Yesterday Advertising Week kicked off and as part of the week, the Internet Advertising Bureau held its MIXX Conference at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Times Square. It was attended by about 1,000 people and the sessions covered the usual stuff. The exhibit hall bustled for a bit but it's a smallish conference compared to some of the others in the industry.
This smallness has its advantages though. You can actually find people you are looking for and can talk to them without being trampled by a herd of show bag-wielding conference Nazis whose sole goal is to make sure they shove their business card into the hands of anyone who will take it.
eMarketer's Geoff Ramsey gave another of his stellar, figure-filled sessions which was well attended and left the other two sessions, for the most part, empty and full of cob webs. Geoff always has the facts and figures. Always fills your head with more information than you can take causing you the rush the stage after the session and beg him to forward you the PowerPoint version of the presentation.
So it's Advertising Week this week and what's the most important thing about the week? Icons and slogans, of course. Today at 6PM in Times Square, this year's Walk of Fame Inductees will be announced. In the past, the Geico Caveman, Juan Valdez, the Pillsbury Dough Boy, the Geico Gecko and Tony the Tiger have been Walk of Fame Winners.
In terms of past slogan winners, M&M's' "Melts in Your Hands, Not in Your Mouth", Verizons' "Can You Hear Me Now", FedEx's "When it Absolutely Positively Has to be There Overnight" and Wendy's "Where's the Beef" have been named.
So if you care about the really important stuff in advertising like this stuff, stay glued to Times Square for the news today. And if, like the rest of us, you could care less who wins this folly, just take a walk around Manhattan. There's bound to be a self-centric, ego-fueled ad industry party somewhere on the island.
- Haven't we seen this Chinchilla crap before?
- Cathay Pacific wants you to "Meet the Team" by using its new iPhone application.
- Subaru is out with a new DDB Canada-created commercial for its Legacy. It points to a site which launches next week and "features 3D audio technology using a new 'hypersonic' recording technique that mimics the hearing experience of a test drive."
- RockYou has teamed with Procter & Gamble's Dawn brand for the "Dawn Saves Wildlife" campaign to encourage consumers to join the movement through Dawn's Everyday Wildlife Champions Facebook fan page.
OK so the Webby's will never be the Emmy's of the Oscars or, well, anything remotely that grand and important but, hey, in our own little world of advertising, we like to make things as self-...uh...important as we possibly can. Hence, this promotional video for the Webby Call for Entries featuring RG/A's Bob Greenberg, Deep Focus' Steve Isaacs, and Achtung's Dick Buschman.
The video, which features a collection of five word speeches, asks us what our five word speech would be. We have no idea but oh wow, that was a little goose bumpy to watch. If only advertising award shows were actually that moving.
- Entry materials for the 2010 Effie Awards are now available on www.effie.org. The On-Time Effie entry deadline is October 14, with the last chance to enter set for November 4.
- On September 23 at the Yale Club of New York, MediaPost will host its Creative Media Awards.
- 72andSunny is out with an online and offline campaign for the newest 2K Sports video game, NHL 2K10 featuring three hockey moms who take out their aggressions, and take on NHL pros, with their favorite party game, NHL 2K10.
At ad:tech Chicago last week, and prior to his opening talk, I approached Denuo CEO Rishad Tobaccowala in hopes of scoring an interview later on. He was in a hurry and answered in a way I found brusque and upsetting -- which ended up colouring my feelings about the keynote.
Tobaccowala emailed to apologize immediately after reading the article I wrote, and was also good enough to give me almost three hours of his time in an interview -- more of a conversation, really -- later that week.
We never did get around to a formal Q/A. But I learned so much about branding and relationships from him that most of the gems would be lost if I didn't whip out the cam and start recording.
See the footage below the drop.
If you'll be in New York for Advertising Week September 21 - 25, you absolutely positively have to go to the YouTube Battle of the Ad Bands. Along with YouTube, it's presented by Electronic Arts, the Association of Music Producers and Sonny/ATV Music Publishinbg. Last year, it so totally rocked! There were some amazing performances.
McCann Erikson's More Fucking Cowbell (who will compete again this year) won the competition last year. In full 80's heavy metal, big hair regalia, along with two female dancers, the band absolutely owned the crowd and the judges. Who will win this year? You'll just have to go to find out.
Click More below for a full list of this year's competing brands.
My last ad:tech Chicago session was the Social Media Industry Forum, presented by Geoff Ramsey of eMarketer.
The sesh had a festive air for many reasons, not least that it was Ramsey's birthday. ad:tech's Warren Pickett burst in near the end to furnish him with candle-lit cupcakes.
But the company was also lively: we had a frothy, sometimes cynical and perennially candid band that included Digital Marketing Manager Katie O'Brien of Ben & Jerry's, President Rick Murray of Edelman Digital (which does interactive stuff for B&J's), PR/Social Media Manager Susan Wassel of Sanford Brands (here to rep Sharpie), and Digital Strategist Akash Pathak of DraftFCB, which worked with Wassel to bring life to Sharpie's label.
Please pardon this commercial interruption (unpaid and offered because we're nice and we're going to be there anyway):
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I wouldn't be pimping this if I didn't think it was a great conference. It is and I'm going. And besides, it's Vegas and who doesn't want a little Vegas in their life once in a while?
See you there.
ad:tech Chicago's "Love for Sale -- How Great Creative Seduces Its Target" session was broken into two discernably useful parts: statistics on online dating, and seduction as a metaphor for marketing.
We'll begin at the beginning.
The Online Dating Crowd
Accompanied by Liz Ross of Digitas US, Fusion Idea Lab's Matt Brennock regaled us with both statistics and close-to-home anecdotes -- the kind that's fueled many a romantic comedy.
I heard one guy say the pair had great chemistry, and he commended them for "[opening] the kimono" the way they did. Given the topic matter, and Brennock's zeal for reminding us (first once, then twice, then...) that men really do just wanna get laid, the geisha metaphor was oddly appropriate.
- The average online dater is 42 years old.
- Match.com remains tops, with 3.4 million uniques/month, but people increasingly drift away from these big-box dating sites and into more niche fare: j-date, veggiedate, Christian singles. (AdAge blogger Kelly Eidson seized this opportunity to send me a link to STD Match, a dating site targeted to people living with sexually transmitted diseases. There are also -- as if you didn't know -- ethnicity-specific sites.)
If the world wasn't our oyster before, the marvelous advances of the internet, coupled with mankind's enterprising creative spirit, have ensured it certainly is now. There's a match worth blogging.