Sean X
Summit Alumni

Sean X

VP Acquisition Marketing, Nav

One of my colleagues here gave me a recommendation calling me “darn near legendary in digital marketing.” I don’t know if that’s true, but I do think of myself as a marketing mastermind and agent of change in digital media. I combine technical know-how with creative thinking and a talent for building and leading teams for digital marketing program... more

Sean's Articles Sean's Article Feeds

How advertising ruined publishing

Publishing used to be man's greatest accomplishment -- until advertising came around. Here's how the latter took over.

6 brand spokespeople who need to die

Geico, Progressive, and Skechers all have one thing in common: Their spokespeople need to be replaced. Follow these marketing rules for attaching your brand to the right personality, or discover when it's time to find a new one.

Why Bitcoin is failing

Bitcoin arguably has the potential to transform every aspect of the internet and marketing as we know it. But for that to happen, we have to understand how it works. Here's a closer look.

5 brands that will be dead in 5 years

The health of some major companies is in serious decline. Say your last goodbyes because these brands are on their way out.

6 steps to rebound from an ugly firing

Concerned that a past employer or professional experience will haunt you the rest of your days? Fear not. These steps will get your career -- and life -- back on track.

Awesome ads that saved lame products

We all know that the "sheeple" of the world are easily conned by slick marketing. Here are the insanely brilliant ad campaigns that drove sales for lackluster products.

Why employers are laughing at your resume

You send out your resume again and again, but no one responds. It's almost like potential employers are silently mocking you. Here's why they won't give you the time of day.

4 simple steps to building an infographic

Creating an infographic usually requires sorting through a cornucopia of information and clarifying the essential points. Here's an easier way to build one.

Shady brand tactics that work

Let's be real here. From a numbers standpoint, questionable marketing tactics often work. But is it really worth sacrificing long-term brand health for a short-term revenue spike? You decide.

20 ways to use QR codes correctly

Alone, QR codes are never the answer. Here's how to incorporate them meaningfully into a broader marketing strategy.

How Siri is going to completely change your job

If you think you can ignore something as big as Siri from a company as big as Apple, think again. Here's how to prepare for the coming revolution.

11 agency buzzwords you need to know

The endless supply of agency jargon can leave clients dizzy and disoriented. Here are the most confusing agency buzzwords defined to steady your advertising aim.

How your agency is ripping you off

Intentional or not, there are countless ways your agency is ripping you off, and almost all of them can be avoided. Here are a few pointers that will help you restructure your account and save massive amounts of money.

Why the QR code is failing

The current uses of QR codes are just not cutting it. Find out why these tools aren't working and how they can be redeemed.

Why your viral video never went viral

The most successful viral videos are not the ones that reinforce a brand position. They reinvent it. So if your video isn't turning people into advocates, then it's probably a waste of time. Here's why.

5 more reasons to hate Google

A company doesn't have to be evil to be worthy of hatred. Let's examine traits and practices that give marketers cause for concern over the path that our once-beloved Google has followed.

5 reasons to hate Google

At some point, Google started to believe its own hype; in that moment, it became lost. Consider this evidence that the search giant has officially crossed the line between confidence and arrogance.

3 brands that flunked digital 101

There are brands that benefit from sticking to something that works, and brands that die because they stuck to it too long. Here are examples of brands that failed at Web 2.0 and why.

5 ways you will be defeated by the pitch process

You blew the pitch, and you might have done it before even agreeing to participate. Here's where things went wrong, and how to keep from suffering the same fate next time.

Google highlights "Ad Innovations" at ad:tech

Google's Ad Innovations model doesn't just help advertisers, it helps consumers make navigating the internet more efficient, enabling us to find what we're looking for in the fewest possible clicks.

Optimizing your Facebook Ads campaign

Facebook provides a unique opportunity to connect with your customers. Get up to speed on the company's latest insights designed to help you make the most of your Facebook advertising efforts.

How iAds will revolutionize advertising

The contextual possibilities for iAds are significant, and while it will take some time for the industry to adapt to the new format, the online world has experienced a radical shift. Here's why.

Top marketing innovation killers

Digital marketing has lost its edge, leaving us trapped in a vicious cycle of mediocrity. Take a look at these top barriers to innovation -- and see how you can circumvent them.

5 reasons why clients are so dysfunctional

There are five basic employee archetypes, and the interplay among them dictates how agencies interact with clients. Here's a look at the structural problems each of them face.

5 reasons you no longer need an ad agency

Agencies have morphed into advanced communication production shops, but they aren't serving your brand as well as your own company resources can. Here's why.

Why you need to outsource search

Right now, SEM is in the industry driver's seat, and every other ad format is just along for the ride. If you want to get ahead, don't try to tackle it on your own.

The X Factor: Banners and the death of advertising

Your view of ad networks and the banners they sling all depends on where you sit in the marketing landscape of the consumer, the agency, the client, the creative and, yes, even our industry.

The X Factor: Where TV fails and digital marketers succeed

Traditional advertisers are finally getting on board the digital revolution, albeit slowly. But what if you're still doing 30-second drivel? Here's how to shake loose.

The X Factor: What you don't measure will hurt you

Does metrics mean watching the clicks and hoping for the best? It doesn't have to. Find out how a few simple steps and a little math can make you a marketing monster.

The X Factor: The sex factor

You don't need suggestive imagery to tap into the true power of online campaigns. But there is a vital emotional component that will likely get a rise out of your audience.

The X Factor: Dust the cobwebs from your brand's attic

Your brand may not be built on nostalgia like McDonald's, but you can still tap into a consumer's fond recollections to create online buzz.

The X Factor: Is digital a hopeless medium?

Can online ever pack the same emotional punch as television advertising? Here are six obstacles that stand in the way.

The X Factor: Your SEM program is doomed

Think you have SEM under control? Think again. Find out how to increase efficiency and lower the boom on the pesky problems of this popular tool.

The X Factor: Should you go after the long tail?

The long tail has been the mantra of online marketing, but is it really the right paradigm? Find out why the prevailing wisdom may be flawed.

The X Factor: The ad network you'd kill to buy on

Think the Google/Microsoft/Yahoo triad has the game locked up? Think again. Find out why a major alternative could be just around the corner.

The X Factor: Is buying your brand name a losing battle?

It's time to stop complaining about people piggy-backing on your search terms. Use it as an opportunity to hit back, be smarter, more nimble and win.

The X Factor: Can Fox conquer social media?

As the entire media system is about to completely fracture, did Fox make the right move by jumping into the social media fracas? Here are four simple rules to live by.

The X Factor: How Google will kill ad networks

Does Google's display strategy spell doom and gloom for ad networks?

The X Factor: Diary of an anonymous AE

If clients are going to make last minute requests that will inconvenience your staff and cause stress, have the guts to make them pay for it!

The X Factor: If the Pope gets social media, why can't we?

Now that social media has shattered the illusion of brand control, is your company ready for this brave new world?

The X Factor: Get newbies to shut up and learn

Staff training has to get better or agencies are going to damage client relationships beyond repair. Stop treating your staffing requirements like you did 10 years ago. The client has grown up. Have you?

The X Factor: Why banners fail

If the media biz is a jungle, banner ads are cowardly and camouflaged. Try a plan of attack that goes in for the kill.

The X Factor: Don't get hustled by the social media frenzy

Start looking for an agency that understands the nuances of the consumer conversation because media is about to shatter. Are you ready for it?

The X Factor: The risky business of ad banners

The way most agencies conceptualize banner ads is seriously flawed. The internet is a fundamentally different consumption medium than TV, so wake up!

The X Factor: How to avoid pissing people off

Sick and tired of dealing with the American Airlines fiasco? What can a solid CRM system do to avoid this type of scenario, and are you prepared for when the wheels come off?

The X Factor: Who do consumers think they are?

Like most kings, the consumer can be greedy, selfish and out of touch with the world. So why are marketers still working with ad formats that offer our products for free?

The X Factor: MySpace is better than yours

When you talk to people in our industry, Facebook is hotter than MySpace. But the truth is that consumers in vast numbers -- and at a content-engaging level -- are on MySpace.

The X Factor: The high price of protecting privacy

The biggest illusion is that we have any privacy online. It's bunk. So is New York Sen. Richard L. Brodsky's privacy bill, if it passes.

The X Factor: Wake up, media planners!

The halo of an offline brand may extend to the brand property online, but it does not fully extend to the value of that property for advertising. Here's why.

The X Factor: Facebook, are you listening?

Facebook is a great social networking site, but are the employees really that socially clueless in their ad targeting? Do you think you're creating a positive brand experience, Facebook?

The X Factor: Why online pre-roll is dead

Pre-roll was a bad idea from the start. It was lazy traditional thinking encroaching on an innovative medium. Here's why.

3 reasons to ditch your microsites

Sean X Cummings explains why microsites do nothing more than suck your time, money and other resources without moving your brand forward.

Sean/John put the "P" in the agency/client relationship

Join Durham and Cummings in this master class as they discuss specific ways to improve the agency/client relationship and outline dozens of do's and don'ts you can't afford to ignore given the hyperactive pace of progress of this industry.

Close interactive's hardest sell

Sean X Cummings reveals what it takes to get in front of brands and traditional agencies as early as possible.

Where will you spend your next billion?

The voice of UGC is chaotic, irreverent and will make your brand uncomfortable. Embrace it, shape it, mold it, but get comfortable, because you cannot control it.

Don't let the last cookie crumble your campaign

Sean X Cummings shows you how to tame the cookie monster and go beyond standard metrics to get the most from your online campaigns.

8 things that terrify account execs

Sean X Cummings examines frustrating scenarios for online agency execs and how a great AE stays calm under pressure.

Who Gets the Local Media Dollar?

Doing business has reached critical mass, and while the media universe is expanding, budgets, unfortunately, are not.

6 Ways to Blow a Pitch's Sean X Cummings reveals the most common pitch killers and how to avoid them in your next bid for new business.

6 Signs We Are in a Bubble

But should we worry?'s Sean X Cummings explains.

Calling "Bull$#@!" on 3 Marketing Strategies

Sean X Cummings calls BS on three popular marketing strategies and offers tips on how to turn these mistakes into successes.

5 Signs It's Time to Fire Your Client

Sometimes you have to do the right thing by your employees or your bottom line and show a client to the door. Here's when to do it.

10 Signs It's Time to Fire Your Agency

Check out these warning signs to see if your agency passes the test.

Can Search Build Brands?

Dipsie's VP talks about where search ends and brand begins, and how best to join the two.


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