IAB Sold-Out Annual Leadership Meeting: Live Blog - Sunday Night

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7:10 PM

That’s it from Orlando for now. I’m off to the Poolside Welcome Reception for dinner and a drink—and some warm, fresh air. It’s a far cry from the snow showers I left behind in NJ. Check back in tomorrow morning and throughout the day for complete coverage. Tomorrow you’ll also find video clips of Randall’s and Wenda’s opening sessions on iab.net.

7:05 PM

IAB Sales Excellence Awards

Back to the awards—it’s time now for the IAB Sales Excellence Awards presented by Jack Myers, Media Futurist, Innovation Consultant, himself.

They are based on as inclusive and objective a standard as exists in today’s marketplace, The Myers Annual Survey of Advertising Executives—the one database that contains multi-year metrics on the performance of interactive ad sales organizations of all types: portals, networks, individual branded publisher sites.

The envelope please…….

Account Executive of the Year: Josh Thau, Microsoft Advertising

Account Executive of the Year Finalists
Paul Chenier, IGN Entertainment
Dan Bonert, Yahoo!
Stacey Pear, Yahoo!

Long Term Achievement: Washington Post Digital
Most Innovative: Nickelodeon Online Sales
Best Newcomer: Hulu
Again, check IAB.net in a few days for more details on these outstanding accomplishments. (Read the press release to learn more.)

Jack Meyers tells the audience they must capitalize on this time of economic crisis through the value of media brands in connecting marketers to consumers.

6:45 PM

Keynote Presentation

Wenda Harris Millard, President, Media and Co-Chief Executive Officer, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and the IAB Board Chair, is now welcoming the crowd and explaining why brands need to battle back -the theme of this event. Running through the cold, hard facts of how the recession is impacting the media industry she suggests we leave 2008 behind and think about how we can move forward in 2009, but not expect much recovery.

Innovation, reinvention, renewing—these are the things we need to be thinking about now. We have to move forward and fast. We must master media complexity—both the right and left brain aspects of it.

Are we innovating as we should be? The advertising business is about the art and science of persuasion and now participation. How has that changed our plans? Where is the creative innovation in advertising? Are we turning the data into the information we need to share with marketers? There are lots of questions to be answered. It’s our job to help marketers stop interrupting the conversation and help them BE the conversation. We are the makers of magic - ACT LIKE IT.

Want to see what other audience members are thinking right now? Search twitter for #IABnet. The feed is jumping!

Wenda Harris Millard emphasizes that we must not concede marketing to technology.

6:05 PM

IAB Service Excellece Awards

It’s not time for the Oscars just yet, but close. (We’ll all be watching together later tonight.)

David Moore, Chairman and Founder of 24/7 Real Media and Vice-Chair of the IAB Board, is onstage now recognizing some well-deserving IAB members for their support and involvement.

First off, he’s thanking our 2008 committee chairs and co-chairs for their hard work.

Ad Operations Council: Adrian D’Souza, Google, Inc. and Dan Murphy, Univision Online
CFO Council: Bruce Gordon, Disney Interactive Media Group
Research Council: Rick Bruner, Google, Inc. and Beth Uyenco Shatto, Microsoft Advertising
Sales Executive Council: Sheila Buckley, Weather Channel Interactive (Weather.com) and Brian Quinn, The Wall Street Journal Digital Network
Public Policy Dave Morgan, Tennis.com
Legal Affairs: Jason Ryning, Micorsoft and Brad Aaron, Q Interactice
Networks and Exchanges Committee: David Moore, 24/7 Real Media, Inc.
User-Generated Content & Social Media Committee: Heidi Browning, FOX Interactive Media
Email Committee: Craig Swerdloff, Return Path
Hispanic Committee: Mark Lopez, Terra Networks USA
Lead Generation Committee: Gayle Guzzardo, Q Interactive
Mobile Committee: Gary Schwartz, Impact Mobile and Sharon Knitter, Cars.com
Local Committee: J. Sandhi Kozsuch, Cox Cross Media / Cox TV and Lorraine Ross, USATODAY.com
Digital Video Committee: Joey Trotz, CNN.com and Tim Avila, Yahoo!, Inc.
Games Committee: Dave Madden, Wild Tangent and David Sturman, Microsoft Advertising
Search Committee: Ron Belanger, Yahoo, Inc. and Tim Castelli, Google, Inc.

Now he’s presenting the IAB Service Excellence Awards to awards to recognize exceptional leadership and initiative development by a regular committee or council member or a working group participant. We couldn’t do it without your help.

And the winners of the 2009 IAB Service Excellence Awards winners are…. (drum roll please)
Lon Pilot, Platform A
Geoff Petkus, Operative
Steve Sullivan, Microsoft
Zack Rogers, CBS Interactive
Tim Avila, Yahoo!
Mike Hurt, comScore
Christie Lay, Microsoft
Leslie Dunlap, Yahoo!
Lisa Anderson, Time Warner

Congrats to all. Check out IAB.net later this week for more details about the winners and their specific accomplishments. (Read the press release to learn more.)

Dave Moore recognizes the IAB Service Awards winners.


5:41 PM

The Kick-Off

It didn’t take long for the crowd of almost 500 to settle down as Randall Rothenberg, this event’s fearless leader, and President and CEO of the IAB, took the stage to officially kick-off the Annual Leadership Meeting—and set the stage for the next few days.

He reminded us that the whole point of the meeting is to confront tough questions—things that are usually discussed in back rooms are debated on the IAB stage. It’s the best way to resolve tension and smooth the path to growth, together. And—it makes for some pretty interesting discussion, heated or not.

The biggest challenges the IAB is tackling in 2009:

Brand Power - moving beyond the click and beyond the immediacy of today’s response

Measurement Simplicity - reducing the cacophony that surrounds every discussion about media measurement

Killing Complexity Costs - with the help of the IAB-AAAA Reinvention Task Force (Read the press release to learn more.)

Equity for Publishers - rewriting the standard, voluntary IAB-AAAA Model Advertising Contract (Read the press release to learn more.)

Loving Our Consumers - addressing the data-ownership issue at the heart of the regulatory debate in D.C.

Creativity - creating a creative renaissance in interactive advertising (Read the press release to learn more.)

Sounds like a full agenda to me. Good luck!


Randall Rothenberg opens the IAB Annual Meeting by asking if we can live with the tension between stability and dynamism.

2:40 PM

The Anticipation: IAB 2009 Sold-Out Annual Leadership Meeting

Welcome to the live blog covering the sold-out IAB Annual Leadership Meeting in Orlando. The event hasn’t officially kicked-off yet, but the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress is buzzing with excitement as leaders of the advertising ecosystem check-in, register and network while enjoying the warm Orlando sunshine—some even played a round of golf this morning. Seats for the sold-out Ecosystem 2.0: Brands Battle Back disappeared almost two weeks before the event, but a few lucky folks on the waiting list got last minute opportunities to come take part in the action.

The IAB Board of Directors meeting is currently underway. No one’s wasting a minute of this unprecedented opportunity to discuss the state of the interactive industry.

Check back here frequently over the next few days to stay in-the-know. This blog is your best source for breaking news and in-the-room action.

See you tonight. The General Session convenes at 5:00pm with a welcome from Randall Rothenberg, IAB President and CEO. He’ll set the agenda of what’s to come over the next few days.