Oct 6, 2009
In my view, the iMedia Southeast Asia Agency Summit started proper today. It consisted of some presentations, the keynote address, and a panel discussion — all in the space of four hours in the morning.
During the agency breakfast, we heard two presentations, one from MediaRing Talk, the other from Eyeblaster.
- besides its telephony service (like Skype), it also has mobile advertising solutions – banners, skins
- case study: Singapore Airlines – 4.26% click-through rate, 2.9% conversion rate
- (what was not discussed thoroughly is that MediaRing Talk’s users are mainly in India)
- four new technologies: tabbed ads (display video, text, downloads, etc. in a tabbed banner), dynamic data (e.g. for airlines to pull the latest fares from their booking engines), behavioural targeting (ad’s content that is displayed is based on how you interacted with it previously), and smart versioning (create new versions of the same ad through a non-programmatic user interface (like multivariate testing, but for ads))
- new metric: dwell time – average number of seconds a user is engaged with an ad; sort of similar to how TV is measured, so it’s more easily understood by traditional marketers
- 2008 worldwide trend: 0.14% click-through rate, 0.32% conversion rate
- rich media increases conversion by 2.5x
- optimization increases conversion by 1.5x
Next up was the keynote by Randall Rothernberg, president of the Interactive Advertising Bureau. In his presentation, he listed seven reasons for digital marketers to join the IAB Southeast Asia:
- intimate association with customers through research
- government lobbying
- training and development
- develop standards
- IAB as a platform to market itself
- stay ahead of trends
Benefits of joining the IAB include:
- committee participation
- professional development
- access to IAB products and services
(Note: I am not necessarily advocating IAB nor do I receive any kind of kickback for listing the above.)
Randall continued with his second keynote, “What marketers REALLY want from digital media!”
- Marketers face the following challenges:
- measurement standardisation
- cross-media measurement
- antiquated media-mix modeling (e.g. “we’ll buy ads in Yahoo and Facebook)
- overuse / misapplication of direct response standards and methodologies
- government regulations
- creative shabbiness
- Marketers seek new insights capabilities (82% want consumer insights, 80% behavioural targeting)
- Source: Marketing and Mobile Ecosystem 2010, arranged by Pricewaterhouse Coopers
- Marketers increasingly valuing media and media strategy
- 58% think direct partnerships with media are more important than going through an agency
- 60% think media should be integrated with full service agencies or build up their own (26% think media and creative should remain separate)
- Marketers want “social”, “dialogue / conversation”, “intimacy”
- Interactive advertising has ignored creativity, e.g.
- disincentivizes greatness (e.g. no more names on doors)
- fails to penalise mediocrity
- Interactive marketing revolution = creativity + data + analytics + digital media, i.e.
- consumer insights
- boundary-less creative
- conversation and community
- 360-degree embrance
- metrics that matter
- true behavioural targeting
Immediately after the keynotes, we dived straight into the keynote power panel, with Randall as the moderator. The panel was entitled, “How should agencies organise themselves to avoid extinction”. However, the panelists pretty much discussed the problem, rather than coming up with solutions. As a result, I noticed that most attendees had zoned out about halfway through and were more busy doing their own things.
For me, I thought that maybe there could have been a few intelligent audience questions, but we were all suffering from lethargy already and looking forward to lunch, thus the silence when Randall asked for questions from the floor.
The afternoon was spent at our recreational activities (snorkeling, golf, archery), in spite of the rain. But I won’t bore you with those details.
Balasingam-Chow Yu Hui, with Rueben Anthony, is representing XM Asia Pacific at the iMedia Southeast Asia Agency Summit in Phuket, Thailand. The conference is on 5-7 October at the Indigo Pearl. Stay tuned to find out what’s happened at the conference.