Where Agencies Fit in OPS

OPS is made of the stuff that agency folks crave

So I see you over at your big ol’ holding company office on Madison Ave. thinking to yourself, “Why should I, important agency person, haul my ass to 82 Mercer on Oct. 4 for OPS? What’s in it for me?”

Really, the question you should be asking is, “What’s not in it for me?” Because going through the agenda, I don’t see anything irrelevant to agency concerns. We’re rolling through the biggest issues for the entire ecosystem, and when we’re through with those we’re hitting the ones on the horizon.We’re diving into the latest startup breakthroughs, mobile tracking, the future of consumer data transactions and multi-platform digital video strategy – all before breaking for lunch.

However, there are a few topics that really stand out as being worthy of agency attention, and I thought I might further feed your OPS hunger by highlighting them. Be careful not to drool too much on your keyboard or touchscreen.

The Trading Desk’s Next Steps. We’ll start you out straightforward with Christine Peterson, US Director of Media for LBi – look, that’s an agency person, just like you! Her session, titled, “A Process, Not Just a Tool: The Custom Trading Desk Approach,” is bound to be a bit controversial as there’s little consensus on the next steps for trading desks. Peterson will argue that trading desks should be customized for each client, and trading linked to media strategy. It’s an interesting standpoint, one that mingles with another thread running through the conference…

Brand Embrace of Programmatic Buying. Kellogg Associate Director of Global Digital Strategy Bob Arnold made a big splash earlier this summer at the IAB Advertising Technology Marketplace when he bluntly declared that clicks mean nothing to his brand – some hearty applause followed that line. In the video below, he explains that Kellogg’s increased use of programmatic buying effectively increased their eCPMs and actually helped them better identify premium buys.

Oh man, brand guys can actually see the value of programmatic buying in terms of their entire digital marketing strategy? What does that mean for you agency folks? Hopefully Arnold, Weather Channel Global Revenue Director Curt Hecht and Operative CEO and President Mike Leo will provide some illumination during the panel that closes the day.

Mobile Tracking. So is 2012 the year of mobile? Will it be 2013? Who the hell cares? With Nielsen putting U.S. smartphone adoption above 55% (pre-iPhone 5 mania!), it’s obviously a screen advertisers need to be on – if only gauging performance wasn’t such a hassle because of a lack of effective tracking tools. Mobile thought leader Paul Gelb, Vice President and Mobile Practice Lead at Razorfish, has searched high and low for solutions, and by jove he says it’s possible to show the value of upper-level brand advertising on mobile devices. In fact, he even suggests mobile tracking is better than your old-school online bloodhound work. Yoinks, Scoob.

Gone Native. You’ve heard about this native advertising thing, have you? It’s become quite the term du jour, but there’s a good reason – native advertising opportunities allow publishers to highlight the premium-ness of their content and audience while delivering better engagement for advertisers (when executed properly – there’s always a catch). Rick Webb, cofounder and former COO of the Barbarian Group, made a lot of headlines over the summer when he became a full-time consultant to Tumblr’s burgeoning revenue efforts – you’d come out better listening to his thoughts on native advertising, premium content and the future of social media monetization.

Any Response to Responsive Design? It ain’t a craze, it’s a multi-platform user experience strategy… For now, anyway. Advertisers and agencies seem to be letting publishers make the first move when it comes to integrating responsive design technology – which is no piece of cake, Aaron Jones of IDG Consumer & SMB and Larry Chevres of New York Media will tell you – but there’s quite the opportunity here for the buy side. What kind of bait will lure them in?

That’s just a taste of what awaits agency folks that jump on the OPS opportunity – there’s also a dissertation on branded content from Funny or Die, The Atlantic walking through its incredible digital transformation, industry luminary Jerry Shereshewsky presenting the companies that are about to shake up the digital ad ecosystem and even more. 

Really, it doesn’t matter if you’re an agency person, tech company rep, brand marketing leader or publisher revenue lion – why would you miss such a remarkable lineup?

OPS Macro-level changes are coming, and you can sieze the opportunities that follow at OPS NY. This event will bring together digital advertising leaders and ops professionals to discuss a rapidly evolving landscape and develop strategies for monetization. Register today for OPS NY which will be held Oct. 4, 2012.