Ideas, insights and inspirations.

Until recently, the battle for consumer attention on digital devices and platforms was led by Google, Bing, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter – and to a lesser extent by Pinterest and Snapchat. The entry of Amazon dramatically changes the dynamic of online advertising. It is now the third largest digital advertising platform in the US. To put things in perspective, here is how these platforms are situated in the demand funnel. In a nutshell, social media platforms know buyer’s interests and let them discover new products/services; Google and Bing have the intelligence about the buyer’s intention to purchase something; and Amazon has data about what products buyers are purchasing. Each player now offers its own advertising service, with e-commerce product companies favoring Amazon Advertising, and all other companies using a combination of Google, Bing and social media advertising platforms. According to eMarketer, Amazon advertising is still a distant third behind Google (37%) and Facebook (20%) in US digital ad spending, … Continue reading

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I remember walking along the New York City High Line — a Queens railway turned scenic nature path through Manhattan — and looking up to see one of Spotify’s vibrantly colored billboards on the side of a nearby building. It captured my attention. It made me laugh — not just because it was witty, but because it was relatable. As I took in the ad that reflected absurd and comical listening habits Spotify had observed from users over the year, it made me recant my own Spotify experience and reflect on what my own musical habits say about me. The theme of Spotify’s ad campaign this year is “2018 Goals”, recognizing the ups and downs we’ve experienced in our country and across the globe this year and translating user data into clever headlines that humorously offer suggestions for embracing everything 2018 throws our way. “This year, by looking at our own data and the external data, observing the world, there … Continue reading

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You want to see the world’s most well-practiced and ridiculous eye roll? Play me a sappy country music song. I see right through that charade – disingenuous, insipid and frankly offensive. Cue. That. Eye. Roll. To me, there are two kinds of emotional appeals in advertising and media. First, the kind I’ve just mentioned — intended to make you cry. I imagine the room of country music executives in sharkskin suits and cowboy hats (stay true to those roots!) in some Nashville high rise, sitting around a rich mahogany table coming up with the next sappy ballad. It’s sole purpose is tears. And the reason they do it? It works. It works really well. It’s why Christmas Shoes became a made-for-tv movie. But to me, I feel exploited. Toyed with. I lose trust in brands who take advantage of my tender heart. (Think Sarah McLachlan Arms of the Angel ASPCA ad.) The second is a different kind of emotional appeal. … Continue reading

For an ad lover and athlete like myself, the olympics are like super bowl, but better — I get to experience great ads for two weeks straight. (The only difference is the advertisement restrictions that the International Olympic Committee for non-sponsors but this isn’t a blog about those rules. This is a blog about the awesomeness that has unfolded in the last few weeks.) I’ve shared my top three from the 2016 Rio Olympics: Bronze: Samsung Samsung took a bit of several national anthems — the parts that talk about unity — and mixed them into one song. Stuff like this gets me every time. Silver: Google Photos #relatable. #toorelatable. Gold: Nike – The Iron Nun Nike’s UNLIMITED ads knock it out of the park, and this one is my favorite. Their ability to combine together professional athletes with 9-minute-mile schmoes like me has forever earned my brand loyalty. I love the concept of breaking the fourth wall. And how the narrator and athletes interact. Also watch … Continue reading

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