AAF: MySpace and YouTube, Yes; Blogs, Not Really Very Much

by Marianne Richmond on June 13, 2006

An AAF (American Advertising Federation ) survey of industry leaders on digital media trends indicates that advertising agencies are not confident that Fortune 500 companies quite appreciate the effectiveness of digital marketing. Sixty three percent of Fortune 500 companies according to the survey are, “generally behind the curve when it comes to online strategy.” However, the agencies executives themselves acknowledge that fifty-eight percent are “personally “struggling simply to manage existing online efforts, let alone stay ahead of the curve.”

Well, what a shame about that curve; agencies think clients are behind the digital curve but agencies admit they can’t stay ahead of it. While the agencies and the client in this surveys are rounding� Dead Man’s Curve they might want to drive by Todd Copilevitz’ and see why they are Advertising Themselves to Death.. Another eye opener awaits as Todd notes that General Mills has told its agencies that they will now be compensated based upon the dreaded RESULTS.

Might be important to realize that the Future of Advertising is NOW: Its not about whether the advertisers or the advertising agencies “get it.” The consumer gets “it” and that is really all that matters. According to Yankelovich and Forrester, seventy percent (70%) of consumers say they like products such as TiVo that block advertising and ninety two percent (92%) of these users fast forward through advertising. For more data, check out the Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMMA) Research Blog and to experience the future in real time join me next week at the Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMBAT 2) Basic Training Conference.

OK, and how does the AAF regard blogs and “user generated content sites”? “Advertising executives find blogs a riskier, less effective advertising vehicle than user-generated content sites such as MySpace, YouTube, Facebook, etc. Sixty-two percent (62%) stated that “blogs are too risky to advertise with due to lack of predictability of the editorial content,” while only 53 percent agreed with the same statement about user-generated content. Despite these concerns, an overwhelming majority said advertisers “should exploit the viral marketing opportunities” of user-generated sites and, to a lesser degree, blogs.

Well Yankelovitch did report that 55% of consumers still enjoy advertising “itself’. Of course that reminds me of the oft quoted John Wannamaker comment about the 50% of add dollars that are wasted but he just didn’t know which half.

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