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IAB Innovation Days: Everything is a screen these days

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New York—Marketing integration seems to mean one thing these days to Randall Rothenberg, president-CEO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau: “Everything is a screen,” Rothenberg said, kicking off IAB's third annual Innovations Days conference here today and stressing the convergence of media channels via a variety of mobile devices. “I can watch TV on a tablet, get the Internet on a camera and take pictures with a phone. And when we have flexible digital paper, magazines will be a screen, too,” Rothenberg said, at the conference, which was subtitled “Screens to the Nth Power.” “How all these screens come together represents a new opportunity for marketers, and challenges to all of us working in the media market ecosystem.” Rothenberg explored these and other issues with Kimberly Kadlec, worldwide VP-global marketing group at Johnson & Johnson. “We are challenged to take customer insights and turn them into actionable marketing messages across many formats and screens,” Kadlec said. “And it's a question of doing it to add value ... while also being less disruptive and more instructive.” Kadlec said that, in both its consumer and b-to-b marketing outreaches, Johnson & Johnson, is striving to move from “a reach-and-frequency mindset to a reach-and-relationship mindset.” “We recognize the marketing notion of storytelling, but that still keeps us in charge of the beginning, middle and end of the story,” she said. “That needs to change; we need to spend more time listening.” Kadlec said the company also is working on solving the big data challenge, not only through technology but also in the hiring of top talent. The challenge here, she said, is “in incentivizing behavior in senior management that attracts digital natives to help grow our business.” At its conference, IAB also debuted a certification program for sales reps. The IAB Digital Media Sales Certification will feature exams administered by testing and education company Pearson, intended to develop greater sales professionalism in the digital field, according to IAB. The exam will cover the “digital advertising ecosystem, selling digital media and analyzing campaign performance,” IAB said. “While we're starting this program for sales pros, we have expectations that it will soon extend into complementary fields,” Rothenberg said. “We want to use the collective knowledge of IAB members to develop a body of knowledge and define levels of expertise.” Registration for the first testing cycle, which begins June 11, is at www.iab.net/certification.
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