Pay Up or Shut Up

Native advertising. Branded content. What are those? They’re advertisements (typically online) that are placed within a publication whose contents blend with the context of the user experience. “What?” As I assume you just said to yourself. Well, it’s just a new form of ads that are less annoying and more entertaining. For all intents and purposes, let’s call it the future of advertising.

What does all this mean? Well blog readers, students, people seeking knowledge and also people desperately trying to connect with interesting people, it means shitty ads are on the decline.

What is the actual meaning of native advertising? Maybe a new annoying and innovative version of ads? Deceitful messaging? Perhaps even a desperate cry to make money for your brand?…#budlight. The answer will be debated for the next few years to come. Some people may say that the advertising industry should take caution or become self-conscious of their new and eager ways of connecting with people–I’m most certainly not.

67% of consumers feel positive about the advertising they see around them. And that was when advertising looked like this.   And now, thank God we at least have videos like this.

I have no complaints. Do you? That’s a rhetorical question. If in your head you are still saying, “but wait, no I think that ads are extremely annoying and….” Then start a Kickstarter campaign for a new way to pay for your mindless Internet activity because ads are keeping you from paying for your 140 character news bits, cat videos, Facebook stalking and celebrity photoshopped porn (maybe you pay for that last one).

Anyway, I’m not the biggest proponent of online advertising, either. Everyone gets annoyed when you try to show someone a song or video on YouTube and the excitedness is delayed because of a dumbass Geico ad. However, advertising in general is paving a toll free road for us to access our favorite websites. In this case, the more enjoyable and entertaining advertising, the happier we all can be.

If you still aren’t convinced, then tell me why and we’ll talk. At this point, not even Mark Copyranter himself could keep me from trying to steer you to an alternative perception.

Whether we’re talking about Siri taking over the world, printing guns or free Internet, the future is something we cannot predict. We can dream, imagine, think and maybe even plan. However, it is not something that we can necessarily control.  If that sounds cynical and blunt, then you are awarded no points, and may God have mercy on your soul. If you are still upset, then please buy more RAM for your brain, increase your bandwidth and figure out more shortcuts to your laptop because this is where life is heading.

This is the current future of online interaction. Advertising in some way, form or fashion is evolving into entertainment. This is beyond your ordinary Coca Cola shoutout in a Mary Kate and Ashley movie. Where we are now with advertising is authentic productions, short stories, documentaries and sometimes parodies.  Don’t tell me you haven’t cringed during a Red Bull video or laughed at a branded video from Funny or Die.  If you don’t keep up with these social trends or choose not to, then I applaud you more than Spike Lee during a Knicks game–it’s nice to be unplugged.  Just know that even Alexander Supertramp himself couldn’t survive alone without technology in today’s world. Clothing, bare essentials, maps, weapons and a few good conversations can keep a dream alive, but they will hardly allow you to achieve it.  Be opinionated,  pursue your dreams and keep the Internet alive and well.

 

Side note–please realize that you just read an entire native advertisement for this blog; branded under Two Beers and a Coffee.

 

 

 

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A Lesson for Every Week

I’ve been considering what I would write for this post and it got me thinking—how do professional writers get started? So, I turned to one of my favorite writers, Carrie Bradshaw, for some advice. So here I sit, in front of a window, cigarette in hand, writing. Don’t worry, I’m not writing about sex (this isn’t Gay Q&A guys, sorry), but I am writing about the city.

I have hit the one month mark of living and working in New York City and I have to say that my mind has been in information overdrive for the last 4 weeks and I have spent that time compiling a list of things that I have found to be important for newbie’s my age.

1) 10 o’clock bedtime is necessary, but not realistic

– When you work 9am-6pm (or 8 or 10) you quickly realize how exhausting  a job/career can be. I think back to only 8 weeks ago when I was spending my evenings watching Netflix until 5am with not a single worry about making it to my 10:30 class on time because I had done it for years. It doesn’t take long for your body to get run down and tired. I reminisce on fond memories of sitting in Louie’s Too on the Corner 4 nights a week drinking cheap wells and Bud Light and being alright with going to class hung over because… well just because. Being hungover in an office is not pleasant nor is it productive. People will notice, and they will judge. Besides, going out every night is expensive (I could literally buy an entire H&M in Brooklyn with the money I spent on alcohol in college.)

This brings me to my next point.

2) This is not Monopoly—Money is real, and it is very important.

-Let me start by saying that everyone’s financial situation is different and I recognize that. I have always been somewhat financially independent. I had a job through high school, and I had a job all through college so I have always had money for necessities like rent and food,  however, after 6 seasons with the girls of Sex and the City I had this vision for my new life in NYC. Fun dinners and nights out on the town in the hottest joint opening in the East Village were obviously going to be weekly occurrences. No. They are not. Being an adult is very expensive. Rent, groceries, and other necessities require money. Go figure.

3) Comfortable shoes are absolutely a requirement

-I’d like to first tell you that Carrie Bradshaw and her Manolos can get the fuck out of here.  Cabs are expensive and the majority of people don’t take them. You will walk, and your feet will hate you if you aren’t wearing comfortable shoes. (also, boots are an important investment. It snows and rains here…)

4) Homework is easier than real work

– I hated homework. I always felt like I was doing busy work because I had older people to tell me how the only way to understand having a job in the industry was to actually have one. So now I have one, and I get it. Homework is shit compared to what you do on a day-to-day basis in an agency. I love when I tell people I work in advertising and they reply with the typical “Oh so you’re like Don Draper!” Bitch, no. I don’t get to sit around and drink scotch and smoke cigarettes all day. That’s not how it works. I spend 12 hours a day looking at excel spreadsheets and coordinating with 5 other agencies on how to make a campaign go smoothly. Not the same.

So these are my words of wisdom that have come from a few of many lessons I have already learned and will continue to learn from here on. Post-grad life is tough. Fact. It’s expensive, and difficult, but at the end of the day I walk out of my office, and I see the New York skyline and I remember that the hardships I endured in college and the innumerable hardships that will continue to come my way are all worth it in the end.

-Jordan

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The Real World is Snow Joke

So here we go. I’m one week into my first “big boy” job out of college and I have a long career ahead of me. I got on the plane from Oklahoma City to head to New York City thinking that I was going to touch down, walk out of the airport and there would be a crowd of people waiting for me at the cab line cheering me on because I finally got to join the ranks of great New Yorkers. I was going to get to my apartment and Colin was going to be sitting in a dark mahogany room with books,  pipe and velvet jacket waiting for me.

Boy was I wrong.

I arrived at Chicago for a layover, with 4 hours to wait around—tequila shots, anyone?  Instead a brutal blizzard was there to welcome me to the North. SO, a cancelled flight, and a small panic attack later I jumped onto a new flight excited that I was going to reach my new home earlier than expected (more time to smoke pipes and discuss literature with Colin, right?)

I finally reach my destination after 4 hours of waiting on a runway. I call my cab and head to baggage claim. I am ready to be a New Yorker! A small part of me knew that when the carousel started moving that my checked baggage was not going to appear. And I was right. They never came.

A week later and I have my baggage (Do you even know how stressful it is for someone as glamorous as me, in New York City, without all my clothes? Carrie Bradshaw would understand), I have my desk, I have my team, I have my future.

My welcome to post-grad life was a very bumpy one, and it was very challenging. This is something that I feel is relevant to all of us going into the advertising industry. In college we are used to the routine of every day. Monday/Wednesday/Friday you go to the classes that go quick, Tuesday/Thursday you go to the classes that you feel like you should have a drink before you walk in. They’re never ending. It’s easy. Its routine. Not the way it works in the industry.

Everyday is different, you have different projects to complete, you have different meetings to attend, and along the way you are going to hit some major roadblocks and you are probably going to scrape yourself up a bit. That’s OK. The point is that at the end of the day, in advertising, we all have something in common—we are smart people, we are strong people, and we are all willing to put serious elbow grease into reaching our career goals.

So while I don’t get home from work until 7:30 or 8 some nights, I do get to spend those long days with talented people who have already taught me how to set my mind to a goal and get there (and that there is always a place for red wine and beer in late meetings!)

– Jordan

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