The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

The Future Of Digital. As Told By My Mum.
November 9, 2011, 8:55 am
Filed under: Comment

So I’ve done it.

And it went OK.

I think.

Though apparently at one point in the presentation, I asked the 500 attendees whether any of them “liked porn featuring dwarfs having sex with polar bears” which for that alone, is going to ensure that I am never invited back. Or allowed in a zoo.

And no, I don’t understand why – or how – I asked that question either.

I also met the journalist behind my recent media misunderstanding and – sorry to disappoint you Andy – there was no punching or shouting, it was all very polite and he’s a decent guy who is kindly making amends for what happened, even after I started my speech by calling him and the article out. Hahaha.

Anyway, if anyone is in the slightest bit interested in seeing what the hell I talked about – as well as see how many slides I have managed to ‘recycle’ from previous presentations – here you go:

As usual, it was mainly pictures so all the narrative came from me – but I’m hopeful you can get most of what I am trying to say.

However, to help you along, the gist is this:

SLIDES 1-7: How I haven’t got the faintest idea what will be the next big thing in digital marketing and that after talking to a lot of people in the business, I don’t think anyone really knows what will be the next big thing in digital marketing.

SLIDES 8-9: Except my Mum.

SLIDE 10: A reminder that digital marketing is the same as any marketing – it’s purpose it to help clients attract more people to them than their competitors.

SLIDES 11-21: Some of the pros and cons of digital marketing.

SLIDES 22-24: What my Mum and me will be presenting in terms of ‘tips to make your digital marketing work harder for brands and people’

[It also includes what we won’t be covering either because we don’t know enough of it or because everyones heard enough of it]

SLIDES 25-30: It’s important to look at more than just people’s digital habits because otherwise you are missing out on an opportunity to develop something more powerful, emotional and motivating. The porn and gaming industry are pretty good at this – even if their category deals in the dark side of human traits – however the best example is possibly Harry Potter, because if the author had based writing her book on the characteristics of how people consume books, she’d of either not bothered or would have written something short, to the point and with far less complex characters and storylines.

SLIDES 31-35: We have become obsessed with ‘social’ but we should be focused on creating things that people want to make social because they’re interesting and meaningful to their lives, not just the brands.

SLIDES 36-39: Digital is a medium that allows incredible flexibility and allows messages to be made more meaningful by simply finding ways to integrate into people’s World’s rather than trying to make people do something different just because it suits your agenda. The examples are when Second Life was flooded to promote the effects of global warming, Def Leppard releasing a single via a video game prior to any more ‘traditional release’ platform and Bjork creating experiential music experiences that ultimately drive paid for music and enhanced experiences.

SLIDES 40-41: Similar to the point that you should look beyond people’s digital habits is the power of addressing cultural tension points – things that make people think and react, even if it’s done in a playful way, ala the Burger King Whopper Sacrifice.

SLIDES 42-43: Don’t forget that online is no longer a parallel universe it’s part of people’s natural habits and day so it’s vital you communicate your brand in a way that is true to the brand – not some weird love-child simply because you think that’s what you have to do when embracing digital communication. It’s also important to remember that digital is no longer the domain of just youth, and so a greater appreciation of who you are targeting is vital. The example I use is Uniqlo … possibly one of the greatest brands to use digital as marketing out there. Fresh, meaningful, interesting and true to the brand voice, whatever they do.

SLIDES 44-46: There are people out there that create technology because they are consumed by the desire to do something new. That is admirable, but in marketing terms, it’s vital you remember that unless it helps – or enables – people do something that is meaningful to them, it’s more of an indulgence than something effective. At the end of the day, you should always look to do something that has a powerful effect on a group of people and my examples are [1] INSTAGRAM – which basically photographers and models use to expand their portfolios [something they did off their own back, not through the aid of an agency] and [2] W+K ‘ChalkBot’ that basically allowed people to leave messages of hope and love and support in real time during Lance Armstrong’s return to the Tour De France after recovering from cancer. In short, while Instagram and ChalkBot are great pieces of tech, people used them for completely different – and personal – reasons.

SLIDES 47-50: Basically it’s time the digital, media and creative communities stopped bashing each other. We all need each other because digital is an incredible gift for the comms industry and we must nurture it, not weigh it down with petty squabbles and attempts at ‘land grabbing’. Of course there are many factors that drive this – client remuneration models for one – but the fact is a Mum who videoed one of her children biting her other child has had more ‘views’ than many of the Top 10 Digital Marketing campaigns COMBINED … so as good as we think we are, we can be better when we work together and the state of a lot of bad digital marketing is something that needs the blame shared, not just placed at the feet of one division.

SLIDE 51: Remember we’re not competing against other brands marketing themselves on digital … we’re up against films, video games, tech … so make sure it’s brilliant in every way because otherwise you’re ultimately working against the goals and roles of why clients hired you in the first place.

SLIDE 52: For some reason this slide doesn’t appear but it should be this …

This is not saying ‘thinking’ is more important than having brilliant creatives, coders, tech guys or anything else – nor is it trying to advocate keeping to a model where everything is left to the creative department and then once they’ve had their “genius” it’s passed down the line of skillset and talent – it’s just that if you want to create digital communication than is meaningful, powerful, motivating and memorable, you have to have a good understanding of people, purpose [from both an audience and a client objective perspective] and provocation because anything less and no one will get what they’re looking for.

Digital might allow brands to connect to people in ways like they’ve never done before.

And digital might let them creatively do things like they’ve never done before.

Which will allow society to express, connect and enable them like never before.

But as the last slide – and my Mum says – the basic principals of digital marketing are the same as marketing has always been and if you ignore them, the best you’ll do is make digital ‘marketing’ material when – with a bit more work – you could be creating something that has enviable levels of value, meaning and enablement for both people and brands.

Right, that’s it … I know no one will read any of this so I’m not going to waste more time writing up any more notes so instead I’m going to go out and hear the other speakers and work out just how bad I was in comparison.

If there’s no post on here within 7 days, send flowers.

30 Comments so far
Leave a comment

I’m no Andy, but good to see the long anticipated presentation. Like Bilbo’s 111th birthday, almost. 🙂

Comment by Aditya

Great presentation Rob. Entertaining and informative and you smashed a heap of myths and bad practice in the process. Come back again soon.

Comment by Emily George

You were brilliant Rob, even with all the swear words. 🙂

Comment by Francis Andrews.

Thank you Francis and Emily. I am presuming you joine my presentation late – but I still appreciate your kind words.

Comment by Rob

Conclusive proof that Australia is far out and gone.

Comment by John

good stuff

Comment by toto

Very good. I’m relieved there was no picture of me on the porn slides
By the way, what I negelected to mention in the Youporn revelation was that EVERYONE was watching it

Comment by northern

I must admit I was tempted – I had actually done it – but then I realised:

1/ Few in Oz would recognise your wonderful face.
2/ You’re back in super-Daddy mode.
3/ You’d hit me.

Oh … and 4 …. I couldn’t find a high enough res pic of you online.

Comment by Rob

Evil. Pure evil.

Comment by northern

Meaningful. not social.
I’ll thieve that.

Comment by northern

That’s OK, I probably nicked it from George.

Comment by Rob

Campbell on digital. I actually laughed.

Comment by Marcus

No Marcus, it was my Mum on digital – exactly for the reason that you would otherwise laugh.

Comment by Rob


Comment by Marcus

Fantastic presentation Robert, but then we knew it would be. Will I be able to watch it online and how was your wonderful mother? Well done, you can get some sleep now.

Comment by George

nice to see the fucker is still recycling slides. not as many as he fucking used to. but still some. lazy fuck.

Comment by andy@cynic

Ron Jeremy. Giving ugly men hope they can get laid.

Best slide you’ve ever done.

Comment by Billy Whizz

secret is: always be more a giver.. just like marketing..

not that difficult really.. just messy, but the best planners get stuck in rather than do desk research…

Comment by niko

how much of that cash on the hedgehog chart is yours billy?

Comment by andy@cynic

Love this Rob. Great work. Thanks for putting it up and well done on bringing niche porn categories to the masses.

Comment by Pete

is that it campbell? no more fucking posts so you can leech off the cred your mum has momentarily fucking given you. you fucking parasite. you fucking ad twat.

Comment by andy@cynic

I hope Rob gives his mum his massive salary because she’s the one with all the brains.

Comment by Billy Whizz

His mother got nothing and he apparently has manflu hence we’re spared any more of this wisdom.

Comment by John

Sarcasm or not … you said my name and ‘wisdom’ in the same sentence so I’m going to take that as a compliment, mainly because I have to take whatever I can get.

Comment by Rob

ok campbell, where the fuck is your new bollocks? every fucker knows you dont do any fucking work so dont give us any shit that youre too busy or tired to fart out another of youre pieces of shit because they only take a fucking second to produce.

Comment by andy@cynic

Careful what you wish for Andy.

Comment by DH

and dont think i miss your bollocks, its because theyre like a laxative and im choked up right fucking now.

Comment by andy@cynic

Well you’ll be shitting like a champion because the posts are back tomorrow.

Comment by Rob

so where the fuck is this laxative masterfuckingpiece?

Comment by andy@cynic

[…] I – and my Mum – have banged on for years, if you want to make a difference, be meaningful, not […]

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