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Last week JMC Brands sent our President and Production Team Lead to the #iabmixx in New York City. They came back revved up and excited for a variety of reasons. One of those reasons was the tchotchke and swag. Every corner was packed with big businesses tattooing their name on cheap handouts as a method of advertising (something that no doubt came out of their marketing budget, but that’s another article). While it was cool seeing them come back with some USB’s and notebooks, their take-away was even more exciting. But, before I get to the exciting piece, I need to share with you the presentation given by Andrew Bosworth, Facebook, VP Engineering.

Boz_iabBoz, as he is cleverly referred to on Twitter (where characters count), shared some insights into some company failures and successes. He talked about Eskimo whalers and Kodak. Both of these companies were the big business of their time. Whalers sold heat and light which was made from whale oil; Kodak sold film and cameras. Both business did well for a time, but in contrast, both companies failed to identify what made them successful. For the whalers, it wasn’t their ability to produce heat, it was an oil no one else had. For Kodak, it wasn’t the film they were profiting on, it was the memories. Both companies are dynamic case studies in what happens when opportunities are missed. Or, as Boz eloquently stated, when you fail to recognize what you are selling.

As Boswroth spoke, you could tell there was a passion and a history that was more personal than just a professional insider, and rightfully so. It was only about four years ago when the CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, asked Andrew to make money from mobile ads. Four years ago, the thought of using cell phones to make money was crazy. As near as one year ago, the whole transition became the subject of a feature article. Bosworth recalls at that time he, “knew almost nothing about the ad business”, and he wasn’t interested. But there was a piece of him who liked a challenge—much of that was Zuckerberg persuasion. The point is, he did it, and he did it in a way which revolutionized ads.

“Facebook doesn’t treat ads as a separate thing. It treats them as just one more piece of information people want to see.” – Andrew Bosworth, Facebook, VP Engineering

Even amateurs to marketing have the ability to recognize Facebook does ads a little differently. Where others are placing ads, Facebook is boosting posts. Where others are linking gifs, Facebook is rolling out carousels. It’s the same data which a new technique, a new way to find, target, and reach the same audience. And guess what…it’s working. Mobile devices really are driving up sales on Facebook.

What does that mean for you?

Great question. It goes back to the whalers and Kodak; it goes back to where we first introduced you to Bosworth. It means that we can learn from big companies that came before us. Boz said it right at iabmixx when he said,
“retrospect is an incredibly privileged position from which to judge…it’s never easy to see the future coming…but for those of us in 2016, we have no such excuse. Mobile is a piece of the future.”

charityWhen I began this article, I began by sharing the excitement of the JMC Brands leadership as they returned from rubbing elbows with industry leaders like Bosworth. But it wasn’t what they learned that excited them, it was what they knew. Speaker after speaker, break-out session after break-out session, all emphasized the importance of integrating the latest trends—doing what JMC Brands has been doing. We are marketers who help marketers…it’s our company philosophy. I say that because I’m proud of this company, the small and humble roots, their support of veterans and charities and families. But I also say that because we are here to help—not in a give us your money way, but in a ‘your success is good for both of us’ way.


Are you using mobile to increase your sales? Shout out your success below, let us celebrate you. Are you afraid of missing the mobile boat? Let us get you started—it really is that important.