Industry heavy hitters wasted no time with small talk as they kicked-off IAB Innovation Days @ Internet Week, Day 2 - All About Branded Content/Content Brands. First up was Tim Armstrong, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, AOL, and Jacob Weisberg , Chairman, The Slate Group, engaging the audience with a fireside chat about the future of AOL and the changes Armstrong has made since taking the reins. One major theme is giving the power back to the true journalist and working off a business model beyond simple aggregation of information. Original content adds more value to the site, bringing more online dollars from marketers, and driving the tipping point for online content. In response to Weisberg’s questions about the turnaround of AOL, Armstrong stressed the organization’s focus on delivering what consumers want, not strategizing around what competitors are doing.
Robert Bowman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Major League Baseball Advance, addressed the challenge of forming partnerships with competitive sites and working with major platforms as they work to determine who/what is going to be the standard. He stressed that success comes from using what truly works—what consumers are clicking on and viewing—rather than limiting the creativity of brands and marketers in order to make implementation easier for agencies and publishers. What does he see for the future? More flexibility for smaller screens, more accurate work on getting measurement right and more creativity.
***DEMO: Glam Media introduced GlamAdapt, an ad serving platform built for brands—a third-generation technology platform that helps brands and agencies make a greater impact online, helps publishers derive greater value from their inventory and allows developers to innovate through open standards.
Insights are a new form of media, said Tina Sharkey, Chairman and Global President, BabyCenter, as she walked through how the category leading branded publisher uses insights to help partners reach the right people, at the right time, and the right place, ultimately surrounding users through the journey of motherhood no matter what the medium. These insights help brands identify their most influential customers and activate the audience at large.
Ka-ching! That’s the sound marketers and agencies hope they’ll be hearing after putting to use the insights and expertise shared by the Ka-ching! Cashing in on New Forms of Digital Content Creation panel that was co-produced by the Magazine Publisher of America. Marketers from three brands joined their magazine executive partners to detail case studies that successfully integrated products and messaging into next-generation magazine content. Nina Link, President and Chief Executive Officer of the MPA, highlighted several ways magazines are excelling in the digital space before the panel began. “No brand is an island and no media is an island,” she said.
Magazines remained part of the discussion as Kevin Krim, Global Head, Bloomberg Digital, gave a rundown on what’s in store for the multimedia company, touching on the recent acquisition of BusinessWeek magazine. After previewing the relaunch of Bloomberg.com, he described the business model based on feedback the organization’s senior business executive audience on arbitrary paywalls and overall content availability.
*****DEMO: Barcodes aren’t just for pricing anymore. Stickbits Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Billy Chasen, showed off their new purpose—using a barcode as a common identifier that enables people to virtually “attach” items such as pictures and comments to the item. www.stickybits.com
Closing the event was a first—the first appearance on any stage together for Yahoo! and Associated Content since the recent acquisition. Mollie Spilman, Senior Vice President, Global B2B Marketing, Yahoo! and Michael Cohen, Director, Business Planning and Operations, Associated Content, shared an inside look at how the partnership will create differentiated experiences by offering crowd-sourced and professionals content, plus more insights.