Massive 2013: Our Take-Aways From The Variety Advertising Summit


Last week, a couple of our team members spent the day at the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood for Variety’s one-day advertising summit, Massive.


The day’s events centered around the fast-changing business between advertisers, studio and TV content partners, digital media brands and next generation technologies. Speakers included executives from Twitter, Google, Paramount Pictures, DirecTV, and Marvel.  One of the interesting keynote conversations of the day was with the Chief Marketing Officer of Ustream, Dave Thompson, whose company is turning mobile viewing of live streaming video into a growing trend and as a result, has created a new asset for marketers looking to make more immediate and direct connections with targeted audiences.


Additionally, Melissa Lavigne-Delville, the VP of Strategic Insights and Culture Editor at NBC Universal, gave an insightful presentation on how millennials are different than other demographics and how that impacts the way advertisers target them.  She suggests looking at millennials as a family unit, but a modern family that consists of more stay-at-home-dads and stay-at-home-moms who are choosing to stay at home.


Another interesting take-away came out of a roundtable discussion on the state of entertainment and advertising, noting that social viewing of television through the use of social media is directly impacting performance.  Specifically, it was argued that a 4.5% increase in Twitter conversation during a specific television show can result in a ratings boost of a full point.  This means that one thing is for sure, social media is positively impacting the television experience and creating communities of viewership that are being driven by more dynamic co-viewing and sharing among peers.

Finally, Bob Sabouni, EVP of Worldwide Marketing Partnerships at Marvel Studios, had some insightful comments on how to secure new partners.  He believes that it’s not just about co-branded television spots but more about developing true partnerships by creating equitable and enjoyable co-branded marketing with a solid call to action. Marvel Studios has had a lot of success doing this with partners like Acura, Dr. Pepper and Audi.

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2 thoughts on “Massive 2013: Our Take-Aways From The Variety Advertising Summit

  1. Really interesting article – thanks so much for the wrap up! Could you please elaborate a little bit on Bob Sabouni’s understanding of “true partnerships” and “co-branded marketing”. Did he imply that brand partners will have the opportunity to create more branded spin-offs such as Audi’s Steer The Story ( in the future? Did LeeAnne Stables and David Messinger share that point of view?
    Looking forward to your reply!

    • Hi, Tobias! First of all, thanks for taking the time to stop by our blog. To answer your questions, Bob simply made the argument that attracting and securing true partners has to be more about creating entertainment with marketing that benefits both parties, not just focusing on standard commercials tagged with a call to action. He didn’t reference branded spin-offs specifically, but we would agree that such extensions are certainly a large part of the types of partnerships Marvel is looking to make with advertisers. LeeAnne did say that typically it’s more of “crash and burn marketing” with partners because most executions involve a one-off film but agreed that you can work on building longer term relationships like Marvel has with film franchises.

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