Welcome to Market Revolution's blog

Thank you for visiting Market Revolution's blog.

We live and work in exciting times - revolutionary times. Technology continues to recast the media industry.

The extraordinary advance of affordable personal digital technology and the stellar rise of social networks are both distrupting and transforming the media market making this a unique moment to be involved in the convergence sectors we focus on.

This is also our place to ruminate and comment on the world as we see it, we hope you enjoy and please join in.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Timeshifting - brand friend or foe?

There's been some debate about which brands are embracing the new consumer ability to choose when, where and how to consume and interact with content and products.

One brand which has managed to re-invent itself in my personal world in the last 2 years has been the BBC. Old time, pillar of the UK society, somewhat staid in its view, it was something I consumed without really a second thought.

Now though, it's all changed. My view of the brand, and the way I interact with it have changed radically recently.

I rarely watch BBC on TV at the time they would like me to. The i-player gives me the ability to carry around my TV on the laptop to watch when I want to watch it. I used to listen to BBC radio when I could. Now, I download the podcasts I want onto my MP3, and listen at my leisure. Not convinced on bbc.co.uk's relaunched new coat, but that's a minor quibble.

I have control, which is nice, but I'm now getting into a routine of when and what I download, which is a commercial brand's dream relationship with a customer. Which non-licence fee funded brand is going to build a relationship like this with me? So far, no-one has.

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

McFly bigger than Barry Manilow!

The Mail on Sunday's exclusive giveaway of the new McFly album boosted its circulation 300,000 copies above its non-promotional average to 2.4m copies, according to estimates.

Couple of things strike me about this the latest in a long, long line of CD giveaways.

Firstly, McFly are more popular than Barry Manilow amongst MOS readers. Thats extraordinary. Surely no one I mean no one is bigger than Barry in middle Britain .

Who are McFly anyway?

Well the answer must lie in the popularity of McFly with MOS readers children me thinks.

Is this pester power at work at the news stands

Second thing that strikes me is how attrition seems to be finally taking its toll on these promotions. McFly beat Manilow but fell well short of Prince's Planet Earth CD last year.

All involved with these promotions are very polished at heralding their success but once again isnt it time to call into question the ROI of these deals. Its estimated that Associated Newspapers alone spend £100m a year on this type of stuff. Meanwhile the piles of unused, unwatched and unlistened to CDs and DVDs pile up - unloved - on readers shelves.

Car boot sales are the major beneficiary of these deals!

Wouldnt the money or at least part of it be better spent investing in long term relationship building with readers rather than short term bribery?

Maybe recessionary times will necessitate move toward strategic rather than tactical marketing at the papers.

That would at least be one good thing to come from these challenging times.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Is Google a victim of its own success or of a declining market

Google shares were off 8% in late trading today as it posted a profits gain but fell short of estimates.
Whilst its hard to feel sorry for these guys its ours to wonder whether they arent a victim of their own success. Posted growth in this market would be enough for most brands to set the shares alight but not Google. They post gains and analysts say not good enough and shares fall - hard.

But its not that simple is it.

Clearly Google are not only a bell weather for the advertising industry but the entire economy . Any sign of slowdown adds more evidence to what we already know so well - we are entering an economic nuclear winter.

Its unfortunate for Google stock holders that the business has become economic 'canary in the cage'

Keep warm

Monday, 14 July 2008

iPhone opening weekend sales

Apple has sold more than 1m of its new iPhone 3G handsets, the consumer electronics giant announced today, just three days since the chaotic launch of the second version of the smartphone.

Apple's chief executive Steve Jobs said that the new iPhone 3G has had "a stunning opening weekend".

"It took 74 days to sell the first 1m original iPhones, so the new iPhone 3G is clearly off to a great start around the world," Jobs added.

Bellwether report: Ad budgets see sharpest downturn since 9/11 attacks

Monday July 14, 2008

UK businesses are slashing their marketing and advertising budgets for the third quarter in a row in the sharpest downturn since the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001, according to the latest Bellwether report published today by ad agency trade body the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising.

Internet marketing was the sole bright spot, with 19% of companies reporting a rise from the budgets set at the start of the year, and only 12% reporting a decline.

But even the growth of digital spend has slowed dramatically since the first quarter of 2008, when 27% of respondents reported an increase in their online marketing budgets since the start of the year.

Friday, 11 July 2008

Friday Queues

Soho on a Friday morning is usually an oasis of calm, with media and arty types stumbling towards lattes, cappucinos and wet decaffeinated skinny americanos.

Today however, a queue snaking along the pavement. At 8.45am. Was the European opticians having a black chunky framed glasses sale? Was the executive man-bag shop doing 2 for 1 deals?

No, the queue was for Carphone Warehouse. For the next generation i-Phone launch.

Have to hand it to Apple, it has brand loyalty like few others, and customers who go that extra mile without complaint.

Looking forward to seeing the phone in action.

Credit Crunch - just how bad is it?

With shares of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac - two pillars of the US housing market - continuing to plummet yesterday investors and federal officials contemplated the possibility that the giants of the mortgage business could require a federal bailout.

OMG this is pretty serious stuff. These 2 companies are key part of the infrastructure that holds together the US economy (together they underwrite nearly 50% of US mortgages). Whilst they wont (cant) be allowed to fail its a huge concern that we are even close to this situation.

The conclusion that we draw from this is that the economic situation is far far worse that we are being told.

Hold on to your hats and tighten you belts

Women kills husband with folding couch

Well its friday and high time for a little lightness after a wet and rather depressing news week

Thanks to Reuters for this one - you could'nt make this stuff up

ST PETERSBURG (Reuters) - A Russian woman in St Petersburg killed her drunk husband with a folding couch, Russian media reported on Wednesday.

St Petersburg's Channel Five said the man's wife, upset with her husband for being drunk and refusing to get up, kicked a handle after an argument, activating a mechanism that folds the couch up against a wall.

The couch, which doubles as a bed, folds up automatically in order to save space. The man fell between the mattress and the back of the couch...................

TMG pan for digital ad gold abroad

Telegraph Media Group's partnership with AdGent 007, a global digital advertising services company to sell ads abroad, makes a lot of sense.

British Newspapers are very popular abroad and as recorded here in a previous post well over 50% of online usage of newspapers comes from outside the UK

The Telegraph does particularly well abroad - according to the latest ABCe audit, it recorded over 18.4m unique users globally, an increase of more than 150% over the previous year.

In a market where newspapers are experiencing the 'double whammy' of falling circulation and (fast) falling advertising revenues this kind of deal is very sensible and potentially very important.

Thursday, 3 July 2008

The winds of change

Just glancing back through the archive of posts here looking for a couple of things, and couldn't help noticing how the mood has changed.

What ever happened to social networking, incredibly high valuations of digital businesses and all the hype surrounding Web 2.0?

Now it's all credit crunch, high street bloodbath, advertising recessions and redundancies.

Those who keep their heads and invest wisely in brands and audience should be able to reap the benefits in the medium term, it'll be interesting to see "who dares wins".