Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Are You A Human?

Does CAPTCHA drive you bonkers? As in raving, #@$% WhiTHerstoNE and &*#@ DamNAtion mad.

Make your website tastier for users while keeping spam on the lamb. Check out the technology and contest winners, including yours truly, here:

Are You A Human "PlayThru" Contest Winners

Honorable Mention

I'm big on Linkedin. Indeed, they've told me so just this past week.

Seems I have one of the top 5% most viewed profiles for 2012. That's a wider cohort than the 1% of Occupy fame and the 3% of Mitt Romney's productive few. But I'm one in a million, eh?

I am big on Linkedin for helping me to stay in touch with many colleagues across the world: what they're doing, what they're thinking and for the opportunities that are presented in career development. 
As a job seeker, ready to transition from consultant to full-time, I can only hope this fine honor will elevate my prospects, right!?!

Best wishes Linkedin on the first 200 million. Keep the relevance strong — and keep it focused. Take care not to fall into the Facebook muddle, and risk the dismissive "un-cool" opprobrium of my young nephew and his peers: Facebook sucks. It doesn't suck, but it not so great either with disregard for users on the rise. Monetization is OK; abuse of data and privacy is not so clever. Linkedin seems to have found a virile path to quality revenue and subscriber loyalty.

Cheers, friends!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Nokia "Nuron" campaign showcased at Wunderman New York employee forum

The assignment was to showcase our recent client work to the agency at a "Town Hall" assembly for all Wunderman New York staff. But it was also a perfect opportunity to give a well deserved shout-out to my Dallas-based Nokia team with the folks back East, and that was a key motivation to create a video. For certain, I had a lot of fun pulling it together, because of the work and the strong business results. More gratifying still, our big city colleagues offered their enthusiastic, approving response, even the junior staffers had no idea who shot J.R.

Monday, October 18, 2010

More on the Media Mix Conversation

In 2008 and 2009, I had the pleasure of working with some brilliant colleagues doing advanced statistical work in the area of revenue-linked media mix modeling. Their analysis prepared each quarter for this direct-sales technology company revealed — to much surprise and skepticism — that certain traditional media channels delivered consistently stronger ROI than digital channels like email and online display ads, and even outperformed search at times. The data also provided an optimal frequency based on saturation curves for each media channel, your call for a “productive mix” including digital tactics.

The key to the analytic insight was the ability to model sales response data for latency, the often observed but rarely measured time lag between a media impression and a correlated revenue-generating action. To establish a link, sales traffic from all of the inbound response channels was attributed methodically to the most probable or demonstrable “last touch” in the prior quarter's media plan -- matching by time/date/item with precision minute by minute, product by product, and by price on limited time offers.

Since our work, the fundamental importance of “last touch” is today recognized even more widely now that Google has introduced the “View Through Completion” tracking metric for ad buy latency on the Google Display Network. Still, despite high confidence in the methodology as proven across multiple industries and disparate marketers, we still faced a skeptical CMO’s mandate to “go digital, or go home”. We might have predicted that!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Is Digital Interaction Pulling Its Weight?

Agency bosses too old and change resistant, claims Sorrell

(Advertising Age) NEW YORK - WPP chief executive Sir Martin Sorrell claims that brands are not spending enough online because the people who run their agencies are too old and resistant to change.

"Delivering the opening keynote session at ad:tech New York yesterday, Sorrell criticised brands for investing an average of just 13 per cent of their marketing budget online despite the rapid increase in digital media consumption.

The boss of WPP, parent of OgilvyOne and Wunderman, claimed that brands are being preventing from spending online due to a lack of understanding on behalf of the agencies handling their media budgets."

"WPP's [five year] strategy can be summed up in one simple sentence: new markets, new media and consumer insight," he told ad:tech delegates.


Drinking with some digital marketers last evening, I mentioned a stat that the average under-25 spends 5 hours a day on Facebook, a starting change in media consumption. But before we rush to purchase every online ad avail on Marc Zukerberg's brain child, my colleagues wisely noted that the average 20-something is also simultaneously watching TV, listening to iTunes, texting on mobile and probably checking every 60 seconds on the Domino's Pizza Oven app to monitor the progress of dinner. The medium is not the message. In today's communication planning, the brand experience as represented in digital media has become a critical support plank for the brand promise. Not always sufficient, but necessary.

With all due respect to Sir Martin, there are limitations in our present approach to digital media. Catalogs and other mailed communications deliver more more revenue per touch - and more certain revenue -- than digital media. The first wave of digital communications has hit a saturation wall of effectiveness. While email is scarcely 10 years old, remember, "You've got mail," open rates and end-actions rates are sinking under the volume. Ditto for online display ad banners. They didn't exist five years ago, but OA response is down by 50%, and network CPMs are in the tweens to single digits because of excess inventory. UHIPs like MSN home page reach eyeballs but at a negative ROI for most advertisers. And while pre-roll video is hip, hot and showing good numbers, there a lot of questions of exactly what constitutes an "interaction". Viewing through completion is much lower.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Five P's of Enfatico and Dell

Dear Enfatico,

It's been lovely. An audacious venture to change a traditional marketing services model and challenge a client culture to embrace marketing over manufacturing and logistics. Still, the brickbats from the blogs missed the point. For certain, 90-days wasn't long enough to build an agency, but it was a running start to the right goal envisioned by Casey and Mark.

The hard work and long hours were never an issue. The people are bright and passionate. I hired the US SMB client team, organized the work, and will challenge anyone to find a more productive and dedicated group of client service professionals. We took on 100% of the business in record time, and delivered far and above any reasonable capacity expectation with near zero defects.

With Dell, marketing is predicated on the traditional measures of price, product, positioning and promotion - and a fifth, process, that trumps quality of work. Balancing "the speed of Dell" with the most impactful and effective ad promotion is the core challenge for year two of the relationship. Dell is well on the way to placing great business products in market, our "Take Your Own Path" campaign is working in key global markets to change perceptions ( though pricing power -- and profits -- remain elusive. But squeezing the agency on revenue will not be the answer to the client's overall cost structure, ask HP and IBM, and it won't keep good people in place.

For my part, I will submit there is actually a sixth "P" in this equation:

Peace, out. Time for a new challenge.

Wishing you all the best.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Milagro Bath Towel

Milagro Bath Towel

At last, the perfect combination of size (a generous 30" x 60") and softness, price and color. These luxury bath towels by Matouk come from Pioneer Linens, a West Palm Beach institution. I got them in white and aquamarine. Matouk makes my favorite sheets and robes as well. (via Pioneer Linens, West Palm Beach)