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The Interactive Gospel According to Kevin Roberts

During his keynote speech on the first day of the 2006 Canadian Marketing Association annual conference yesterday in Montreal, Saatchi & Saatchi’s Kevin Roberts strung together 10 words that were music to my ears:

"Within the next five years, all advertising will be interactive."

Roberts covered a lot of ground during his talk, which was (somewhat ironically, given his apparent fondness for interactive) peppered with over a dozen TV commercials. He argued that "the power now sits with the consumer" and that marketers are playing catch up to them.

Roberts also made the case for advertising on mobile devices … "the future is going to be on screen" … and implored marketers to "revere the big idea" and stop focusing on the technology … "assume it can be done."

On Websites, Roberts commented that "most of the Websites I go to look like packages," versus telling a story that will connect with people on an emotional level.

His speech came at the end of a long day for many of the attendees and was very well received, especially by the tiny contingent of interactive marketers in attendance, including yours truly.