Why I built this blog

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by Scott Hoffman on June 5, 2009

I started this blog, cliqology, to keep up with the rate of change and evolution in digital marketing, and that rate is quickening. cliqology will chronicle my thoughts around those changes and how marketers and brands can take advantage. It will be focused around my belief that the Social Media, once relegated to isolated and forgotten parts of the web, have become so pervasive that the ENTIRE WEB IS NOW SOCIAL. Through cliqology, I will provide insight, research, and advice on how brand marketers can participate in this new Social Paradigm, with confidence & knowledge.

A little background about who I am may reveal why cliqology is important to me.

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Scott Hoffman, and I have been involved in advertising my whole life. My early years were spent with traditional advertising agencies Oglivy & Mather and SFM Media (which is now part of the French holding group Havas.) were I was a network television media buyer. In my last year as a network television buyer, I placed almost a quarter of billion dollars with the networks, on behalf of my clients which included Nike, MCI, Porsche and Isuzu, amongst many others.

In 1996 I joined with Yahoo. At that time Yahoo was a relatively unknown and obscure company that had a web directory. Most people didn’t even know what the internet was at that time (beyond eMail which was already seeing massive adoption.) I had the chance to be part of a wonderful organization, and watch it grow in importance and value, both to consumers and brands. My primary role was to engage with fortune 500 companies like Proctor & Gamble and Pepsi and enlighten them on the power of internet marketing. I still count Jerry Yang & David Filo as my personal friends.

I got to work with Steve Case, former CEO of AOL on his vision for what the internet could do to disrupt the current health care system. The name of the company was Revolution Health, and we successfully launched a community based health care portal. Revolution Health enabled real time conversations and dialog about the health issues that mattered to people the most, their own. Revolution Health was sold to Waterfront media for an undisclosed sum; in a recent conversation with Michael Keriakos, co-founder and President of Waterfront said he couldn’t be happier with acquisition.

It was at Revolution Health were I first got the “social” bug, realizing that when people were allowed to talk with other people, the rules of the online media game changed. The big media corporations began to lose control of the conversation, and people gained the control, we are living in a time the will be remember for the democratization of media.

For the last few years along with some of the folks who we the core team building Advertising.com (now part of AOL) we started a company called Lotame, that took advantage of the vast and valuable amount of data that was being generated by users. The amount data is so vast that Andreas Weigend published a statement on the Harvard Business Blog that “In 2009, more data will be generated by individuals than in the entire history of mankind through 2008.” This data becomes a very powerful tool when placed in the hands of marketers, allowing them to reach the most desirable portions of an audience, with marketing messages that are relevant and personalized to them. Marketing Kismet some might call it.

It is really a remarkable time with so much self expression. Equally as important, there has never been so much technological development of  “easy to use tools” for anyone to add their own voice (just look at this blog as proof, I can barely turn on a computer)

I don’t pretend to know everything. I am still a student and still look on in awe at what the internet community comes up with on daily basis. The rate of change and evolution is quickening. Maybe this blog, and writings will help you (and I) understand what the marketing possibilities are within this evolution.

If there are ever any questions, issues, or topics that you feel should be explored & discussed, please feel free to let me know.

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