Issue 23: Advertising Week Needs Fewer Speakers, More Listeners
From Serial Marketer: "The Cutting Edge of Marketing”

What should you make of this year's Advertising Week New York?

There are incredible speakers. So much of it is so thoughtfully produced. For an industry that needs to reinvent itself, even seeing how it reinvented a movie theater is a fascinating (and often frustrating) experience (the hub is Manhattan's AMC Lincoln Square).

It's a great event to catch up with people, and yet terribly designed for that. At an event like this, I wish there was far more time and space dedicated to connecting with others than sitting in panels. Panels are an overutilized crutch, as they're useful for getting more speakers involved and in turn getting them to bring their own peers and followers to the event, but panelists rarely have to work too hard at being a panelist. It's a twist on the 90-9-1 rule, in terms of the ratio of effort speakers put into a solo talk versus moderating a session versus speaking on a panel.

As a case in point, I've probably moderated 100 panels or so in the course of 350+ speaking opportunities. Every single time, going back to when I was just starting to do this, I send questions to speakers in advance of the panel and then ask them what they'd like to change or add. I think in all those years dating back to 2004, two people have replied with any substantive feedback. I'm pretty sure that's not because I come up with the perfect batch of questions and topics (one memorable speaker even said on stage how he disliked my questions - including the question that just reformulated the panel name into a question). 

Beyond using the panels themselves, we have this slew of events where very little is announced and hardly more is learned. Ask anyone what they're learning during Advertising Week. As I write this after the first day, I learned quite a bit about marketing blockchain companies, but that was thanks to a dinner that a friend organized. I also learned about some developments in the crypto industry, but that was at a Crypto Mondays meetup run by Lou Kerner. Yes, it's useful to have people like Facebook's Carolyn Everson on stage, but that's also because such speakers have ample time to communicate their ideas, and they're usually paired with an experienced journalist to push for at least a little more candor than they'd otherwise provide.

Overall, if Advertising Week sticks to the same kind of venue next year, I'd love to see half of the theaters turn into a series of meetups scheduled around various topics and themes, and perhaps even featuring a few 5-10 minute talks so that speakers can share their expertise. The rest of the time would be devoted to conversation and allowing people to really learn something from each other. At such a scale, there could be more experimentation too, such as certain meetups being very open-ended, while others could involve some kind of speed-dating (professionally, of course), and others could involve bringing people together to share some kind of challenge presented to the room.

Those are some initial thoughts as Advertising Week is underway. What do you think of these, and of the event in general? And what are you making of yourself?



We're #1! We're #1!

Here's one to bookmark (and one that's the latest addition to my Tech Tool list): The Brief, by NfX. It's a fundraising pitch tool for founders and VCs to craft the kind of pitch deck that investors will appreciate. By the way, I sometimes like these startup tools when pitching new ideas for marketing, treating your own proposals like startup pitches. I think it's overblown for every marketer to try to think like a startup - do you know the startup failure rate? (I don't either, but it's REALLY high.) Still, there are plenty of ways marketing folks at brands and agencies and elsewhere can learn from startups and assimilate some of their thinking and practices.

Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web. Now he wants to redo it. Overly ambitious and optimistic? Sure. But marketers should keep tabs on this one - especially since he has a very anti-corporate message, and that could bode poorly for advertisers if this catches on. From the article: "The difference here is that, on Solid, all the information is under his control. Every bit of data he creates or adds on Solid exists within a Solid pod–which is an acronym for personal online data store. These pods are what give Solid users control over their applications and information on the web. Anyone using the platform will get a Solid identity and Solid pod. This is how people, Berners-Lee says, will take back the power of the web from corporations."

Google is now making it easier for advertisers to get consumers to take actions within YouTube ad units, while also making it simpler to use its Brand Lift offering.


Want to include your event below? Just reply with the details.

October 4-5
New York, NY
This event is really several in one, covering music, games, TV & video, and rights tech. I'll be moderating a panel on voice-activated AI for media and entertainment.

October 9
New York, NY
Landmark Ventures puts on some phenomenal events, and this is their tentpole; you can request an invite via the link. I'll be attending (they do let some riffraff in). "Dealmakers Digital is a private forum for advertisers, publishers, and content creators to convene around the next chapter of consumer digital engagement. Leading CMOs, CDOs, and executives across media, sports, entertainment, and e-commerce will come together to collaborate and discuss trends and innovation at the core of the evolving digital engagement landscape."

October 10
New York, NY
This $10 event is worth at least $11.50. I found out about it through Bob Hoffman's newsletter and look forward to hearing what he, Doc Searls, and others have to say. I'm sure it will make everyone feel great about the ad industry. If you're going, maybe we can sneak in flasks and do shots every time someone says something that makes us question everything we've done in our careers.

October 15-19
New York, NY
Kite Hill PR is back with another round of their annual Communications Week. This year's theme is The Workforce of the Future. As always, they have a mix of paid and free events, including the PRSA Tri-State conference, plus some shorter events open to all.

October 30
New York, NY
Hailed as "the largest one-day media event of the year," hot topics include multi-screen marketing, location data, and new media models. Brands and agencies can attend for as little as $150, and I'm looking forward to attending. I'm doing a bit of work with them as well, so if you have an audience (even a newsletter, blog, Slack group, etc) and are interested in spreading the word, let me know; I may be able to help snag a press pass.

November 11-13
Half Moon Bay, CA
This is an excellent event series; I went last year, and their lineup is full of memorable speakers. Everyone in the room has some impressive background and story. Request an invite via the link. "This November please join us for a probing, wide-ranging conversation about the tech-inflected issues that affect business and our world. Techonomy’s breadth is unlike other “tech” conferences. This year’s theme is Harnessing Tech for Responsible Growth, and as always we will address many of the issues facing leaders today."

CES 2019
January 8-11
I'll probably return for my 13th straight year. Registration is now open. Are you going?


New jobs are listed at the top, and older ones are phased out. Reach out to me if you want introductions or any additional information. And let me know if you have other job postings you'd like to share.

Part-Time Marketer
Boston, MA (could be remote for an excellent communicator and practitioner)
I met the founder at an event recently. Here's what she needs: "We're looking for a part-time person who is well acquainted with digital search marketing, including Google Ads. We'd love someone with at least 3 years of experience. We help people identify which skin diseases they may have using artificial intelligence, and connect with relevant doctors."
Reach out to me and I can connect you with the founder

Head of Product Marketing
Boulder, CO
Via the community: Unsupervised ( is hiring a full-time Head of Product Marketing role in Boulder, CO. The President is a close friend. They've raised $3.5M and the two founders previously sold a company to Oracle and are looking for another big exit. They're looking for someone who has worked in Product Marketing for a B2B big data, BI, or Analytics enterprise solution that has been targeted to Marketers or Analytics professionals as customers. People coming out of companies like Domo, Tableau, Looker, etc. would be amazing. This person would get to build out the full Product Marketing function for the company and build out their own team. This is a full-time role in Boulder, CO - no remote or consultants. 
Contact me for the job description and recruiter information, or check the Slack jobs channel

Senior Social Media Strategist
New York, NY
Via a friend of a friend: "The Port Authority is looking for a Senior Social Media Strategist to join our Marketing team. The Senior Social Media Strategist will oversee the social media strategy and creative vision, developing, executing and measuring plans to help transform how the Port Authority serves and engages with millions of customers."

Various roles
Los Angeles, CA
Just got this note for any LA friends: I'm looking for a few key hires in LA, including a Social Media Director, Social Media Producer and Ad Manager. If you know anyone, can you send them my way? Job descriptions are here.
I can also connect you with the hiring lead.

Head of Product Marketing
New York, NY
Noteworth, a healthcare-related startup, is looking for a product marketer, one who has experience launching a product and can build and lead a team. They're gearing up for a pretty big launch in January and need the right marketer. The company has impressive credentials. The target is to market to execs at hospitals, but you don't need healthcare expertise. The biggest trick for them is they need both the doer and the manager, so it could be an execution-oriented person ready to step up and manage/lead, or more of a manager who wants to go back to rolling up sleeves.
I can connect you with the hiring lead.

Lots of roles
New York, San Francisco, many other global cities
As Lizzie in Serial Marketers noted, "MightyHive is growing like CRAZY -- we have a ton of openings globally." From their site: "MightyHive is a Programmatic Solutions Partner for forward-thinking marketers and agencies. As one of the largest and fastest-growing programmatic buyers in the world, we know how to navigate the system for top brands and agencies. "

VP Marketing
Cambridge, MA
This is a tremendous role for the right person, whether based near Cambridge or willing to relocate: "The Vice President of Marketing will lead and deliver break-through marketing strategies to propel the company to a new level of brand awareness, perception, and market penetration. He/she must be a collaborative team player who can help build upon the value of the existing reputation of Wistia and have a passion and appreciation for video. He/she must be creative, dynamic, engaging, curious, thoughtful, team player."
Contact me for the job description and recruiter information

Indianapolis, IN
They are looking for someone based in Indianapolis or who can relocate or commute: "Viral Launch is recognized as the go-to Amazon seller growth platform. They are the recognized leader in their space. The company’s software tools, creative services and consulting services have launched 30,000 products, grew 8000 products and tracked 77 M products...  We are targeting a strategic CMO to lead all Branding, Demand Generation, Digital, Product and Marcom areas. A business partner first, we are targeting a CMO leader that can help innovate and broaden the brand."
Contact me for the job description and recruiter information

Head of Marketing
New York, NY
Into meditation and wellness? Well, sell and market the heck out of it. They compare themselves to the Peloton for Meditation. From the description: "We’re seeking someone to lead our marketing efforts across the company. You will bring Journey to life through all touchpoints - online and off, including experiential. You will engage new B2B customers, help create incredible experiences for our users, and support our work to build a product that scales."


Here's are requests people posted lately in Serial Marketers or otherwise sent to me. Even if you don't join the Slack group, email me recommendations, and I will get them to the right people.

DM: Who has recommendations for great content marketing / social media agencies based out of SF? Needs to be local to that area. 


Below are updates from the #selfpromo channel in Serial Marketers. Even if you're not in the Slack group, and you have something you'd want to promote, let me know. Other readers will probably love hearing about it.

LEO MOREJON: My blog and soon to be podcast: Interviews for the podcast have already been recorded with Jay Mandel and Matt Wurst, and I hope to launch the podcast in the next few weeks. Sign up for the newsletter to get updated! [Editor: Yes, I'm a guinea pig guest too.]


Thanks again to 4C Insights for their support of this newsletter and of serial marketers everywhere. 

David Berkowitz, editor


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