The Future of Online Advertising

vintage Sony advertisement from the 60sOver the next few years the online advertising landscape is predicted to change dramatically.

We are moving on from the days of analogue, advertising mediums are changing and so are marketers…so where is digital marketing heading?

The Asia Pacific Digital Marketing Yearbook 2010 emphasises there is a battle going on to determine which platforms will host the majority of online users’ activities. ‘The days when a portal was a web user’s main access point to the internet are long over, but it’s not yet clear what will take its place. Will the future be driven by search? Social networking? Mobility? A device? An application? A browser? Microblogging?

Google, Facebook, Twitter, Apple, Microsoft, Skype and Yahoo! are just a few of the international players experimenting with different mixtures of applications, content and devices in their quest to be dominant.’  Have a look at the digital marketing yearbook for facts on digital marketing in 2010, from the major media producing countries in the Asia Pacific (Australia included).  I’ve analysed a variety of industry sources to compile together facts in this blog – worthwhile checking if you are involved or interested in online advertising [1]

Teresa Sperti in her Digital Marketing Lab blog explains ‘Consumer consumption of video, mobile and social are all starting to play a role in the way we plan and buy media, however by 2015 our online media schedules will look very different to how they look today.’  The Digital Marketing Lab also released an article indicating online advertising in Australia is forecasted to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 15.4% every year for the next four years, while the same forecast for print growth is 1.9% and for free TV is 3.9% (see point 16 of article).  A summary of online advertising expenditure in Australia indicates the 31 March 2011 quarter recorded an increase of $88.5m (or 17%) in online advertising expenditure from the comparable prior first-quarter in 2010.

The Internet has continued to grow in significance when compared to other ad supported media. In 2010, Internet Advertising surpassed advertising revenues in Newspapers in the US!

The International Journal of Advertising in (2009) examined what has been learned about digital advertising on the internet and new media, and proposed that there are six principles of digital advertising  that can be widely applied to new media:

  1. marketers must be sensitive to consumer concerns about privacy and spam
  2. consumers are more likely to be  receptive to digital ads from marketers they trust
  3. consumers are more likely to be receptive to respond to digital ads for products that are relevant to them
  4. digital approaches that incorporate interactivity are more likely to be effective
  5. advertising messages that are entertaining have a higher chance of success in the digital context
  6. in the long run, new media messages need to build the brand to be effective

I have observed these 6 principles throughout online research; in fact you will notice some points perusing through article references within this blog. The 6 principles apply well to viral advertising, and are apparant in successful digital campaigns to date (see video advertising example below).

The journal also states multiple factors have contributed to the internet achieving the status of one of the major advertising mediums that it is today. By 2005 advertisers as well as search engine companies began to understand how consumers searched for information online, and noticed a substantial opportunity for advertising and behavioural targeting by matching advertisements to searches.’

Search & Directories advertising is top of the line for ad statistics, and is only going to get bigger in my view. This is evident from statistics released on internet advertising in 2010. In the US, Search and Display continue to lead ad formats with revenues accounted for 45% of Q4 2010 revenues, down from 47% in Q4 2009. Search revenues totaled $3.3 billion in Q4 2010, up 14% from Q4 2009, when Search revenues were $2.9 billion.

In Australia, General Display advertising and Classifieds advertising accounted for 21.59% and 24.17%, respectively, of the total advertising expenditure for the first-quarter 2011, while Search & Directories advertising comprised the remaining 54.24%.

I believe the advent of Internet TV is a BIG player in the future of online advertising.  Have a look at a blog I wrote on Google TV.  Google TV is still in it’s infancy in the US, but after necessary product improvements I think this type of Search TV will be a competitive force in the Internet TV market. An important product for marketers to note in the future of online advertising.

Online Advertising  – Info and Hit Predictions

Video Advertising

Video advertising is one of the fastest growing segments in the online advertising market. Nielsen indicated online video usage was up by 45% in the US in January 2011.  An article by Media Notes says an IAB report from December 2010 indicates that 69% of marketers and 55% of agency executives say digital video advertising will rise in the next 12 months. ‘Digital marketers say consumers show a higher engagement rate with online video, according to the survey. Digital video is more trackable and targetable and digital video production is less expensive. The findings also say marketers will shift TV ad dollars to digital video because of better ROI, while media agencies and television will shift more emphasis to digital video to follow target audiences.’

Google predicts by 2015, 50% of ad campaigns will include video ads bought on a cost-per-view basis (that means that user will have choice whether to watch it or not). Digital Marketing Lab says advertising is still however in its infancy despite the fact that consumption of video by Australian consumers is significant. ‘Whilst video advertising provides a significant opportunity for marketers it is not without its challenges. As some video channels / networks allow viewers to skip advertisements, marketers will need to provide more than a traditional TV style commercial– engagement and entertainment will be far more important in the video ad space.’   Note the Old Spice Advertisement below, pure entertainment, one of the Top 10 viral video ads of all time.

Indeed entertainment and engagement are important points to note, in addition to choice. As this article by Bost Innovation explains, the importance of choice changes the social dynamics between ads and consumers. ‘When consumers can choose to watch ads, as opposed to being interrupted by them, they share and recommend those ads to friends and family, blast them across social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, embed them on their blog and site, copy and repost them across hundreds of video-sharing sites, and more. This is Earned Media, and it’s the crown jewel of advertising.’

YouTube Channels

Most major brands have a presence on Social Media networks like Facebook and Twitter, but YouTube is more of an afterthought according to Mashable.  A surprisingly high number of branded YouTube channels (eg.Amazon) are sparingly updated and have few followers. Mashable says companies like Amazon are missing out on a big opportunity. ‘A YouTube channel doesn’t have to merely be a vehicle for new commercials. It can house games, behind-the-scenes stories and, best of all, a new, visual way to interact with your fan base.’  Check out these 5 Branded YouTube Channels That Get it Right .

Viral Video

Visible Measures says 2010 was the year social video advertising came crashing into the mainstream. Their report Social Video Advertising: 2010 in Review says categories that produced millions of views in 2009, generated hundreds of millions in 2010. The number of active brands in social video advertising more than doubled. Campaigns like Old Spice’s The Man Your Man Could Smell Like, Nike’s Write the Future, and Pepsi’s Oh Africa captured the attention of audiences across the world.

Brands realized the power social video has in influencing consumer choice and began waging major battles in attempts to dominate their category. Visible Measures says these trends are likely to continue into 2011. ‘As more audiences come online and watch social video, we’ll see more brands, more campaigns, and more competition, all in efforts to influence consumer choice.’

Viral Video: What’s Hot In May 2011

·       Top 10 Viral Video Ads Chart  – May 2011 – Viral Ads on the Visible Measures Chart

Google Video Search Ads

If you aren’t counting on an Ad to go viral, sponsored video search ads were launched by Google on March 24th. Media Ads is still in limited release to major motion picture studios promoting new release features. Google plan ‘over time’ to offer Media Ads to advertisers in more industries to help them promote their videos on The new search ad could be utilised by media industry advertising companies and business in future.

Internet Search TV

As forementioned in this article I think Internet TV, and in particular Google TV could be big if product improvements are made to the first version. See my blog on Google TV for more.

Mobile Advertising

apples-mobile-advertising-platform-iadDigital Marketing Lab notes by 2015 it is anticipated that mobile internet will surpass desktop internet usage – and with that mobile advertising is expected to undergo rapid growth. Global mobile advertising spends will total $3.3 billion in 2011 and this figure will balloon to $20.6 billion by 2015. Teresa at Digital Marketing Lab states ‘like video, mobile too will bring several challenges. Small screens / ad formats will make it more difficult for marketers to communicate their message. The power of mobile combined with local however will also provide new opportunities for marketers to connect with consumers when and where it is relevant…Over the next 4 years will see significant investment from Google, Facebook and start ups in the mobile / local space, which will also result in new ad formats and opportunities for brands to target new and existing customers.’

The Android network is growing in a bid to compete against Apple, which includes both platforms advertising networks – Android Market (Android Software used in Android,  other Phones, Google TV, Tablets) and  iAd (Apples Advertising platform for Apps, iTunes, iPhones and iPads, Apple TV). Both companies are currently under fire for their location tracking devices, and privacy breeches.   Location browsing mobile advertising was also recently launched as fellow blogger Rowdy highlights, again though there is clear concern for privacy issues with such advertising.

I agree that mobile advertising is on the rise, and if challenges of the medium are surmounted it should be a good avenue for digital advertising.

Social Advertising

social-media-bandwagonADMA says Australians spend more time on social networking sites than anyone else in the world (seven hours a month) and 27% of all Australians blog!

In their article The Changing Face of Online Advertising, Digital Marketing Lab indicates in 2011 US marketers are expected to spend $3.08 billion on social network advertising, which is roughly 10% of total ad spend online and an increase of 55% from 2010. Whilst we are behind the US when it comes to digital, marketers take up of social media in Australia is on the rise so there is no doubt that social advertising will make up a larger slice of the advertising pie in the future.

Another growing trend is that of Social Gaming. Social gaming organizations like Zynga building branded experiences into games – for example McDonalds use of Farmville to provide virtual McCafe to players so they can work at double the speed. Mashable features an article on Hot Social Gaming Trends.

In America most marketers plan to increase social media spend this year.  Mashable says a report by IAB (US) notes an overwhelming number of marketers consider social media to be integral to their strategies this year, and 70% plan to increase their social media budget by more than 10% this year, according to a poll from Effie Worldwide. ‘Much of that spending will go toward trying to find new Facebook fans, which 35% of respondents said is their main goal in 2011. “Increase our presence on mobile” was number two on that list, coming in at 22%.’  Have a look at the Mashable article for more IAB findings.

Whilst Facebook is the lead for Social Advertising, I think marketing through Four Square and Twitter (see my blog) will increase in future. I believe MySpace still works for music fans and Social Entertainment, but not sure of growth unless they launch a campaign to grow a new fanbase!


A growth network and potentially big area for B2B (business2business) and B2C (business2customer) online advertising is through LinkedIn. With the recent announcement of the company public listing on the stock exchange, and a increasing member base worldwide ($2million just reached in Australia), this online platform is surely a great avenue for advertising now and in future.

Finally, check out the brilliant video below on the Social Media Revolution

What trends do you think will be BIG in online advertising in future years?

Please feel free to COMMENT


[1] Apologies for the lengthy blog, I was so eager to share got carried away!  Hope this will interest some of you  🙂


ADWORDS BLOGSPOT, March 2011,  Media Ads Joins the New Ad Formats Family,

ADMA, Asia Pacific Digital Marketing Yearbook 2010: Multiple Platforms Infinite Choices,

BOST INNOVATION,  5th May 2011, Social and Viral Are Great-But The Real Future Of Video Advertising Is Choice,

DIGITAL MARKETING LAB, 30th April 2011, Latest Digital Statistics Compilation,

DIGITAL MARKETING LAB, 30th April 2011, The Changing Face Of Online Advertising,
IAB Internet Advertising Revenue Report, April 2011,

TAYLOR CHARLES R, International Journal of Advertising, 2009, 28(3), pp. 411–418, The Six Digital Principles of Advertising

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To Tweet Or Not To Tweet

twitterThat is the question on many business owners minds according to an article by Mashable, titled 8 ways Entrepreneurs can get more out of Twitter.  The article states that most small business owners have no concept about how to use Twitter effectively.  ‘For some, Twitter has proven to be a powerful way to engage customers and build a community. For others, tweeting has been nothing but a useless time suck.’  I encourage a read of the article to take note of the comments from a panel of young American entrepreneurs giving advice on utilising Twitter –  a variety of opinions offered.

I’m a recent convert to Twitter.  I signed up in 2009, but at the time found only 3 followers (how sad) through my online friends network, this was a far cry from my ever expanding Facebook list (at the time edging its way over 200)…so I left my account dead after a month of no interest – all alone with one solitary tweet!  I had put my lack of interest in Twitter  down to mixing with late Gen Y / early Gen X’ers that also had no interest…thought maybe we were too old for the twitterverse?  At the time it seemed to me to be a Teenage/Early Gen Y fad where you would only tweet your latest status update or stalk celebrities such as proud Twitterer Ashton Kutcher and his wife @mrskutcher (aka Demi Moore). Over the last 2 years I even went as far as denigrating Twitter at work meetings, debating with fellow co-workers the worthiness of this social media application in comparison to Facebook. It didn’t appeal to me to update status without friends (followers) to view it, or aimlessly follow celebrity’s daily ramblings (traditional gossip mags were enough).

twitterverse (follow link for larger image)However, since learning more about the twitterverse, I can tell you I’m fast becoming addicted. An article by CNN Fortune Money Blog explains my sentiments exactly;  “Much like learning to surf or ride a bike, you have to develop a feel for using Twitter. Many users never do, signing up to try it and then giving up. But for those who commit, it’s addictive, entertaining, and cool. It’s emerging as a real-time newsreader, offering users a sampling of what’s going on in the world. Dip into your Twitter stream for two minutes, and you may discover that four New York Times journalists were kidnapped in Libya and your train line is experiencing delays. But to the uninitiated, the service is a bit of a mystery.”  Ring true for anyone else?

How did I convert?

Predominately through learning about digital marketing and the value of the online world as a Marketer, during my Masters at Swinburne,  as I’m sure most people connected to this blog might identify with.

Having celebrated its 5th birthday in March, I don’t think Twitter is slowing down any time soon.  Not long ago there was talk of Trouble @ Twitter, but in early May an event occurred that put the social media organisation back in the spotlight.  On May 1st Twitter was abuzz with speculation and subsequent confirmation of terrorist Osama bin Laden’s death. At one point that night, Twitter recorded 5,106 tweets per second, which is the third highest tweets-per-second tally behind only numbers registered during New Year’s Eve 2011 in Japan and the destructive tsunami there in March. (Mashable, 2011).  Twitter was the first to report the news, and as Business Insider states ‘Twitter was faster, more accurate, and more entertaining than any other news source out there’.

bin laden explosion on twitter

Look at the visualization above and see how quickly word spread on Twitter, collated by SocialFlow – a NewYork social media optimization platform.  Mashables article on the visualization explains the Bin Laden news explosion via the social media platform, and also features advice for Tweeters noting:  ‘the number of followers you have on Twitter matters less than who and how active they are’. Read the article for more.

So,  To Tweet or not To Tweet?!  Can Twitter help Marketers, Entrepreneurs, Social Entrepreneurs and Business Owners engage customers?  I believe so, and I think the platform in Australia is growing, especially when Customers and Marketers alike understand that Twitter can be a great network for news of the minute, business updates (from regularly manned tweeting businesses) and product/service promotions.

See a great example below of a successful Direct Marketing campaign through Twitter.  The live and interactive Twitter campaign by Volkswagen in February this year promoted their sponsorship of the Planeta Terra Festival.  View more innovative Twitter Campaigns  here.

I’ve posted a list of TWITTER BUSINESS REFERENCE LINKS below that will provide anyone interested with further information regarding Twitter and business marketing.  New to this game I don’t profess to know all, though can say that the Bin Laden Twitter visualisation article came to me as a Twitter post, which led me to research the social media application and then write this blog –  for your benefit and mine!  

Follow Melani_d8 on Twitter    (Happy to return the Follow 🙂

So what do you think of  TWITTER for business?   Please follow the link to COMMENT

PS. Warning for the addicted…I profess have now caved and begun stalking celebrities in my downtime, sadly couldn’t resist Charlie Sheen and his Tiger Blood


TWITTER Business References

Making of Twitter:

Brian Solis – Exploring Twitterverse (for business):

History of Twitter:

PR Pro Twitter Guide:

The Social Media Guide – Business Twitter Links:

The Social Media Guide – Business Twitter Article:

The Social Media Guide – Ultimate Twitter Tips Guide:  (NB: Is from 2009 but worth a look for the numerous add-on links)

Mashable – Top Twitter Trends:

Mashable – Twitter for business:

Mashable – Twitter Entrepreneur Tips:


Successful Twitter Campaigns: 5 successful Twitter marketing campaigns you should know about,


YouTube Twitter AD:


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Digital Marketing to the BOOM generation

In the week I review articles on digital lives of boomers and myths about marketing to the oldies,  my mother decides to join Facebook sending me her first friend request…the irony!

OK I’d never consider my mum an ‘oldie’,  the term is offensive…and hey I’m probably an ‘oldie’ too according to most teens.  This article is all about busting those bad ‘oldie’ myths…

Mum if you are reading,  Happy Mother’s Day this one’s for you 😉  xo

Baby Boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) are accustomed to change. They’ve lived through numerous wars, were the first TV generation, the first to use PCs, and let’s not forget it’s the boomers that invented the Internet!

Interestingly an article on boomers embracing digital media by Mashable notes Google’s chief Internet evangelist and one of the fathers of the Internet, turns 68 in June!  ‘The web, often viewed as a realm for just the young, is getting older.’

Tradition says that by the age of 50, a consumer has developed deeply entrenched buying preferences and brand loyalty that no amount of marketing can undo. Today’s marketers, however, are finding that tradition is wrong. “Unlike previous generations, boomers are much more likely to change careers, have more children, go back to school, remarry, pursue new hobbies, and inherit more money from their parents.  Consequently, marketers are finding that boomers’ brand preferences and shopping habits are not as entrenched as once thought.” (Marketing Strategy, 2005)

I definately agree this generation of Boomers are well adapted to change, though there may be a few Brand Loyals still out there.

Mother Case Study 1:
My Mother, a prime Boomer has been eating Weet-Bix as her breakfast of choice – for 30 years running!

Did someone say brand loyal?


Mother Case Study 2:

Apart from the late adoption of social media, smart phone technology, and still owning a Fossil of a Laptop that’s takes 10mins to warm up (plus an annoying ‘running dog’ on screen – anyone old enough to recall that!), this boomer on average is a mainstream adopter of technology…
Compare my facts to research on Boomers, the results show boomers digital habits are not unlike younger generations.

‘Boomers spend more time and money online than any other demographic. Younger boomers (ages 47 to 55) spent an average of 39.3 hours online per month in 2010 and Older boomers (ages 56 to 65) averaged only slightly less, at 36.5 hours. A lot of that time was spent shopping—and buying says’ a Pew Internet Research Project. Health information is the third-most common search activity for adults of all ages.’ According to my personal Case Study and comparison research, top of the line search for boomers is certainly Health.


Whilst there may be some laggards in Boomer world, reluctance to embrace Social Media and new technology also happens to Gen X, and even Gen Y. I know several Gen Y’s reluctant to join Facebook…

Contrary to stereotypical belief boomers are embracing technology.

According to Mashable (& the Pew Research Project) “recent trends show older people are among the fastest-growing demographics online. Social network use among Internet users 50 years old and older has nearly doubled to 42% over the past year…in the U.S. alone there are nearly 16 million people 55 and older using Facebook.”

Anthill Online, Myths and misconceptions article maintains Facebook has the potential to improve the lives of older Australians by keeping them connected and maintaining relationships through online groups and fan pages. e-marketer agrees, ‘Boomers and older people are creating Facebook groups fueled by their passion about a particular product or service, and companies have the opportunity to target these online groups as part of their social media strategy’.

I wrote a blog on Google TV recently and it’s impending release in Australia (launched in US last year).  Looking at the digital awareness of BOOMERS,  I think they’d be a great market to target for Google TV.  What do you think?  Please feel free to COMMENT



[1] ANTHILL ONLINE, 19th April 2011, “Myths and misconceptions about marketing to the oldies”,

[2] E-MARKETER, April 4th 2011, ‘Are Digital Marketers Ignoring Baby Boomers”,

[3] MASHABLE, April 6th 2011, ‘How Baby Boomers Are Embracing Digital Media’,

[4] FERRELL O.C and HARTLINE Michael D, 2005, Marketing Strategy – 4th Edition

[5] PEW INTERNET, Aug 2010, ‘Older-Adults-and-Social-Media/Report’,

TOMS Turns 5…A Social Entrepreneurs Viral Success

May 5th 2006, American traveller and entrepreneur Blake Mycoskie launches TOMS shoes (an acronym for Shoes for Tomorrow).

The story of TOMS began after Blake competed on the second season of The Amazing Race. He visited Argentina through the race and liking the country returned on vacation. During the trip Blake witnessed children living in extreme poverty, with no shoes to protect their feet.  This gave the young entrepreneur an idea…months later on a trip back to Argentina he develops a shoe company producing shoes inspired by the local Argentinean alpargataFor every pair sold, a new pair would be donated to a child in need of shoes. TOMS philosophy, giving One for One.

It didn’t take long for this Social Entrepreneur to cement his cause, the same year Blake returned to Argentina with a group of family, friends and staff and 10,000 pairs of shoes made possible by TOMS customers.

5 years on it’s TOMS Shoes birthday, and the company has given over one million pairs of new shoes to children in need through Giving Partners around the world. Philanthropy is at the heart of the business and what drives it.  What inspired me to write about TOMS is the method used to spread TOMS message, allowing this ethical business to grow and continue their aim of helping the less fortunate. I first learnt about TOMS from a short documentary  explaining its history, (video to the right, produced by Australian Kate Hicky) viewed on an Australian Qantas flight over Easter.

The organisations innovative integration of online campaigns works hard at influencing the brand message, encouraging word of mouth (WOM) virally through online video, social media, well-designed campaign websites, news and blogs.  Online videos are heavily utilised to encourage the social mission, there are 174 short videos associated with and/or produced by TOMS on their YouTube channel. Sparxoo digital marketing website reviewed TOMS videos; “Sometimes, video can make things complicated. TOMS, on the other hand, is not complicated. It’s simple, understandable and approachable. The video has two goals:  1) to explain TOMS social mission (one-for-one) and how they create impact (prevent foot disease) and 2) to encourage you to get involved”.

The founder enhances the viral message cleverly through co-branding with companies such as Element Skateboards and Ralph Lauren Polo, the co-branders also making use of the one for one model.  TOMS regularly enlists the help of celebrities to endorse TOMS through press ads, interviews and again online video clips. Musicians show support providing soundtracks on videos and online endorsement.  The success of TOMS has been huge in the US, his model winning praise among politicians (Bill Clinton), businesses (AT&T), advertisers (BBDO Worldwide) and digital influencers (Digg’s founder, Kevin Rose even designed a ‘Digg shoe’).


Youth are a driving force in spreading TOMS brand message. TOMS movement began by young people, features Campus Clubs and Internships to get youth involved at a grass roots level. TOMS supporters stay connected with the active TOMS Community on Facebook and Twitter. Yet another good use of low-cost viral marketing is via the movement campaign website. The site encourages people to get involved through a number of sharing initiatives; You can share TOMS story through social media, screen a TOMS documentary to organised groups, creatively host a style your sole party and upload personal images wearing TOMS shoes, proudly showing your visible support.


  • twitters no. 1 topic
  • googles #4 most pop searched term
  • over 1000 events held in 25 countries
  • 1400 companies participate
  • 500 schools participate

Enthusiastic college students were responsible for getting the first One Day Without Shoes off the ground in 2008. Now an annual event that has spread globally, the day helps raise awareness about TOMS cause through action, asking people to go without shoes for a day.

Australian awareness of TOMS and the recent One Day Without Shoes event was surprisingly minimal. Whilst events were set up in some states the largest event organised by youth at the University of QLD only enlisted 163 followers. My hometown of Melbourne registered zero. The difficulty in gaining support globally could be due to the philanthropic TOMS message coming from a business model, rather than an NGO. Blake explains in his documentary, “In a sense by creating a one for one model with TOMS we have created our never going away benefactor”.  TOMS has its critics, and no doubt must answer questions on a for-profit BOGO model versus a not-for-profit philanthropic model, particularly regarding criticism that giving out products for free from developing nations can have a negative effect on local business. TOMS released its first giving report in 2010, providing answers for inquirers (and cynics).  To increase support TOMS could continue to focus on virally promoting their global campaign through online video, but with an increase in documentation for criticsvisually adding more facts from the giving report to gain awareness and support.

Blake Mycoskie has a new global vision on the horizon, an idea spoken of in March at the SXSW conference through a speech on the power of giving.  On the 7th June 2011 TOMS will launch their surprise one for one model, ‘poking the box’ at a new sustainable movement.

Anyone else have a passion for Social Entrepreneurship?    Please feel free to COMMENT.



Blake Mycoskies Blog,

Daily Trends, 6th April 2011, ‘How Toms Shoes Uses Video:In the News’,, viewed 3rd May 2011

Kelsy Timmerman – Made in America, “The problem with TOMS shoes and it’s critics”,, viewed 3rd May 2011

Kabissa – Space for Changing in Africa, “Why BOGO doesn’t have to be a no no”,’t-have-be-no-no-0, viewed 3rd May 2011

One Day Without Shoes,

POPSUGAR Australia, 8th April 2010, ‘Celebs Get Behind Toms Shoes’ One Day Without Shoes’, , viewed 3rd May 2011

School For Social Entrepreneurs,

SPARXOO, 11th December 2009, ‘Brand-Advertising-Review-Toms-Shoes’,

SXSW Festival, “Blake Mycoskie: Creating Happiness, One Small Gesture at a Time”,

TOMS Website,

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Australian Google nerds, have you heard about Google TV?

Well I hadn’t up until a few weeks ago…did I miss the hype?  Whilst researching the new era of IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) and Internet TV I stumbled across a reference to Google TV.  IPTV set-top boxes and Internet Video such as YouTube, Fetch, TIVOIINET and I-Q Foxtel have been in market for several years, but 3D/HD TV models featuring Internet video access, special Internet TV remotes and downloadable net TV apps are a fresh 2011 release in Australia.  So there is Internet TV or Smart TV,  but what is Google TV?

After seeing the words ‘Google‘ and ‘TV‘ promisingly co-joined I was immediately curious to know more, not only about the product but primarily regarding it’s release in Australia. How as a regular Googler and online newsreader, could I miss declaration of a surely massive product launch?  Eager for insight I began with a Google search using the phrase ‘Google TV‘ to check SEO results or relevant news reports. The search returned good results with the Google TV website ranked top of the search engine, a mass 5,940,000 results appearing in 0.06 seconds.  A rank to be expected for a product released by the infamous #1 search engine.  Other related product links and several old (mainly 2010) articles pertaining to the product’s release were also ranked above the fold.

Sony Internet TV (Google TV)The new generation of ‘Google search’ television was launched in the USA in October 2010, however a launch in Australia was announced on hold. In collaboration with Sony the product was released via Sony Internet TV (the first and currently only HD TV offering the software), the Sony Internet TV Blu-ray player and in addition a set-top box release of Google TV through Logitech Revue. The new search technology powering Google TV indexes TV content and applications, basically any data generated within the context of the service. Users can search for Web and TV programs,  access their digital video recordings from a keyboard controller, a special remote, or mobile phone applications from Logitech, Google and Samsung,  download Google Android apps and record digital content.

So perhaps I was not an avid news reader around October 2010 and missed the hype…

Fast forward though to April 2011 – why have we still not heard of a product release in Australia?  Lukewarm reviews in the US by consumers, technological peers and the media since the launch have affected the popularity of the product.

SlashGear, a technology review website recently posted the article How can Google save Google TV announcing, “Google TV is in dire need of some retuning”.

The review notes the US product set-top box was too expensive in comparison to Apple TV, had a clunky search keyboard and needed a hardware and software overhaul to increase product uptake. E-week another tech site (plus several other online reviews) posted similar sentiment in Dec 2010 on why Google TV is failing: 10 Reasons Why

One of the first ten reasons aptly stated:

1. Where’s the excitement?

When Google TV was first announced there was palpable excitement around the United States about the potential the software offered…But now that Google TV devices are on store shelves, all that excitement seems to have dissipated, causing some to wonder if it’s actually falling flat” (E-week)

2. The Apple TV influence

3. Consumers know the features aren’t there

4. The apps haven’t arrived

5. Content is king

6. The studios aren’t happy

Major broadcast companies in the US such as ABC, CBC and NBC were loath to embrace the service and blocked content from Google TV view.  Google is currently in negotiations with major broadcast companies for advertising rights in the US/UK, and would likely negotiate with Australian broadcasters before entering the market.  A plus for Australia if it does attract Google TV is the new national broadband network, which Euromonitor International claims ‘will increase uptake of entertainment services such as IPTV (Internet protocol television) and Internet video, which will in turn create business opportunities for media and advertising companies.’ (Euromonitor International, August 2010)

7. There might be truth in the rumors

Until Google confirms that it’s asking vendors to halt development on their Google TV products, there’s no telling what’s really going on.” (E-week)

8. Google hasn’t been so quick to gloat

9. Progress has been slow

10. Are consumers ready?

The content-streaming market, while growing rapidly, is still in its infancy…Over time, the Google TV platform could be quite worthwhile, but now the question of whether or not it’s ahead of its time must be asked.” (E-week)

Ten interesting points noted in the E-Week article.  If Google TV does save itself with product improvements, a release in Australia must educate the market of its capabilities and increase market awareness. Harris Buzz, a Harris Interactive poll survey launched results of consumer awareness of  Apple TV and Google TV products in December 2010. Harris Interactive poll survey

Steve Evens, head of research at Harris Interactive UK indicates one of the issues facing a wider adoption of living room media streaming is awareness and understanding. He suggests that if Apple TV or Google TV are to become mainstream living room technologies and not just for the early adopters then there is a long way to go to educate the market on their products and their benefits.

If you are ahead of the game and have news of a 2011 Australian Google TV release,  please feel free to COMMENT.


REFERENCES, 23rd March 2011, “The real future of TV: How IPTV works”, viewed 16th April 2011,, ” Online TV: how IPTV changes everything”, 18th October 2010, viewed 16th April 2011,,  “Smart TV killed the ‘idiot box’: Samsung”, 6th April 2011, viewed 16th April 2011,

Euromonitor International, August 2010, Technology, Communications and Media poised to take off in Australia,, viewed 16th April 2011

eWeek , Dec 27th 2010, “Google TV Is Failing 10 Reasons Why”, viewed 16th April 2011,

Google TV website , viewed 16th April 2011,

Slashgear website, 5th April 2011, viewed 16th April 2011,

Sony website, viewed 16th April 2011,

Tech Media Now website, 26 January 2011, Blog: Apple TV & Google TV research – awareness holding back adoption, viewed 16th April 2011,

Convergence – an instant feed from traditional media

I’m a longtime listener and subscriber of Melbourne community radio station Triple R. I generally tune into regular programs on ‘drive time’,  in the car on my way to and from work.  Ironically, in the week I began research for this blog critiquing digital media & marketing, I serendipitously drove home late from work after drive time and heard a broadcast I’d not heard before.

Byte Into It was the aptly named show, a weekly technology talk show on Triple R focusing on computer news, reviews, tech talk and opinionated chat with feature interviews and regular guests. [1]

Intrigued at the novel idea of ‘listening’ to tech news through traditional media in an emerging online world, I listened on.  The show was easy listening and announcers sounded well versed on ensuing topics, beginning discussion with the latest ‘tech news’.  Reports on the iPad 2 launch (Apple confirmed availability in spite of US shortages), and ViewPad10 Android tablet in Australia quickly synergised into Amazons new app store launch Amazon Appstore for Android(US only), with subsequent discussion on Apple’s attempt to deny Amazon that name through a trademark claim on the term “App Store.”   Following on news of Mozilla’s Firefox 4 browser launch and the battle of the browsers added to topics of the day…All of interest to an emerging ‘tech head’ of course!

Moving on to broader topics, a more in-depth chat on Internet democracy touched on the severance of Internet connections to Egypt and Libya in the past couple of months, and “what would Australia do if we turned off the Internet?”… I shudder to think!   It’s technically unlikely according to the Internet society of Australia (isoc-au). Announcers referred to an ‘isoc-au’ meeting this week that discussed the likelihood (not) of Australia’s Internet disconnection and would it be possible technically, would our democracy allow it?  One announcer said it got him thinking “what if it was a targeted attack – could we manage, would it be chaos, would we go to work…how would we organise our bday drinks?” 🙂  Interesting futurist theories proceeded. [2]

Convergence with new media was naturally (given the subject matter) encouraged throughout the show. Listeners were advised to send feedback through twitter, email or the blog. Interspersed with this were repeated comments of prior discussions had on the show, “all available through podcasts on the blog. The historical references worked for me, on the back of listening to the 1 hour show I subscribed to the weekly podcast via RSS Feed that evening.

What really sparked my interest on the program, was a segment on South by South West (SXSW) A yearly conference festival in Austin Texas (USA) offering the unique convergence  (a resounding theme) of original music, independent films, and emerging technologies.

Guest presenter, Keren Flavell [3] spoke of her experience at the conference attending in particular SXSW Interactive. Keren ascertained it was an “amazing conference that brings together designers, programmers, VC’s (venture capitalists), CEO’s…what sets it apart is that it’s a melting pot of people there because they want to advance the industry…it’s a peak event for people around the world sharing information on interactive media”.  Keren Flavell was an eloquent speaker and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to her analysis on the varied content presented at SXSW.  She also headed a discussion panel at the conference on the ‘growth of open source crisis mapping tools and social media networksgiven rise to community driven disaster preparation and response‘, an extremely relevant topic in today’s climate.

Following the show I explored the SXSW website and schedule of events, wishing I could teleport myself back to Texas for the interactive feast that is SXSW.  Futurists might say it’s only a matter of time!

There were additional topics of interest about SXSW (and more), so if this post grabs your attention I encourage a listen to the show, and certainly a visit to the SXSW website for a fix on the latest in global interactive.   Overall I found it hard to fault the long-running (since 1993) traditional media show, voicing updates from our digital world.  I’ll listen to the online weekly podcast…or catch it offline on my drive home! 

Till next week,

Melani @ d8


[1] The show is also streamed as a weekly podcast on the Byte Into It blog

[2] For full discussion listen to the podcast – Byte Into It Podcast – March 23rd

[3] Keren Flavell – online media producer and digital marketing expert.