forward that people should surely be already doing this. But it also isn’t. The majority of people I’ve worked with in behemoth-sized companies are certainly not fools. They might lose sight of the big picture, or be forced into strange KPIs; but generally they are all keen on being decent human beings and look to be part of positive, productive projects. So, why do we so often lose sight of the fundamentals? Even the good basic principals of HCD ?

+++The further I get into my Social Psychology course the more I wonder if it is simply that the way we’ve set up our large companies is not ‘human’ enough? That is, our enterprises themselves are often not based on HCD, so often they don’t take employees’ natural behaviour as a way of building out strengths in the business. And to the Gen Y argument, what is it about extra-large companies that seems to bring out more of the social loafer1 in people? Could it be that the way we organise large workplaces and collaboration is simply failing?

+++Groups can often create situations where Read More

It seems that every day we get told that there is a digital revolution afoot, and in the advertising industry, the nature of this revolution certainly changes depending on who is trying to sell what to you.

The advertising-hive-mind is now making noise around the idea of bring back one:one value, through fancy digital tools.  So I thought it was time to wriggle free from the shackles of cynicism and take a big-picture look into what ‘value’ revolution might actually be going on in the consumer landscape and the product shifts that may need to accompany it.

Basing this exploration on leading business thinkers, seemed to be a good idea for getting broader perspectives; so I’ve explored a key concept from the erudite Shoshanna Zuboff around how we can create value for consumers in our contemporary space.

The thoughts in the below presentation are based on applying her notes on a broader economic topic to our digital consumer context.

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socky conversations

Last night a friend posed a question:  Really, how useful is the recent #cockinasock campaign?  If it’s ultimate aim was really to generate conversation around testicular cancer, is it actually doing the cause any good?

As fan of great (branded) social content, my instinctual response was a resounding yes!  The #cockinasock has that elusive golden formula: mass niche appeal.  If anything was ever going to be primed to ‘go viral’ this would be it! It is not only immensely shareable and humorous; it also appeals to a wide variety of disparate audiences.  How often is that you can get this litany of tribes to engage with the same content:

Males from both the Straight and Gay exhibitionist category…

Read More

The tl;dr research notes are (hopefully) de-nerded summaries of interesting (nerdy) research pieces I’ve come across.  

IDC Prediction: Social media technologies will become key arsenal in the marketing toolkit and the technology budgets to come from the CMO Office

Social media face

Social media in 2013 will mature from being a simple basic tool of engaging with customers to a more advanced marketing tool.

Uptake of social media technologies in enterprises was stronger in 2012 with 42% of the companies surveyed stating that they already have deployed it.¨

The social media priorities in B2B marketing are to build market awareness, engage customers or prospect in real-time interactions, acquire information, exchange ideas, and gather customer feedback.¨

tl;dr says: Social media is allowing consumers to talk directly to brands, this “bottom up” feedback needs to integrate into product development and can help growth hacking efforts Read More