Thursday, 5 April 2012

Mobile, Mobile, Mobile.

This is quite a simple video but it makes a point. Mobile is growing.

Shocking I know, because as you yawn, you knew that too.
RTE have said that Irish mobile penetration is 100%. No mean feat.
But you knew that too because you have one and so does everyone you know.

Mobile Adspend predictions for the US in 2012? 2.6 billion usd. Which means it's stealing big money from advertisers.

And why? Because it's targeted and engaging.

Mobile App development too is exploding (500,000 Apps on the Apple Store alone right now) and they drive usage. 

Notably like Flipboard which I raved about yesterday on this blog

Or Highlight Location based mobiling will become bigger than ever.

And we all know the story of Draw Something, launched in February and just sold for 200m usd to Zynga last month

That blog also mentions Instagram and what that does to make photographs beautiful so you can use them on the amazing, Pinterest. A mobile App that's helping to drive Social Media.

(If you haven't been on Pinterest yet, don't waste another day. It's truly incredible - try

Researchers 'Forrester' reckons that the App market alone, will be circa 38 billion usd in 2015.

Equally the huge level of increased sales of Smartphones (who doesn't yet have one) allows the transmission of video, live streaming and all rich media.

In fact the mobile will become the closest personal feature you'll have. 

Don't take my word for it - Here's the man of the moment, Pete Cashmore of Mashable at SXSW. Just sold to CNN for 200m usd
and co-incidentally just before a time in his life when his voice was changing from Scottish Aberdeen to downtown LA. 

With increased product design (bigger screens), it will be the place where you will engage with all content and Social Media. Tablets will grow too of course, but mobile offers greater flexibility and closeness to consumers.

Brands need to get more engaged on mobile media platforms and think about it differently rather than an old-fashioned device delivering SMS text messaging. 

It's rich media allowing you to create programming (perhaps a show broadcast daily on mobiles only), live streaming of events as they happen and great looking applications that consumers will want to keep and use. 

Imagine that. Your brand on a mobile phone..... for life. As Coke have done, Nike have done with their Apps and lots of others, but few Irish brands.

Engagement? Of the very best kind.

Mobile has a real future but in lots of ways it's here already.

Time to start thinking differently.
If we applied ourselves with as much vigour to this media as we do in the traditional space, we will reap better benefits.

Mobile is one great space.
Don't miss it.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Flipboard. What every Press Publisher was looking for.

Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water, along comes Flipboard......

It's an Iphone/Ipad App that connects your content with your social media with their content with everything. And you read it like a magazine. Beautifully.

In fact it is just that, a Social magazine.

It is exactly the web application that press publishers have been looking for and should have thought of. Stunningly.

This will re-invent newspapers and magazines, backed by real leading internet venturists including CEO Mike McCue. I haven't been blown away by something like this since Amazingly.

Perhaps it's biggest compliment is Google's Propeller which is coming in similar form.

But this will change Print. Totally.

Go out. 
Download it. 
It's free.
Tell your friends.
Put it on your phone.
Use it on your Ipad.
Blog over.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Advertising Restrictions. You're Fired!

Last week, yep, just in the teeth of the worst recession on record, The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (which used to be The IRTC), announced another code restricting advertising.

Any restriction on advertising of course, means less money in the hands of media owners who are struggling enough as it stands. Of course too, it seems unfair to me anyway, to grant licences to media owners on one day and then later, reduce the commercial attractiveness of those licences with the other hand through further restrictions of advertising. 

In particular they are now restricting products High in Fat, Salt or Sugar ('HFSS' as they refer to them) in many different ways but notably, by reducing the availability of media airtime given to these products in a day. They'll restrict the right to advertise them - meaning less Ads for breakfast cereals, confectionery, fast foods and so on. Some which are the main advertisers on some radio stations. So it's a big move.

Of course it's still draft, but you get the drift. Confectionery causes obesity, caused by advertising. Ban advertising and you'll cure all from obesity to early hair loss. Mad isn't it? Ban alcohol advertising and you'll cure binge drinking and alcoholism. Really? Ban tobacco advertising and you'll cure smoking. Huh?

More concerning however, is Government interference in broadcasting media through the licensing regime administered via The BAI. In other words, if you want to broadcast in this state you must have a licence to do so. Kind of like China.

You apply for the licence to broadcast and if it's reviewed favourably you're in business, if not, you're not and worse still, it can be withdrawn.

Now I should not need a licence to broadcast.

For example, if I want to start my own radio station and play wall-to-wall Lady Gaga songs, 247 and I've a Bank Manager who is foolish enough to support me in that, then I should just be allowed to do so. 

And yes of course, provided I do so within the law in general (in other words, not start broadcasting racist views for example). But I should not need a special licence. 

The State in issuing a licence, which they can withdraw, is insidiously excercising control over the broadcaster.

And does it?

I have had many conversations with senior owners of broadcasting licences who admit, that through their broadcasting, that they will not treat the Government unfairly, because of their fear of licence withdrawal. 

Sure, they may not actively generate or influence pro-governmenent news, but they are certainly wary of broadcasting unkind coverage. Broadcasters admit that privately, they may not admit it publicly - because it's dynamite.

Think about it too yourself. In the same position where your business wholly depends on "not rocking the boat" with the Government, would you? Not on your nelly.

However as the web grows and more streaming goes on from far away places outside of the jurisdictional control of The BAI, and without the insidious control of The BAI, they'll have a problem on their hands. Freedom. A problem about people being able to broadcast freely, which they can't touch. They can't regulate the web.

Another reason why broadcasting streaming is taking off. And therefore, advertising regulation is going to be a waste of time because it can't be policed locally.

Potential online broadcasters take note.
It's a new media away from the constraints of State interference and influence.
Opportunity or threat? 

You'll find more about the BAI here