Issue 27: 2008 vs. 2018 - A Tech Odyssey
rom Serial Marketer: "The Cutting Edge of Marketing”

Hi, y'all, from Louisville, Kentucky!

Okay, not literally. I'm back in New York, for better or worse. Actually, mostly for the better, as I couldn't physically take all the bourbon, barbecue, fried chicken, fried pickles, fried mac & cheese balls, and banana pudding (which may or may not have been fried).

While I was inspired by the bourbon distillery tours and the center honoring Louisville's native son Muhammad Ali, I had the greatest of all times joining the Louisville Digital Association for their annual Digital Crossroads event, sharing the stage with luminaries such as Jason Falls, my 3x-colleague Leo Morejon, and my 1x-colleague Jenna Watson. 

I wasn't sure what I was going to talk about; a typo in a draft of the program listed something I referenced about "chat bots" as "chat box," so I really could have spoken about anything. And then, over lunch with my She Runs It mentee Jill, I mused that I should review a bunch of talks I gave around 10 years ago while I was at 360i and compare them with what's happening in tech today. Paring down more than 200 slides to 124 for a 30-minute talk, I then annotated it and posted it to SlideShare at

For those who get nostalgic for when the duopoly (if the term had existed) would have referenced Google and Yahoo!, QR codes were so pervasive that they were slapped on ads on garbage trucks (really), and Second Life was the closest most people had ever come to experiencing virtual reality, you'll probably enjoy the whole deck. For the rest, here are a few parting thoughts I shared that hint at what to expect for the next decade:

1) Brands still matter. Expect a continued focus on direct-to-consumer brands that can get around the middleman, especially when that middleman is Amazon. How well will these continue to scale? Will the ad economics continue to hold up? In the near-term, this is a high-growth area. But beyond that, established brands matter too, and many will keep thriving. Consider Kaepernick & Nike. Call it a stunt. Call it political. You can hate the guy and hate the shoes and still acknowledge that this brand plays an outsized role in our culture. For better and worse, brands will keep shaping culture, and they'll continue to be responsible for a disproportionate share of corporate valuations.

2) Very little goes away entirely. Technologies and trends take a long time to mature and become ingrained as a habit. Expect more evolution than displacement. Even QR codes, which are still around through various platforms, represent the larger idea of seamlessly connecting the physical world with digital screens. That kind of idea won't die any year soon.

3) Control wins. Bet on what shifts the power to consumers and giving people control over what, when, and with whom we interact. Even voice-assisted devices are less about tech innovation and more about controlling our homes and how we access information (they're also good for playing Jeopardy!).

4) Newton’s 3rd Law constantly applies: For every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. Conflicting trends happen simultaneously. We consume more long- and short form content. We’re more concerned about privacy, but more people also want to share content publicly and earn influencer status. We buy directly from individual brands but spend more on Amazon. Bet on opposite trends coinciding.

5) Most laughably dumb ideas now were laughably bad a decade ago. You can prevent these. Ask what are your goals, what problem are you trying to solve, and does this fit in with any way an actual human being behaves. There are Garbage Truck QR Code ideas all the time that we can prevent from happening.

That's what I'm making of myself. I'm also looking for any excuse to get back to Louisville. My next trip, as an aside, is a family visit to Birmingham, so I'd love any recommendations.

So, what are you making of yourself?


PS: Happy Halloween. Please tell me you're relieved to get one newsletter today that otherwise has no reference to the holiday. 


Thinking about taking a stand on political issues? Just do it (maybe). Here’s a decision tree for

THC is just one cannabinoid, and other non-psychotic varieties are making their way into consumer products. For those like myself newer to the nuances of the cannabis business, here are examples of which other cannabinoids could become household names.

Serial Marketers community member and veteran digital chief Perry Hewitt has some great advice in TechCrunch. She writes, "The annual report is your friend here. The focus may be digital transformation or global collaboration or risk management, and aligning to this priority may enable your client to get buy-in internally. Make sure you are fluent in the visible, budgeted, CEO-led, cross-departmental initiatives — and how your solution plays a role here." Read the whole piece; it's all great advice.

You're Jeff Bezos. You have $156 billion. What do you do with it? Do you end homelessness? Fix Puerto Rico? Rebuild Flint, Michigan's water system? Pay your taxes? Give everyone at Amazon a 100% raise? Play Kris Ligman's game to see what options await you, whether or not you feel such wealth is obscene or deserved (or both).

I can't resist adding in a plug for a book written by two of my favorite marketers and serial authors, Ekaterina Walter and Jessica Gioglio. I  have my copy and look forward to diving in soon. Their description: "Packed with inspiring brand stories, original strategic frameworks, and useful tips, The Laws of Brand Storytelling shows you how to use storytelling to positively impact and differentiate your business, attract new customers, and inspire new levels of brand advocacy. The authors lay down the law―literally―for readers through a compelling step-by-step process of defining who you are as a brand, setting a clear strategy, sourcing the best stories for your business, and crafting and delivering compelling narratives for maximum effect. Win your customers’ hearts and minds, and you win their business and their loyalty." 

WOW, TOP 25?
Had to share this. My alma mater 360i is on this list of the top 25 US agencies from the past 50 years. And this company is about as esteemed as it gets. Wild. What do you think of the list?​

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

November 1
New York, NY
Gotham Media always puts on thoughtful events with some great people. You can use the code "Serial" to get $10 off the already reasonably priced tickets. About the event: "Our event will feature a conversation with VCs about what they look for in companies seeking funding. How much value do they place on the product versus the team? What questions do you need to be prepared to answer? Is venture funding always the best way to raise funds? If you've got the questions, we'll provide the answers (or at least most of them!)."

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."

December 1
Los Angeles, CA
I love Tameka's work, and this should be a great addition to LA's event calendar: The In.flux Reality Mixer is a pop-up innovation lounge, blending TED-style talks with immersive technology demos and a digital art installation. Speakers and attendees from across advertising, VR/AR/AI, academia and entertainment will gather to learn, network and get creatively inspired. It's the first of a series of events produced by long-time conference programmer Tameka Kee (eMarketer, Digital Summit, ad:tech, etc.) who is offering Serial Marketer readers a special discount (use code SERIAL for 20% off). 

CES 2019
January 8-11
I'll probably return for my 13th straight year. Registration is now open. Are you going? I'm already making plans with 4C's Aaron Goldman to eat Cinnabon in the Vegas airport again - but none of those mini-bons. Full-size 'bons are for closers!


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.

Senior Manager, Content
I have two roles here, both remote, shared by Ekaterina (the author mentioned above). "The Senior Manager, Content is responsible for creation and execution of content strategy of the Content Studio. This person is a content creator, curator, editor, and calendar manager all in one. This person looks at the daily news, makes assignments, manages writers and the process/flow of content creation and curation across YPO's myriad platforms and channels."

Senior Manager, Social Media Strategy
"This position serves as the strategic and implementation lead for YPO’s global social media practice within the content studio of the global marketing and communication department. This leader develops and delivers YPO’s global social media strategy across platforms and programs and manages the YPO global social community to create enduring relationships and engagement with current and prospective YPO members."

VP Sales
They are hiring a VP Sales, along with others like an Event Marketing Manager. I can connect you with them, or check the link here and the rest of their jobs if interested. "In the newly created role as Clarifai’s Vice President of Sales, you will report to the CEO and provide sales leadership to grow repeatable commercial revenue through the sale of Clarifai’s API, Mobile SDK and on-premise solutions for our enterprise customers. You will also develop a scalable approach to growing the sales team including recruiting, training, and managing a team of exceptional account executives and sales development representatives."

Product Marketing Manager
New York, NY
Dashlane, my favorite password management utility I've been using since its alpha days, is looking for a product marketing manager with at least three years experience. This is a great company and product to sink your teeth into. Feel free to apply through here, or let me know if you or someone you know is a great fit, and I can refer them to the internal hiring lead.

Marketing Manager
New York, NY
Paxos' mission is to modernize finance by mobilizing assets at the speed of the internet. Today, as the first regulated Trust company with blockchain expertise, Paxos is uniquely positioned to mobilize and custody these assets digitally. We are looking for a Marketing Manager to help execute our marketing initiatives across the whole company. This is a role that influences not only our products and businesses, but also our employer brand and our culture within the organization as well. As a high-growth tech company that is solving very unique and challenging problems around mobilization and settlement of assets, this is an opportunity spread our mission externally through marketing initiatives."

Agency Sales Manager
New York, NY
More details via the link. If interested, I can connect you with the hiring lead, or you can check the #jobs channel in Slack and connect with Marc directly: "We have developed an All-in-One solution for sellers and vendors, including everything they need to be successful on Amazon. Our integrated toolbox offers features for all aspects of business: Amazon SEO, Profit Analysis, PPC Campaign Management, Product Research, Review and Inventory Management and Competitor Tracking. And with more exciting features to be added in the future, we continue to shape this fast-growing industry with cutting edge software innovation."

Social Marketing Manager
New York, NY
From my old and still beloved firm, 360i: "The Social Marketing Manager is an analytical thinker who thrives in fast-paced situations, can seamlessly liaise with multiple stakeholders both internally and externally and who has a strong understanding of social media best practices, reporting and analytics." Use the link below, or I can connect you directly. Thanks to my favorite 360i employee ever for sharing this in the Slack group (he happens to share 25% of my DNA).

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

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. "


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.

TK: Hi everyone. In search of a potential beverage sponsor for The Reality Mixer. Ideal would be an up-and-coming (or even well-established) beer / wine / spirits brand that could provide some liquid refreshment. Could be a great opp to build some brand equity with ~200 attendees + speakers across advertising, VR/AR/AI, entertainment, academia and art.

RN: Asking for a friend, looking for someone to run Social Media for a one-woman interior design firm in NYC. DM me for info.


Thanks again to 4C Insights for their support of this newsletter and of serial marketers everywhere. If you're looking to sponsor this newsletter in Q1 2019 or beyond, please reach out. 

David Berkowitz, editor


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PS: Thank you so much for reading this.


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