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Adtech: Internet Advertising Smoke – Mirrors

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With this link-bait title, let me start out by pointing out that there was value at the show, and, I think, many potential advertising buyers in the audience.   There were several very interesting booths, and some real innovators some of which we interviewed: I will have my educated, more gentle staff detail many of those here in the next few weeks.

But I must say that I am dissapointed that my son edited out all the duhhhhs we got when we asked about social media advertising applications.

And I must say that I was very dissapointed with the party that I paid $500 to have my guys go to: they announced several awards for things that were not so impressive, and literally had a circus act begin and punctuate the presentation.  While the act was amazing, with two nearly naked guys doing some amazing gymnastic stuff: I would have prefered substance, statistics, a keynote speech, and some networking time in a less sensationalist atmosphere: this industry has been plaged with enough hype already, in my humble opinion.

For such a great event to be pertrayed with such a sleazy finally was sad.

I did find many of the new products and services being offered very interesting, and we will elaborate here in more detail soon.

  • I found PPA (pay-per-action) very interesting, but look out for the upfront setup fees: think about it: if I can really perform, and I am going to pay all of your expences, why would I include you?  You would be crazy not to do this kind of advertising, but, as always, there is a catch.
  • I continue to be suspicious of PPC (pay-per-click) options, as the devil is always in the details, and these models tend to favor the media, not the advertiser.
  • There were several new entries (a few of them notable) who actually have promoted their own verticle portals in niche markets, which are established and generating real leads: the catch here is how many of your competitors are included, and how easily your stuff can be found; and, of course, price and ROI.
  • There were an alarming number of offerings where it was hard to dicern what they sell: sort of the all things to all people approach: or what I call the just trust me request for your budget.
  • There are always some guys who sell by saying how big they are: beware of this; they must cover their overhead!  A good example of this approach is Realtor.com: although Alan Dalton may be a great promoter, frankly, they never had a businessplan that worked: they just raised a bunch of money in an IPO and bought the market, and they are selling it back to the people who should have owned it in the first place (the Realtors); worse, it really never was any good for the consumers or the advertisers; yet they continue to raise money and re-invent themselves in a market (real estate newcomers) which turns over 90% every 16 months.

All in all, I would attend again, and I may even get a booth next time (but I will skip the party).

If you were there, please share your thoughts on the right here.  The comments are moderated, but we have a reputation for publishing even conflicting views here.

Adtech: Internet Advertising Smoke – Mirrors
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