Ad:Tech is a global digital marketing event held 10 times a year in venues all over the world. It's a place for digital marketers---brands, agencies, publishers, and service providers---to come together to share, network, learn, and do business. For those who couldn't make it, here's a bit of what you missed at this year's Ad:Tech NY.

The show kicked off Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2010, with a keynote speech by Lauren Zalaznick, president of NBC Universal Women and Lifestyle Entertainment Networks. Her three main points:

  1. Consumers decide. Give them what they want, when they want it, how they want it. Niche is the new mass. Program to small but very zealous audiences.

  2. Content wins. Media must be enablers, nourishing consumers’ new-found addiction to choice (with great storytelling).

  3. Fear not. New devices don’t spell death for traditional media, just a way for consumers to engage deeper and longer. Note: Bravo and Oxygen have taken integration to a whole new level with a host of ways for the viewer to interact including live chat, Blurts (voice tagging of photos, emails, etc.) and Miso, which connects the viewer with other fans.  Participation compels the viewer to watch the show in real time---including the commercials.

A few gold nuggets gleaned from the press briefing, including some clever search advice from Telenav, a voice-guided GPS navigation company supporting all major targeted search-based ads, allowing tracking to “drive-to’s” (e.g., fast food, hotel, big box). It suggests incorporating big brand names into search (e.g., McDonalds,  if you’re an independent fast food chain in the area) as many people type in the brand name rather than the item type to find what they are looking for. Another nugget, some research on the effects of Google Instant on paid search campaigns was provided by paid search management platform provider Marin Software. Gist: Google Instant cuts down mistakes and mispellings by searchers, resulting in a drop in cost per click (CPC) for advertisers. Google Instant has turned out to be a huge win-win for Google and advertisers. Download the report here. (Sign up required).

LinkedIn also announced its upgraded company profiles. From the release: “In addition to product and service endorsements, businesses can display videos, featured production information and targeted ads on their Company Pages to drive sales ad interaction.” I believe LinkedIn, now at 80 million users, is near the tipping point. If you haven’t looked at your profile in a while, you should spruce it up, and if you don’t have a company profile, now’s the time.

Google announced the additional ways to report on and interpret web analytics, including reports that will explain why the analytics changed as well as a “major contributors” report and the ability to set alerts on ad words and custom alerts on metrics.

Also of note: DMG, an ad network that has a proprietary platform called Traffiliate, which improves post click action by predicting and serving up the best-performing landing page for each visitor. Yes, landing page. Check it out.

The highlight for me, however, was the lunch keynote where CEO of Personal Life Media and Ad:Tech Chair Emeritus Susan Bratton interviewed the founder of the the MindTime Project, John Furey. MindTime is a model that outlines how our thinking styles (and the way we take in and process information) are shaped by our relationship to time (past, present and future). He's written a book, “It’s All About Time: How companies innovate and why some do it better” (Pioneer Imprints, 2010). I'm already planning to interview John for a post on how we can use this model to help us better understand our audiences and ensure we deliver connect-able content.

I also played a serious game of Twitter tag with @gadgetboy (John Federico) who was out roaming the show floor doing video interviews. Gadget geek? John's got a great gadget blog. And finally, a shout out to Casale Media, who sponsored everything from the dandy notebooks on our chairs at the morning keynote to the nifty totebags, and more. As a marketer, I found their presence elegant and delightfully ubiquitous.

Hungry for more information on digital marketing? Check out the Digital Marketing Forum, Feb. 2-3, 2011.

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Takeaways From Ad:Tech NY 2010

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Helena Bouchez is principal and owner of Helena B Communications ( Reach her via or follow her on Twitter (@HelenaBouchez).