tipping point

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There’s a tipping point when a small business grows up at which it recognizes the need to invest in a higher level of marketing sophistication. It’s kind of like puberty. Awkward. A bit hard to watch. Three quarters magical.

The signal moment occurs during the hiring of the company’s first marketing director. Not marketing manager, marketing director. If the marketing director is strategic, continued growth is likely. If tactical, it’s a crap shoot. One can learn from tactics (derive strategy from tactics) but it’s bass ackwards.

A good marketing director is likely to make founders and owners a bit uncomfortable. That is because s/he will be interested is everything. The money. The product. The sales team/channel. Leadership. Customers. For small growing companies this can be a little overwhelming.  But hey, it’s puberty.  You just have to stick with it.

If, as a hiring company, you are not at least a little afraid of your first marketing director – keep looking.  Peace!  

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There’s an interesting article in The New York Times today on the growth and viability of programmatic ad exchanges – algorithm based, bidding based systems that finely tune ads to consumer behavior.  A buyer of hiking boots might be found on a bowling site, for instance, rather than a bird watching site at a more effective price and click-through, so implies the analysis.

It’s science folks. 

Anyway, if online media is getting more predictive, tied to behaviors and data trails, then it stands to reason creative will follow. Here’s a prediction: advertising production is going to flip in the coming years.   The big TV shops from holding companies will have fewer creatives than will be found at didge shops.  Makers of shorty, bursty digital ads have long been seen as less glamorous than those who create high production videos and network :30s and that may not change.  But banners and towers and leaderboard and whatever is next will become more creative and effective – it’s evolution baby. And the need for more units, especially those tailored to the algorithm’s finding, will generate exponential leaps in the need for creative resources at digital shops.  Creative will never be algo based, though it will be tried. So the jobs won’t be replaced by the machine — not here. 

The tipping point for when creatives at digital shops outnumber those at the BBDOs, Ogilvys and Greys is coming.  I bet it will happen by 2016. Peace. 



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