5 Key Takeaways from Advertising Week

Last week’s Advertising Week drew hundreds of thousands of participants, according to the organizers, from around the world to New York City for a week of over 200 different programs on advertising and its neighboring industries (media, marketing and technology). Portada  editorial team members attended many of the functions. As is often the case, there is as much information to be obtained in major presentations in front of a large audience as in more informal conversations between conference attendees. Below are 5  Key Takeaways from 2012 Advertising Week:

  1. Amazon “gets out of the Advertising closet”
    As an insightful Fast Company article pointed out Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook are the big disruptors. That means that the 4 Tech Titans are continuously entering into sectors they have not been a part of yet. Amazon chose Advertising Week as a big coming out party for its advertising business.  The company  led by Jeff Bezos has an ecosystem of devices, websites and an ad network that can target 180 million users based on what they have browsed or bought in the past (e.g. moms shopping for diapers or men who research electronic gadgets). It’s all about (big) data, as Amazon is applying this concept to its own Zappos, Diapers.com, IMDB, Kindle devices, and third-party site targeting. Sellers can also retarget customers off Amazon, boosting direct sales. Like everything with Amazon, ads are about improving the consumer experience and subsidizing products, so expect more at least partially ad-supported products to come.
  1. Take your Brand “Native”
    Buzzword? Sure. Is there something behind the word “native”? Definitely. If conversations at Advertising Week 2012 are any indication, you take your brand narrative and go “native.” What are we talking about? As Forbes’s Chris Perry puts it: “A native mindset, simply put, is about delivering content that adds value as opposed to interrupting the media experience. It can happen in an ad, on a social network, in media stories, and more.” In the old days, “native” was called “Advertorial”. In the digital and social media world “native” forms of advertising are non-disruptive advertising that digital media properties provide to their clients: E.g.  sponsored article series and, most importantly, contextual ads.
  1. The growth of English-language TV Targeting Hispanics
    English-language media that targets Hispanics exclusively seems to be gaining ground. At least that is what Portada learnt from conversations it had with attendees at the Hispanic TV Summit. However, while there is a strong rationale for targeting Hispanics in English and “in-culture”, there are still some obstacles. One important obstacle is distribution. For instance take Nuvo TV, the cable network that airs English-language shows targeting Hispanics, may need more distribution in order to really become a player. For that to happen it needs to be distributed by more carriers. A distribution deal with DirecTV would provide NuvoTV an additional distribution of 15 million subscribers.
  1. TV jumps on the Targeting Band Wagon, but is it there yet?
    Last week Telemundo Media announced Telemundo+, an advertising collaboration between Telemundo and Comcast Spotlight. The partnership intends to build an advertising platform to enable  advertisers to geo-target relevant Hispanic households across multiple screens with English, Spanish or bilingual customized messages on general market cable networks.
    While Advertising Week attendees noted that this is a step in the right direction, there was skepticism about the real capabilities of TV properties to target Hispanics at a more granular level. One of the main reasons, as one attendee put it, is that “distributors are not yet ready to provide data to networks so that they can accurately target the Hispanic demographic.” Experts note, that for now, the TV targeting effort will mostly materialize in traditionally English broadcasters showing Spanish-language programming in geographic areas that are heavily Hispanic.
  1. The Growth of Connected TV – Online Video
    The integration of online media (including mobile) and TV is generating more and more interest (see this infographic by Tremor Video). Online video (advertising) lies in front of a huge opportunity. Advertisers will notice and at some point really invest in online video. While there will be some cannibalization (see our article: Will Online Video (Advertising) kill the Univision Star?), observers note that online video consumption often adds, but does not substitute, to traditional TV consumption.