Mashable’s Lauren Rubin on Moving “Beyond the Like”

Lauren Rubin is the Global Director of Advertising at Mashable, the online news source dedicated to digital culture, social media and technology. She has previously worked at GroupM, Mediaedge and Wunderman and we recently spoke with her about her current role and trends in social media.

The Makegood: Can you explain a little bit about your role as Global Director of Advertising at Mashable? What does the position entail?

LR: When I first started at Mashable almost two years ago, we were working with Federated Media to manage our media buys. My role was to ensure we were delivering on the brand activations and manage pricing of the opportunities they presented us.

In February of this year, we ended that partnership to manage our own sales and explore new partnerships directly with brands and agencies. It’s my job now to tell the story of how we’ve grown from a little blog to a global brand, and to work with advertisers who want to reach a socially influential audience. Our audience is so passionate about Mashable and what we cover that it has been a lot of fun to share that enthusiasm with clients.

The global title came when I moved to London, where I work with a lot of brands and agencies that manage global media. I went with “Advertising” over “Sales” title because so much of what I do now relies on the skills that I learned at MEC over the years.

The Makegood: You have been on both the buy side and the sell side for enough time to know both well, what would you say are the biggest challenges for each?

LR: I truly believe the RFP process is a double whammy to both agencies and media owners. As a buyer, it was painful to try and match a good idea to a bunch of spreadsheet cells and it often just came down to price, price, price.  Now, seeing different RFP processes from many different agencies, I want to weep for the teams that have to sift through it all. The best brief I have ever received was actually written by the creative agency, and sent by the media agency, on behalf of the entire account. I wish I could see more of those.

The Makegood: What are the major trends that you have seen this year?

LR: I have been really excited to see more and more brands moving “beyond the like” by embedding social graph features. Samsung (a Mashable client) just announced their Olympic Genome Project, allowing users to get closer to the Olympics experience through Facebook connections to athletes, and other innovative activations.

I love how the fashion brands have embraced social media – this is fascinating because of how luxury brands have traditionally been so top-down and brand-protective. Bergdorf Goodman for Instagram is a current favorite.

The Makegood: Thanks, Lauren.