The interactive industry must make fundamental changes to the way it strategizes, sells, buys, and provides online advertising. Here are five places to begin.
This is my last column for ClickZ, and it's been a great couple of years.
A lot has happened since my first column in June 2005. Video advertising continues to blossom, and rich media is a standard part of nearly every media plan. Online advertising spending continues its ascent, with nary a sign of letting up. Consumer habits are evolving, and social media is a daily part of their lives.
A rosy picture, isn't it?
Not so fast.
This industry, including publishers, agencies, and marketers, is stunting its growth and limiting its potential. You wouldn't know it by all the M&A activity surrounding these captains of industry, but, trust me, it's a big problem. It's like the interactive industry is an advanced second grader the school doesn't know how to handle, so he's placed in third grade for half the day. The student may be recognized as intelligent, but he'll have a difficult time being socially accepted.
If we are to advance on our own merits, we must make some fundamental changes to the way we strategize, sell, buy, and provide online advertising. The following are but a few items we must address before we can be officially labeled "mature":
Take these suggestions and run with them. Share them with your colleagues. If we heed them, we can keep this industry hurtling forward responsibly.
Thanks so much for your readership over these last few years. I've always appreciated your thoughts, your feedback, and your attention.
Stay tuned for my replacement. You're going to love him.
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Ian Schafer, CEO and founder of Deep Focus, consistently redefines the way entertainment properties are marketed online. Ian founded Deep Focus in 2002 to bring a holistic suite of interactive marketing and promotional solutions to the entertainment industry. The company's clients include America Online, Dimension Films, HBO, MGM, Nickelodeon, Sony/BMG Music, 20th Century Fox, Universal Music Group, and many others. As former VP of New Media at Miramax and Dimension Films, Ian was responsible for their most popular online campaigns. He's been featured as an expert in online entertainment marketing and advertising in numerous media outlets including Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Advertising Age, and CNN.
Hong Kong, May 5-6, 2015
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