In Silicon Valley, and among startups in general, there’s a single slide that encompasses an article of faith. It was created years ago — and is updated annually — by famed Internet-analyst-turned-venture-capitalist Mary Meeker. It shows the gap between time spent on the Internet and ad budgets spent.
The graph is correct, but the underlying assumption that this gap would magically close is a lie, said Rick Webb, a partner at VC fund Quotidian Ventures and a co-founder of digital agency The Barbarian Group. The reason is simple: Brand advertising online sucks.
“Here we are 10 years later, and the money hasn’t come over,” he said at the Digiday Brand Summit, in Deer Valley, Utah, on Monday. “TV viewership is declining, but TV ad spend has gone up. It’s because TV ads make people cry and make people laugh … and the Internet doesn’t grasp that.”
Webb, who advised Tumblr on its ad strategy and is doing the same for streaming platform SoundCloud, said startups and platforms should focus on solving that problem for brands. That’s the only way to unlock big budgets.
“There’s a million different Internet companies you can spend money on,” he said. “It’s kind of a joke. Nobody in this room has the time to talk to all 50,000 tech startups. If you want to break out [as a startup], give some plausible way to do great brand advertising on the Web. What can you be to [marketers] that’s actually moving like brand advertising?”
Watch a three-minute clip of Webb talking about the subject below.
Why health care network Tia wants to reach women through OOH, social media
Aside from boosting brand awareness, Tia is approaching its marketing with a mission: inspire women to encourage systemic change regarding how they are treated in health care and combat medical gaslighting.
Lime’s new ad campaign puts efficiency on par with sustainability
Lime's latest campaign in Berlin and Washington, D.C. and San Francisco continues the company's focus on local markets.
Why Netflix, Paramount+ and other streaming services are borrowing from gaming IP as the media wars heat up
Consumers’ rabid interest in gaming IP has effects beyond streaming numbers. The popularity of game-inspired shows can flow back into the games themselves, as shown by the sharp increase in Cyberpunk 2077 activity following the release of “Cyberpunk: Edgerunners” in September.
SponsoredHow FAST channels are redefining primetime opportunities for advertisers
As destination travel takes off, the ‘Big Easy’ is experimenting with AR/VR to draw visitors
As travel, and travel tourism, return to pre-pandemic levels, New Orleans is leveraging AR/VR technology marketing to stand out and capture more traveler attention.
Why companies like iHeartMedia, NBCU rely on homegrown IP to build metaverse engagements
The success of recent brand activations is evidence that media and entertainment brands are the companies best equipped to build metaverse spaces that can dodge online skepticism, thanks to their wealth of owned IP.