The Ad Agency of the Future will be a Marketing Solutions Company

November 19, 2009

An excellent blog posting today from Russ Mann, CEO of Covario, describing his views of the changing role of ad agencies.

Mann points out that a “new breed of CMO [Chief Marketing Officer] would demand a new breed of agency — and it will no longer be an ad agency, it will be something new — a ‘marketing solutions’ company, a ‘marketing consultancy,’ or something that hasn’t even been named yet.”

I agree completely and in the context of the future of publishing note that virtually ALL players in the publishing food chain are facing similar reinventions of their roles. From printers to book and newspaper publishers the revolution is happening faster than most of us can adjust. So be it. Let’s cheer on everyone who makes it to the finish line.

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Adobe-Omniture, Part 3

October 1, 2009

What a great week this has been! I set for myself a tough task last Friday — produce a detailed, fair, informed and detailed report on Adobe’s proposed (and, I think, extremely likely to succeed) proposal to buy the web analytics firm Omniture — and publish my report by next Monday.

I’ve received cooperation from all involved, whether vendors, financial analysts, competitors, partners or customers — granting large amounts of time and insightful commentary on what this might mean to them specifically, to the web analytics industry and to Adobe and Omniture and their respective customers.

I’ve now also been the recipient of generous cooperation from some extremely busy high-level executives at both Adobe and Omniture who have done a great job helping me to better understand the value proposition from their perspective and on behalf of their customers (I think/hope I get it now). Many thanks to Janet at Adobe for facilitating this on short notice.

So  we’re on.

My plan is to deliver the report on schedule, but more than that to provide a  freeextra that very few (if any) analysts offer. Buy the report at the $95 (USD) price and register your purchase (the mechanism for doing so will soon be clear, I promise), and in two months you’ll receive a free update to the report that offers clarification on any and all of the quotes or stated facts that I’ve misinterpreted or not-quite-grokked (very important to keep the record clear), but also to provide you with all of the new developments that are certain to occur in those 60 days from the publication’s first appearance.

It’s great fun for me, as I hope the report will be for all of you.

Does information set us free? Let’s see.

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Adobe-Omniture, Part 2

September 29, 2009

adobe-lqomniture

After my first glib reaction to the Adobe-Omniture deal, this past Friday it struck me that the proposed acquisition by Adobe deserves a lot more scrutiny.

So I’ve set myself the task to prepare a detailed in-depth report on the topic and publish it by next Monday.

I’ve collected all of the interesting articles and web posts on the subject, and this week I’m interviewing analysts, customers, competitors, interested observers and the like to try and fill in the rationale.

I do feel that this deal could be a major change in the way companies publish to the web, and hence to the future of publishing. And I’m working very hard with several fine colleagues to test the theory.

As far as I can see I’ll be the first to publish actual interviews with actual customers of the two company’s products. Surely the customers matter most.

I’m also doing an in-depth financial analysis: $1.8 billion is not spare change when buying a company that isn’t making money.

I’ll try to illustrate what the upside is, in concrete terms, and just as clearly, the downside.

I want very much to be fair, and let all voices be heard.

I’ve always admired Adobe, and don’t think that it would spend $1.8 million on a whim. But the value proposition has not been well-arcticulated by Adobe, and I’m having a heck of a time getting them to answer my emails and calls so that I can represent its viewpoint fairly.

To all of my readers: if you’ve got a perspective or insight on the subject, please comment to this entry or email me at thad@thefutureofpublishing.com.

Anyone who does so will receive a free copy of the report that will be priced at $95 (in PDF format, of course).

Over to you…

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