MarketingSherpa has released its 2008 Online Advertising Handbook + Benchmarks report. They sent a copy for us to take a look and it is without doubt the most complete, concise and fact filled piece of hefty online data goodness out there. It's all about planning, designing, executing, and measuring online ad campaigns and has research from a survey with 577 online advertisers.
Dayparting, frequency capping, demographics, online media consumption patterns, spending levels, clickthrough myths, designing the perfect online ad, ad recall, average clickthrough rates, conversion rates, landing page design, online video, gaming, rich media, targeting strategies, contextual and behavioral advertising, online media buying tips. Everything. It's all in there.
The Handbook also includes an advertising eye tracking study conducted with MarketingSherpa's partner, Eyetools which reveals how important online ad placement (position) can be to a campaign's ROI. Get smart. Buy it here. (And, yes, that's an affiliate link and yes we do get a cut of the purchase price.)
- Big spenders who can't be bothered to attend a fashion show: Prada wants your business. Click on "Prototypes Auction" at Prada.com to see what's bid-worthy.
- Product packaging can be vastly improved with the addition of Braille.
- Twitter, allegedly the 439th largest social networking site, is deemed niche but influential. (The niche aspect is part of what makes something influential in the first place ... right?)
- Yelp.com released a self-serving documentary to showcase its whole anti-Zagat, down-with-the-homies feel. The mini-doc was fast made mockumentary fodder by the anti-Yelp Elite, which seem to think Yelp's all about hair. No arguments here. And apparently Yelpers find the mock more amusing.
In tangent with Cat Fancy, Petfinder.com has launched "Cats Rule!", an ad contest that aims to do two things:
- Improve public perception of cats
- Encourage people to adopt homeless ones
Entrants must create a 7x10" print ad that demonstrates "the value and importance of cats, specifically of adopting one." The winner gets a full-page run in Cat Fancy's September issue. It will also appear on Catchannel.com and Petfinder.com.
That's one thing I don't get about this campaign. If its purpose is to alter negative public perceptions of cats, why preach to the saved? Get that bad-boy a full spread in Modern Dog or ... hell, Dwell.
The deadline for submissions is May 23. See guidelines. If after the height of lolcat and Caturday you can't put together a bangin' cat ad, sell your Big Black Pencil and go be an accountant somewhere.
Before the Barbarian Group VIP party which followed the ROFLcon conference held last Friday and Saturday at Cambridge's MIT, the crew from Our American Shelf Life, Amanda Mooney, Amy Yen, Sarah Hutton, Will Wheeler, laura Nelson, Maria Garcia and Patrick Richardson along with myself, met for dinner at Boston's Sonsie restaurant on Newbury Street.
Between sips of martinis, bites of salmon and appetizer goodness, there was talk of Facebook, Twitter, the origin of Adrants, MySpace angles and why social media really isn't anything more than a shift in the way people use readily available media to interact with others. All of which you will soon see on video.
Sarah Hutton, a writer for Our American Shelf Life and a contributor here on Adrants was featured in a video, shot by Amanda Mooney (also an ASL writer and Adrants contributor) about Facebook chat.
Sarah tells the story about how she like to stay in touch (stalk?) with a friend abroad using Facebook chat because her friend is never on AIM or iChat. She also offers perspective on chat, friending and social media in general.
Okay. We don't make music ourselves, but this iPhone synthesizer is too cool to stand. Wait for the piano sequence around 2:10. Oh, and the song is pretty kick-ass too.
Brought to our attention by Shilo.tv, a team of bicoastal filmmakers, music lovers and artists. We Make it Good serves as its blog and portfolio site, where you can get a taste of neat things Shilo's involved in, like Pretty Titty's We Make It Good mix series, which went out on Obey Giant Records -- another brand we love to the point of hyperventilation -- this year.
Obey Giant was founded by Shepard Fairey, who first caught our eye with his provocative visual mashups of familiar advertising, Communist propaganda and pop and political icons.
- The new Honda Accord is so lame that RPA had to use an image of its own creative team, gawking at the car, as part of an outdoor wallscape.
- American Express has launched Members Know, an "insider" travel community that, in trademark AmEx style, manages to be both elitist and bland. Also, there are INSIGHTS. And TAG CLOUDS. And the word BETA.
- Interactive firm ROKKAN redid the Gnarls Barkley site to reflect the duo's dynamism and harmony. (You know, like OutKast, but without Andre's mood swings.) The site includes a pretty awesome pop-up video player. In fact, it's pretty awesome all around.
Deep Focus is the sole beta partner with MySpace using the social networks new self-service platform which allows marketers to easily create and manage branded pages within the network.Writing on his blog, Deep Focus' Ian Schafer was surprised at commentary given to Advertising Age from other advertising executives who have basically written off MySpace.
Seth Godin recently wrote a warm laudy post about how Twitter is great for building trust, brand equity and ultimately sales. Practically two seconds later, marketing and social media blogger Ryan Kuder wrote Seth an open letter declaring shenanigans.
It's not that Seth is wrong. Twitter is a great relationship development tool. I maintain daily contact with more people on Twitter than I've met in real life over the past year. We pass on streams of thought, as well as links we find interesting or valuable.
Occasionally, that interesting or valuable link brings users to our website. But that isn't only or always the case ... and this is where Ryan raises his complaint.
"I've got a beef with the way you use Twitter," he writes, "Because you don't use it."
Big day for Yahoo yesterday. In addition to tentatively agreeing to serve Google ads on its search pages, Yahoo's apparently in talks with Time Warner to fold AOL into itself, in exchange for 20 percent ownership. Time Warner will pay in cash.
Microsoft, always one to take a crappy bluff, is now in talks with News Corp. to lob a joint bid at the company anyway.
Good life lesson here: if you can't pick just one, take the whole plate.