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Archive for September, 2011

The Evolution of the Advertising Executive [infographic]

by Nick Faber
Monday, September 19th, 2011

Mad Men has certainly brought the world of advertising into living rooms around the world, but how different are today’s ad execs from the Don Drapers of the 1960s?

This beautiful infographic from BuySellAds.com takes a look a the evolution of the ad exec, from the iconic chain-smoking Mad Man of the 60s, to the big ideas-generating power player of the 80s, to the non sequitur-loving Apple-phile of today.

The Disney approach to innovation

by Nick Faber
Thursday, September 15th, 2011
Disney Park’s Approach to Creativity and Innovation  

Gert Garman, Global Creative Develpment Director for Disney, started her effervescent talk at a recent Triangle AMA luncheon with a story of innovation on the fly. On the day that Disneyland was set to open, Walt Disney himself noticed a patch of weeds amongst the flower beds that lined the entrance to the park. With little time to act, he asked the groundskeepers to put together signs with fancy-sounding latin names and plant them in front of the weeds, as if they were supposed to be there.
This sort of “Yes, and” spirit prevails at Disney today, and Garman shared some fantastic tips for innovating the Disney way. This is her presentation deck.

Trash Talk: Ad journos are not nuts for new pistachio commercials

by Nick Faber
Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

Wonderful Pistachios have added Kloe and Lamar and The Winklevoss Twins to a series of commercials staring an already-strange assortment of pop culture personalities,  such as Snooki, Angry Birds, Wee Man and more puns than you can stomach.

Here’s what 7 journalists and bloggers have to say about the latest “Wonderful pistachio ads.”

AdFreak: “Let’s call an advertising moratorium on any campaign that stars a Kardashian. Please?” – T.L. Stanley

copyranter: “Now: also note that with a cheap short spot like this, there had to be many, many takes to choose from. And THIS was the best one.”

All Things D: “You think that if you just shove a couple Web-friendly characters into your ads for pistachios (pistachios?) that time-strapped bloggers will dutifully click over to YouTube, grab the embed codes and slap up a post, don’t you? Geniuses!” – Peter Kafka

Mogulite: “In one of the campaign’s ads, the two brothers, who once claimed Facebook was their idea, sit, in suits (of course), and well…crack a pistachio. It’s nothing too exciting, but the whole country’s about to see it.” – Hillary Reinsberg

The San Francisco Egotist: “While these aren’t the worst things on TV, they just don’t excite us very much. Kind of like pistachios.”

New York Observer: “A million pistachio nuts is cool. You know what’s really cool? A billion pistachio nuts. Which they now clearly have access to.” – Foster Kamer

Sodahead: “Either the Winklevoss twins really like pistachios, or they need money bad.”

On a interesting side note, 6 of the 21 videos listed by WonderfulPistachios are currently private. According to Market Watch, those might feature: Kermit the Frog, The Honey Badger, and everyone’s favorite members of the popular zeitgeist, a priest, a rabbi and a minister at a bar.

Featured Blogger: Heather Cushman-Dowdee of Mama Is…Comic

by Paige Wilcox
Wednesday, September 14th, 2011

Blogger Heather Cushman-Dowdee balances being a mother of four and sharing parenting insights through her cartooning on MamaIsComic.com, which addresses topics like breastfeeding, home-birthing and attachment parenting. In addition to visiting her site, check out her Facebook and Twitter pages!

Blogger Heather Cushman-Dowdee

Q: When and why did you start blogging?

A: I’m pretty old school; I was posting comics to a static Web site once or twice a week starting in 2001 before I had even heard about blogging. My first official blog was probably started around 2003.

Q: How do you think your blog stands out amongst other similarly-themed blogs?

A: I’m first and foremost a cartoonist, I post a newly created comic two or three times a week and then the ‘classic’ comics are posted daily, along with a few of my written thoughts. I think the whole process of posting takes about three times longer than it would if I was just writing. I have been creating the comics since 2001 and so I’ve built up a stockpile of 500+ comics, and a large fan base that can’t wait to see the next comic. My fans are global, which I believe is because I’m posting ‘art’ instead of just words. I have a lot of visitors from England, Australia and the first customer of any product I put up for sale is always from Croatia. Go figure!

Q: What does your family think of your blogging?

A: They are incredibly supportive, and they enjoy the comics even though it takes a lot of time.

Q: What blogs do you read?

A: Stephanie Morales who runs my Facebook fan page does a really good job of aggregating blog posts, so I usually visit my page to see what I want to read:

Q: How much time daily do you spend blogging?

A: About three hours- I have four kids, and we homeschool. I make them my first priority, and posting a comic is my second priority. If I can get to the rest of the business of blogging, it’s last on the list…

Q: How many times have you redesigned your blog since it started?

A: About 6 times. At the beginning of 2011 I had two different blogs with two different comics posting. I recently redesigned the whole site and moved the two into one. It’s now called Mamaiscomic.com, and I post the new comics in a members only portion of the site. I post daily Hathor the Cowgoddess comics for everyone to see.

Q: How much do you correspond one-on-one with readers?

A: Any time they write to me, I will also leave comments in reply to them on my blog and will check in on the fan-run Facebook page and post there, too. I think of many of my fans as friends now. A few have been fans since the beginning (Hi Heather, Hi Lara!)

Q: What joys did you not expect when you started blogging?

A: I didn’t realize how much I would like growing a fan base and how personal it feels to post a comic and have an immediate friendly response.

Q: What pains?

A: It’s been more work to monetize the blog that I thought it would be (my blog grew up as Internet surfers began to believe that everything should be free). My goal in the beginning was to be published, but in the years I was blogging print production started to recede, so now I self-publish. I’ve had to readjust quite a bit to the changing times, and sometimes the adjustment is painful. A while back, I realized that my comics weren’t ‘searchable’ by Google, and that essentially my blog was full of un-search-engine-optimized posts. I had to quickly come up with a plan to make my images searchable. The plan is work intensive. It’s a strange new world, that I have to constantly adapt to.

Q: What’s something your readers don’t know about you?

A: That back in the day I was a mohawk flying punk rocker girl. Most of them think I’m a crunchy granola hippy.

Q: What’s your personal favorite blog post?

A: My favorite and my fans’ favorite luckily coincide:

http://www.mama-is.com/very-crafty/ the comic is Very Crafty, the ‘likes’ reached 5,715 people.


ADVERTISERS: Reach Mama Is…Comic’s audience for 50% off using discount code “Blogads50” for the next two weeks! Advertise on her top right sidebar, bottom middle square button or bottom right mini ad units!

Great photos make great ads. Stock photos? Not so much.

by Nick Faber
Monday, September 12th, 2011

image via stockshits.com

Camera Clara Photography, a studio in Brazil, has presented a clear choice for advertisers: Use a great photographer and get a great ad. Use a stock image and get shit.

Don’t believe them? Check out stockshits.com and see what could have happened if memorable ads had used forgettable stock photos.

(via Ads of the World)

North Carolina business leaders just say no to marriage ban

by Henry Copeland
Friday, September 9th, 2011

Next week North Carolina legislators will debate an amendment to the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage.

We at Blogads believe this amendment and the divisive debate it creates are counterproductive to attracting new business and jobs to our state.

The amendment is a distraction from the important economic issues our lawmakers should be tackling.

And the proposed amendment is just plain wrong.

Our fellow North Carolinians know it, too.

If you are a business leader in North Carolina (CEO, Director, President, Officer), you should sign-on to a letter opposing the legislation. I’ve just done so as CEO of Blogads. To get involved, e-mail with your name, title and company name to John Parker at JohnP /at/ goodwork.org.

How Microsoft can make Atlas suck less

by Nick Faber
Friday, September 9th, 2011

Back in 2007, two tech giants stepped into the ad trafficking game. Microsoft scooped up Atlas with its aQuantive acquisition, and  Google bought NY-based DoubleClick. In the years since, Google has invested in DoubleClick, while Atlas has pretty much sat on the shelf, collecting dust. Now Microsoft promises to update Atlas and stay competitive with DoubleClick in the $12.3 billion display-ad market.

Here at Blogads, we use both systems to work with our advertisers. Based on our team’s experience, here’s where Microsoft can start:

A) Make it work on a Mac. Come on.

B) Update the design. Google has made DoubleClick clean and “Google-y.” Atlas still looks like 2005.

C) Single-page placement uploads. When filling out an RFP in Atlas, you have to upload each placement individually on its own page, then add flight dates individually per placement on different pages, and THEN add specs for each placement on yet more separate pages. DoubleClick allows this all to happen on one page. This is a major time-suck.

D) Disappearing “Value Adds.” When you lend someone a car, you have to warn them about the little quirks, like a sticky clutch, or a broken handle. The “Value Add” problem is kinda like that. “Hey, look out, when you’re uploading placements , whatever you enter in ‘Value Add’ disappears.” This is the sort of bug that should have been addressed a long time ago.

E) Do away with irrelevant required fields. We hate the “outside the box” metaphor, but the required fields in the RFP form are so restrictive, that it forces you to think inside a very out-dated box. There are no “other” fields. We’d like to be able to submit a tweet as an ad unit, or upload an approved plan for a flat fee, or not have to put an ‘x’ in a field that isn’t applicable. We cannot do this in Atlas.

The Smithsonian hosts an open conversation about September 11

by Nick Faber
Thursday, September 8th, 2011

Social media and the web have allowed disparate voices from all walks of life meeting on a level playing field to discuss common interests and concerns. Unfortunately, much of this conversation conversation happens anonymously, and people sometimes talk past each other. For the 10th anniversary of the September 11th tragedy, the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, the Smithsonian Channel and GMD Studios invite you to join a discussion group in  “September 11: Conversations”. Each group will contain a limited number of participants (around 20 per group) from different areas of the country who agree to participate for two weeks, and will strive to achieve the natural give-and-take of real life conversation.

Sign up for our webinar | Facebook: Are you doing it right?

by Nick Faber
Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Do you want to learn how to increase your blog’s traffic so you can make money blogging? We’ll show you how to make a successful Facebook page that drives more traffic to your blog, along with some other tips for making Facebook work for you. Join us on Friday, September 30, at 1pm EST.  Sign up for the webcast now, space is limited!

On Twitter? The hashtag for this event is #BlogadsLive.

5 Blogs doing Facebook Fan Pages right

by Nick Faber
Tuesday, September 6th, 2011

image by Sean MacEntee

A kick-ass Facebook page is a great supplement for any blog looking to increase site traffic and ultimately make more money blogging. Here are 5 bloggers that are making Facebook work for them.

A couple of these pages feature a fancy HTML landing page. We know that not everyone has a developer or designer on staff, so we’ll also focus on how the pages are used once readers get past the landing page.

1. Methodshop.com (Facebook page)

  • – Regularly chooses interesting Facebook fan as for a “Superfan” interview and to be featured in Methodshop’s profile pic
  • – Asks questions when posting links to content, encouraging fan interaction and clicks
  • – Interacts with other Facebook pages, comments on and “likes” other pages’ posts (more…)

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