Annual 2015: The best of Dr Mumbo

annual2015 (1)It’s been another year of glorious misfires and odd moments in the media and marketing industries. As ever Dr Mumbo was there to cast an eye over them all. Here’s ten of his best from 2015.

Zoo Weekly goes out in a blaze of glory – and a raised middle finger to its critics

RIP ZooBauer Media’s now defunct lads mag Zoo Weekly has gone out with a bang, a fortnight after the publisher announced the closure of the struggling title.

The cover features a raised middle finger. Inside, editor Shayne Bugden tells readers: “It’s for all the shouty killjoys who’ve spent years telling us – and you – that we’re horrible people because we like beautiful women and taking the piss out of just about anything.”

In the note, headlined “From the bloke who ruined Zoo”, he added: “I feel like the Tony Abbott of magazine publishing: a bloke who got a top job and f**ked it up before so much as three years had gone by.”

Network Ten star gets legless

Ten has been busy promoting its 2016 program slate today in the wake of its 2016 Upfronts.

However, a number of social media users have been noting that there’s something very wrong with this Network Ten publicity photo:

Matt Preston

Masterchef judge Matt Preston appears to have lost his legs in the photo, which Dr Mumbo can only assume was down to photoshop.

Ice kills Grant Denyer

It appears that 90s rapper turned reality show star Vanilla Ice is actually a fan of Australian Family Feud.

However, Dr Mumbo can’t help but feel his interest might be slightly narcissistic, as the link he pushed out was actually a video of pocket-sized host Grant Denyer freestyling a verse of his hit Ice Ice Baby.

grant denyer vanilla ice tweet

And it’s fair to say Denyer was pretty cool about it when he found out…Not.

Mia, do you sometimes feel like you’re running out of things to be outraged about?

Dr Mumbo has never quite understood why certain elements of the digital world feel so strongly about Mamamia founder Mia Freedman.

Nonetheless her grilling by Tom Gleeson’s on ABC’s The Weekly last night was something to behold.

The question: “Do you ever click on your own clickbait and think: ‘Why am I reading this shit?’” is a toughie.

The shorter the better

Shadow transport minister Anthony Albanese clearly doesn’t like the chairman of Sydney airport.

When the news that Max Moore-Wilton (aka “Max the axe”) was stepping down the former deputy PM issued the following media release:


Fairfax’s Melbourne Cup Sweepstake is fit for the knackers yard

Spot the balls up: Fairfax's Melbourne Cup guide

Spot the balls up: Fairfax’s Melbourne Cup guide

There are some things in Australia you just don’t mess up – and the sweepstake on the day of the Melbourne Cup is one of them.

Which is why there will probably be a stewards inquiry at Fairfax this morning as to how Max Presnell’s Melbourne Cup Sweep guide ended up being quite so lame.

Especially given it’s the one day of the year almost everyone takes an interest in the gee gees and publishers can expect a spike in sales.

While the form guide lists all the runners correctly, the tear-out part used in sweepstakes has two of the runners missing, two repeated and three with the wrong numbers.

Fairfax’s guide of who to poach from the Australian Financial Review

Ever wondered who the most read journalists on the Australian Financial Review’s website are?

Well wonder no more – thanks to an administrative bungle this table charting “Top authors by subscriber pageviews”, which was only meant to be shared with senior editors, was shared with all staff, and subsequently with Dr Mumbo via the back of a truck.

Top 25 journos

The worst PR moves in history

Locum Christmas cardWhile Dr Mumbo is not a fan of the lazy stealing of content from the Reddit hive mind, he can’t go past a recent thread on the worst PR moves in history.

You can see all 14,506 contributions in their full glory here.

And from that list, Dr Mumbo has selected some of his favourites:

1. The time the manufacturer of gasoline additive tetraethyl lead, Thomas Midgley Jnr, inhaled it at a press conference to prove it was safe – and was later diagnosed with lead poisoning which killed him

Woolies’ best apologies

Today’s furore around Woolworths’ Anzac Day campaign is not the first time the supermarket giant has been forced to issue an apology for a marketing mishap.

Here are four of Dr Mumbo’s favourites:

1. The time they patronised their followers with a very taxing Facebook quiz…

everyday rewards facebook

Finally – a secret club for businessmen who fear women flirting with them

Dr Mumbo was delighted to receive a piece of targeted Facebook advertising today from a new Sydney business networking group of which he had been previously unaware “Man Business – Man style events for business men”.man business women

Run at Village Coworking in North Sydney (who are also the registered owner of the URL), the group is quite something. As Man Business explains itself on Facebook:

“We are humble men, we find women flirting with us at networking events to get our business uncomfortable and a conflict with our values. We enjoy hanging out with other guys without the distraction of flirting women who blur lines between business and social. Guys just get it and make it easy to do”.

The post Annual 2015: The best of Dr Mumbo appeared first on mUmBRELLA.


Top Citi media analyst Justin Diddams to depart

Diddams departing Citigroup.

Diddams departing Citigroup.

One of Australia’s most respected media analysts Justin Diddams is to depart his role with Citi Bank.

The Australian Financial Review’s Street Talk column reports Diddams, who has been with the bank since 2010 will take some time off before pursuing a new venture in 2016.

Diddams is well regarded across the industry and advises clients including the REA Group and Network Ten.

Among this notes this year from Diddams was one of the most extensive analyses of the video streaming market which predicted Australia’s major TV networks will lose around 10 per cent of consumer viewing time in the next three years to streaming services, with Netflix projected to have 2.5m local users by 2018.

He did not respond to requests for comment.

The post Top Citi media analyst Justin Diddams to depart appeared first on mUmBRELLA.

How Your Keyword Strategy is Failing You (And How to Fix It)

One day very soon, we’re all going to stop worrying about “keywords”.

And then we can all rejoice.






But until that happens, whenever “SEO” comes up, the next phrase muttered usually involves “keywords” and “rankings”.

This unhealthy obsession with “keyword + rankings” (that was a search operator joke) has long been misleading.

Historically, keywords gave us a fairly reliable way to measure progress in the otherwise abstract and confusing world of SEO. (Not to mention, the very real danger of cheap SEO providers.)

The problem is that today, keyword rankings are basically useless. Which means the way we’ve traditionally optimized and measured for them is basically useless as well.

Here’s why.

Why Your 2005 Keyword Strategy Doesn’t Work in 2015

Rightfully (or wrongfully), keyword rankings have been SEO KPI #1 for over a decade.

And back in the day, this made sense.

Search engines were more-or-less one dimensional, which made SEO a very straightforward process. Everyone, no matter who you were or where in the world you were searching from, would largely see the same exact search engine result pages (SERPs) when looking for a specific keyword.

In this environment, keyword rankings (as a metric) were very simple, reliable, and (I can’t believe I’m going to say this when referencing Google) transparent.

On top of that, analytics programs freely passed keyword referral data back to webmasters. Meaning you could see exactly which terms people used to arrive at your site.

By matching keyword positions or rankings with the referral data you were seeing in analytics, you could easily see the $money keywords – or which ones were driving success (in terms of traffic and conversions).

Unfortunately, none of this is true anymore.

So good thing you scanned over the last ~165 words anyway. 🙂

Something About Personalization

Today, everyone’s search engine result pages (SERPs) are being personalized based on your:

  1. Past browsing history
  2. Physical location
  3. Social media connections

Just to name a few. :/

That means the keyword rankings you’re seeing, instead of being static and universal like the good-ol-days, are completely personalized to you as an individual.

For example, look up a traditionally head (or super popular) keyphrase like, “Pizza” and you now get this:




Modern SERP’s pull from a variety of different sources (here you’ll see the huge prevalence and opportunity of local search emphasized), with traditional “organic” results pushed off a bit.

(This also means the role of “SEO” has evolved to include influential satellites like AdWords and Yelp. But that’s a topic for another day.)

The concept of keywords having one specific rank, and then benchmarking efforts against it, is today at best worthless, and at worst misleading.

But wait, there’s more!

Dude, Where’s My Keywords?

The second part of the keyword ranking equation was using referral data from your analytics to see how and where people are coming from.

With this info, then you could at least get an idea of (a) how people are looking for you and (b) how to use that information to do a better job of optimizing your site.

So even if keyword rankings are losing value, this referral data was extremely helpful in giving you clues to influential topics and keyphrases.

Now, SEO encompasses much more than just Google Search. Hoooooweeevverrr… Google Search is a virtual monopoly, meaning they can pretty much do whatever they’d like. Starting with, taking away almost all keyword referral data that gets passed to webmasters and site owners.

A few years ago, they moved to make all searches secure (except for ad clicks). Now in your analytics program, where you used to see the specific keywords sending you traffic under “organic”, you now see a [not provided] placeholder that accounts for the majority (~70-90%).

That means you can no longer see what keywords are sending you traffic from organic search….

… due to “privacy reasons”…

… but you can, however, pay them for it via AdWords.

How ironic. And convenient.

Keyphrases are still very important. Trouble is, we now have to infer or assume what keyphrases are popular and how to best optimize with huge gaps in verifiable data (and you know what they say about when you assume).

One of the easiest ways, is to simply alter our strategy a bit and focus on what we can control (our website) instead of what we can’t (keyword rankings).

The Simple Change to Update Your Strategy

If (a) keyword rankings are unreliable, and (b) keyword referral data is nonexistent, then… something needs to give.

Going forward, it’s easier to shift focus away from keywords (directly), to the performance of your landing and content pages instead (so you can indirectly assess topic performance).

Then reverse-engineer success based on topic – i.e. a broad set of long-tail keyphrases – instead of only one specific keyphrase. It’s messy, but practically easier (unless you’re interested in getting your PhD in SEO and analytics).

For example, one simple way is to take a look at your most popular content in Google Analytics from organic search:




Then cross-reference this information with some (remaining) query data in Google’s Search Console (formerly Webmaster Tools):




And you can kinda get an idea of the long-tail keyphrases sending this page traffic (along with some position-related info – but let’s not over-emphasize this now, shall we?).

You can also use some paid tools, like Moz, to help track a certain number of keyphrases against specific landing pages:




In a way, this backwards process should actually benefit you by ensuring extra attention-to-detail when strategizing the information architecture of a site’s pages (and their respective keyphrases) in the first place.

The Holistic Future of Search Optimization

In today’s dynamic marketing landscape, SEO isn’t “SEO”.

Instead, SEO now takes a multi-faceted approach where you’re involving different disciplines (i.e. content, email, advertising, social), building a brand (i.e. investing in intangibles, not just conversions), and competing on multiple fronts (i.e. paid search positions, review & aggregation sites like Yelp, TripAdvisor, beefing up your local listings, and more) – all at the same time.

Needless to say, this requires a lot of time, man (or woman – can’t accuse me of discrimination!) power, and sufficient investment.

The days of competing solely on (and overprioritizing) SEO are numbered.

But that’s not to say it’s any less important. In fact, search is only becoming more important and more influential in the buying process of customers.

Finding what you’re specifically looking for will always be priority #1 online. And that means search will be omnipresent and omnipotent because it’s so valuable (and profitable).

The trick will be to remain holistic and nimble as trends and platforms evolve.

About the Author: Brad Smith is the author of a BS-free SEO guide that shows you how to fix common mistakes while avoiding algorithm chasing. He’s a founding partner at Codeless Interactive, a digital marketing firm digital agency specializing in creating personalized customer experiences.

ABC News 24 boss Gaven Morris named ABC director of news replacing Kate Torney


The ABC has named Gaven Morris to replace Kate Torney as its director of news.

The move sees Morris take the reins of the public broadcaster’s 1,400 staff strong news division at a time when the broadcaster is in the process of looking for a replacement for managing director Mark Scott who is set to depart next year.

Morris, who has headed the ABC’s News 24 channel for the last three years, will take the role of director while head of news gathering Craig McMurtrie has also been named to the new role deputy director of ABC News.



ABC managing director Mark Scott welcomed the appointments, which came after a long and closely watched recruitment process.

“The ABC is the nation’s most trusted news gathering organisation and I am confident that in appointing Gaven and Craig it remains in reliable hands,” said Scott.

“Gaven comes to this role with a strong record in managing the complexity of large news rooms and, in particular, building news brands such as ABC News 24. He is well positioned to lead ABC News into its next chapter.”

Morris said that he was “pleased to be asked to lead ABC News’ team of dedicated staff and to serve the community by providing all Australians with an outstanding independent news service.

“In a changing media landscape, original and distinctive journalism is more important than ever. Craig and I look forward to leading the team.”

Before joining the ABC Morris previously work at Al Jazeera, CNN and Ten.

McMurtrie is an ABC veteran and was previously North American bureau chief and before that Canberra political editor.

Torney announced she would depart back in July to take up the role of CEO of the State Library of Victoria.

Nic Christensen 

The post ABC News 24 boss Gaven Morris named ABC director of news replacing Kate Torney appeared first on mUmBRELLA.

News Corp aims for five per cent circulation boost ‘ultimate family movie’ DVD offer

News Corp Australia are giving away a collection of DVDs for just $2.50 a copy in an effort to boost the circulation of its metro and regional newspapers.

Launching this weekend, readers are able to collect a different DVD of the Ultimate Family Movie Collection for 14 days with the purchase of any of News Corp’s metro and regional mastheads.

Nick Turner, head of retail marketing and media at News Corp, told Mumbrella: “Our number one objective is driving incremental circulation during that promotional period. We look for around 5+ per cent uplift during the three week period.


“We also look to drive engagement through our Rewards. We offer these deals to our subscribers at a good rate and it’s a good benefit for the loyalty of those people.”

The push is supported with a marketing campaign, created by Archibald Williams, running across TV, social media supported with a PR push.

The TV ad sees two kids treating their parents to an at home cinema experience, complete with $25 popcorn, to watch one of the DVDs.

It is complemented by the PR campaign which features 17-year-old New York Jackson Murphy, the youngest professional film critic in the US who won an Emmy Award for his work when he was 11. He created a video review of each of the 14 movies for News Corp’s masthead website.

This retail push is the sixth of its kind, with Turner saying the more detail and research News Corp is pulling out of the campaign results suggests they are driving frequency of purchase.

“Our big opportunity is not to try and get the older demographic to buy more than six papers a week, our opportunity is to get the families with kids who are only buying two to three newspapers a week, to come into the category more often,” Turner said.

Turner explained the family demographic is “over-indexed” in buying newspapers over the weekend however the habit doesn’t extend into the rest of the week.

“They still enjoy the physical experience of a paper but they might not have the time or the habit or behaviour of doing it. That is what we want to try and encourage, getting them back in the habit of engaging every day,” he said.

“What we do is get them in the seven-14 days picking up the product and engaging with it.”

Participating newspapers are:

  • The Daily and Sunday Telegraph
  • Herald Sun and Sunday Herald Sun
  • The Courier-Mail and The Sunday Mail
  • The Advertiser and Sunday Mail
  • Mercury and Sunday Tasmanian
  • NT News and Sunday Territorian
  • The Sunday Times (WA)
  • Gold Coast Bulletin
  • Townsville Bulletin
  • The Cairns Post
  • Geelong Advertiser

Miranda Ward

The post News Corp aims for five per cent circulation boost ‘ultimate family movie’ DVD offer appeared first on mUmBRELLA.

Elle deputy editor admits to nerves around its mirror cover treatment for latest edition

0008739_elle-australia_220Bauer Media’s fashion magazine Elle has ditched the typical celebrity cover for a mirrored treatment that allows the reader to see themselves as the cover model to complement the magazine’s feature celebrating the diversity of women.

Speaking to Mumbrella, Elle deputy editor Damien Woolnough admitted the magazine did have some nerves around the cover treatment, and consulted with outside cover advertiser Chanel before committing to it.

“You don’t also want to be tokenistic in any way and we’ve had quite a diverse selection of covers in our time on stands,” he said when asked why they didn’t use a range of diverse women on the cover instead.

“We’ve had an indigenous cover person with Jessica Mauboy, we’ve had diversity of shapes and ages and ethnicity with [fashion blogger and influencer] Nicole Warne and backgrounds.

“We feel the Elle covers are always quite diverse but I’m not going to pretend there weren’t nerves,” he added.

220px-Time_youcover01It is not the first time a magazine has done a cover like this, with Time Magazine chosing “You” as its 2006 person of the year. The cover of the magazine featured an iMac computer monitor with a reflective pane appearing as the window of a YouTube-like video player.

The magazine’s We are Women feature showcases 47 women and girls aged from one-month through to one-century and features the likes of Lisa Wilkinson, Julie Bishop, Margaret Pomeranz and Chrissie Swan. Readers can also contribute to the ‘We Are Women’ gallery by submitting their own headshot online.

Woolnough said the magazine was confident it has already made itself “represent diversity with our past cover selections” but the nerves were still there and saw the magazine work closely with its advertisers to “make sure they were on board with what we were doing”.


“In particular we consulted with Chanel who occupy the outside cover of this issue to make sure they feel comfortable with what we’re doing. We’ve had incredible support,” he said.

Woolnough said the cover was “the best way of reflecting the diversity of Australian women”.

“Of course as publishers we are all looking for new ways of engagement and we thought this was an innovative way of engaging our audience and because of the feature, which we think is quite important, it came off as a meaningful engagement rather than just a gimmick,” he said.

Woolnough said the magazine was confident it has already made itself “represent diversity with our past cover selections”.

In terms of the risk of turning off potential buyers by the lack of a well-known face, Woolnough was hopeful buyers would “see something different amongst the sea of Jennifer Aniston’s and Blake Lively’s and that hopefully that will be enough to catch their attention.”

“It’s also a matter of timing, this has come off the back of a very traditional cover with Jen Hawkins in September, which performed exceptionally well for us, so that gave us a bit of permission to experiment as well,” he added.

Woolnough said in light of print magazines posting circulation declines, with Elle magazine seeing its circulation dip by 0.30 per cent according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulation figures, it is important to be innovative.

“It’s incredibly important to look at new ways of engagement across all our media, a lot of people have been focusing on how they do that digitally and through social media,” he said.

“Print is at the heart of Elle and we wanted to do something innovative with print on this occasion and it’s great that people have noticed.”

Miranda Ward

The post Elle deputy editor admits to nerves around its mirror cover treatment for latest edition appeared first on mUmBRELLA.

How to Build a Periscope Audience for Your Business


Are you marketing on Periscope? Want to reach more people? You can develop a following on Periscope by promoting your broadcasts, engaging with viewers and repurposing your content on other channels. In this article you’ll discover how to build a Periscope audience for your business. #1: Cross-Promote Broadcasts While content is ultimately king, think about how you can attract […]


This post How to Build a Periscope Audience for Your Business first appeared on Social Media Examiner.


Social Media Examiner – Your Guide to the Social Media Jungle


Chemist Warehouse pull ‘Smell like a sir’ ad after ruling against pipe-smoking character

The ad watchdog has upheld a complaint made against the ‘Smell like a Sir’ Father’s Day campaign from Chemist Warehouse, forcing the discount chain to pull all advertising that featured a man holding a pipe.

The Ad Standards Bureau (ASB) received a complaint about the advertisement of tobacco smoking on TV, as well as a child being used in the promotion, which prompted the inquiry.

A man is seen dressed as a character from British yesteryear, complete with moustache, bow tie, monocle and pipe. He is accompanied by a child who wears similar attire, however without the pipe.

Chemist Warehouse at first dismissed the claims, arguing the complaint “so fatuous and unfounded” they took no action to respond to the ASB.

After repeated attempts to get a response, the company hit back, arguing that the character presented is a stereotypical representation of a British ‘sir’ and is humorous, not aspirational or desirable. The company stated: “The character displayed is more Charlie Chaplin than Charlie Sheen.”

“The entire advertisement is a light hearted satirical look at those clichéd representations of British nobility. No reasonable viewing of this advertisement by any reasonable reader would result in them concluding that we were in any way endeavouring to promote pipe smoking as a desirable and sophisticated habit. On the contrary having the pipe appear in his parody of nobility somewhat diminishes any perceived sophistication of the habit.”

The Board considered the characterisation and found the ad sent a message to the audience glamorising smoking as a sophisticated activity. They also noted that while the pipe was a prop, using smoking paraphernalia next to a child should not be encouraged.

As a result, the Board upheld the complaint and forced Chemist Warehouse to remove all advertising reflecting the ‘Smell like a sir’ message.

In response to the findings, Chemist Warehouse said: “We thank the Board for its determination and confirm that in light of your findings we will no longer be using the offending advertising material. It has been withdrawn.”

Danielle Sen

The post Chemist Warehouse pull ‘Smell like a sir’ ad after ruling against pipe-smoking character appeared first on mUmBRELLA.

Don’t become the next Ashley Madison, firms are warned amid ongoing CMO, CIO unease

Dane-234x127The data breach crisis engulfing extramarital affairs website Ashley Madison is a stark lesson in the failure of a chief marketing officer and chief information officer to communicate, a conference in Singapore has heard.

Senior Forrester Research executive, Dane Anderson, said too many CMOs and CIOs still have contrasting objectives when they should be working hand in hand.

Mumbrella Asia reports Anderson also warned the failure to collaborate risks undermining businesses as they strive to become more digitally astute.

Anderson cited Ashley Madison as having “slick marketing” but said the apparent absence of communication between the CMO and CIO ultimately led to the security breach which saw the site hacked and the details of 37m customers stolen.

“There was a focus on marketing, and they had slick marketing….but they have not maintained the privacy and security of customers and it is likely to sink them,” he told delegates. “It is an example of when the two sides don’t talk and an example of when marketing and strategy is not enough.”

Anderson said research has found 50 per cent of CMOs and CIOs still follow separate agendas, when they should be bringing their respective skills to developing what he descrbed as a “business technology strategy”.

“Unfortunately, for many organisations this relationship is strained,” he said.

Anderson described the CMO as the “brand champion” who should bring their customer expertise and knowledge to the table, while the CIO should bring their skills in generating growth and profit and their deep understanding of technology and data.

He told the conference that investment in technology should shift from internal IT systems to “business technology that will help the CMO and CIO succeed in the age of the customer”.

A business technology agenda was about “systems, processes and technology which help win, serve and retain the customer”, he said.

But Anderson, Forrester’s president, research director and regional manager, said too few firms have a digital business strategy – even though they think they do.

Neither do firms truly understand the customer, he said.

“Time and time again, with the research that we do, we’re finding companies are letting themselves off the hook too quickly,” he said.

To read the full piece please click through to Mumbrella Asia.

Steve Jones


The post Don’t become the next Ashley Madison, firms are warned amid ongoing CMO, CIO unease appeared first on mUmBRELLA.