IAB Live MIXX Blog, Day 1

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9:00 a.m.

MIXX Attendees

Good morning and welcome to the IAB MIXX Conference! My name is Chris, Marketing Manager for the IAB. Given the conference is sold out, this is an opportunity for those who couldnt make it can get a peek of MIXX from my perspective, that of a first-time attendee.

Right now there’s a great buzz in the room. The general session room is slowly filling up in anticipation of John Hayes, CMO of American Express, taking the stage. Stay tuned for photos, updates and commentary as the day goes on. And, please post your comments, questions and observations below. Remember to hit refresh as the day goes on and for more MIXX thoughts, visit IAB President and CEO Randall Rothenberg’s “clog” at www.randallrothenberg.com.

The lights are going down. Stay tuned for more!

9:45 a.m.

John Hayes just left the stage and left us all with words of wisdom about where we are in the evolution of marketing and advertising and what it takes to engage consumers in today’s world. Here are a few quotes from his opening keynote:

“The traditional marketer/agency framework is over.”

“We as advertisers must join the conversation.”

“It’s not just about servicing customers online. It’s about furthering engagement.”

“Never stop experimenting.”

“The challenge for us is that we let go of the creative process.”

“In order to create the authentic dialog, it requires for us to let go and let those who create do what they do best and create that dialog.”

“Armed with a megaphone like the web, consumers wield enormous power.”

“The era of brands and agencies creating the messages is over.”

John Hayes

In summary, Mr. Hayes expressed that we need to work in an open environment to enter the conversation. We must collaborate and that does not happen in controlled environments. Collaboration happens in open environments and we must listen to the conversations that happen in these environments and enjoy listening.

10:45 a.m.

Our first panel of the day.

The first panel of the day just finished. David Kirkpatrick moderated three powerhouse agency leaders in Carla Hendra, Rishad Tobaccowala and David Verklin. All three enlightened the jam-packed room with some very heavy dialog on the new strategies agencies are taking.

David Kirkpatrick moderates three powerhouse agency leaders.

Carla Hendra reminds us “It’s the customer, Stupid” as she receives accolades for the Dove campaign.

Rishad Toboccowala talks about the need to build talent in the agency.

David Verklin emphasizes that in this day and age, the great brands do not tell the best stories. They have the best stories told about them.

Ok, it’s time for a networking and refreshment break, and I could use a cup of coffee. We’ll be back in an hour or so with more updates!

12:15 p.m.

The second panel was all about consolidation.

The second panel had everyone on the edge of their seats to say the least as they discussed what consolidation means for marketing and media. We had four heads of newly acquired companies, one very persistent New York Times Editor and just for good measure - three of the companies are acquired by rivals Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft.

Saul Hansell pressed each of the panelists about what the merger really means. What will advertisers get in return? What will be different? Why is an exchange better for advertising? If advertising is sold and not bought, why are we convinced an exchange will work when there’s more inventory than advertising?

Saul Hansell injects some controversy by asking the panelists their thoughts on the Google/DoubleClick merger.

David Rosenblatt talks about the liquidity, lower prices and the ability to greater target.

Michael Walrath talks about how advertisers can get more ads with better insight due to resources of Yahoo.

David Moore emphasizes that advertisers want the best return on their investment and that’s what the merger will accomplish.

Karl Siebrecht talks about how innovation will be delivered at a much faster rate.

Needless to say, this led to spirited, vigorous dialog - especially when Saul asked each panelist why his exchange is better than the person to his left or right.

Now it’s time for some workshops and then lunch. I’m going to check out the Expo, grab a bite to eat and then I’ll have more updates later.

2:00 p.m.

Back from Lunch and Marketer Paradise

We had a nice break with lunch and the educational workshops going on so I decided to do some exploring around the Expo. Here’s a little mini-tour of my journey:

I started off by heading outside to get some fresh air on Broadway. The street was packed with MIXX Attendees who traveled from out of town taking in the scene of Times Square New York. Here’s the view on the way back into the Crowne Plaza.


Next, I made my way into the Exhibit Hall. This was tons of fun. Vendors from all over the country are showing off the latest advertising and marketing solutions. Being somewhat of a self-proclaimed “nerd” when it comes to this stuff, I could have spent all day here, but alas, this blog was calling. Plus, as you can see, the Exhibit Hall was packed so I figured it was best to move on and make room for the rest of the conference attendees.

Outside the Exhibit Hall

Attendees are getting the low down on the latest and greatest in interactive.

After passing through the Exhibit Hall, it was finally time to get a bit eat lunch - Caesar salad and a delicious rigatoni and vodka sauce to be exact. If this is the last blog post of the day, you’ll know it’s because I’ve happily entered a food coma.

Mmmm Lunch

And now one more pass through the exhibit hall to walk off lunch and I’ll be ready for a jam-packed afternoon.

Lots of networking happens in the Exhibit Hall.

They told us this station is for registered guests only but I won’t tell if you won’t.

That’s all for now. Look for more updates after the Afternoon Track Sessions.

5:00 p.m.

Fresh off a second tour of the Exhibit Hall, I decided to hit up the afternoon track sessions. The framework of these sessions consists of three rooms with three consecutive learning sessions in each room. Each individual session consists of four experts and a seasoned journalist leading the discussion. View each track here.

I decided to plant myself in Track Three. This consisted of The Frontiers of Cross-Selling, The Race for Consumer Insights and Users vs. Journalists vs. Advertisers: Does Web 2.0 Destroy or Enhance the Marketing-Media Ecosystem.

Here are a few photos from The Frontiers of Cross-Selling and The Race for Consumer Insights. I’m heading into the third track now and will try to sneak in one more post before the day is done.

Scot McLernon leads George Blue, Tom Wolfe, Tim Spengler and Ed Ernhardt on a lively discussion of cross-selling into today’s market.

IAB President and CEO Randall Rothenberg poses with the panel.

Melanie Wells digs deep into the process of gathering consumer insights and the value they bring.

6:00 p.m.

And now it’s time for today’s finale — the networking reception. This is where everyone gets to unwind after a long day of learning, meet some old friends and make some new ones.

With that, I’d like to thank everyone who’s been following along today. I hope I was able to give you a glimpse of what it is like inside MIXX 2007. Be sure to tune in tomorrow for more live blogging all day long from Day Two! Also, don’t forget to check out www.randallrothenberg.com for enlightening commentary on today’s events.

Everyone is all smiles at the end of day one.

MIXX is a time to celebrate excellence in interactive.

On this note, I’m wrapping up today’s blog. See you tomorrow!

photos by Doug Goodman and Sean Sime