ad:tech SF: Levi's Blueprint for Storytelling

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"When presented with bold new ideas, people reference what they know more than what they can conceive."

Senior Director Michael Perman of Levi's passed us oranges, recounted memories of his dad and deluged us with blue-jean trivia in an ad:tech sesh entitled "The Power of Storytelling."

See snippets of tweet coverage. It's apt that Levi's give us the skinny on storytelling's underrated appeal, given that its capacity to spin tales has beguiled us for years. Anyway, here's some videographic deja vu.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-27-09    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Events, Industry Events, Video



ad:tech SF: Steve Hayden Replaces Industry Fear with a Wee Bit O' Wonder

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Ogilvy Vice Chairman Steve Hayden conducted a keynote titled "Fear, Love and Advertising" at ad:tech SF last week. I livetweeted it; you can see some of the tweetage here.

Hayden kicked off by explaining the premise behind his talk: in this dire economic clime, when everybody's castrating their own creativity, he hopes to encourage the industry to shelf their fears in favour of a little (well-informed) wonder.

He woke the muse by blasting us with iconic ads, like the Apple Newton stuff and "True Colors" from Dove's Real Women campaign.

Then he gave us a long, colourful explanation of a hexagon he calls Hayden's Mandala -- a complex (and yet simple!) cycle of everything a person/brand goes through when facing a major growth trajectory or change. Here's a video snapshot of that:


Then Hayden did something I've never seen a keynoter do before: he passed the floor to people whose products he thinks will change the media environment. I was awestruck, and only more so when I saw what came next.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-27-09    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Events, Industry Events



ad:tech SF: Hashing Out Social Networking's Impact on Photo Storage

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The stuff that comes out after an interview is sometimes just as good as what you get during. After our audiovisual taste of the future of HootSuite (and a power-fail story about ZipCar), founder Ryan Holmes of Invoke Media and publisher Krista Neher of The Marketess riffed on the photo storage merits of Facebook and flickr.

Compelling factoid: while it may be true that flickr hosts over three million photos, the unlikely Facebook totally pwns that figure. As of October 2008 Facebook became the largest online photo storage site -- clocking over 10 billion pics and counting.

Obviously there are big differences between the sites. Krista argues that flickr's too public for comfort, and people are more inclined to curate personal images in a space where they can control who sees what. (Apropos to that, I like how Ryan murmurs, "...stalker" at :22.)

How has social networking changed online photo storage and personal life-whoring in general? What's coming? We contemplate these questions and others while I clutch a digicam with one hand and macaroon-gorge with the other.

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ad:tech SF: Amielle Lake on Mobile Marketing, (Copper) Mining and Pinot-Friendly Cheese

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Amielle Lake is the CEO of Tagga, a Vancouver-based company that helps agencies add a strategic mobile component to their campaigns. (Think broad SMS efforts, mobile websites, etc).

The service -- currently live in Canada and the US -- includes reporting and dashboard management, and payment models are flexy.

We sat down yesterday to talk about Tagga in a video interview. As luck would have it, I ended up gleaning a lot more than I expected. Amielle tells this great story about Tagga's birth and the state of agencies at that time; it also turns out she worked in mining and knows French cheese like this. (*crosses fingers*)

Funny what you can find out when the pressure's on (ad:tech was ending, hence the skulky suited man in the BG) and you know your first take MUST be perfect (I don't know how to use my video editing software. But you probably guessed that).

Compulsive Twitterers can hit the Follow button at: @tagga and @amiellel.

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ad:tech SF: Ryan Holmes Demonstrates Serious Interviewing Fortitude

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Forget, for a second, about the vacuumy cafe noises and the girl with the crutches in the background. The weather is pretty, Schoggi is cozy and we have pistachio and rosewater macaroons.

Fun fact: Founder/CEO Ryan Holmes of Invoke Media, parent company of HootSuite, has never had a macaroon before. When I ordered them at the register, he asked if they were "Asian hamburgers." And then I died.

Notes on this video:

1. HootSuite is one of the cooler tools available to marketers on Twitter right now. It has a proprietary URL shortening feature (ow.ly) with a built-in ad and revenue sharing model. HootSuite can also manage multiple accounts at once.

An update, slated for the near future, will boast still more features and turn the HootSuite UI into a cross between Firefox (with tabs!) and TweetDeck. Yeah, that sounds scary, but Ryan assures me they've got good info architecture/usability peeps back at Invoke.

I believe everything he says. EVERYTHING.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-24-09    
Topic: Creative Commentary, Events, Industry Events



Big Parties, Small Parties, Dinners Add to ad:tech Experience

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If one could identify a trend in parties at this year's ad:tech in San Francisco, it would be this; more, smaller and no open bar. It all makes perfect sense in a "down economy." Excepting a couple of parties, most were small events held at small venues with limited or no open bar. That didn't seem to stop people from having fun though this year.

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As early as Monday night, the eve of ad:tech, Glam Interactive held a small event atop the Clift Hotel in the Spanish Suite. From 7P-9P, members and guests mixed and mingled before the general ad:tech crowed began to glow in. While it was open to all, it never really got all that busy.

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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-09    
Topic: Industry Events



German brothels, Microbooking, Canadians Who Shave and Stay Off Twitter

- George Parker on German Brothels in hard times like these.

- Microbooking is the new...?

- Social media IS like sex. (For the record, I don't pay for social media.)

- Microsoft blowing up on campus like Google used to.

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by Bill Green    Apr-23-09    




Press Room Hijinks: Duck9's Sensual Revenge on The Marketess

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It's impossible to get work done in the ad:tech SF press room, and this is one of the reasons why. Witness while Krista Neher (The Marketess) tries telling an Extremely Boring Traveling-to-ad:tech Story. And Larry Chiang of Duck9 tries detracting her with tantric massage.

Then they reflect on their recent Jedi marketing battle and how they couldn't have been SO DAMN AWESOME! without each other.

Be advised: there are bad words, and this video is of no practical value whatsoever. Although Krista does lend valuable insight on how to get out of speeding tickets in Toronto.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-22-09    
Topic: Events, Industry Events



Press Room Hijinks: The Marketess Blocks Duck9's Self-Promo Game

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This casual ad:tech SF press room convo takes place between Brent Terrazas of Everything's Better with Brentter, Krista Neher of The Marketess and Larry Chiang.

Larry runs a company called Duck9, which helps college kids improve their FICO scores. He also explains the premise behind (read: plugs the living dickens out of) his BusinessWeek column, What They Don't Teach You At Stanford Business School.

Krista, never one to resist an opp to antagonize, loudly observes Larry never actually went to business school.

Witness with awe how a (too) smooth operator eases out of that snagglety-snaggle.

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-22-09    
Topic: Events, Industry Events, Promotions



ad:tech: Jimmy 'Jimmidee' Wales, Post Keynote

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Shortly after his keynote at ad:tech San Francisco -- and David Spark's timely pre-talk grab -- founder Jimmy Wales of Wikipedia sat down with me to talk shop.

Expect to hear his dish on where consumer generated media is now and why brands should dive in (as well as where). We also talked about what-in-hell happened with Wikia, why branding's underrated, and what keeps Wikipedia afloat. (It ain't advertising.)

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by Angela Natividad    Apr-21-09    
Topic: Events, Industry Events, Opinion








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