OMMA Conference - search in the publishers and brand world
This new conference took place in San Francisco yesterday. Many fluffy sessions but an excellent presentation by John Battelle on the state of fresh content and search on the web. Many of the sessions were 'doom and gloom', as Kevin Lee put it, about the advertising world having to change and the time for advertising companies and publishers to make tons of money without accountability was over.
The search sessions were more interesting; talking about contextual and where the budgets come from and how to pick you ad network. And discussions on tool technology and how important it is. Interesting that Harrison Magun from EonMedia/Razorfish/Avenue A (the largest PPC buyer, for clients, in the business) talked about needing people and customer service to manage campaigns and having the technology just be a small part of the total advertising agencies solution. EonMedia was the customer service/consulting arm on AtlasOnePoint, the most used bid management and conversion tracking tool our there. Ellen Siminoff from Efficient Frontiers was on the panel as well and believes that automation with wall street type algorithms can run PCC campaigns without much intervention. I put Dan Boberg of Overture on the spot by asking the agencies on the panel and more specifically Cheryle Pingle from Range Online Media, if she would ever use a media vendor tool for bid management or conversion. She said NO. Dan said there tool was an open API for anyone to use. Sounds like Yahoo! Search Marketing expectation is for companies like Efficient Frontiers to use the API to help develop their tools and for small companies to use it for tracking. Those clients/agencies inbetween are probably not targets.
I hope that OMMA stays around. It provided a publisher and large agencies point of view on much of online marketing. It was targeted to large agencies - not just online folks. It is different from ad-tech. Ad-tech has become a much more realistic event - not fuzzy at all. And SES is very tactical. I think there is room for all three.