Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Welcome. Thanks for visiting.

Welcome to Translinear, a blog where I’ll look at marketing not from an above-the-line perspective, nor from a below-the-line perspective but instead from what I call a through-the-line perspective.

Huh?  Whazzat?  Come again?

Among marketers, above-the-line marketing generally refers to communications and channels that build brands, including TV, print, outdoor and other mass media.  Below-the-line, on the other hand, refers to communications and channels that drive immediate sales such as direct mail, coupons and search engine marketing.  (Other interactive media can fall on either side of the line, depending on how marketers use them.)

In theory, both types of marketing have the same main objective: to sell.  However, brand and direct marketers, in practice, all but come from different planets.  Brand marketers talk about persuasion and cultural relevance.  Direct marketers talk about conversion rates and response numbers.

I think both sides of line have some of it right and some of it wrong.  At the risk of making creative directors cry, I think that brand folks don’t do enough to measure their ads.  At the risk of inviting punishment from the DMA, I think that direct folks focus too much on the measurement and not enough on what they really mean.  More to the point, the Capulets and the Montagues will probably settle their feud before the brand and direct folks do.

I’ll elaborate as I write, but for the sake of an elevator pitch, think of me at the grand unified theorist of marketing.

First, some ground rules:

  • For competitive reasons, I won’t talk about my current clients
  • For discretion, I won’t call out former clients if they did something less-than-stellar
  • I’ll try to keep it brief and frequent, but excuse me if I need to fly off the handle
  • I’m moderating comments for your protection

About me:

I’ve spent 18 years in and around the advertising agency world, having helped develop communications strategy for every medium from TV to disposable cups.  Currently, I’m Vice President/Group Strategy Director for RAPP, an Omnicom agency.  I enjoy the singular pleasure of living and working in New York City.

You can also find me on Facebook and LinkedIn.

I hope to hear from you.

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