Last year, Unilver, one of the world's largest advertisers and a bellweather for the ever-important CPG market, spent $8.6bn on ads, an 8% jump over the prior year.
And it invested heavily in digital, upping its digital ad spend a whopping 40%.
That would normally be reason for agency execs to cheer, but you like won't hear any champagne bottles popping.
The reason? According to Unilever CFO Jean-Marc Huet, the company is working to reduce "the part of the advertising spend which is used to make films, pay agencies and the like." And it isn't where it wants to be yet.
Despite the fact that real-time bidding is a complex and sometimes confusing space, media buyers and sellers alike continue to flock to RTBs, a trend that experts don't believe will end any time soon.
Real-time bidding, of course, isn't the end-all and be-all of digital advertising, and there are numerous areas for concern.
But is the entire model for how ads are bought and sold via RTBs broken?
The 2012 holiday shopping season was one for the online retail records and that led to a very merry Christmas for Google, which reported its fourth quarter earnings yesterday.
All eyes were on the search giant, which failed to deliver in the third quarter, much to the disappointment of Wall Street.
But there was no disappointment this time as the company delivered $14.4bn in revenue, a 36% year-over-year increase, and earnings of $2.9bn, up from $2.7bn in the same quarter a year ago.
Being the 800 pound gorilla of online payments isn't easy. Despite PayPal's ubiquity and the fact that it remains at the forefront of digital payments, including in the rapidly-evolving mobile payments space, the company's reputation is mixed.
Serving millions upon millions of customers isn't a walk in the park, and when something goes wrong with somebody's money, the world is bound to hear about it one way or another.
A business can't survive and thrive without customers, but when it comes to understanding customers, many companies feel like there's a huge gap between what they know and what they need and want to know.
In fact, companies "are desperate to understand more about their customer" according to Yesmail Interactive president Michael Fisher.
Last week, Facebook made what could prove to be one of its most important announcements ever.
After years of discussion, speculation and debate, the world's largest social network is finally executing on a search strategy, and while it doesn't look like a threat to Google, at least initially, Facebook's Graph Search is no less interesting.
Most companies involved in lead generation spend a considerable amount of time thinking about, well, lead generation, with an emphasis on generation.
Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is that far more organizations have mastered the art of generating leads than have mastered the science of converting leads into sales.
Ask folks about mobile operating systems and most will probably tell you that it's a two-horse race: Apple's iOS versus Google's Android.
The mobile OS landscape isn't this way because other companies haven't tried.
Microsoft has done some interesting things with Windows Phone, and Palm's webOS looked pretty darn promising when it launched.
Brick-and-mortar retailers may face challenges in competing online, but pure-play online retailers that think they've won the ecommerce game shouldn't count out their old-school competitors.
In fact, in some product categories, brick-and-mortar retailers are starting to beat out pure-play retailers.
For most businesses, marketing is a crucial component of success. If you can't market effectively, you can't sell and grow, and that spells trouble.
Thanks to the internet, the rise of digital marketing channels, and the abundance of marketing tools and technologies, companies have more marketing assets and capabilities than ever.
But figuring out how to use them correctly is often a challenge and there are a number of common mistakes that hold companies back. Here are five of the biggest and most detrimental.