SXSW day 1 hangout

SXSW interactive logoSouth by Southwest one of the biggest festivals looking at technology, media and marketing kicked off overnight in Austin, Texas.

Each day Mumbrella editor Alex Hayes will be joined by panelists to discuss what has happened, the sessions they have seen and what new thoughts they have triggered.

Today he was joined by Douglas Nicol, creative partner at The Works and Andrew Grinter, a creative at DT Melbourne, who will be looking at among other things what Al Gore had to say on climate change, neuroplasticity and a few insights on behaviour change from Daniel Pink.

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Paid media no longer driving fashion recommendations claim fashion startup bosses


(l-r): Julie Bornstein, CMO, Sephora; Katrina Lake, founder, Stitch Fix; Jennifer Hyman, co-founder, Rent the Runway

The founders of two disruptive online fashion businesses have said bricks and mortar retailers must become customer service centres, and said magazines and paid media are no longer the most effective drivers for sales.

Speaking on a panel on defining the next generation retail experience both Jennifer Hyman, co-founder of Rent the Runway and Katrina Lake, founder of Stitch Fix, said businesses relying on paid media to drive new customers were set to fail.

“Who’s influencing purchase behaviours has moved away from magazines and moved more towards these trusted influencers,” said Lake.

“Traditional stores’ over dependence on paid marketing led to them not focussing on the customer experience.  We’re focussing on delivering a great experience – it generates an organic word of mouth which is translated through digital mediums.” Read more »

‘Don’t ignore native advertising just because it feels icky’ journalism expert warns media

Panel (l-r):

Panel (l-r): Susie Banikarim – Vocativ; Justin Ellis- nieman Journalism Lab; Jane Spencer – Fusion

Branded content and native advertising should not be ignored by media outlets “just because it makes us feel icky”, while plagiarism and not attributing sources is “one of the greatest problems we have”, a journalism expert has said.

Justin Ellis, a writer for the Nieman Journalism Lab which looks at the future and development of the profession, was responding to claims that native and branded ads are like selling “snake oil” during a panel on new media ethics at South by Southwest overnight.

“It’s like arguing anything we try in media now is going to fail because we don’t have any connection with our readers – the fact you think you’re selling snake oil to people when they can decide for themselves is misguided,” he said.

“There’s  a lot that has to be figured out – publishers say its going to be clearly labeled, cigarettes are clearly labelled, but the label is on the side, it’s not on the front.” Read more »

Companies need to imitate political campaigns with consistency in their brand equity messages, says Obama panel



Companies need to stick to a consistent brand equity platform and not flip flop between messaging when they change marketers, a panel which worked on the Obama 2012 presidential campaign has said.

Looking at what marketers can learn from political campaigns Team Detroit president David Murphy said brands need to stick to a clearer brand platform, but be prepared to pivot their messaging to what the data is telling them mid-campaign.

“I think there’s a lesson in brand equities,” he said. “In marketing we respect the value of it, but we change quickly when a new CMO comes in for no substantive reason.

“Political campaigns adopt clear brand equity and drive it. They also have great rigour in staying on message, they issue the message of the day. If you’re being interviewed on TV or even a phone volunteer you are on message, and there’s a penalty for going off message.”

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Ad watchdog rules against horse racing ad with slogan ‘Treat a woman like a race horse and she’ll never be a nag’

Quilly ParkA print ad for horse racing venue Quilly Park has fallen foul of the ad watchdog over the slogan “Treat a woman like a race horse and she’ll never be a nag”, with the Ad Standards Board (ASB) ruling it was discriminatory to women.

A complaint to the ASB suggested the the ad was sexist and disgraceful.

“It is sexist and offensive to women. The country race meeting is a family event and a significant number of jockeys were women – making the offensive advertisement even more disgraceful.”

Quilly Park defended the ad arguing it was “more directed at the male audience” as males predominantly own Thoroughbreds.

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Management of The Communications Council and PADC consolidate in Perth

comms councilThe management of industry bodies The Communications Council and the Perth Advertising and Design Club are consolidating with the PADC to be powered by The Comms Council in WA with the body’s state manager Danielle Norrish to oversee the administration of the two organisations.

In a statement Norrish said: “An agreement has been entered into by the two associations, and the PADC will remain an independent entity. The aim of this agreement is to streamline process, ensure cost-efficiencies, unite our work in raising the credibility and profitability of the advertising and marketing industry in Western Australia, and to deliver a consolidated industry approach to advocacy, professional development and representation to government, media and the public.”

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FutureGov owner Alphabet Media facing claims of unpaid bills as Australian office shuts down

Screen Shot 2015-03-12 at 4.59.18 PMThe Australian office of Alphabet Media, the owner of government technology brand FutureGov, has effectively closed down as the company faces claims of unpaid debts from Australian suppliers and conference speakers.

Two companies, one the provider of audiovisual services for events, have called in debt collectors to recoup a total of AU$32,000 from Alphabet Media.

Calls to the company’s Sydney office found the company’s phones had been disconnected, while a FutureGov Forum due to take place at the Pan Pacific Hotel in Perth on March 26 appears to have been axed.

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Morry Schwartz launches The Real Estate Conversation in partnership with Mark Williams

The Real Estate ConversationIndependent publisher Morry Schwartz, publisher of The Saturday Paper and The Monthly, has today launched new online property title The Real Estate Conversation, in partnership with real estate entrepreneur Mark Williams.

The venture includes a new website and e-newsletter dedicated to the residential property market and will showcase the most desirable homes on the market across the nation and examine topics such as foreign investment, interest rates, taxation and regulations. It will also feature breaking news and blogs written by industry experts alongside profiles of industry people.

Publisher Mark Williams said in a statement: “Owning a home remains the best expression of success and security in modern Australia and there have never been more issues surrounding property than today. We will deliver the most comprehensive news and views covering real estate in an interesting, modern and relevant format.”

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Former Pie Face marketer Scott Baird joins Hungry Jack’s



Hungry Jack’s has appointed former Pie Face national marketing manager Scott Baird as chief marketing officer.

Baird joined the fast-food chain earlier this year having finished up with Pie Face in December last year after nine months with the struggling company.

Prior to Pie Face he was the national retail marketing manager for United, a role he was in for less than a year.

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QBE focus on ‘100 per cent commitment’ position in new campaign from Core

QBE Australia is focusing on its ‘100 per cent commitment’ positioning in the first integrated campaign from newly-appointed creative agency Core who won the account last October following a pitch.

Tasked with growing the insurers presence in the competitive insurance category, the animated campaign uses exaggerated scenarios that consumers could potentially encounter to focus on QBE’s ‘100 per cent commitment’ positioning.

Christian Finucane, creative partner at Core, said: “Brands need to standout from the pack whenn it comes to insurance advertising and this campaign delivers differentiation compared to the other work in this category. This was the idea that was presented during the pitch and we’re delighted to see that QBE has brought it to life.”

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Digital radios reach 3.2m in Australia

Digital RadioDigital radio listening has grown by 24.2 per cent in a year, in the five metropolitan capitals, according to GfK figures released by Commercial Radio Australia (CRA).

According to the figures, 3.2m people now listen to radio each week using a DAB+ digital radio, which according to CRA indicates 1.5m more people listen to radio using the device than listen to radio via streaming.

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Matt Rowley joins Cirrus Media as head of content marketing



Business to business publisher Cirrus Media has appointed the founding CEO of independent rugby website Matt Rowley to be its head of content marketing.

For the last year and a half Rowley has been the managing director of digital customer engagement agency Thirteenth Floor.

John King, Cirrus Media CEO, said: “Content Marketing is a key growth area for Cirrus Media. Matt’s expertise and vision in creating digital engagement for clients is a critical piece of the puzzle for us as we continue to build our content marketing offering.”

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Retailers urged to get more creative with imagery to win search wars



The head of Adobe’s DigitalIndex research division has urged retailers to get more creative in their search advertising to stand out from the crowd.

Principal analyst Tamara Gaffney told Mumbrella there is an “opportunity” being missed by marketers with product images in search, with too many relying on the product image from the manufacturer so they “look just like everybody else”

She added: “The lack of differentiation happening in certain areas of creativity is problematic for brands because they’re limited on competing on price more often or how much they paid for the top spot on the search.” Read more »

Gogglebox sheds audience despite moving to earlier timeslot

Ten’s Gogglebox saw its audience slump last night despite shifting from the 9pm timeslot to 8.30pm, with the show only grabbing a metro audience of 445,000 after pulling 503,000 last week.

It did out-rate Nine’s The Footy Show, also in the 8.30pm, timeslot which was watched by 266,000, down on last week’s 286,000 due to the absence of an NRL game.

Also on Ten, 709,000 metro viewers tuned into I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here to see American actress Maureen McCormick booted from the jungle, with the rest of the show watched by 679,000. Finals week continues to see the reality show’s audience improve with the show last week watched by 614,000.

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ESPN: Industry needs proper metric for online video to stop relying on ‘Frankenmetrics’



The head of research at ESPN has said the industry needs to start to count online video views alongside the linear TV ratings, as people move across devices to an online world.

Dave Coletti, head of  digital media research at the US sports network, said part of the problem was caused by there being a lack of agreement on what counts as a rating, and the industry’s reliance on hybrid “Frankenmetrics”, jamming online numbers together with TV ratings numbers.

“The challenge is that there’s no standardisation or syndication (of online video views) so our colleagues at the ad agencies don’t see that other than what we put forth,” he told a panel on the future of monetising media at the Adobe Summit today.

“There’s a tremendous gap between what the media companies are seeing and what the advertisers and agencies see. It’s remarkable.

“TV, if you subscribe (to Nielsen data), you see every number that gets measured on a minute by minute basis, while digital you get at best once a month across some Frankenmonster which means nothing, no granularity of programming, and we’re sitting on 10 second by 10 second video measurements. That’s part of it to close that gap as well.”

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Sky News wins Channel of the year at ASTRA Awards

SKy24 hour news channel Sky News has taken out the channel of the year at the annual ASTRA awards.

The award was a one of a number of awards given to the news channel and its presenters at the annual event recognising the best in subscription television, with Sky host Paul Murray also picking up two awards for best news program and best presenter, while journalist David Speers won best broadcast journalist.   Read more »

Morning Update: Kevin Bacon does ads for eggs

AdWeek: Kevin Bacon Does Ads for Eggs, Because What Goes Better With Eggs Than Bacon?

Kevin Bacon has traded off the whole “six degrees” things in ads for years. Now it’s time to put the Bacon to work.

And that he does in an amusing if obvious campaign from Grey New York promoting eggs on behalf of the American Egg Board. Because after all, nobody knows eggs better than bacon. Or Bacon.

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Smart watches predicted to become the ‘remote control’ for our lives

(r-l) Aseem Chandra, Adobe,; Jody Giles, Under Armour;  Suresh Bathini, Sony Entertainment;  Brent Hieggelke, Urban Airship

(r-l) Aseem Chandra, Adobe,; Jody Giles, Under Armour; Suresh Bathini, Sony Entertainment;
Brent Hieggelke, Urban Airship

Smart watches will become the “remote control for the remote control four our lives” according to one technologist, whilst a senior executive at Under Armour has said it is a tech brand, not a clothing brand.

During a panel discussing the internet of things at the Adobe Summit overnight mobile evangelist Brent Hieggelke warned as connected devices become more common brands are going to need to become more strategic about the messages they push to consumers, but said “when they’re relevant they’re life savers”.

“On average at the moment people have 100 apps on their phone, and we’re probably going to have an app for every single device,” he said.

“Just think about how daunting that’s going to be. We’re going to get interrupted theoretically non-stop. Our bar of what we’re going to allow is going to get unbelievably high.  We only need to send the things that matter and the consumer will love us for that.”

Hieggelke, who works for push notification provider Urban Airship, also took aim at beacon technology which triggers a person’s phone “just because someone is near your store” as “a terrible experience” dubbing it “advertasing”.

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