Publisher Forum New Orleans: Live Blog

February 24, 2014 Joshua R. Weaver

The Crescent City welcomes AdMonsters with open arms as we kick off our 32nd Publisher Forum from the heart of New Orleans. The Krewes are in full gear as they roar down Canal St. and you can't turn a corner without hearing the electrifying sounds of Zydeco and Creole drum and bass. Luckily enough, our first Publisher Forum of 2014 is poised to be just as impressive, with a stellar roster of content and speakers lined up. If you couldn't make it down to NOLA, don't fret. You can catch all the action right here on the Publisher Forum live blog and on Twitter

Peering Into the Visual Web, Peter Naylor, SVP, Sales, Hulu 

9:30 a.m. – Our morning keynote Peter Naylor takes the state to discuss the future of a visual Web. We're all used to looking at the web in terms of conventional verticals. But, what about Instagram, Pinterest, Vine and etc. Instagram, for instance, has more users than Twitter... with an even greater regular usership. Snapchat has shares more photos daily than Facebook? Pinterest's new photo geo-tagging feature registered 750 million locations in less than a year. 

9:33 – Verticals are now taking on the trend, amplifying visuals. Image centric communication is much faster than reader. We process images 60 thousand times faster than we process text. Photos are literally worth a thousand words. Photos help engage users by encouraging user-generated content. 

9:36 – Images also increase engagement. We absorb information best by using multiple senses. Visual images make for powerful communication. Twitter and Facebook have capitalized on the hierarchy of visuals when it comes to human senses. 

9:39 – Naylor brings up imgur, 120 million uniques with only 11 employees. Also, new social media platofrm We Heart It also driven by photos and bringing in a large youth demographic. 

9:41 – Data visualization is a rich storytelling technique: interactive and stimulating. Infographic-on-Demand site Visually made $8.1 million. 

9:42 – E-commerce driven by photos as well, i.e., social platform Wanelo. Pinterest and Target collaboration works by aggregating most pinned [Pinterest] items that are also sold at Target. When Online went Offline: Caribou Coffee makes real-life Pinterest board at Mall of America. 

9:44 – Visual search is a pivotal move towards the visual web. Think about having a photo search for you? Visual search is a growth engine for eBay and other major commerce outlets. 

9:47 – You can't talk about the Visual Web without talking about the selfie. Pew found that 92 percent of young adults have admitted taking a selfie – indicative of the visual revolution. 

9:50 – Generation C: You're always connected, you're always sharing. Constantly taking advantage of the growing visual and sharing tech platforms. Defined by their digital connectivity. Agencies are capitalizing on the growing shift, showing marketers and advertisers how to maximize the visual web for native, e-commerce, and more. 

9:54 – Facebook's Paper blends social and news components in visually driven space.

DMLA Winners' Circle, Julian Zilberbrand, Zenith; Dan Foehner, Facebook; Barbara Healy, Tribune

12:22 p.m – Our first lot of DMLA winners of 2014 take the stage to discuss hot topics in OPS for 2014. 

12:25 – Healy: [Sales] is really coming to find us early on to exchange ideas and go outside the box when it comes to what we can sell. We've become more of a partnership. 

12:35 – Zilberbrand: We want to spend the money, it's our job to spend the money. But, we want to know what we sold is feasible. 

12:38 - Foehner: There's still a pretty big gap between ad ops professionals and sales professionals, in terms of compensation, in terms of status. I think we still have some dysfunctional things that need to be fixed in the space.

12:40 – Healy: Make sure the experience is there from the start. You want to take the time to give your team on-going training. Let them work on different projects, etc. We hire internally often, and I think that helps because it builds a career path. 

12:43 – Zilberbrand: The space is so quick; you've got to have people on your team that are constantly on top of the space. You have to have people who are constantly developing. Education is crucial to the overall success and management of a team. 

12:45 – Zilberbrand: You have to create real career paths, and focus on that in your organization. 

12:50 – Foehner: I think most of us as publishers...shame on us for letting are data sort of leak out and be used to sell against you. It's something that we haven't addressed as an industry as well. That's something that's top of mind for us. We run third party tags [on Facebook] and we have a certain responsibility surrounding how that data is being used. 

12:53 – Zilberbrand: How do we communicate to the consumer at the right time, and how do we apply this online data in a linear space, i.e., print, etc.? A lot of advertisers are siloed – that's where they fall short. 

Cultivating an Environment for Innovation, Robbie Vitrano, Co-Founder, Idea Village

4:33 – Vitrano's sweet spot lies in the middle of branding, New Orleans and Startups. Founded New Orleans agency Trumpet. Also, founded healthy pizza chain Naked Pizza. All businesses start with a clear problem definition. 

4:40 – Proper packaging put New Orleans on a very interesting course – with two periods of growth, multicultural origins, tolerance, artism and culutre, i.e., the first opera house in the new world. 

4:47 – There was a 40-year decline in New Orleans even before Hurricane Katrina, Vitrano mentions. "You're forced to reconcile in one of two ways – retreat or rebel."

4:50 – "We were surprised at some of the friction that resulted from entrepreneurial support," said Vitrano. But, we needed to address the matter and give the city a vehicle for entrepreneurship. 

4:55 – The new way people consume media information – they're moving side to side. For brands, a top-down strategy is not useful anymore. The power lies from the bottom up...by being culturally authentic. 

5:07 –  Think like an entrepreneur and a publisher. 

Conquering the Mobile Frontier, Jay Lauf, Publisher, Quartz

9:13 a.m. – Lauf: I can't claim to conquering the mobile frontier. My experiences are informed by trying to reach premium audiences with premium content. 

9:14  – If you rewind to your 2009 commute, even then, 50 percent of commuters were engaged in some sort of linear publication, i.e., newspaper, magazine. When you move to today, mobile/digital has conquered the commute.

9:17 – Everything about how people get their news is changing. Before 2006, people answered the question,  "When during the day do you get your news?" with a specific period of time, i.e., regular intervals. This is changing rapidly as the new news habit is becoming "no habit"; passive news consumption catalyst through push on social, etc.

9:20 – Moving beyond the writing.... Visuals are crucial to conquering mobile. Infographics travel on the social web. Quartz's chart builder allows publishers to create on-the-fly charts, infographics to complement storytelling.

9:27 – "The performance conundrum": 10+ vendors needed to gauge comprehensive performance. 

9:30 – Mobile geography may be the biggest conundrum. How do you create higher CPMs through better mobile advertising? More inventory may alienate readers.

9:33 – 70 percent of Quartz's traffic comes from social. If readers are coming to Quartz for a specific story, why bombarb the reader with advertising? 

9:36 – Relevance is key to mobile advertising; "Don't take me away from the experience I'm seeking." People are good at judging quality, and will ignore content they see as subpar. Spend time making ad campaigns and native ad useful and engaging to readership.

9:40 – Transparency is not only important; and, it doesn't affect page views. Readers don't care that articles are sponsored; they just want to know that it is. 

9:43 – Digital advertising has a bad reputation. Why? Because the experiences have been bad. We've allowed ourselves to stay stuck in the past, says Quartz's publisher Jay Lauf.

9:50 – People do not type in your URL and go to your front door anymore. Advertising has to address the changing dynamic, says Quartz's Jay Lauf. 

Related Event: 
Publisher Forum XXXII


Joining the AdMonsters' team in December 2012, Joshua has a creative knack for writing, and an even deeper love for learning new things -- including the world of digital advertising. Formerly an editorial assistant at TheRoot.com, a leading online, African-American news website, Joshua spends his time scouring for the latest and most influential news on ads and ad-operations for AdMonsters. In addition to his tenure in the editorial world, Joshua spent a year trampling over pitches and press releases while part of a D.C.-based lifestyle PR firm. 

Hailing from Texas, Joshua spent his most recent years in the nation's capital., graduating with a master of arts from Georgetown University, before packing up and trekking to Brooklyn, N.Y. When off the Clock, Joshua enjoys gallery-hopping  and wallowing in the fresh-cut grass at Central Park's Sheep Meadow. 

Follow Joshua on Twitter: @admonstersjosh 


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