tag:econsultancy.com,2008:/topics/media-planning-buying Latest Media planning & buying content from Econsultancy 2017-08-16T15:03:00+01:00 tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69343 2017-08-16T15:03:00+01:00 2017-08-16T15:03:00+01:00 Are marketers underestimating the fraud threat to influencer marketing? Patricio Robles <p>And in recent years, the rise of the programmatic has created a significant new ad fraud front. As Jeremy Hlavacek, VP of Global Automated Monetization at The Weather Company, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68578-the-weather-company-on-programmatic-ad-fraud-and-how-extreme-conditions-affect-business">explained</a>, "Companies running the exchanges have perhaps been a little bit liberal in terms of who they let into that exchange."</p> <p>The complexity and opaqueness that is often present in the programmatic ecosystem has led to inventory spoofing and unauthorized sellers, among other things, problems that the industry is now trying to stamp out with solutions <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69231-ads-txt-a-new-standard-for-fighting-inventory-spoofing-unauthorized-sellers-what-you-need-to-know">like Ads.txt</a>.</p> <p>Driven in part by fraud concerns, marketers have been turning to alternative types of digital advertising, such as native ads and influencer marketing, which appear to be less vulnerable to fraud.</p> <h3>But are they <em>really</em> less vulnerable to fraud?</h3> <p>Influencer marketing agency Mediakix has sparked headlines by demonstrating just how easy it is to scam in the now billion-dollar influencer marketing business.</p> <p>In <a href="http://mediakix.com/2017/08/fake-instagram-influencers-followers-bots-study/">a blog post</a>, it explained how it created two fake Instagram accounts, one, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/calibeachgirl310/">@calibeachgirl310</a>, using photos of a model obtained during a one-day photo shoot and the other, <a href="https://www.instagram.com/wanderingggirl/">wanderinggirl</a>, using stock photos. It then purchased followers for these accounts, at a cost of $3 to $8 per 1,000 followers.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/8303/calibeachgirl.jpg" alt="calibeachgirl fake insta" width="615" height="611"></p> <p>Initially, Mediakix limited the number of followers it purchased to 1,000 followers per day because it was "concerned that purchasing too many followers at the onset would result in Instagram flagging the account" but it discovered that it was able to add up to 15,000 fake followers at once "without encountering any issues."</p> <p>Finally, Mediakix paid around 12 cents per comment to generate fake comments on its accounts and between $4 and $9 per 1,000 likes to generate fake likes. For each photo on its fake Instagram account, the agency purchased between 500 and 2,500 likes and 10 to 50 comments.</p> <p>The real fun began once the two fake accounts had 10,000 followers. "Once we hit this threshold, we were able to sign the accounts up for a wide range of [influencer marketing] platforms," Mediakix explained. And it started applying for opportunities on these platforms.</p> <p>Ultimately, before Mediakix revealed its findings the fake influencer accounts were successfully able to land two paid brand deals for each account under which the non-existent influencers were "offered monetary compensation, free product, or both." </p> <p>For obvious reasons, Mediakix's experiment is raising eyebrows as it demonstrates that with modest effort and investment, it's possible to create out of thin air "influencers" who don't really exist and therefore aren't likely to influence anybody.</p> <p>While this kind of fraud does not affect the upper echelons of the influencer marketing world, where high-profile celebrities <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68953-can-pharma-companies-effectively-use-influencer-marketing/">like Kim Kardashian</a> are said to rake in five and even six figures per sponsored post, the implications are increasingly important. As Mediakix explained:</p> <blockquote> <p>Brands and advertisers eager to reach audiences on popular social media channels and seeking quick entry into the influencer marketing space, are turning to platforms, automation and micro-influencers in hopes of making the media buying process more turn-key and easier.</p> </blockquote> <p>By automating their influencer marketing efforts and working with so-called <a href="https://www.econsultancy.com/blog/67807-is-micro-influencer-marketing-viable">micro-influencers</a>, marketers risk falling victim to the kind of fraud that Mediakix has demonstrated is not just theoretically possible but can be successfully executed in the real world.</p> <p>While this doesn't mean that marketers should avoid influencer marketing, or automation and micro-influencers, it is a reminder that the fraud risk is not limited to a few digital channels. Indeed, <em>all</em> channels are vulnerable.</p> <h3>Where the dollars flow, fraud will go.</h3> <p>As a result, marketers will need to be more vigilant about how they plan and execute their influencer marketing strategies. And just as many are starting to demand more of their vendors in other channels, such as programmatic, they would be wise to demand that the influencer marketing agencies and platforms they work with don't ignore this threat.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69295 2017-08-09T11:43:04+01:00 2017-08-09T11:43:04+01:00 As companies embrace Amazon advertising, some SMBs struggle Patricio Robles <p>In fact, by some estimates, more than half of consumers <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68345-over-half-of-consumers-now-turn-to-amazon-first-for-product-search">now turn to Amazon first – even before Google – when they want to search for a product</a>.</p> <p>As a result of this, a growing number of companies are treating Amazon as an advertising channel and taking advantage of its growing suite of ad offerings. </p> <p>These companies include large brands like L’Oréal, <a href="https://digiday.com/uk/loreal-uk-shifting-search-budget-amazon/">which is now shifting some of its ad budget to Amazon</a> to capitalize on the fact that more than a third of beauty searches start on the ecommerce platform.</p> <p>While Amazon ads still only make up a single digit percentage of L’Oréal's ad budget, L’Oréal digital director Nick Buckley says that his company is "buying up all the inventory" it can on Amazon for the beauty terms its makeup brand is interested in. And as it expands to other categories, like skincare, "this will naturally increase the scale."</p> <p>Interestingly, L’Oréal isn't necessarily expecting its Amazon ads to drive sales immediately, or even on Amazon.</p> <p>“We're seeing people initially go to Amazon to find out information about a product before then jumping outside of that to YouTube, where they can see how to apply those products," Buckley explained to Digiday. "Then, they're moving on to Google to compare that same product with others. [Amazon is] an ecommerce platform, but we believe it's more than that."</p> <h3>SMBs are still learning the ropes</h3> <p>But while large brands like L’Oréal embrace Amazon Ads, some small and medium-sized business (SMBs) advertising through the retail giant are struggling to capitalize.</p> <p>In fact, according to <a href="https://www.netelixir.com/blog/amazon-for-small-businesses-friend-or-foe/">a study</a> recently published by search marketing agency NetElixir, 40% of SMBs running paid ads on Amazon say they are ineffective. </p> <p>SMBs cited a number of reasons for this. 23.7% of respondents who said their Amazon ads were ineffective cited a lack of know-how as the likely reason why. Almost a quarter (23.5%) cited lack of budget, 20.7% questioned whether Amazon was the right channel for their business, and 15.1% believed they lacked the time to make the ads work.</p> <p>Clearly, despite <a href="https://digiday.com/media/advertisers-warm-amazons-increasing-ad-pitch/">its promise to agencies</a> that it will become an "ad platform leader" that delivers "best-in-class service" and "strategic consultation," Amazon has work to do in educating SMBs on the best ways to make effective use of its paid ad offerings.</p> <p>But that's not unexpected. After all, it took years before there was broad knowledge of Google and Facebook advertising, especially among SMBs.</p> <p>The good news is that advertisers willing to invest in getting ahead of the curve could very well find that they're rewarded for the effort, just as many early adopters of Google and Facebook advertising were. After all, there's still less demand for Amazon ads right now, and the demand that exists isn't necessarily from sophisticated advertisers, meaning those advertisers that figure out what they're doing first could have a period of time in which to capitalize.</p> <p>Additionally, as the return on investment for digital ad spend is dropping, there's an imperative for advertisers to explore newer advertising channels, and despite some early challenges, few look as promising as Amazon.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69309 2017-08-03T14:32:33+01:00 2017-08-03T14:32:33+01:00 How much waste is in the digital ad market? Patricio Robles <p>The experience of one of the world's largest advertisers, Procter &amp; Gamble (P&amp;G), suggests that it is. <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/p-g-cuts-more-than-100-million-in-largely-ineffective-digital-ads-1501191104">As detailed by</a> the Wall Street Journal, the CPG giant reduced spending on digital ads by more than $100m last quarter.</p> <p>According to CFO Jon Moeller, almost all of the company's cuts came from digital and he explained the rationale behind the decision:</p> <blockquote> <p>What it reflected was a choice to cut spending from a digital standpoint where it was ineffective, where either we were serving bots as opposed to human beings or where the placement of ads was not facilitating the equity of our brands.</p> </blockquote> <p>He elaborated:</p> <blockquote> <p>We got some data that said either it was in a bad place or it was not effective. And we shut it down and said, 'We're not going to follow a formula of how much you spend or share of voice. We want every dollar to add value for the consumer or add value for our stakeholders.'</p> </blockquote> <p>Despite the reductions, P&amp;G said that its business wasn't harmed. "We didn't see a reduction in the growth rate,"  Moeller told investors. "What that tells me is that the spending we cut was largely ineffective."</p> <p>P&amp;G's move raises a number of questions. Perhaps the biggest: just how much more wasteful spending can P&amp;G identify and eliminate without hurting its business?</p> <p>Interestingly, it appears that it might not take as much effort for advertisers to at least start separating the digital wheat from the chaff. For example, in March, the New York Times <a href="https://econsultancy.com/admin/blog_posts/69309-how-much-waste-is-in-the-digital-ad-market/edit/https:/www.nytimes.com/2017/03/29/business/chase-ads-youtube-fake-news-offensive-videos.html">revealed</a> that JPMorgan Chase had reduced the number of sites its ads appeared on from 400,000 to 5,000 with "little change in the cost of impressions or the visibility of its ads on the internet."</p> <p>JPMorgan Chase's approach? It first eliminated all of the sites that didn't generate any activity beyond an impression and then had an intern review the 12,000 sites that remained after that initial filter was applied.</p> <p>One might suggest that JPMorgan Chase's approach was somewhat crude and therefore subject to some risk, but the initial results spoke for themselves and seemed to confirm what a lot of people already knew: there is a significant amount of junk inventory out there.</p> <p>To date, the high ROI of digital ads has enabled many brand advertisers to keep buying inventory of questionable quality, particularly <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66712-former-brand-marketer-banner-ads-suck-but-they-re-great/">sucky banner ads</a>, but that dynamic could very well be changing.</p> <h3>Canaries in the coal mine</h3> <p>While it's too early to tell if more brands will follow the lead of P&amp;G and JPMorgan Chase, it seems more than likely that brands will be forced to make changes as the digital ad market matures.</p> <p>One of the reasons for this is that the return on investment for digital ad spend is dropping as demand for quality inventory grows faster than supply. According to the 2017 Marketing Intelligence Report published by Analytic Partners, ROI on paid search, display and digital video ads has fallen by 27%, 32% and 14% respectively over the past six years.</p> <p>"Online ROIs will continue to fall until they are on parity with offline, largely made up of TV spend," Joe LaSala, Analytic Partners' VP of marketing, <a href="https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/305181/paid-search-roi-continues-to-fall.html">stated</a>. </p> <p>That means that advertisers large and small will have little choice but to get more vigilant about where their digital ad spend is going. After all, if the ROI of online ads eventually reaches parity with offline ads, advertisers will simply not be able to continue purchasing the same amount of inventory without spending significantly more money. And if they aren't careful about where they continue to buy, and where they cut, they could see dramatic drops in ROI.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69296 2017-07-28T14:34:27+01:00 2017-07-28T14:34:27+01:00 10 superb digital marketing stats we’ve seen this week Nikki Gilliland <p>On we go…</p> <h3>Only 25% of data is being used for real-time customer engagement</h3> <p>Despite 60% of UK organisations believing that real-time customer engagement can deliver a 10%-40% increase in revenue, those same organisations are collecting less than a third of relevant data on their customers.</p> <p>What’s more, just 25% of this dataset is being used in segmentation for real-time customer engagement.</p> <p>These stats come from SAS’s <a href="https://www.sas.com/en_gb/whitepapers/real-time-customer-experience-report.html" target="_blank">Age of Now</a> report, which also reveals how slow companies are to act. It says that only 16% of UK organisations can adjust their marketing communication in real-time based on customer behaviour.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/7888/SAS.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="327"></p> <h3>42% of customers more impatient due to reliance on technology</h3> <p>A new survey by Fetch and YouGov suggests UK consumers are increasingly looking to new technology for functional purposes, with 81% of millennials being more receptive than older generations to try new tech in order to improve the speed at which they do things.</p> <p>42% of UK consumers now say they are more impatient today than they were five years ago, mainly due to an over-reliance on technology to complete everyday life activities.</p> <p>When it comes to food, 61% of Brits are unwilling to wait 45 minutes or more for a takeaway they ordered online or using an app. Similarly, 22% of consumers say they are only willing to wait between 11-15mins for a taxi service.</p> <h3>CPC costs reach an all-time high</h3> <p>iProspect has just released its <a href="https://www.iprospect.com/en/us/insights/povs/paid-search-trends-2017-q2/" target="_blank">Q2 report</a>, which includes in-depth analysis of data from more than 1,800 AdWords accounts.</p> <p>It has revealed that CPC costs continued to rise in Q2, reaching their highest recorded levels since 2014. Despite this, iProspect found year-on-year impressions and clicks declined 16% and 27.5% respectively, as advertisers were forced to pay more per click while dealing with diminishing budgets.</p> <p>Elsewhere, it found mobile CPC to be on the rise, increasing 17% from Q1 to Q2 of this year and 52% year-on-year. Similarly, mobile click share increased 22% year-on-year. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/7890/iProspect.JPG" alt="" width="743" height="547"></p> <h3>Over 60% of SMB’s attribute half or more of sales to Amazon</h3> <p>In a survey of 503 small- to mid-size retailers, NetElixir found that 60% of respondents attribute 50% or more of their ecommerce sales to Amazon. Interestingly, 26.6% are seeing a 50/50 split from their website vs. marketplaces like Amazon and eBay.</p> <p>In terms of the reasons why SMBs are choosing to sell on Amazon, 52% said that the potential for increased sales volume is the biggest benefit, 32.6% said increased brand exposure and 11.3% noted solid infrastructure. Conversely, 45% cited lower margins as the biggest downside.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">What was the biggest benefit and downside of <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Amazon?src=hash">#Amazon</a>? <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/webinar?src=hash">#webinar</a> <a href="https://t.co/OhOnUZG67Z">pic.twitter.com/OhOnUZG67Z</a></p> — NetElixir (@NetElixir) <a href="https://twitter.com/NetElixir/status/890292060938543105">July 26, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>UK advertising spend grows 1.3% YoY in Q1 2017</h3> <p>WARC’s latest <a href="http://expenditurereport.warc.com/" target="_blank">Expenditure Report</a> has revealed that overall ad spend grew 1.3% to reach £5.318bn in Q1 2017. But despite being the 15th consecutive quarter of growth, it was actually the slowest rate seen in four years.</p> <p>This growth also occurred despite a 6.2% decline in total television advertising spend – TV’s first fall since 2009. However, it is forecast to recover next year with 2.5% growth in 2018.</p> <p>Meanwhile, online ad spend grew 10.1% year-on-year, and mobile growth was recorded at an impressive 36.2%.</p> <h3>Retailers wrongly assume that customers value speed over free shipping</h3> <p>According to a new report by <a href="http://www2.temando.com/l/86602/2017-07-10/4g564b" target="_blank">Temando</a>, 86% of UK shoppers prefer free delivery over fast delivery. However, the majority of retailers’ surveyed wrongly assume that customers place greater value on a fast shipping service.</p> <p>As a result of this misconception, many retailers are failing to respond to customer demands, with just 27% offering free standard shipping every day. Even worse, almost a quarter of retailers admit that that they don't use free shipping as a promotional tool.</p> <p>With 58% of shoppers stating that they’d shop more if free shipping was offered, many online retailers are still missing a trick.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/7889/Tamando.JPG" alt="" width="780" height="439"></p> <h3>Usage of connected TV’s predicted to grow 10.1% in the US this year</h3> <p>Emarketer says that usage of connected TVs will continue to surge in 2017, with 168.1m Americans predicted to use an internet-connected television this year – up 10.1% on 2016.</p> <p>In terms of brands, it predicts that 38.9m Americans will use a Roku device at least once a month – 19.3% more than in 2016. Meanwhile, 36.9m will use a ChromeCast and 35.8m will use an Amazon Fire TV. Just 21.3m users are expected to use an Apple TV.</p> <h3>AI predicted to create over 2.5m jobs in the next 15 years</h3> <p>PwC has estimated that by 2030, 30% of British jobs will be lost to automation. On the back of this, <a href="https://joblift.co.uk/Press/artificial-intelligence-and-automation-potential-job-creation-will-fill-only-19-of-the-hole-left-by-robotic-job-replacement" target="_blank">Joblift</a> has further analysed the situation, comparing potential job creation with jobs lost.</p> <p>Research shows that 136,939 jobs dealing with AI and automation have been posted in the last 12 months, and jobs in this field have increased by an average of 0.06% each month.</p> <p>On this basis, calculations suggest that over the next 15 years, AI, automation and robotics will create 2,535,009 new jobs in total. However, by 2031, 13,375,363 jobs will be at risk from automation, meaning that newly created roles would be able to fill only 19% of the jobs lost.</p> <h3>John Lewis tops UK brand health rankings</h3> <p>John Lewis has ranked first in YouGov’s BrandIndex list of UK brand ‘health’. The ranking is based on consumer perceptions of a brand’s quality, value, impression, satisfaction, reputation and whether consumers would recommend the brand to others.</p> <p>BBC iPlayer comes in at number two on the list, followed by Sony and Marks &amp; Spencer. In contrast to these older, more heritage-based brands, the global list was topped by younger tech brands like Google, YouTube, and Facebook. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/7892/Brand_health.JPG" alt="" width="500" height="291"></p> <h3>Cause-related ads generate more views &amp; engagement</h3> <p><a href="https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/advertising-channels/video/cause-related-marketing-purpose-driven-ads/" target="_blank">Pixability</a> has revealed that the number of cause-related ads created by the top 100 global brands has increased four times over the past five years.</p> <p>Women’s empowerment accounted for 24% of these ads, making it the top featured issue. Meanwhile, 17% of ads were related to the topic of community aid and 14% were about sustainability.</p> <p>Pixability also found that the average number of views for cause-driven videos was almost 1m more than for those not related to a particular cause. The engagement rate was also 0.31% for cause-related ads compared to 0.29% for the rest.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/7891/Cause_related_ads.JPG" alt="" width="750" height="384"></p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69276 2017-07-25T15:00:00+01:00 2017-07-25T15:00:00+01:00 Following YouTube's brand safety backlash, will ad relevance take center stage? Patricio Robles <p>But another crisis could be brewing for Google as advertisers wise up to the fact that their ads aren't always being displayed alongside relevant content. </p> <p>As detailed by AdAge's Jack Neff, one advertiser reviewed 1,000 YouTube videos its ads had been displayed with and came to the conclusion: "A lot of inventory was going to the wrong place."</p> <p>What does that mean in practice?</p> <p>Zefyr, a VideoID technology provider, performs audits for advertisers and Andrew Serby, the company's director of marketing, gave the example of alcohol marketers' ads "showing up in front of 'Minecraft' videos, Peppa Pig and all this problematic content where the only possible consumer is a kid."</p> <p>Serby further explained:</p> <blockquote> <p>We've looked at several campaigns where the target is a 25-year-old male or a 35-year-old woman, and no matter what, they're running against Peppa Pig videos, because the algorithm goes to where the eyeballs are, and younger people aren't skipping ads, and if there's a shared device and you're demo targeting, mom hands the kid an iPad and they see it.</p> </blockquote> <p>Oops. For all of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69115-what-marketers-need-to-know-about-google-attribution">Google's efforts to build tech that can track consumers across devices</a>, it's targeting capabilities are clearly falling short in this type of shared device scenario. </p> <p>John Snyder, CEO of Grapeshot, a "context marketing engine", suggests that this is because Google is ignoring the relevance problem. "They let these things happen because they're a media company, and they want to sell as many ads as possible. Basically, the tools are there. They're just not using them," he told AdAge.</p> <p>Grapeshot's tool, which is used by brands like Unilever, Johnson &amp; Johnson and Chase, as well as media agencies including Group M and Ogilvy, has access to Facebook inventory but not YouTube inventory.</p> <h3>So what can advertisers do?</h3> <p>They can gain access to theoretically more relevant inventory through the Google Preferred program, which "aggregates YouTube's top content...into easy-to-buy packages for brand advertisers." These packages offer access to 12 "lineups" that fit into categories like Beauty and Fashion and Entertainment and Pop Culture.</p> <p>But as AdAge's Neff notes, Google Preferred is already crowded and the costs of participation are hefty. </p> <p>"Preferred inventory is scarcer and pricier, subject either to category exclusives or more clutter from competitors, and leaves out lots of high-quality content," he explained, while also noting that Google Preferred, at one point, even included inventory from PewDiePie, the YouTube star whose offensive videos sparked the brand safety backlash.</p> <p>Ultimately, there are few easy answers. Nobody in the ecosystem is realistically going to pay human reviewers to sort through millions upon millions of videos, screening them for relevance. Brand safety is a big enough challenge.</p> <p>More likely, advertisers will have to come to grips with the fact that there will always be a conflict between reach and relevance, meaning being able to buy millions or billions of impressions in an automated or semi-automated fashion while ensuring relevance is little more than a pipe dream.</p> <p>Instead, advertisers will need to accept that greater relevance will come at a higher cost through programs like Google Preferred, as well as <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68844-should-advertisers-be-more-picky-with-programmatic">private programmatic exchanges</a> (programmatic direct). </p> <p>They will also have to look at their investments in alternative ad formats, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/69245-native-ads-gain-as-advertisers-seek-brand-safety-away-from-programmatic">such as native ads</a>, which not only promise greater levels of brand safety but could also be easier to control vis-à-vis relevance.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69231 2017-07-11T15:00:00+01:00 2017-07-11T15:00:00+01:00 Ads.txt, a new standard for fighting inventory spoofing & unauthorized sellers: What you need to know Patricio Robles <h3>Ads.txt allows publishers to broadcast a list of authorized sellers of their ad inventory</h3> <p>The idea behind Ads.txt, which stands for Authorized Digital Sellers, is simple: by providing publishers with a means to tell the world who is authorized to sell their ad inventory, the digital ad ecosystem will get a much-needed boost of transparency that can help weed out scammers engaged in <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68578-the-weather-company-on-programmatic-ad-fraud-and-how-extreme-conditions-affect-business/">ad fraud</a>.</p> <p>The Ads.txt format is equally simple: an ads.txt file is hosted on publishers' websites and contains a comma-delimited list of four fields (three required and one optional) and one record per line.</p> <p>For example, a publisher, example.com, to show that it has authorized a reseller, somessp.com, to sell its inventory would include the following on a single line in its ads.txt file: </p> <blockquote> <p>somessp.com, 12345, RESELLER</p> </blockquote> <h3>The IAB has built a crawler that the media buying ecosystem can use</h3> <p>The IAB is providing <a href="https://github.com/InteractiveAdvertisingBureau/adstxtcrawler">an open-source reference implementation for an Ads.txt crawler</a>. This can be used by media buyers to create their own crawlers to pull Ads.txt data and incorporate it into their bidding systems.</p> <h3>Lots of companies have voiced support for it</h3> <p>Ad firms including Google, AppNexus, Rocket Fuel and The Trade Desk, as well as publishers like Business Insider, have voiced their support for Ads.txt.</p> <p>According to Scott Spencer, Google's Director of Sustainable Ads, "It's great to see the industry moving quickly to address the issue of counterfeit inventory with Ads.txt. Google fully supports ads.txt, and with a finalized spec, we'll begin integrating Ads.txt functionality into all our ads systems to make sure advertisers' spend reaches the intended publishers."</p> <h3>Ads.txt's success will require mass adoption</h3> <p>While the initial support for Ads.txt looks promising, for it to become a truly powerful weapon in the fight against ad fraud, large percentages of both publishers <em>and</em> media buyers will need to follow through in adopting it. For example, if enough publishers don't adopt Ads.txt, or a meaningful percentage of media buyers fail to take advantage of Ads.txt in their bidding, the specification will be for naught.</p> <p>On the media buying side, a June article published by AdExchanger <a href="https://adexchanger.com/platforms/buyers-ready-pull-trigger-ads-txt/">reported that</a> "no buyers that AdExchanger spoke to had immediate plans to implement campaigns using ads.txt."</p> <p>According to Melissa Bonnick, VP of programmatic strategy at Havas Group's programmatic trading desk Affiperf, "We will be paying attention to who starts to implement ads.txt." Translation: we're not going to incorporate Ads.txt into our bidding until there's a good enough reason to do so.</p> <h3>There are reasons some publishers might not adopt Ads.txt</h3> <p>While Ads.txt is relatively easy for publishers to adopt, there are a number of reasons that some publishers might not opt to do so.</p> <p>One of the biggest: even though transparency is a good word in the digital advertising ecosystem today, when push comes to shove, some publishers are likely to be uncomfortable letting the world know who is selling their inventory. </p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/69150 2017-06-08T09:45:00+01:00 2017-06-08T09:45:00+01:00 Google Contributor: What you need to know Patricio Robles <p>But that is just the start of Google's efforts to ensure that it doesn't lose out big time as ad blocking continues to grow. Last week, the Mountain View-based company launched <a href="https://contributor.google.com">Google Contributor</a>, a new offering that allows users to pay to remove ads from the sites they visit.</p> <p>Here's what you need to know about it..</p> <h3>It's an "ad removal pass for the web" </h3> <p>Google Contributor allows users with a Google account to load $5 onto a virtual "pass" and opt into paying a per-page fee on sites that they don't want to see ads displayed on.</p> <p>The per-page fee is set by the publisher. Users manage their pass from their Google accounts, eliminating the need to establish and manage accounts with each publisher. With a few clicks, users can opt out of paying for content and revert to seeing ads.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/6662/pass.png" alt="google pass" width="615" height="311"></p> <p><em>A range of publishers have signed up in beta</em></p> <h3>Google is going to help publishers deal with ad block users</h3> <p>Google is also launching a publisher solution called Funding Choices that works in conjunction with Contributor. When enabled, Funding Choices will give publishers the ability to identify users who are using an ad blocker and prompt them to either disable their ad blocker or opt-in to supporting the publisher through Contributor.</p> <h3>Google is beta testing Contributor</h3> <p>At launch, a dozen sites are part of the Google Contributor beta. These include Popular Mechanics, Business Insider (UK) and Townhall.</p> <p>Google is, however, inviting interested publishers to apply to join the Contributor beta as it expands.</p> <h3>Google isn't the first to try micropayments</h3> <p>Google isn't the first company to try building a way for individuals to support sites through micropayments. Major companies <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/5598-paypal-plans-better-micropayment-solution/">like PayPal</a> as well as startups like Flattr have tried to make micropayments a bigger part of the way consumers pay for content and services on the web, but <a href="https://www.editorandpublisher.com/news/nickel-and-dimed-micropayments-wont-solve-ad-blocking/">none have cracked the code</a>. Even so, entrepreneurs continue to launch micropayment schemes.</p> <p>Google, of course, has some natural advantages that could help it succeed where others have failed, and coupled with publisher urgency to deal with ad blocking, the timing could be right.</p> <h3>Some see a conflict of interest</h3> <p>Some observers, however, are concerned that Google's decision to include an ad blocker in Chrome <a href="https://news.vice.com/story/google-ad-blocker-could-make-it-the-prosecutor-judge-and-jury-of-online-ads">could turn it into the "judge and jury" of online ads</a>, raising anti-trust concerns.</p> <p>Google Contributor could eventually factor into the debate. After all, the inclusion of the ad blocker in Chrome will logically exacerbate the ad blocking problem for publishers at the same time Google is pushing a solution to deal with ad blocking that it stands to profit from if it works.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">This looks like instant antitrust to me. Restriction of competition through dominant position in browser. <a href="https://t.co/5tlPhLX0QE">https://t.co/5tlPhLX0QE</a></p> — Charles Arthur (@charlesarthur) <a href="https://twitter.com/charlesarthur/status/870544751120011264">June 2, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>It could still be a tough sell</h3> <p>Google's size and position combined with publisher interest in micropayments as a solution to ad blocking won't necessarily help the search giant finally solve the micropayments puzzle.</p> <p>In fact, Google Contributor isn't even Google's first foray into the world of micropayments. In 2011, <a href="https://news.googleblog.com/2011/02/simple-way-for-publishers-to-manage.html">it launched</a> Google One Pass, "a service that lets publishers set their own prices and terms for their digital content." One Pass was shuttered in 2012.</p> <p>While Contributor is not a carbon copy of One Pass, the harsh reality is that a large percentage of consumers are opposed to paying for content and don't feel an obligation to view ads. Therefore, convincing them that paying pennies (or fractions of a penny) at a time for viewing content without ads is probably going to remain a tough sell, especially as ad blocking technology becomes harder and harder to detect.</p> <p>Notwithstanding consumers' appetite for micropayments, Google Contributor might not be so appealing to publishers, a number of which have <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67130-seven-ways-publishers-are-addressing-ad-blocking/">turned to subscriptions</a> to offset declines in ad revenue.</p> <p>Unlike subscriptions, micropayments won't necessarily offer a predictible revenue stream and with Google sitting between them and their users, they won't have the opportunity to build direct relationships with the people who matter most to their business. What's more, consumers <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/4657-subscriptions-preferred-over-micropayments-in-the-uk-report/">have for years demonstrated a preference for subscriptions</a> over micropayments.</p> <p><em><strong>More on ad blocking:</strong></em></p> <ul> <li><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68502-three-creative-ways-publishers-and-advertisers-are-combating-ad-blockers/">Three creative ways publishers and advertisers are combating ad blockers</a></li> </ul> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68996 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 2017-04-13T15:22:31+01:00 10 cracking digital marketing stats from this week Nikki Gilliland <h3>28% of marketers still feeling unprepared for the GDPR</h3> <p>With just over a year until the GDPR comes into force, a <a href="https://dma.org.uk/infographic/infographic-b2b-marketing-and-the-gdpr" target="_blank">new infographic</a> from the DMA shows that many marketers are failing to prepare.</p> <p>While general awareness of the GDPR is up, 28% of B2B marketers still feeling unprepared – down just 2% from previous figures. Only two-thirds of survey respondents said their business would be GDPR compliant in time for 2018.</p> <p>In terms of the causes of concern, 37% of marketers said profiling, while 50% said it was legacy data. The biggest was by far consent, with 70% agreeing that it would change under the GDPR.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5442/DMA_infographic.JPG" alt="" width="618" height="324"></p> <h3>Three fifths of marketing graduates have no knowledge of affiliate strategies</h3> <p>Affilinet has been researching how well marketing students are prepared for a career in the industry, with results showing that many are graduating with little or no knowledge of affiliate or performance-based marketing.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of graduates said that they have studied modules related to affiliate marketing. Out of these, however, 67% stated that the information taught was ‘outdated and unhelpful’.</p> <p>52% admitted that they’d needed to teach themselves to progress in their career, with 22% learning through courses later on. The remaining 26% of marketing graduates said that they still had no knowledge of affiliate practices whatsoever.</p> <h3>Mobile drives digital ad spend past £10bn</h3> <p>According to a new report from <a href="https://iabuk.net/about/press/archive/mobile-drives-digital-ad-spend-past-10-billion-threshold" target="_blank">IAB and PwC,</a> digital advertising grew at its fastest rate for nine years in 2016, increasing 17.3% to £10.3bn.</p> <p>Mobile video is now the fastest-growing ad format, with spend on mobile video ads doubling to £693m. Consequently, it now accounts for 29% of the total growth in ad spend.</p> <p>Insight suggests that the rise reflects the increasing amount of users watching video clips on their smartphones, with two in five people reportedly saying they now watch mobile video more than they did a year ago.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5440/PwC_IAB.png" alt="" width="780" height="480"></p> <h3>Just 13% of employees able to name their company CMO</h3> <p>New research by eShare suggests that chief marketing officers are one of the least recognised board members, with just 13% of employees able to identify the CMO of their organisation.</p> <p>In a survey of over 1,000 UK employees, just 8% were able to identify the chairperson and 14% were able to identify the chief information officer and chief financial officer. In contrast, 36% were able to name the CEO, making this the most visible board member to UK employees.</p> <h3>66% of beauty shoppers use Instagram for inspiration</h3> <p>Facebook and Instagram has revealed how beauty shoppers are increasingly turning to social media to help inform their purchases.</p> <p>The Mobile Makeover Report states that 66% of beauty shoppers look to social media for inspiration on how to achieve their perfect look, 70% for learning make-up techniques and 62% for advice on products. </p> <p>Tutorials are among the most popular types of video, with 74% of beauty viewers watching ‘how-to’ content. You can read more about how mobile is impacting the beauty industry <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/68992-three-ways-mobile-is-impacting-the-beauty-industry/" target="_blank">in this article</a>. </p> <h3>41% of UK shoppers will spend more to make Easter special</h3> <p>Savvy has been exploring how consumers will spend their money over Easter, with 62% of UK shoppers planning to celebrate over the bank holiday weekend.</p> <p>In a survey, 41% of respondents said they don’t mind spending more in order to make their Easter celebrations special. That being said, shoppers will still be on the hunt for a discount, with 60% saying they already know where they’ll can find the best value Easter eggs.</p> <p>Unsurprisingly, eggs will be the most popular item to buy, followed by chocolate in general, and the ingredients for a roast dinner. </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5441/Savvy.JPG" alt="" width="700" height="452"></p> <h3>62% of ecommerce brands don’t personalise digital experiences</h3> <p>Episerver’s <a href="http://www.episerver.com/learn/resources/research--reports/seven-digital-commerce-trends-for-retail-2017/" target="_blank">State of Digital Commerce</a> report suggests that just 38% of ecommerce brands are incorporating personalisation into their current marketing strategies. Despite 70% of companies using email marketing, only 28% are using triggered emails to re-engage non-converting customers.</p> <p>What’s more, despite the abundance of data available, 46% of marketers admit they wouldn’t be able to create an omnichannel campaign due to a lack of insight into the customer journey.</p> <h3>Paddy Power generates the most social engagements during Grand National</h3> <p>4C has analysed the level of social engagement generated from TV ads during the Grand National. Results show that Paddy Paddy stole the show, with its two ads generating 59,527 engagements from public mentions, retweets, comments and likes on social channels – double the engagement of competitors.</p> <p>SkyBet saw 16,840 engagements and Coral saw 18,733. Meanwhile, despite its close association with horse racing, William Hill saw just 2,812 over the course of the event.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet"> <p lang="en" dir="ltr">Looking for some guidance on how to pick the winner of the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GrandNational?src=hash">#GrandNational</a>? Watch this video to find out how the experts do it. <a href="https://t.co/27q9DPQJP0">pic.twitter.com/27q9DPQJP0</a></p> — Paddy Power (@paddypower) <a href="https://twitter.com/paddypower/status/850644686096281600">April 8, 2017</a> </blockquote> <h3>Consumers see Snapchat as a passing trend for brand communication</h3> <p>A new study by <a href="https://uk.mailjet.com/blog/guide/email-innovations-research-report/" target="_blank">Mailjet</a> has revealed that consumers are displaying a lack of faith in new platforms like Pinterest and Snapchat and their role in brand communication.</p> <p>41% of consumers believe that email is the platform most people will be using in 10 years’ time, followed by 26% of consumers saying the same for Facebook and WhatsApp. In contrast, just 11% of people are certain that Pinterest and LinkedIn will be used in a decade and only 14% are confident that Snapchat will still exist. </p> <p>Despite many brands getting involved, major updates to platforms are also going unnoticed by consumers, with just 6% of people noting Instagram’s ‘buy button’.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5443/Instagram_shop_now.JPG" alt="" width="680" height="452"></p> <h3>Supermarket promotions fall to lowest level in 11 years</h3> <p>According to <a href="http://www.nielsen.com/uk/en/press-room/2017/supermarket-promotions-at-lowest-level-for-11-years.html" target="_blank">Nielsen</a>, supermarket promotions have fallen to their lowest level in 11 years in the UK, with just 26% of consumer spend going towards temporary discounts or multi-buy offers in the four weeks up until 25th March 2017.</p> <p>Nielsen suggests that this is due to supermarkets becoming increasingly price competitive, turning temporary price reductions into permanent cuts as a result.</p> <p>Year-on-year supermarket sales have also fallen, with the late Easter period said to have contributed to a 2.6% decrease in the four-week period to March 25th.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68937 2017-03-24T15:05:08+00:00 2017-03-24T15:05:08+00:00 Stories from SXSW 2017: ad blocking, content distribution, and Joe Biden Nick Hammond <p>These looked at the areas of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67076-the-rise-and-rise-of-ad-blockers-stats/">ad blocking</a>, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">influencer marketing</a>, social video, <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/66752-10-steps-to-better-content-distribution/">content distribution</a>, and the thoughts of Joe Biden, former Vice-President of the USA.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP67501">Ending The Ad Blocking Wars</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this session included representatives from Brave Software, The New York Times, Digital Context Next and The Christian Science Monitor. They considered whether publishers can improve the ad experience to persuade readers to turn off blockers? Or will add blockers bring about the end of the free web?</p> <p>As you may imagine there was no simple solution to this conundrum. The two biggest players in the digital space (you know who they are) are not affected by ad blocking and therefore are not bothered by its effects. </p> <p>Although ad blocking is plateauing (<a href="http://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/uk-ad-blocking-levels-stabilise-22/1425085?bulletin=campaign_breakfast_briefing&amp;utm_medium=EMAIL&amp;utm_campaign=eNews%20Bulletin&amp;utm_source=20170223&amp;utm_content=www_campaignlive_co_uk_ar_6">at least in the UK</a>), the real squeeze is on smaller publishers, the little guys getting caught in the middle. These organisations are caught in an imperfect storm, made up of greater reliance on ad revenues and lacking the engineering investment levels and knowledge to respond to the threat.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0008/5034/adblock-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="163"></p> <p>As a result of this, there is a real possibility of local, smaller publishers, starting to disappear. This could create a regional ‘news desert’ as even more people seek their news from social media. Currently 44% of Americans use Facebook as a news source and the number is rising. </p> <p>There was also a discussion around different types of ad blockers. Much of the debate tends to be around the big players, such as AdBlock which has 200m downloads; but there are other providers with different business models. <a href="https://brave.com">Brave Software</a> (represented on the panel) doesn’t just remove ads – it replaces them with new ads and splits the revenue between publishers, users, network partners and the company itself.</p> <p>Brendan Eich from Brave suggested that this software is the first ‘post-bad’ ad blocking solution. Still early days for this, 'softer' ad blocking model and it will be interesting to see how it plays out.</p> <p>Predictably, content was identified as a way to get around this challenge. The NYT emphasized the importance of engaging content – ‘pull instead of push’ – and advised strongly against using technology to push advertising onto consumers.</p> <p>Sponsored ‘native’ content is not necessarily the panacea to solve this problem, as publishers often tag creative to acquire more data; these are then identified as ads and therefore blocked. </p> <p>Ad fraud was a serious related issue discussed, with an estimated 23% of global video traffic being served to robots. </p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP65228">The Hundred Thousand Dollar Snap(chat)</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this one was ShopStyle and Neiman Marcus, who considered the opportunities and challenges arising from social commerce, as well as the <a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-rise-of-influencers/">growing importance of influencers</a>, particularly within retail.</p> <p>The background to this is the change in consumers’ consumption of media and the importance of the mobile channel. 30% of all time online is spent on social and 60% of that is on mobile.  </p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5033/snapchat_logo.jpg" alt="" width="470" height="243"></p> <p>As is often not the case, influencer activity should be approached in the same manner as any other communications campaign. It is not safe to assume that a single endorsement – ‘one and done’ – will do the trick. An effective frequency of ‘seven’, was mentioned as appropriate to the fashion retail sector. As with other channels, planning should be considered over an extended activity period, not as a series of one-offs. </p> <p>In addition, activity should not undermine influencers connections with their followers, and these retail influencers can be initially incentivised through special deals to offer to their followers. </p> <p>An interesting analogy compared the purchasing process for expensive items, such as for a Chanel bag, to the dating process; where buyers return to the store to view and interact with the product over time. In instances like these, iterative influencer messages can be effective in moving an individual closer to purchase.</p> <p>Strategies need to be different across separate social channels. Facebook is all about advertising, whilst Instagram benefits from a more organic approach. Snapchat is the new kid on the block and the hardest to measure. </p> <p>Above all, brands need to work out when to act as themselves, or through influencers in the social space. What are the key KPIs, how to measure these and how to ensure valuable content lives effectively beyond social channels? </p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP97038">Social Video and The Future of Consumption</a></strong></p> <p>Representatives from Vox Media, Vice Media and the New York Times joined this panel to discuss how social media is impacting video journalism. This session made very clear that Facebook is now the platform for video consumption. </p> <p>The NYT identified Facebook as ‘the stage’, and the essential channel for engagement and getting time with its audience. A major focus for NYT is around <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67808-10-pioneering-examples-of-brands-using-facebook-live/">Facebook Live</a>, which is being used to provide real-time coverage of news events. They are even looking at using this channel to create crowd-sourced investigations, a kind of mass citizen journalism.</p> <p>The upside of the live video phenomenon is that brands have an opportunity to powerfully engage with a massive audience, using current, exciting and rapidly changing content. </p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fnytimes%2Fvideos%2F10151119750979999%2F&amp;show_text=1&amp;width=560" width="560" height="476"></iframe></p> <p>The downside of live unedited content, is a concern around quality and the loss of editorial perspective. As a result, insightful user comments can be important to create context; but recognising this may not always be the case, Vice has indicated that all user comments are monitored in real-time.</p> <p>More controversially, the <a href="https://tytnetwork.com">The Young Turks</a> news channel is allowing users to pay to have their comments listed. Although the rise in importance of user comments can be seen as a democratic trend, allowing a financial bias on inputs would seem rather less altruistic. </p> <p>Another concern is that a publisher brand cannot easily prevent incorrect stories or unsuitable content being viewed. They can provide a retraction or an alternative perspective later on; but this may be seen by many fewer people. A good example of this would be the <a href="http://money.cnn.com/2016/06/10/technology/hillary-clinton-google-search-results/">SourceFed Hilary Clinton conspiracy theory</a>. </p> <p>For me, this progression towards an ‘always-on’ society is worryingly redolent of Dave Eggers' book, and now film, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QCOXARv6J9k">The Circle.</a></p> <p>In any event, the benchmark for how quality video is defined is changing rapidly as we transition from a ‘TV-centric’ to ‘mobile video-centric’ world. In the digital space, where everyone with a phone is a director, quality is now less about production values and more about the story, speed and authenticity. </p> <p>Separate approaches to video content are needed across different channels. For example on Facebook a ‘raw’ approach is more appropriate and authentic. <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67977-four-examples-of-brands-using-an-episodic-content-marketing-strategy/">Episodic content</a> on Snapchat is popular, with bitesize ‘episodes’ being used to tell a story in a manner entirely fitting to the medium. </p> <p>With live video, there is also a greater ethical onus on brands to decide what they will show and what they will not. A good example of content that could be considered to be on this demarcation line is <a href="http://mashable.com/2016/10/21/snapchat-breaking-news/#i0SLEFuJPsql">Snapchat’s coverage of the conflict in Mosul</a>.</p> <p><strong><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP65066">Content Distribution Platforms – Friends or Foes?</a></strong></p> <p>The panel for this session included The Economist, Conde Nast International, The Young Turks and ABC News. They looked at how<em> </em>publishers are becoming more reliant than ever on content distribution platforms such as Facebook and Snapchat to reach new audiences. </p> <p>A good starting point for this session was mention of Emily Bell’s 2016 article <a href="http://www.cjr.org/analysis/facebook_and_media.php">Facebook Is Eating The World</a>.</p> <p>Facebook is the key platform under consideration here, as it increasingly becomes the place where online content is consumed. It’s importance and control over brand content has increased with the rise of <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67544-facebook-to-open-up-instant-articles-what-publishers-need-to-know/">Instant Articles</a>, as opposed to publisher feeds, keeping traffic within the Facebook ecosystem. As an aside, Snapchat was seen to be on the rise but not currently a viable global option. </p> <p>With this is in mind, the panel considered that Facebook was both a friend and a foe. It was seen to be a friend in terms of providing a broad distribution platform and a foe with regards to its control over advertising revenues. </p> <p>According to Steve Oh of The Young Turks, the key to content success with Facebook is threefold:</p> <ul> <li>Creating regular, relevant content</li> <li>Swift use of new product features released</li> <li>Focus on building an audience </li> </ul> <p>The Economist’s approach is to focus on bite size content that lures customers towards subscription, with news topics including ‘on this day’ and ‘famous quotes’. A specific approach is with ‘Vimages’, using Facebook <a href="http://www.niemanlab.org/2016/09/with-vimages-the-economist-is-using-facebook-to-make-low-budget-video-versions-of-its-stories/">to re-package magazine stories into video form</a>.</p> <p>One of the questions in the session, was how to keep up with the rapid changes at Facebook and the best ways to share content. There was no clear answer, but suggestions included looking for Newsroom tips, and Google Alerts pertaining to Facebook algorithms. </p> <p><a href="http://schedule.sxsw.com/2017/events/PP61899"><strong>Art + Science: Videos That Inform, Inspire &amp; Scale</strong></a></p> <p>Finally, PopSugar's David Grant discussed what brand marketers need to know about creating video that engages their target audience at scale while delivering on brand KPIs. The session sought to explain the success of PopSugar in targeting millennial women.</p> <p>The starting point for the brand's success is to understand, as does Snapchat, the increasing cultural relevance of the camera (<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/08/technology/snap-makes-a-bet-on-the-cultural-supremacy-of-the-camera.html?_r=0">as identified in this NYT article</a>) and that humans naturally gravitate towards content that is made up of <a href="http://www.kvibe.com/2015/03/17/why-we-as-humans-gravitate-towards-video/">sight, sound and motion.</a></p> <p>PopSugar creates videos that inform, and are created from a combined perspective drawn from its brand, brand partners and their data. PopSugar has created its own tool, <a href="http://www.adweek.com/digital/how-popsugars-new-tool-will-help-you-stay-ahead-social-media-trends-174640/">Trend Rank</a>, to help it identify areas of content focus, supply ‘velocity data predicting’ and find trends ahead of time.</p> <p>Grant observed that, with video, companies typically have only one second to make an impact, so selected content has only that time to have an effect. </p> <p>Some examples of PopSugar's recent successful native content campaigns are: </p> <ul> <li>Doubletree by Hilton: ‘Find Your Happy’ campaign. Building on the fact that Hilton always leaves a cookie for its guests, PopSugar a campaign focusing on wider acts <a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Random-Acts-Kindness-You-Can-Do-Every-Day-40742607">of kindness and generosity</a>.</li> <li>Garner Shampoo: ‘Photo Ready Mums’. Based on the insight that mums often take pictures of the family, <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzaKYqPYKyo">but regret that they are not in the pictures themselves;</a> this campaign shows how mums can be in the photos, and look great, with the help of Garner. </li> </ul> <p><strong>Joe Biden</strong></p> <p>And finally, some lessons from the keynote speech of SXSW 2017 (and a totally inspiring moment) from Joe Biden, former Vice-President of The United States. </p> <p>Perhaps more recently famous for his (unwitting) appearance in <a href="http://www.boredpanda.com/funny-barack-obama-joe-biden-tweets/">a sequence of memes with Barack Obama</a>, Joe Biden appeared on stage in Austin to raise awareness and seek support for his <a href="http://www.cnbc.com/2017/01/09/biden-outlines-steps-to-pursue-post-obama-cancer-moonshot.html">cancer Moon-shot agenda</a>.</p> <p>He discussed the progress made during Obama's presidency by the call for innovative solutions to tackle the barriers that prevent faster gains in ending cancer; and described how he plans to remain in the fight. </p> <p>This talk has a wider relevance for business because, as Joe Biden put it, organisations involved in the cancer treatment process had become ‘siloed by design’ and their ability to face the growing threat of this disease was limited by this lack of co-operation.</p> <p>One of these silo-related issues was the low number of patients involved in clinical trials (only 4/100) as there was no system for companies to match the correct trial drugs to the correct patients and vice versa. In addition a database of patient learnings was not being effectively shared between hospitals.</p> <p>Biden’s efforts to break down the barriers in the cancer treatment process are a lesson to organisations who may have similar silo problems. </p> <p>Organisations in this process have started to collaborate and other bodies have become involved in the fight. NASA is adding information regarding the impact of radiation on astronauts, and Amazon has provided free cloud data storage for the project.  </p> <p>There is also focus on clear KPIs and where the biggest return on investment can be derived. As Biden said, of any process "where everything is treated as equally important, then nothing is considered important."</p> <p>The key to the project’s increasing success (apart from the obvious profile of the promoter) is the open sharing of information, offering clear encouragement and, of course, giving hope.</p> <p>Inspiring stuff and a lesson to all businesses interested in breaking down silos and identifying priorities.</p> tag:econsultancy.com,2008:BlogPost/68901 2017-03-24T12:10:34+00:00 2017-03-24T12:10:34+00:00 Top tips to drive more engagement with data-driven native ads Ray Jenkin <p>This quote nicely sums up the reason for this forecast: “Native advertising looks like a rare win-win for the industry: more effective for advertisers, more valuable for publishers, and more acceptable for users”, says Joseph Evans, digital media analyst at Enders Analysis.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/0008/5022/native_spend.png" alt="" width="470" height="470"></p> <p>To deliver this sort of scale and growth over the years, the programmatic buying protocol will be key; and with this in play, a whole plethora of opportunities emerge; from the use of data to dynamically adjusting the creative elements in native.</p> <h4><strong>Why native ads? </strong></h4> <p>Consumer consumption is changing and so is our attitude to “traditional” digital advertising. Display click-through rates are decreasing year on year, while engagement with native ads is up to six times higher than traditional display.  </p> <p>The native ad experience is personalised to the specific site and context where the ads appears, providing a more integrated experience for the ads and content. Furthermore, the format extends meaningfully across all major devices.</p> <p>Not only is native preferable for the users; the creative execution of native ads is quick and easy to deploy with most native supply being very similar to the specs of Facebook’s native ads, so little additional work is required and creative approvals should be significantly faster.</p> <h4><strong>Strengthening native: a data-driven tactic</strong></h4> <p>TripleLift, a programmatic native vendor, saw the number of ad impressions traded through its platform grow more than sevenfold in <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/programmatic-native-ads-are-growingbut-banner-habit-is-hard-to-break-1484737200">2016 to 23bn</a>. This increase in supply in the programmatic environment means marketers can start to focus on a user centric approach to native. Applying both contextual and behavioural data to native buys means there can be even more relevance and value applied to the native experience. </p> <p>It is an exciting time to match this trusted ad format with the blend of data, but you should be aware of several key considerations to really take full advantage of data driven native:</p> <h4><strong>1. Not all native supply is created equal </strong></h4> <p>Consider what native supply you are tapping into for your campaigns. Look for supply partners that give a meaningful or exclusive share of voice within website content; sharing your space with other native placement only dilutes the potency of your content.</p> <p>Alignment alongside questionable ads and click bait news stories also does not engender trust in your brand. Understand how the supplier’s ads typically render on sites. Also make sure they comply with best practice on ad disclosure, failure to do so means a great opportunity to engage consumers turns into perceived trickery.  </p> <h4><strong>2. Native supply and audience reach: a balancing act</strong></h4> <p>Balance inventory access with audience reach. If you want to use behavioural or contextual data to help further enhance your segmentation and improve engagement, make sure you tap into native supply that provides the audience reach you need to benefit from data based targeting.</p> <p>If you are only interested in cherry picking a few properties for your native ads then you are better off not mixing data tactics into the buy as your audience and inventory overlaps will be too small. However, some promising programmatic native integrations with large portals and popular vertical publishers over the last few months mean there is increasingly good scale to blend audience and inventory tactics. </p> <h4><strong>3. What data and when?</strong></h4> <p>In using data-driven native, data recency is key to engagement. If you are not serving ads to consumers based on recent behavioural actions, all the benefit of native placement is lost on those consumers.</p> <p>Behaviourally targeting a consumer with automotive ad content will seem misplaced if the data of that user browsing auto-related content is two-weeks-old. Work with data partners who can demonstrate the ability to build and refresh audiences quickly or ideally in real-time.  </p> <p>Consider the use of both contextual and behavioural data to provide both scale and improve relevance. Site buys may be good for a demographic segmentation but drilling down into the content of that page or URL can be a great way to enhance your data-driven native campaign. </p> <h4><strong>4. Creative Relevance</strong></h4> <p>If you utilise audience data for your native ads, headlines, images and copy need to be more relevant than ever before. Make sure you are matching your audiences and relevant data points with the most compelling creative. Being native and therefore in content means you need to be truly relevant to be noticed. You can’t fall back on the standard ad slot and call to action to gain attention.</p> <p>Dynamically served native ads: this is still in its infancy but as this becomes more prevalent, it will provide exciting opportunities for brands to have a more scaled approach to matching out the context of the page and/or the behaviours of the consumer with the most relevant content or product in real time.</p> <p>Native ads are much more than headline, copy and static image, with video and <a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/67507-30-stunning-cinemagraphs-that-will-blow-your-mind/">cinemagraph formats</a> now becoming more prevalent in native placements. Improve relevancy and engagement by learning about and experimenting with these formats and how they might interplay with data-driven native opportunities.</p> <p><img src="https://assets.econsultancy.com/images/resized/0008/4705/data_driven_native_ops-blog-flyer.png" alt="" width="470" height="271"></p> <h4><strong>In conclusion...</strong></h4> <p>Those that move quickly and begin to experiment and learn more about combining data to drive their native activity stand to benefit; not just from short term gains in engagement but also by preparing themselves for the long term changes in the digital ad market.   </p> <h4><em>Related resources:</em></h4> <ul> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/training/courses/programmatic/">Programmatic Training</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/reports/the-cmo-s-guide-to-programmatic/">The CMO's Guide to Programmatic</a></em></li> <li><em><a href="https://econsultancy.com/blog/65677-a-super-accessible-beginner-s-guide-to-programmatic-buying-and-rtb/">A super accessible beginner’s guide to programmatic buying and RTB</a></em></li> </ul>