In lieu of a “Project of the Week”, I thought I’d spend some time downloading a few take away moments (for me at least) from the recent American Advertising Federation national conference. As an officer of the Fifth District, I annually attend to experience four days of professional advertising, networking, ideation, and of course, the national ADDY® Awards. I’m hopeful that some of this information can benefit your individual universe… so, here goes.

Regarding all things mobile: Mobile technology is as important today as roads and water have always been to our society. There is no “mobile of tomorrow”… it’s here, now. Think about it, do you realize that the iPad is only 120 weeks old. What will we see in the next 120 weeks? Hold on tight. The implementation of mobile marketing needs to always focus on the mobility aspect of any opportunity. Most of us see so many images today, that we are literally suffering from “banner blindness”, especially as it relates to mobile ads. Here’s the big “ah ha” for me regarding mobile… for every ten hours spent on a brand platform (website), eight of those hours are spent via mobile device. Final word on mobile: think interaction not transaction.

Regarding advertising ethics: Leo Burnett says “Make a statement, shun technique.” Advertising laws cannot mandate advertising ethics, that’s up to you. Golden Rule: If at all possible, only work for and with people who have the same values as you do. Otherwise, it’s a betrayal to yourself and them.

Regarding the age of creative: here is my favorite quote of the conference… “Most agencies are digitally drunk and socially awkward.” Love it. Consumers have all the power now. Always have a story to tell, not a gimmick to show. In branding, you either start a conversation or change one. Successful communication creates a passionate curiosity which leads to > easy advocacy > consumers searching you out > brand advocates and loyalists. Let’s redefine ROI: how about “Return on Influence” verses “Return on Investment”… Closing takeaways: always ask if something is social by design? And, finally… ask your kids. They know if it’s cool or not. Listen to them.

Regarding social media marketing: Social media is not a sales tool. It “tees up” the sales process. Social media drives engagement, which drives conversion. Awareness > Consideration > Loyalty > Advocacy. Determine why fans or people follow you… and give them more, a lot more! God gave us two ears and one mouth for a reason. Spend more time listening.

So, that’s about it. Of course, there was a lot more… but at a certain point my brain went into overload. As you can tell, there is a lot to be considering in the advertising and digital space and, at Balance Creative, we have a firm enough grasp on all of it to help you navigate those waters. We can help you determine the right message, the right medium, the right time. The perfect balance. Okay, enough talk. Our turn to listen. Call us. – David

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