Did Media & Marketing Factor Into The Mortgage Mess?

Yes it did.  I mention this because I have had interesting conversations with Wall Streeters lately about the mortgage mess and the financial meltdown.  I have asserted that media and marketing played an important role in the disaster,  as the promotional engine the financial sector used to entice people to take out loans they couldn’t repay.  My point?  Financial institutions aggressively marketed interest-only loans,  HELOCs, negative amortizing loans and the like.  I bring this up when my Wall Street friends complain that (i) politicians coerced the banks to extend the “dream of home ownership” to people of questionable means and (ii)  consumers themselves were to blame for signing loans that they could never repay.  At the end of the day we are BOTH right.  Banks did aggressively market toxic loans,  but it was to some degree a response to Washington pushing them to provide sub-prime mortgages to millions of under qualified Americans.  And yes …consumers were all too happy to take the money being offered.

The tough thing is this:  many parties WERE guilty in creating the bubble.  We can agree on that.  But Wall Street is back in the black and Main Street is still hurting.  Bonuses on the Street soared in 2009.  Some say they will be high again in 2010.  And yet people living and working on Main Street are another year into the deepest recession in decades.  Ask a small or medium size business owner you know — sales are soft and way off of where they were pre-recession.  Ask someone who has been out of work for a year or more.  I’m sure some of them would love to be able to borrow money from the Fed Funds window at 0% and then buy Treasuries and make an automatic, guaranteed profit.  Like the big banks do.

We can’t blame Wall Street 100% for the mess.  But there are those who find it hard to watch Wall Street making the big money again.  And media and marketing?  It factored in only as a tactic,  a part of the larger dynamic that was played out from 1993-2008.

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About samkimball

We are living in a transitional period where the Internet, now established, is going through adolescence. No longer the new kid on the block, the web is now central to the world of media and marketing. And yet traditional media, though in decline, is still important. It still reaches and influences many millions of consumers. Those who succeed in Marketing 2.0 will skillfully combine digital with traditional. There’s a lot of game yet to be played… About Me I am a veteran of the digital media world and have also spent time working for traditional media giants. In 1999 I left BMG Entertainment and joined a web startup called NextAudio.com. One of the original developers of Internet-delivered, personalized radio. From there I did stints as Director of New Media at Clear Channel and VP, Strategic Sales at Internet Broadcasting/NBC Television. In 2006, after 4 years as head of Business Development at Emmis Communications in New York (where I tripled the sponsorship business), I spun off the company’s concert and event division into Marquee Concerts. 6 years later Marquee is a leading regional player in the concert industry, producing 70 events per year. I now head up the Advertising and Brand Sales business at Livestream, the market leader for real time event coverage. With simple to use technology, our platform allows anyone to broadcast live to the web, as well as being the top destination for live content from around the world. Our content partners include Facebook, The New York Times, ABC News, CBS News, Associated Press, HBO, AT&T, PepsiCo, Electronic Arts, Adidas, The Academy Awards, Warner Bros. Records, Paramount Pictures. Livestream operates with over 120 full-time staff members in 4 offices—in New York, Los Angeles, Bangalore, and the Ukraine. The service is available for free (advertising-supported) or as a feature-rich, monetizable, premium subscription for business. The New Livestream (in beta as of Oct. 27, 2011) is an innovative new platform, that combines live event coverage with real-time photos, text, and video clip updates posted using web browsers or mobile devices. The technology supports live blogging, live and on-demand video, and real-time posting tools. CONTACT 917-543-2369 LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/samkimball Twitter: http://twitter.com/SamKimball
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