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Digital trading: Why invisible ads aren’t so bad
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
John Wanamaker, a merchant in the early 20th century: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, the trouble is I don’t know which half.” Over a hundred years later into the 21st century advertisers are still saying the same thing.
Viewability is currently a hot topic amongst advertisers, some of whom are becoming increasingly concerned that they are paying for online display ads that are not actually seen. When do we hear about TV ads not being watched, or how about radio ads not being heard? Or even newspaper ads when the page is not turned?
Now we know each medium shares the same problem, with the vast amount of served impressions going unseen and labelled as wasted. Digital advertising is being held to a higher standard than any other advertising medium. It is without question that digital advertising measurements are leading the way with the support of the MRC and 3MS. With such phenomenal achievements in our industry it baffles me why I keep on hearing talk of such poor viewability statistics. Before we know it, ad tech companies will share the frustrations of John McEnroe, saying, 'You can’t be serious, that ad was in!'
Although I’m supportive of all industry bodies striving to implement industry standard acceptance levels, I would also like to challenge them. The IAB has set a target of 70 per cent for viewable impressions. While the digital media industry is well on its way to achieving this goal, there are still significant obstacles that we need to overcome. For example, non-measured impressions should not be counted as non-viewable. The technology required to fully measure all served viewable impressions just isn’t there yet. To meet the threshold set by the IAB is optimistic for ATDs, ad networks and even direct publishers at this time. Recently, I attended a meeting where a global publisher highlighted they have 6bn ad impressions per month to sell but could not answer how much of their inventory is viewable. Why not?
Let’s not fall into the trap of believing that non-viewable ads are completely wasted. Even if some banner ads are invisible to the human eye, these ads still help audience based targeting companies (like Audience2Media) to capture data points from the ad calls to our servers logging important information about the websites visited to enhance behavioural advertising. The end result is delivering targeted ads to anonymous users online based on their web traversal data driving high brand engagement. Consequently, the advertiser receives a positive ROI.
Given that we are still far from being able to accurately measure viewability, we need to start thinking of ways to improve viewability on our own. There are many reasons why some ads may not be viewable, from the format of the website to the design of the ad creative itself. Some ads have slow load times, some may appear outside a viewable browser window, fake publisher traffic from ad exchanges, and some are only viewable if you scroll down the webpage. Each of these points should be tackled individually and with haste. Admittedly, waste in digital advertising is an issue, albeit a lot less severe in comparison to TV, radio and print. Put simply, I believe it can be improved immediately if media is sold, purchased and applied effectively.
Furthermore, I believe the MRC should toughen its selection and accreditation process in order to maintain and improve the current standards. I fear that an over populated market of measurement companies applying their own calculations and algorithms may potentially create larger discrepancies on advertising viewability statistics.
Today, we can all agree that it is not possible to start charging purely on viewable impressions. The discussion on viewability is debatable from all aspects, but I believe brand marketers understand the primary goal is to deliver a positive ROI back to the advertiser on each of their campaigns. With this in mind, allow me to make it simple. There are two types of advertising, visible and invisible, both having a role to play in digital. The subject matter of viewability needs to expand to the technical side, not just the commercial.
Tony Laskar is founder and chief executive of Audience2Media
Tunepics chief Justin Cooke: The Apple Watch will add another sensory element to social media
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Tunepics chief Justin Cooke is readying for the day when Apple Watch will allow people to physically feel another’s emotions when they share content via social media
Tunepics – which launched last year – is the first solo-project from Cooke, who was previously Burberry’s digital creative and the chief marketer at Topshop.
It is described as a "multi-sensory social network" and allows users to post an image with a soundtrack and can also choose a colour from an "emotion wheel". Combined, the picture, song and colour aim to reflect the way someone feels at any given moment.
Cooke called the release of the Apple Watch a “game-changer” and said that “there is something beautiful coming” as the company opens up all of the SDKs in the product to developers.
“You could send me a Tunepic and I see that you’re crying and I get a raindrop feeling on my wrist," he mused. "There’s a whole load of stuff that will come and the first iteration is always this is the idea, we want to bring you on board, learn the behaviour, and then we’ll improve it based on your feedback."
Cooke went on to say the power of the Apple Watch is that it has never intended to replace a normal watch, which is built with beautiful, classic design in mind.
“What’s powerful is that [Apple] can change the watch on your wrist overnight through software,” he said.
The Apple Watch has been quickly embraced by the industry, with brands such as Amazon, Starbucks, Pandora, Uber and Twitter already tailoring their software to meet the needs of the product.
Five ways Apple Music could beat Spotify (and everyone else too)
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Bruce Sterling once said "those that live by disruption, die by disruption". No one is immune. Apple has laid waste to many industries, especially the music business. In turn it has seen its downloads empire eroded by challenger Spotify.
As a brand that continually reinvents itself, we know Apple's retaliation strike is coming soon, maybe even at WWDC. Here's how it could make Apple Music a winner in the war.
1. Make it integrated
Apple’s success is due to functional integration. It makes systems, not just services. Being native in iOS and OSX means a potential audience of epic proportions.
Seamlessly working with iTunes, Radio, and PodCasts would increase convenience for many. Evolving Garageband to give musicians a way to produce and distribute in one platform could be another. Factor in CarPlay, Apple TV and HomeKit and you’ve got a classic walled-garden play.
2. Make it matter
We know Apple is going to charge a subscription fee. That’s going to erode the audience size. But what if it used a part of its war-chest to subsidise the service for, say, three months? Just long enough for us to habituate on it, unlike Beats' laughable two-week trial. Or what if it offered better family plans than Spotify?
Apple’s notorious 30 per cent cut has earned it few musical allies. Musicians hate Spotify’s pari-mutuel model too. What if Apple paid-per-play instead? And reported it to musicians in a way that was transparent, easy-to-understand and fair?
3. Make it better
Sound quality is a debated concept but what if Apple had a better standard? 320k + surround sound could move more hardware product and differentiate it from Spotify. We've been listening to stereo for too long. Can Cupertino create what's next?
Think of the potential to use Siri as a Shazam-style search. Sing lyrics or hum a melody to find the song you want. All within the core Apple Music app. Siri could automatically create playlists on the fly based on your context, mood, etc. That could be a powerful way to challenge Spotify's just announced "Now" functionality.
New Apple hire Zane Lowe is going to be every bit as critical to this effort as Jimmy Iovine, Dre or Reznor. Beats' best features — Just For You, Expert Essentials and curated playlists — are all going to get a lot better. Lowe’s cache means the indie crowd found on Bandcamp and SoundCloud could follow.
4. Make it social
Social integration on Spotify (and all the other services) is terrible. They all suffer from YASN (yet another social network) syndrome. You have to rebuild too much from scratch.
Apple has access to your contacts, Facebook and Twitter thanks to native sharing on iOS. Imagine a 'Twitch'-like ability to just drop in and listen along with your friend. The one that has the hippest taste in music? Think of it as 'This is My Jam' in real-time, all the time. A streaming mixtape made for you from the people that know you best.
You could do the same with musicians and experts – with the added bonus of seeing exclusive, early release or behind-the-scenes content. Artists could eschew the 'secret album' trend and just release tracks when they're ready. We might finally see 'the Serial effect' for music.
5. Make it live
Regardless of all the above, it’s still not enough to make money. The real money in music is in live.
Apple could alert fans to concerts based on their playlists, favourites or owned music. They could let you know friends wanted to go too. Top that off with an ability to buy via Apple Pay and we’re off to the races with a 30 per cent cut of ticket sales. Toss in merchandise and you’ve got untapped revenue streams Spotify would love.
Apple doesn’t have the potential to disrupt just Spotify but every related service. Shazam, Ponyo, Soundtracking, This is My Jam, Songkick, Tidal, SoundCloud, Bandcamp et al could all suffer if it manages to close the gap between customers’ expectations and the services and experience they receive. Every last one of those apps is at risk of deletion from your home screen.
Daniel Harvey is experience design director at SapientNitro
Nottinghamshire Police enlists Twitter to track down wanted man by sharing his Tinder pics
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Nottinghamshire Police has shared pictures from a wanted man’s Tinder account on Twitter in a bid to help track him down.
The police force is taking to social media to find Henry Spencer who is wanted in connection with a gross bodily harm offence.
However, instead of a traditional wanted poster, the force has found and repurposed images from Spencer’s Tinder dating account in a bid to question him over an incident of GBH inflicted on a woman on 16 November, last year.
The 28-year-old allegedly set up the Tinder account under a false name and is suspected to be in the Doncaster area.
— NottsPolice Specials (@NottsSpecials) May 21, 2015
Earlier this week a dating profile also came back to bite a homophobic preacher.
An LGBT publication found and exposed Reverend Matthew Makela's Grindr account which he was using to meet up with other gay men while condeming homosexuality in church and on social media.
Promposals and how brands are using Snapchat and ephemeral content to reach teens
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
It's promposal season and brands are joining the fun. For those unfamiliar with the act of promposing, simply put "it is the act of asking someone to go to the prom with you." Teens have been lavishly asking their dates to the prom for decades but the Snapchat generation has taken the act to an entire new level that's causing major brands to pay attention and participate.
Yesterday, I moderated a Shorty Awards panel (the ceremony I produce) on Snapchat and ephemeral content at at ad:tech in San Francisco. MTV's VP of Digital Strategy and Fan Engagement Jack Daley, Taco Bell's VP of Digital and On-Demand Tressie Lieberman, Sour Patch Kids (a Mondelēz brand) Senior Associate Brand Manager Lauren Fleischer and HUGE Head of Social Joe McCaffrey discussed how important Snapchat has become to reach younger audiences and the ways their brands are using the platform and other ephemeral social networks like Periscope. Here are the highlights and best practices they shared.
Engaging teens on Snapchat during promposal season:
Last month, Vanity Fair recently described promposals as "the fastest-growing form of public affection." Both Sour Patch Kids, the yummy candy that's popular among teens and MTV who reaches a young audience created genius ways to participate in the fun.
Fleischer told the audience that Sour Patch Kids will soon host their very own prom after finishing a competition where they asked teens to submit their promposals on Snapchat and social media. The winners and submissions are currently featured on their Tumblr.
Fleischer said their prom was also supported by creative on TV showing once again how strong the relationship between the older mass medium and the newer fragmented social channels are.
Daley described MTV's Promposal Mania, launched last month across their Snapchat, Perisocope, linear channel and more.
In honor of the newest of prom rituals, MTV is launching “Promposal Mania,” a two-day celebration of prom across all MTV platforms beginning Monday, April 20. On Monday, teen sensation Austin Mahone will be live in studio at MTV’s Times Square headquarters to accept one lucky viewer’s promposal. On Tuesday, April 21st, Fifth Harmony will orchestrate an unforgettable live promposal for one Harmonizer and their proposed date.
Daley said the results on Snapchat have been outstanding. "Forty to fifty percent of our followers on Snapchat view our Story each day."
Lieberman described how Taco Bell recently started using Periscope for making announcements that just a few years ago might have only made it in a corporate press release. This included announcing a free giveaway on Cinco de Mayo.
Expirementing with Periscope, the latest shiny new social network:
Daley told the audience that there's a "temptation to go for the bright shiny object," but "bright shiny objects lose that shine if you're not successful with metrics you've set up."
MTV is still experimenting with Periscope and is making an effort to do things that are fun, sincere and don't require a lot of production. Daley said MTV's community managers recently played a game of "would you rather" on the MTV Persicope. He talked about the challenges with live content and the importantce of trying to make sure that you're not Periscoping where there will be long and often awkward silences in between the big moments.
Why Snapchat is the perfect platform for brands to find their most passionaite fans.
"There's no discover section," Lieberman reminded the audience about Snapchat. "You actually need to go into the app search for 'tacobell' and manually add us as a friend." This proactive social media engagement has led Taco Bell to continue to grow their precence on Snapchat. The food chain was extremely early to the platform.
The people behind brand Snapchatting:
All the panelists talked about how amazing the community managers and content creators managing the brands' Snapchats are. Lieberman said that the two creators behind Taco Bell's Snapchat are extremely close with the community and that the community knows who they are.
One of the biggest brand Snapchat successes to date:
McCaffrey talked about the Snapchat work they did with Audi during the Superbowl in 2014 and then later with ABC Family's Pretty Little Liars. The success they had during the Superbowl set an important example for many more brands who have now since joined Snapchat.
The campaign received 100,000 total views on Snapchat and generated 2,400 mentions on Twitter, reaching a total of 37 million social impressions. Thirty percent of all Audi Super Bowl conversation stemmed from Snapchat. The team manually added 9,600 followers to the Audi Snapchat account over 48 hours, reaching a total of 10,500 followers, pushing Snapchat's ability to keep up with the volume of user growth.
When asked if it was difficult to convince Audi to get on Snapchat early on McCaffrey said that, "Audi is built on being innovative and brave so it didn't take a lot to convince them."
The metrics behind Snapchat and what brands want from the platform in the future:
Snapchat is still in its metrics infancy. For a brand, you can see how many people viewed your Story, how many times your content was screen shotted and how many followers you have. Beyond that there's not much.
"I'm still manually inputting the numbers into a spreadsheet," Lieberman described. While the panelists agreed that those metrics were very helpful they're definitely hoping Snapchat builds out more metrics and analytics for them to judge the success and enable more investment in what they do on the platform.
Brand of the Day: Boy Scouts of America
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Today we feature the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). After years of scandals involving the club turning away adults from volunteering on the basis of homosexuality, the club’s president, Robert M. Gates called for an end to the ban on gay adult leaders.
1) What is BSA?
The Boy Scouts of America is a federally chartered corporation and one of the most popular youth organizations in the country. It boasts almost three million youth members, and about a million adult volunteers. Under the program, young boys are taught everything from outdoor adventure to character building.
2) The History of BSA
The BSA was founded in 1910 by W.D. Boyce. At the time, its mission statement was "to teach [boys] patriotism, courage, self-reliance, and kindred values.” The group’s first sponsor was The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often referred to as the Mormon Church. By the end of 2014, the group had become one of the nation’s largest charities, boasting a revenue of $1.2bn.
3) Scout’s Honor
Scout’s must say an oath with their membership, and follow a specific law. The oath states: "On my honor, I will do my best, to do my duty, to God and my country, and to obey the Scout Law, to help other people at all times, to keep myself physically strong, mentally awake, and morally straight.” The law required members to be “trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent."
4) Treatment of gay males
Strong references to morals and values in the scout’s code has caused trouble for the group. Since its founding in 1910, secular definitions of good morals have changed, though some argue the group’s allowances haven’t.
In 2013, 60 per cent of Boy Scout leaders voted that they could turn members away based on their sexual orientations or preferences. This ruling added to the group’s long-standing ban on gay adult volunteers.
5) Looking forward
Gates’ proposition to lift the ban doesn’t mean that any changes have been made officially. Leaders from across the country will have to vote first.
Gates doesn’t believe that gay volunteers should be allowed because it’s the right thing to do. Rather, he believes that if the ban continues, it could lead to a court case that would rule to lift all discrimination. “We must deal with the world as it is,” he said, “not as we might wish it to be.”
There has been no official word on when BSA will vote to lift the ban.
Dreamers wanted: RKCR/Y&R's Mick Mahoney walks through Johnnie Walker creative idea
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Mick Mahoney, executive creative director at RKCR/Y&R, has described the thinking behind 'The Man Who Walked Around the World' campaign for Johnnie Walker, as part of The Drum's Dream Awards.
The latest in a line of creative luminaries to sit down with The Drum's resident psychiatrist, Dr Sarracenia, Mahoney described the vision to come to him to inspire the ad.
"A man, coming out of the mist, just walks and walks and walks from a speck in the distance. Highlands in the mist, a bagpiper, and he's just getting closer and closer. And the second he goes past the bagpiper, out of the corner of his mouth, he just says 'shut it'."
Dr Sarracenia then prescribes a large glass of malt whisky, three times a day – or as necessary.
The film is part of a wider series created by Lost Boys, featuring creative visionaries discussing the inspiration behind some of their biggest campaigns. The campaign also features photography by the renowned Julian Hanford.
In a world of multiple channels and touch points, the best marketing is still defined by big ideas. With this in mind, The Drum has launched its Dream Awards. Judged by leading industry figures including BBH London deputy executive creative director Rosie Arnold, Guy Duncan, global creative director at Coca-Cola, and Beattie McGuinness Bungay founder Trevor Beattie, the awards will recognise creativity across a number of categories, covering numerous sectors, verticals and channels.
The deadline for the Dream Awards is Friday 19 June. To find out more and enter the awards visit the dedicated website.
Frédéric Fekkai latest to face P&G’s brand chopping block
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
Proctor & Gamble (P&G) has sold its Frédéric Fekkai luxury hair care brand and salons as it ramps up the pace on its brand cull as part of a wider plan to streamline the business.
The Frédéric Fekkai brand was purchased in a joint venture between Designer Parfums and LUXE Brands. It will see the group rebranded under the name Fekkai Brands, LLC. T
The founder, Frédéric Fekkai, will retain his role as adviser and brand architect at the flagship salon on 5th Avenue in New York.
"We are excited to be working with the extraordinary talent of Frédéric Fekkai and the Fekkai brand to optimize and further develop his brand of world class and innovative hair care products," said Designer Parfums chief Dilesh Mehta.
The Fekkai business comprises a range of hair products and seven salons in New York, Connecticut, Florida, Texas and California. Approximately 225 people are currently employed in the salon business; they are expected to transfer to the newly formed entity.
P&G has declined to comment on the sale price. A P&G spokesman told the WSJ that the sale is in line with the company’s broader plan to shed noncore brands to better focus on core beauty brands, such as Pantene and Head & Shoulders.
People on the move: Hires and departures at Unilever, Thorntons, Kik and more
Posted on Friday May 22, 2015
This week has seen another wave of appointments and departures at brands, media owners and agencies. The Drum has rounded up the key hires below.
Unilever has named Graeme Pitkethly, its current UK executive vice-president, as its new chief financial officer.
No further detail was forthcoming on the management change but Thorntons has appointed Barry Bloomer, currently serving as chief operating officer, as chief executive on an interim basis.
Messaging service Kik has appointed Josh Jacobs, former chief executive of Omnicom Group's programmatic trading desk Accuen, as its president of services.
While Kik already offers promoted chats, it is hoped that Jacobs will help build brand partnerships.
Jules Fuller, currently commercial executive producer at Endemol Shine, has been appointed creative director, whilst Caroline Reik, head of branded partnerships, has been promoted to director of branded content.
In addition Riyad Barmania has been promoted to content director, while the MCN's current creative director Jamie Lennox and commercial director Matt Rook will step down from their roles early in the summer.
Kevin Crull, who previously served as president and chief executive officer of Bell Media, has been named chief marketing officer at Sprint.
In this role, he will be tasked with attracting new customers and advancing the company’s push for more innovation. He will also be responsible for all digital and social efforts.
Wunderman UK has hired Lauren Pleydell-Pearce as creative director in a boost to its creative offering.
Pleydell-Pearce, former design director at Fabric, will work across the agency’s range of clients assisting on content, digital and social projects.
Whilst at Fabric Pleydell-Pearce was part of the team behind KFC's 'It doesn’t count if...' social media campaign, which won a British Arrows Gold in 2013.
David & Goliath
David & Goliath (D&G) has revamped its creative team with 12 new hires, including three creative directors: Brandon Davis, Nick Hine, and Rick Utzinger.
Previously Davis freelanced in New York and worked at Wieden + Kennedy. Hine served as a global executive creative director at TBWA\Chiat\Day. Utzinger was also at TBWA\Chiat\Day where he served as a creative director.
Partners + Napier NYC
Creative agency Partners + Napier NYC (PNYC) has appointed Ted Florea, who formerly served as head of brand strategy at Droga5, as its first chief strategy officer.
In this role, he will be responsible for the strategic leadership of all existing PNYC business, which includes the Outdoor Advertising Association of America and ShopKeep.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Florea served as a freelance brand strategy consultant prior to joining PNYC. Before that, he spent three years as head of brand strategy at Droga5.
MEC has hired former AppNexus solutions engineer Martin Beauchamp as its first head of programmatic strategy as the agency looks to ramp up its expertise in the sector.
Beauchamp spent two years at AppNexus where he led new business in EMEA.
He joins the data team which is led by David Fletcher, chief data officer at MEC, and has been tasked with helping clients understand and adapt programmatic technologies.
Quaglio joined Siteworx as president and chief creative officer last summer to oversee direction, growth, and long-term profitability. Through his career, he has held senior positions at firms including Ernst & Young and EDS.
The Market Creative
Retail and brand agency The Market Creative has strengthened its creative, account handling and business development teams with six new appointments following a strong start to the year.
Jeff Dillon has been appointed as senior art director, and is joined by Stuart Keates, who has been appointed as a creative artworker.
In addition, Nikita Lewis has taken the position of business development manager to grow the agency’s retail and brand portfolio, whilst Shaun Watson takes an account manager role and James Kay has been appointed as an account manager for Grafton Merchanting GB.
Holding company MDC Partners has teamed up with one of its agencies, Doner, to launch Cultura United Agency.
The new multicultural agency aims to bring together “specialized full-service advertising and public relations expertise with deep insights across Hispanic, African American and Asian audiences,” according to a statement.
Based in Los Angeles, Cultura United will be led by Anita Albán Gastelum. Previously, she was on the executive leadership team at IPG’s multicultural agency Axis.
DLKW Lowe has appointed Anna Vogt to the newly created role of head of planning.
Previously strategy director and partner at BBH London, Vogt has a strong track record in digital product and service innovation and a portfolio that has been creatively, commercially and culturally awarded.
The appointment comes as DLKW Lowe continues to build on its growth and integrated account offering.
Ensighten has appointed industry veteran Ian Woolley to lead its growing EMEA team.
Woolley has almost 20 years of experience in the industry and joins Ensighten following his role as chief commercial officer at Visual DNA.
His appointment follows a succession of senior hires this year, including Jerome Cail, who joined Ensighten from Tealium, Lars Schleibach who joined from IBM, and Alexander Gaertner from Adobe.
Morning all, here’s a glimpse at all the media and marketing news you should know today.
1. YouTube has beefed up its video ads with side-by-side product listings, reports AdAge. The Google-owned platform has updated TrueView ads so that retailers can use interactive card overlays to include product information, images and links to purchase products.
2. Disney is expanding it's $1bn MyMagic+ program, writes Business Insider. The mobile initiative uses wristbands and an app that allow Disney World visitors to unlock hotel room doors, pay for food and merchandise, and book dinner reservations or ride times. It's currently only available at the brand's flagship resort in Florida but is set to roll out other parks soon.
3. USA Today may cease publishing a daily print edition "within the next five or six years", according to editor in chief David Callaway. AdAge says that the remarks were made on Wednesday during a panel on the 'Future of Media'. If the
daily were to shutter its print edition, it would become the second major US newspaper to go online only, following the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.
4. Mozilla will soon let advertisers target firefox users based on browsing history, according to MediaPost. The tech company's Suggested Titles platform categorizes users based on their recent and frequent browsing history, and then shows users tiles from marketers, including content companies and other publishers, who want to reach specific segments.
5. Russian authorities have threatened to block Google, Twitter and Facebook if they fail to abide by the country's internet laws, reports the Huffington Post. Media watchdog Roskomnadzor has asked the firms to register bloggers who have more than 3,000 readers a day and remove websites which call for "unsanctioned protests and unrest."
6. Uber is allegedly seeking a $1bn credit line from banks, asserts the Wall Street Journal. About six to seven banks are expected to be part of the move, which could signal an eventual initial public offering for the ride-hailing app.
7. Good news for Back to the Future fans: Christopher Lloyd has reprised his role as Doctor Brown in Lego's latest ad, reports the Verge. The Doc features in the new spot for action-adventure video game Lego Dimensions, which lets fans use real toys in the in a virtual setting.
8. And Hillary Clinton is now on LinkedIn, notes Yahoo. As any good job applicant would, the presidential candidate has created a profile on the site so that voters can get to know her work history and qualifications.
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