For those interested in new models in media and advertising, Mr Porter's The Journal is a project to keep your eye on in. The brand seems to be spending the bulk of it's marketing focus on creating it's own content rather than the old school pay-for-an-ad-next-to-someone-elses-editorial-content approach. While the outlook for the print publishing industry is fairly dismal, people are consuming content more than ever. I believe that smart companies are going to move more and more to creating content in-house, and curating an audience on their own site. For a savvy fashion brand, that $150K per month you were going to spend on the media buy for a single page ad in Vogue can go a long ways towards producing some beautiful custom tailored content. There are other reasons why I can really see this being a great promotional strategy, particularly for the fashion industry. Mr Porter is able to hire industry heavyweights like Derek Blasberg to write content. Having someone like Blasberg write for you goes a lot farther to build the brand than running a paid ad opposite that same article in a glossy magazine. Also, thanks to what we've been conditioned to see in fashion magazines, pairing editorial content with sales comes off quite naturally. It's doesn't feel obtrusive at all for the article titled "How to Dance (well)" to be followed by a widget suggesting you buy a Dolce and Gabbana tux or a Brooks Brothers bowtie from them. I believe that Mr Porter is leading the way with their Journal, and I expect that we'll be seeing other fashion retailers follow suit in the near future.
"Because of the new age of digital media we’re almost back into a period where it’s a bit of the Wild West out there."
I recently interviewed Eric Ogden for the F Stop Mag. Our discussion covered a lot of ground. It was interesting to get Eric's perspective on how technology is making it easier to create things. I absolutely agree with his assertion that we're in a period of flux in the photography world, and I think we're just now starting to see the careers emerging of the photographers and storytellers who will be making the most of the new order.
"Photos, once slices of a moment in the past — sunsets, meetings with friends, the family vacation — are fast becoming an entirely new type of dialogue."
Great article in the New York Times suggesting a paradigm shift for photography from something we do to remember past moments to something that we do to communicate. The idea can easily be extrapolated to how pictures work in advertising. Traditionally a campaign consists of a series of epic, heavily produced images that are displayed over and over again in media. Nimble advertisers are already starting to move to original photography produced on a daily basis as a conversation with their fan base. Starbucks, occasionally Oreo and the Verizon campaign that I'm working on are the big brands that I know of producing original photography for social media, and others are sure to be entering into this space soon.
"You guys are more talented than anyone in the Tumblr office or in Palo Alto or Sunnyvale"
At Cannes, David Karp did some massive backpedaling on the tune he was singing to advertisers. Just a couple years ago he was telling people that the thought of advertising on Tumblr "turned our stomachs".
Surely Karp will catch some flack from his colleagues on the way he presented this. Putting that aside, this is great news for people interested in still photography and advertising. Photographers producing work at a higher volume but lower production value than traditional advertising is a great match for Tumblr (take JCrew for example). AdAge reported that Karp and crew were ferrying ad execs to private sales meetings in St. Tropez. Here's hoping that something clicked and we start seeing more great work produced for the platform.
Check out the whole article on AdAge (tiered subscription)