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Six Letter Word for Core Strategy
I ’m thinking of a
that should drive
nearly every decision you
make at your organization.
It should be at the heart of
your content strategy. The
key to your ad strategy. The
focus of your company
And though you won’t
exactly find this word
called out as one of the 11
takeaways of Local Media
Association’s 2014 Innova-
tion Mission, the more I
read through the IM Report and think about my weeklong
experiences with 25 forward-thinking media executives
visiting some of the world’s leading media and technology
companies, the more I notice how each experience, each
takeaway, and the mission in general evolved around this
Growth? Give up?
The secret sauce that makes these great companies
great : people.
The other words above – and an endless list of others
(including some five-letter words like money) – are all
secondary to the real focus at great companies. People.
I recently blogged on Deseret Digital Media’s Innova-
tion Wire about one company we visited that sure opened
my eyes to this idea in a very unexpected way. I walked
into eBay/PayPal thinking the company was old news – a
once dominant website whose time had passed. I was
wrong. With their mobile-first strategy they are poised to
disrupt (read: revolutionize) your commerce experience.
“Mobile, mobile, mobile,” they exclaimed.
My second revelation at eBay came when they clarified
that for them – and this is key – mobile is the person, not
the device. In other words, it’s not about the technology.
It’s about people, and finding innovative ways to serve
those people wherever they are, regardless of the device in
Rewind two days, traveling nearly 3,000 miles from
Silicon Valley to New York City, and we find ourselves at
BuzzFeed, a truly disruptive media organization seeing
tremendous success by identifying and meeting its audi-
On the surface, we’re in a conference room having a
conversation about data-driven content and sales strate-
gies. Our analysts, they tell us, scour data to understand
user behavior (read: the things people do on our website).
We write articles to feed that behavior, they say. We craft
native advertising pieces that our users (people) will not
only read, but will share with their friends (other people)
across social networks (communities of people linked
together by technology). Yes, these guys are so together,
even their advertisements get shared.
The more people they get to their site (most of their
traffic comes from side-doors like social) the more native
advertising articles they can sell and the more money they
make (in part, to pay all of their creative, hard-working
That’s the next point : focus on the people inside your
organization as well as those you’re trying to reach out-
LMA referred to this as “company culture” in mission
takeaway #1. Fellow attendee and publisher at The Elkhart
Truth, Brandon Erlacher, captured this eloquently in a
blog post at www.erlacher.com that not only helped me
further recognize the connection between people and
everything I learned on the trip, but was also impactful
enough to be republished in LMA’s IM Report.
“Experiencing the energy in many of the innovative
companies we visited on this year’s trip... was over-
whelming,” wrote Erlacher. “LinkedIn. Google. BuzzFeed.
Simulmedia. Automattic. There was buzz. Smiles. Fun
and creativity. Trust. Collaboration. Real-time commu-
nication whether in-person or via Skype/Hangouts. You
could feel the electricity in the air. Yet, the staff was highly
engaged and working. The Executive Suite and HR were
not running the show by pushing out orders via the chain
He goes on to list four areas on which management
(read: people who set the tone for the other people in
the organization) can focus to affect positive change in a
He concludes, “Culture and leadership is about people,
not systems and buildings.”
I’ll take it a step further and say it should all be about
people. That six-letter word: P-E-O -P-L -E. Say it with me.
People. Now go make a difference for the people you em-
ploy by improving culture, giving them the tools they need
to succeed, and empowering them to make a difference
for the hundreds, thousands, millions or hundreds of mil-
lions of people they’re trying to reach and serve.
Deseret Digital Media
Social & Mobile:
Show Me The Money
August 20-21, Chicago
ESPN Joins SoMo’s Impressive Speaker Lineup
F acebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest,
Google and now ESPN are some of the
headline companies who are sending
representatives to this month’s ‘Social+Mobile: Show
Me The Money’ event set for August 20-21 in Chicago.
LMA, Borrell Associates & Local Search Association
have attracted a lineup of stellar speakers from some of
the world’s leading companies in this space and there is
still time to register for this two-day gathering being
held at the convenient Sheraton Chicago O’Hare.
Full details and registration are just a click away
at www.localmedia.org. Alternatively, LMA HQ staff
stands ready to assist at 888-486-2466.
“Really top notch speakers at this conference,” says
Gordon Borrell, president of Borrell Association. “These
folks are following the ROI.”
“I don’t ever remember seeing a conference with
this many heavy hitters,” says LMA President Nancy
Lane.” The focus is all about monetizing social + mobile
and we have also assembled some of the best case stud-
ies from local media across all platforms. ROI guaran-
teed or your money back!”
T he latest addition to the program is Jon
Paul Rexing Sr., ESPN’s Sr. Director of Sales
for ESPN Local. With a heavy focus on SoMo,
ESPN has been targeting local ad budgets in five
major markets (New York, Boston, Chicago, Dallas
and Los Angeles). Mobile and social both play
important roles in their strategy, especially as it
continues to evolve. In this session, Rexing will
explain how these two areas have emerged as key
drivers, while highlighting some case studies. He
will also discuss ESPN's decision to discontinue
their local apps in order to prioritize developing a
more integrated local app strategy and why this
strategy has proven to be very effective.
“Very excited that Jon Paul will be joining us,”
says LMA President Nancy Lane. “ESPN is doing
a great job monetizing social and mobile and he’ll
share many lessons for local media companies.”
Jon Paul Rexing
Among the big names who will be speaking
at this conference are:
Lutz Finger, Director/LinkedIn and ‘Big Data Guy’
PJ MacGregor, Instagram, Brand Development Lead
Joel Meek, Pinterest, Head of Partner Online Sales & Opera-
Ted Zagat, Facebook, SMB ads
Greg Stuart, Mobile Marketing Association, Global CEO
Luke Edson, YP.com, Vice President
Jon Paul Rexing Sr., ESPN, Sr. Director of Sales, ESPN Local
Lindsay Jacaman, The Dallas Morning News, General Manager,
Digital Marketing Services
Matt Baldwin, President, SSRS Research & Marketing
Plus Many More!
YOU CAN’T IGNORE SOMO
The growing forces in social + mobile are red hot and alert media
companies are actively pursuing and implementing the strategies
to capture their share of eyeballs and revenue. This conference
is perfect for local media executives across all platforms includ-
ing TV, radio, directory publishers, newspapers, pure plays and
more. If you are selling social and/or mobile to local SMBs, this is
a must-attend event.
Register now at www.localmedia.org or call
LMA HQ at 888-486-2466.
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