LIVErtising exam

August 14, 2016

Updated on August 15: timetable at the bottom

You are wondering what to expect for the #LIVErtising exam, right? Here is the information to put you at ease with this.

Your study

Social Media Landscape 2015 by Fred Cavazza

The exam contents correspond to the information shared during the lectures, on the basis of the slides, I mean, the oral contents shared during the lectures, not just the slides. In addition, the Reading File and the Youtube Video Channel provide background information you need to integrate in your knowledge. All this is required in your study. Finally, you’ll want to add in edgeways all additional information you have gathered in a number of ways: the course Twitter feed is a good source, together with your trial experience on various sites and social platforms (remember Fred Cavazza’s Social Media Landscape I invited you to explore?), your exploration of dashboards such as Hootsuite, and not least of the programme that enabled a number of you to certify with Hubspot or Google. Main goal is to show your ability to orient yourselves in the digital landscape we have sketched in the course. Your study must focus on understanding the links between all the components  of that landscape.

Your exam

Now, the exam itself is oral. It will be structured in the following way: it is based on three concepts from the course, not on questions. You’ll draw at random three cards from a triple list inluding: (1) core concepts (2) supporting concepts (3) illustrating concepts. To explain this, here are some examples of concepts we have already covered this year:Three stones of wisdom

  • Core concepts:

advertising model evolving – A presence is not a strategy – A/B testing – Ad blocking – Addressable ads – Advocacy – Affiliation – algorithm – Amplification – Banner ads – Be social, not just on social – black hat – Bottom up – Bounce rate – CDJ – Chris Anderson – Clay Shirky – connected cars – connected objects – Connecting with people – Conversation – cookie tracking – creative vs data-driven digital – Cross device consumer behaviour – CTR – data – Death of traditional media – Digital as a science or an art – Digital transformation – Digitisation of TV – Display advertising – Engagement – Evolution of TV – Facebook – free – Google – Here Comes Everybody – IAB – Inbound marketing – Interaction – Interruptive advertising – keywords – KPI vs metrics – Link earning vs link building – Listening – Local SEO – M payment – mobile apps – Mobile marketing – mobile wallet – Multiscreening – Networked communication – off-page – on-page – Online identifiers – online targeting – Online tracking – organic results – Outbound marketing – Paid social media advertising – Paid / Owned / Earned – Permission marketing – Plan / Execute / Measure – Presence VS strategy – Principles of Engagement Marketing – Reach / Act / Convert – remarketing – retargeting – Search marketing – Second screen – See / Think / Do – SEM – SEO – SEO is dead – SEO strategy and tactics – Shared media – Social media marketing – social media trends – Social TV – spamdexing – Split testing – the Cluetrain Manifesto – The digital advertising ecosystem – the IoT – Top down – traditional funnel of conversion – Trust – ubiquity – UGC – VR – white hat

  • Supporting concepts

#McDStories – 360¡ video – Acxiom – Adsense – AIDA – Airbnb – Alt tag – anchor text – API – ATAWAD – Attribution models – Audience fragmentation – Avinash Kaushik – backlink – behavioural targeting – Belgian’s TV watching behaviour – CDJ shaping – cloaking – contextual targeting – conversion funnel – conversion rate – CPC – CPM – Craigslist – Crash the Superbowl – crawling – CTA – customer journey mapping – dashboards – data granularity – Dialogue marketing cycle – digital fingerprinting – duplicate content – E-A-T in optimization – embedding – Facebook dilemma – Edgerank – First position in SERPs – FMOT – FOMO – friction – Gartner Hype Cycle – Generation C & P – Google Analytics – Google Knowledge Graph – Google Payments – Growth in display advertising – H1 & H2 tags – Hashtags – Head keywords – Hootsuite – Hub website – Hummingbird update – incognito mode – Instagram – IPTV – keyword density – keyword stuffing – L-E-A-N online ads – lead generation – Linear TV – link farming – load speed – Long tail keywords – LoRa – Marketing Grader by Hubspot – McKinsey’s loyalty loop – Media time spend vs Adspend – meta tags – mobile retargeting – mobile-friendly update – MOTs – multivariate testing – NAP – Native advertising – obstacles to on-site optimization – Oculus Rift – online branding – online inventory – organic reach – OTT – paid social reach – Panda update – Penguin update – Periscope – personas – Pigeon update – post purchase – post tail – Precision TV data – programmatic ads – recommendations – referral – rich answers – Science of Time – scraping & spinning – sensors – sentiment ratio – Seqr – SERP – Shazamable ads – silos – Sixdots – smart TV – social media consumption – SRP – the adserver – Tinder – touchpoints – Transactional objective – triple play – TV on demand – Universal Analytics – user value – UX – wearables – Whuffie factor – ZMOT –

  • Illustrative concepts

#evianbottleservice – #LoveSouthAfrica – #myNYPD – #onlyintheapp Taco Bell – AMP project – app TV – AT&T Strong Can – AVG Privacy Fix – beacons – Blind Date – Blindspot – Bring the Love Back – Chromecast – cloud TV – Coke Chok Chok Chok – Coke Drinkable Commercial – Comscore – daytime targeting – – Feedly – – Fred Cavazza – Ghostery – Gilette The Shave Test – Google Content Experiments – Google goggles – Google Moteur de Reussites – Google Now – HTTPS pages – iMinds Digimeter – IMS – Jo Caudron – KakaoTalk – Keyword Planner – L’Oreal makeup genius – Line – LinkedIn – local TV ads – lookalike audience targeting – LSI – Mary Meeker – Medium – messaging apps – Mobile World Congress – MyTF1 Spot and Shop – Nest – NFC – Obsessee – Optimizely – Panopticlick – paywalls – Paypal – Peach – Quartz – Rank Brain – Realytics – ROPO – RTB – Samsung – Secret – Seqr – showrooming – Snapchat – Social media calendar – Social Media Landscape – Social Tees Animal Rescue – Starbucks – Tara Hunt – Telegram – time and place shifting – Tweetdeck – Visual Website Optimizer – We Are Social – WeChat – WhatsApp – Whisper – YikYak

I’ll update and complete this list in the following week after the last lecture. The above list is now complete.

digital_cartoonYour aim will be to show you have clearly understood these concepts and how they relate to the evolution of marketing communication as we have analysed it in the course. In a nutshell, this evolution has taken us from (1) interruptive/ top-down/ one-way/ outbound advertising over (2) permission/ bottom-up/ two-way/ inbound advertising to (3) networked/ collaborative/ social/ participatory/ connected communication – three stages I have distinguished several times and detailed in other posts on this blog.

Each concept should be a door that opens up the context it belongs to.

You’ll use the above sources of information to provide your answers, and can use the LIVErtising blog to dig out some helpful information, by using the search function **and** by asking questions at the bottom of this post. I will be very happy to bring detailed answers intended to help you all, but won’t answer any contents questions I get by mail. I want networked communication, not just inbound 😉


Your task

In a nutshell, your task will be to:

  1. define those concepts

  2. put them in their adequate context and develop that context 

  3. show how the connect with associated concepts

  4. detail how they help us understand the evolution that the course focuses on

  5. make sure no language problem blurs your message – here the language support should help, or your own language work if you feel your knowledge is shaky.

You’ll realize how wrong it is to consider that the above list of concept is the study basis for your study, because the focus is on the relationships between concepts, not the concepts themselves. This exam format is far more open than getting three question. So, it’s easier and also more difficult. It gives you more possibilities: no danger of feeling stuck in a question you do not understand or remember – no set or expected answer, as long as it is relevant, information-rich, coherent and shows that you have understood the context. But is also gives you more responsibility: the need to build your own answer with all the bits and pieces of the course in order to provide a relevant answer that makes sense.

Student notes

You can still get hold of the student’s notes on our Onedrive below:



LIVExam timetable – August exam

With this link you’ll be able to see and modify the timetable, to add your name on the appropriate date:!AkOFBhZJw3YlwHRCVIM-uZZoPbXv – only with this link, not in the table below!


Have I made everything clear? Let me know!

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16 Comments. Leave new

Etienne Nicolas
May 27, 2016 18:14

Gooooodmorning Sir !

First of all, how are you ?

I have a little misunderstanding concerning de Search part of the class..

We have seen that there was 3 big mistake with SEO. My misunderstanding goes to the beginning of the second one. Actually, we are not talking about search ENGINE optimization anymore but well search EXPERIENCE optimization.

In classes, we have talk about the Link Building in 2013 and the black hat SEO that goes with spamdexing.

My misunderstanding goes here with the Link building, Black Hat SEO and Spamdexing, i don’t really quite understand those 3 notions… Could you please make it a bit clear for me ?

Thanks by advance for you answer,

Best Regards,

Etienne Nicolas


Hello Nicolas,

Fine, thank you! I just heard a programme about low-tech technologies on « La Première ». Very exciting perspective on an alternative for your future. This made me happy I mentioned low-tech (as opposed to energy consuming high-tech) in my personal critical note of VR – do you remember ?

Now, black hat SEO, or spamdexing? They are synonyms to cover a wide and evolving range of techniques to artificially boost your positioning on SERPs, i.e. influence the search engines’ indexing algorithms by taking advantage of their weak points. Black hat is not limited to SEO, by the way: there are techniques to steal your competitors’ online identity or to destroy their online reputation – illegal and/or unethical techniques, of course.

The search engines themselves keep trying to fill the gaps in their algorithms, making what was yesterday’s loopholes (for instance keyword stuffing or site scraping and spinning) today’s penalised technique, that will make you get blacklisted or dereferenced by Google, Bing or Yahoo. This cat-and-mouse game between search engines and black-hatters (the numerous updates) started much earlier than 2013 – already in 2006 Matt Cutts from Google announed that BMW’s German site ( had been withdrawn from their index for using “doorway pages” redirecting surfers to a different, artificially optimised address. Google has been lowering the impact of SEO techniques and tricks while increasing the impact of the user experience on the one hand, and making use of artificial intelligence (with Hummingbird) on the other hand. Focusing on the user value and trying to understand search intent better : that makes search engines less vulnerable to tricking and cheating.

A case in point is backlinks and link building, considered a major element of Google’s Pagerank (after Larry Page, one of Google’s founders). Google was first to consider that links that point to your site are so many « votes » testifying that you’re interesting. Backlinks are in essence positive signals : if your site offers relevant content for the keywords that the brand is trying to position itself for, if the landing page is convincing, if your site is smooth to surf on, not distracting the visitor by bad design or intrusive ads for unconnected products, … in a word, if it provides a positive experience and real value, other sites are going to point naturally (i.e. organically, not artificially) to it ; enthusiasts will share a link on social platform ; your content will be embedded on other blogs, … This is an organic way to get links to your site. It is called link earning, and is a long-term approach, as it takes you time to build the reputation that earns you links. But it is worth its energy, because it builds values for your potential clients : the visitors of your site.

Very early, though, black hat SEO practitioners started looking for and finding ways to increase the number of backlinks artificially, basically by buying those links by the hundreds or even thousands from so-called link farms, i.e. sites built for that purpose only, making a business of that activity. These are low quality links, because the sites they originate from are sites that have low or no E-A-T (in the Panda update terms : expertise, authority or trust), and that have no inherent connexion with your site (I mean, when you are an architect for instance, links coming from other sites relating to architecture have much more weight than links coming from a general portal site). Now, you’ll see easily that this whole backlinking area is a continuum with a wide range of possibilities between white and black : 50 shades of grey, if I may say. Ooooops… You’ll understand also that this is only a short-term approach for two reasons : one, Google is increasingly drastic with its updates, increasing the danger of getting you blacklisted or dereferenced ; two, this activity is only intended to cheat the search engine, but it is completely useless for your visitors, and for your prospects. Even if it gets you a temporary positioning boost, you’ll possibly get more visitors to your site, but only with a high bounce rate and low conversion rate. Too bad !

I hope that helps you out Nicolas. Let me know. I appreciate that you and your colleagues feel involved enough to share their questions ! Please do not hesitate to come up with more of them ! No question is too basic if it can help !

P.S. I agree, I did some keyword stuffing, just to help you build better connections between relevant concepts. Please do not report me to Google, Nicolas 😉

Etienne Nicolas
June 6, 2016 12:28

Hello Sir,

Sorry for answering late, i was focused on the others exams before yours and now that the time is gone to study yours again, i’m In !

Thanks for all your answers, I think that it makes the things clearer for me, even if I still have a lot of difficulties with the Search and everything around this !

But don’t worry, I won’t report you on google, it doesn’t worth it if i need some other explanations about your materials (which may probably be the case…!)

Have a nice day and next time, don’t disturb me with 50 shades of grey, I haven’t seen this movie yet… 🙂


Hello Mr Ranschaert,

I have difficulties understanding what LoRa is, could you please give me a short explanation about this technology ?

Thank you in advance !

Have a nice day.


Hello Fanny,

LoRa is the association set up to develop an open protocol providing a standard for IoT connectivity. IoT is a network connecting smart objects with each other. One component of such a connected object is its connectivity, enabling it to communicate with its environment. There are a number of technologies that enable this, such as Bluetooth, NFC, Wifi, 3&4G. These are all communication standards making it possible for objects to communicate with servers or other objects. LoRaWan is another communication protocol intended to do the same job.

Now, each protocol has its own characteristics (range, needs in energy, data security, …). LoRa is now in a position to establish LoRaWan as a standard for IoT, because it is well-suited for this use: it has a wide range (it is a WAN, Wide Area Network), is also suitable for objects moving at up to 100 km/h, intended for bi-directional short messages, and it enjoys triple encryption (which means high data security). The Belgian historic operator Proximus is partnering within LoRa and is now rolling out this standard for IoT throughout Belgium.

As LoRaWan is highly modular, Proximus invites actors in the field to develop apps integrating the protocol – and this is where the marketing communication field should be careful not to miss these new opportunities.
Now, Fanny, watch the videos with this in mind. Want to go further? Check out, and

Is that OK?


Very helpful ! Thank you !

May 22, 2016 09:22

Dear Mr Ranschaert,

I’ve still some misunderstanding about two concepts of your list :

“Digital is a science of art » : it’ about innovations thanks to digital ? could you give me a hint ?
Mary Meeker : I really have difficulties to find about what it refers in the livertising notes.

I thank you in advance for your answer.

Celine Denoiseux


Hello Céline,
as you have already taken your exam I am answering here for the sake of other students who may be wondering.
1. Science or art? Art or science? Draper or nerd? Is webdesign a matter of creativity or is it data-driven? Probably both, but as your curriculum at IHECS develops the creative side, I highlighed the need to base your work on data and code as well, implementing an experimental approach: analytics, APIs, A/B testing, measuring bounce rate, using heat maps.
2. Mary Meeker provides each year around this time an updated “Internet Trends Conference” for KPCB – we have used some slides to support some of our claims with recent stats, and you can do so as well in your dissertation next year. It’s a good thing to subscribe to her updates – just Google her name.
Was this helpful? Let me know!


Hello Mr Ranschaert,

I’ve got a few questions about the list.

– Does “IMS” stand for Instant Messaging Service ?
– I Can’t recall the concept “We are the future”, could you give me a hint ?
– When you give us concepts such as “Facebook” or “Google”, I guess that we’re not supposed to speak about what they are, but rather which aspects were discussed in course. Yet, there are so many, will you give us a “direction” at the exam ? I must admit that i would be lost if i had to speak about the concept “Google” right away.

Thank you !

Magali de Potter
May 19, 2016 08:46

Hi mister Ranschaert, How are you today?

Can you -please- give me a short explanation/differentiation about the 3 toolkits: dashboards, hootsuite and feedly?

I thank you in advance for your answer&generous support!


Hello Magali,

A dashboard is a programme or platform that enables you to monitor, track, analyze or organize any among several types of activities. In connection with Hootsuite and Feedly, we are speaking about social media activity. Specifically, Hootsuite offers a dashboard that will enable community managers or social media managers to cover different aspects of their social media activities :
(1) listening in to what is being said on social networks about your brand, your competitors, your market, your audience, your keywords, your hashtags, influencers in these fields, trends, … (2) organizing this information, e.g. by focusing on specific lists you create (3) posting on social media (4) answering on those media and engaging with your audience

Such a dashboard is your control panel. It enables you to monitor several social media channels alongside as it is not limited to one account (if you have for instance more than one Twitter account or Facebook page) or to one social network (Hootsuite supports a growing number of networks : Twitter, Facebook profiles and pages, LinkedIn profiles, pages and groups, G+, Instagram, Youtube…). A dashboard such as Hootsuite is an expanding system that now offers all kinds of apps to fine tune your social media monitoring activity. In all these respects Hootsuit performs better than the original platforms, or a monitoring dashboard such as Tweedeck, which is limited to Twitter. In the lecture I showed you you can list different twitter contents next to each other , e.g. your own posts, your RT s, the RT s you get, a hashtag, your new followers, … .

Feedly offers another approach to monitoring as it is a platform to subscribe to RSS feeds. This is a syndication system to keep track of everything that is published on websites of interest to you, as long as they offer an RSS feed. This is then called your newsfeed. In this way you can for instance follow all comments on the livertising blog through its RSS feed ( each time anyone adds a comment to the blog or gets an answer, this is automatically added to your newsfeed in the RSS reader you’re using, Feedly for instance. Incidentally, Hootsuite also enables you to create RSS newsfeeds.

Dashboards exist in other fields to monitor activity. For example, Google Analytics is a dashboard where you can track most activity on your webpages in a very granular way. We have illustrated that when we covered the bounce rate concept.

This is a factual answer to your question. Now, to build your own answer on the exam, you should sketch the context this belongs to : these are tools that help you implement one of the important skills that marketing communication has had to develop recently : listening. To develop a bottom-up and a networked approach (you see what I mean?) you need to listen to your audience. A conversation requires listening and marketing communication has shifted away from talking to holding a conversation. So : connect the concepts with their conceptual background, which you can start explaining. You could also link this with the notion of engagement: interaction + amplification. Such a dashboard enables you to go further than building a presence: it is essential for interaction.

To prepare this, you really should (have) visite(d) the sites in question, Hootsuite and Feedly. Actually, you must have used Feedly with my colleague Damien Vanachter. Hootsuite is indeed not free to use, but you can have a 30-day trial period. So : try them to know better what you’ll be speaking about, and to leverage their power to prepare for your final media work, and many other professional tasks later !

OK ? Does that answer your question ? Let me know !


So, Hadrian, three questions for the price of one !

1. IMS, could be what you’re suggesting, but we actually met this concept when analyzing the digitization of television. IMS is the technical enabler of IPTV. It means IP Multimedia System, which is the framework that makes it technically possible to communicate multimedia contents over IP to enjoy triple play services.

To answer that, you do not need to go into technical details, but open the door to the broader context of the evolving TV experience through IPTV.

Want more ? Watch the video about IPTV . Want even more (without needing to) ? Google « define : IMS » to use Google as a dictionary.

2. Do you mean the « we are social » agency ? Subscribe to their slideshare channel to get regularly updated data about technology, media and IT use worldwide. I have use their slides throughout the course to provide up-to-date stats and data to support my claims, and they may come in handy for your thesis next year. This is a case of BEING social rather than ON social: they are building social capital, i.e. a real online reputation by giving real value free, showing they are genuinely a thought leader in their field. In this way, they not only build their presence, they create engagement through advocacy. They are bottom-up (calling for subscriptions) and networked (as many people share their contents). They use the P-O-E-S range of media fully, downplaying the P and capitalizing on the O-E-S.

You see how you can start from a very narrow question, and work your way up to a more general level, showing that you have a good understanding of the relationships between the relevant concepts. Are you with me?

3. I have indeed not covered Facebook of Google as a dedicated part of the course. Facebook helped us introduce, analyse and discuss several concepts throughout the course, at least in three chapters. This is the angle you should use to built your answer : how does FB tie in with the conceptual framework of the course. Same with Google, although you can consider that Google stands for the whole SEM field, which in our country is 90% true.

There is no need to feel such concepts are a threat to be afraid of – they offer you the possibility of choosing your angle. Do so, choose an angle, and develop that. With FB for instance, the answer I provided to Magali’s question about dashboard/Hootsuite/Feedly may be such an angle. You see what I mean ?

Let me know if I helped you out, OK ?


Definitely helpful. Thanks for your time

Magali de Potter
May 21, 2016 11:59

Yes, it does!

Many thanks for your answer and your advices,

Have a nice weekend!

May 8, 2016 10:09

Hi Mr Ranschaert !

Is the list of concepts already complete or do you still have to make some adjustments ?



Hello Alexandra, if you now check the updated post you’ll have the complete list. It covers the whole course, excluding what we have not been able to cover (e.g. programmatic display, ad exchanges, social media monitoring and research, …). You’ll realise there are also many duplicate elements, e.g. cloaking, link farming, keyword stuffing are all examples of black hat, which is the same as spamdexing. Don’t hesitate to post further questions!


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