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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

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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…

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This intended as a bit of a memes 101, originally written for a senior management man who wasn’t quite sure what all the fuss was about.  So this little article was born, because everyone deserves to understand our little meme friends.

A meme can be any idea that gains popularity, and it’s a slightly different take on what the traditional marketing guys may label as “buzz” or “hype” as it’s (usually) user-generated content that acts in a dialogue with the complex inter-textual network of a peer group or hyperlocal community. The most visible “memes” usually take form of appropriated images with captions: perhaps it’s to make a pithy comment on issues, express pet annoyances or just done for a laugh… some are quite layered and clever, others are not. There is not one main source for image memes. Anyone who has something (or nothing) to say can make one. And anything can become a “mainstream” meme.

image: meme - High Expectations Asian Father

High Expectations Asian Father

Most memes don’t explain themselves very well — you have to know how to read them, and you most likely have to look at several examples before you “get” the joke or the internal language. However, memes are increasingly entering mainstream dialogues and take many forms. Christina Xu and Christian Twang started ROFLCon in 2008, a deep dive conference into internet culture. They’re unofficially considered by many to be the official internet-meme mum and dad, the ones who started it all.  But, that’s the beauty of memes, they can’t really be owned by anyone.  They are live beasts that constantly evolve and by their nature are uncontrollable and roam free…. Read More

So a few weeks later I’ve managed to change jobs, book a wedding venue and reopen the Nike Case study series. With exams starting next week, I’m hoping for a prolific next 5 days with lots of writing and thinking and not much TV, couch or Fiancé (or as I like to call it, the Devil’s trinity of procrastination) I’ve managed to wrangle a week of study time between jobs and have dutifully set myself up in a suburban library, as far away from the Devil’s trinity as possible. So without further ado…

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When we’re looking at Nike’s developments over the past decade, innovation and consumer influence over the marketing mix and key product developments have changed dramatically. As Yoo et.al. (2009) point out, digital technology has radically reduced the communication cost for remote collaboration and coordination. While this has implications for all global companies, and how their international supply chains operate, it also changes the ball game for how consumers can interact with the company and what innovations are possible.

Stefan Olander, the company’s director of digital content notes, ‘‘In the past, the product was the end point of the consumer experience. Now it is the starting point.’’ The digital space has opened up infinite avenues for both continuous and dynamically continuous innovation, propelled by both consumer and the brand. A great example of Nike engaging in this space is the Nike + innovation.

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We all wonder about the internet, are too many catzburgerz overloading our brains with mortifying stupidty?  Are our kids going to be able to think for themselves, without Googling every question they have?

The old interweb allows us to take a bloody good idea and get friends, collegues and strangers to enjoy it, amplify it, correct it, as well as misunderstand and degrade it.

By far the best (short) (readble) (entertaining) article I’ve read on this topic is by Thomas Rogers. He’s penned a great interview with David Weinberger, a senior researcher at Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society.

We all love a bit of Havard to make us feel smart again, after way too many Lolz pics. Rogers and Weinberger take a look at the widening aperture of information, the rise of the networked fact and what Darwin would do with the intertubes.

A highly recommended read: http://www.salon.com/2012/01/01/are_we_on_information_overload/

image credit: PhotoHouse via Shutterstock