You can't call yourself a new media advertiser if you're not hip to the jive, and ad:tech is a great place to brush up on this crucial skill-set.
But it can be tough to keep up. With that, I give you the 2007 edition of the Official ad:tech New York Ad-Jive Dictionary. Use this knowledge well, and you're sure to be the life of the break room.
Better still, you'll confirm your CEO's conviction that burning $5K to send you to an ad conference was a very intelligent idea.
Agnostic. adj. Connotation: positive. Used in reference to an application that plays nicely on any OS or browser, or in reference to a marketing campaign theme flexible enough to perform on any media platform. The Hulu video player is browser agnostic, and thank heavens, because I will kill somebody if I have to download IE7.
It can also be used as a verb, allowing for some mental play between Ajax as it is referred to here, and Ajax the household cleaning product. We need to Ajax the forums. Nobody's going to stick around if they have to refresh during a burn war.
CGA. n. "Consumer-generated advertising." See CGM.
CGM. n. Connotation: hysterical, particularly at ad:tech. "Consumer-generated marketing." Refers to "amateurs" (read: non-advertisers) building brand messages, for subversive, evangelical or monetary reasons. Dude, forget about hiring the agency. Why don't we just launch a CGM contest and give away an iPod? I think my cousin has a camera at home.
Collaboration. n. Connotation: euphemistic. The dreamy thing vendors say will happen between marketers and consumers, or between IT and upper management, when their "online solution" includes a messaging feature, a Twitter function or a news feed. State-of-the-art digital technology encourages seamless real-time collaboration between the enterprise and the end user.
Dovetail. v. Connotation: euphemistic. Used when small companies get absorbed or otherwise hopelessly eclipsed by a larger entity. Paths between Wee Guppie, LLC and Big-Ass Sharks, Conglomerated began to dovetail in '03; a collaboration was the next logical step.
Iconistan. n. Connotation: negative. Coined by Sphere CEO Tony Conrad, it refers to the untidy collection of icons, usually found at the bottom of a blog post or article, that enable readers to disseminate the post on a social news medium like Digg or Newsvine.
We see less of this clutter now because social news leaders, such as Digg and Reddit, have emerged in the field. As a result, "Iconistan" has fallen into antiquity -- which is too bad, because it was strangely charming. Dude, your blog looks like a virtual Iconistan. Why don't you delete all that crap? Nobody ever Diggs you anyway.
Intermediate marketers. n. Connotation: nebulous - probably negative. Hails from the dust jacket of a marketing strategy book called The Eyes Have It: How to Market in an Age of Divergent Consumers, Media Chaos and Advertising Anarchy.
The precise meaning of the label remains unclear. Based on its original context, where it was paired with a less nebulous demo, "Advanced digital marketers in the C-level suite," we can assume it is at least slightly pejorative. That shit looks like Crayon on cardboard. Clearly it was disseminated by an intermediate marketer.
Meatball sundae. n. Connotation: negative, but using the expression will reflect positively on the user because it is still fresh. Coined by Seth Godin for his heavily-promoted publication of the same name. Refers to what happens when you put together two great ideas (like meatballs and ice cream) that produce something unfortunate. Rich media ads on a widget? I don't know, Rick. We don't want a meatball sundae on our hands.
The expression may unseat last year's book-title-cum-buzzword, "the tipping point."
New media. n. Connotation: positive. Refers to any number of the socially "democratizing" applications or services -- usually ad-supported or AJAX-heavy -- that have appeared on old media (the online and mobile platforms) over the last several years, bringing said media back into vogue.
Platform. n. Connotation: neutral. May refer to the means by which content is delivered (e.g. the mobile platform), the technology on which applications are built (Google's open source mobile platform), or any other foundation -- figurative or literal -- upon which something else can be built. The platform of Lisa's sanity was piled high with new jargon.
In the tech realm, "solution" and "offering" can be used interchangeably with "platform" when referring to a new means by which advertising or other content can be conveyed. Jerry thinks Facebook's Social Ads solution is the ultimate collaborative platform for advertisers and consumers.
Social advertising, Social seeding, user marketing. n. Connotation: positive or used in jest, depending on who you're talking to (a client versus a colleague, respectively). Refers to astroturf WOM: When advertisers and marketers attempt to harness word of mouth as an ad campaign in and of itself. Attempts to generate inorganic WOM have very rarely worked, and backlash can be uncomfortable. Jesus created a resonant dialogue after implementing an aggressive social seeding approach.
UGC. n. "User-generated content." See CGA.
UGR. n. "User-generated revolution." See UGC.
Viral. adj. Connotation: positive. Refers to when an effort, usually online video-based, gets passed from user to user until the offering becomes part of a larger cultural discourse.
A unit cannot "go viral" until after this has occurred. Marketers that call freshly-released efforts "viral" commit a serious faux-pas in this regard. Did you see that Hitler viral where he's all pissed-off about his Xbox gaming score? You have to. I'll send it to you.
Wikinomicon (not to be confused with HP Lovecraft's The Necronomicon). n. Connotation: expected to weigh in as "positive" when more people know what it means. Refers to the mindset that new communications technologies are democratizing the creation of value. I'm just here to brush up on my intermediate understanding of the wikinomicon. What? You haven't heard of it? Here, take my card.
The working affluent. n. Connotation: neutral. Refers to members of the labor force bearing a net worth between one million and 9.9 million dollars. It is unclear why there is a cap. One may surmise that if you still come to work after breaching the $10 million mark, you likely suffer from Marie Antoinette syndrome -- which, while admirable to the subject, is loathsome to observers. It has not been determined what percentage of Nalts watchers consist of the working affluent, but a fair estimate is anywhere between five and 90.