Leadership

Lunchtime Links: When It’s OK to Keep Your Head in the Sand

Why knowing everything about the business you're entering isn't always a good idea. Also: how an electronic musician's app could inspire your next light show.

You may be entering a new market, but sometimes it helps to leave the market research for later.

That and more in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Ignorance is bliss. No, really: Trying to take your association’s business in a new direction? Sometimes it helps not to know everything about it, Inc.’s Eric V. Holtzclaw argues. How’s that? Well, with less research, you can bring fresh eyes to a problem. “If you have no experience in a space, you create new approaches to a problem that others might not have considered,” he writes. “You may bring something from another industry or experience to your current situation that is more appropriate.” Does that sound counterintuitive or like it makes sense?

Indie inspiration: For a big, communal, colorful moment at your next annual meeting, check out what experimental electronic musician Dan Deacon has been doing at his shows lately. Deacon, working with members of his Wham City art collective, created iPhone and Android apps that flash lights on a user’s screen based on the music being played. With hundreds of phones in a dark room, the effect can be pretty stunning, as shown above on his recent Jimmy Kimmel Live appearance. The musician tried it on a recent tour, and after the tour’s success, the art collective recently launched a version tailored for outside events. (The Catalyst Conference, a multicity religious conference targeted at young adults, has already taken advantage of it.) If you’re looking for a light show that gets the audience involved, you might want to try this.

How much do those ads cost? What kind of budget would you need to buy those big-scale online media ads? An article in Digiday spells it out, noting companies can find themselves paying $450,000 for a takeover of the Yahoo! homepage, $100,000 for a set of five sponsored articles on Buzzfeed, or $125,000 for a branded mobile app. But this comes with a caveat. One ad buyer told Digiday‘s Jack Marshall that “rate cards are a bit of a sham in digital. No one pays the going rate for anything, and sellers try to make every agency believe they have the lowest rate, and that they’re the smartest, most strategic and a pleasure to work with.” Does your online magazine’s ad rate card sound anywhere close to this?

What are you reading today? Tell us about it in the comments.

(iStockphoto/Thinkstock)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a senior editor for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. MORE

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