All posts in “Blog”

Microsoft launches new audience network, ‘Audience Ads’ at Bing Partner Summit

New display network combines search signals, Microsoft’s AI assets and its audience graph, which includes LinkedIn.

Toward the beginning of today at the Bing Partner Summit, at Microsoft central station, the organization reported another show arrange, the Microsoft Audience Network (MSAN). Despite the fact that the organization has had the “Bing Audience Network,” the new offering unites various components that weren’t already accessible: Bing look plan flags, Microsoft’s AI abilities and the Microsoft gathering of people diagram.

AOL needs to date been the selective dealer of Microsoft show publicizing. Furthermore, to run show promotions, including on Microsoft properties, advertisers needed to make a different purchase with AOL. (I’ve asked Microsoft whether this declaration closes the AOL organization yet presently can’t seem to hear back [see underneath for update].)

Presently, Bing look promoters will have the capacity to expand their battles through what Microsoft is calling “Gathering of people Ads” crosswise over different Microsoft and outsider properties. There are two alternatives for advertisers:

Gathering of people Ads look expansions. As of now propelling for the US, the UK, Canada, Australia, with different markets to take after. This is an essential approach that pushes the Bing effort out to the more extensive MSAN.

Group of onlookers Ads crusades. These incorporate committed/upgraded inventive and isolate detailing. This is US just for the present, with a worldwide rollout got ready for later in the year.

The prompt inquiry is: What makes MSAN and Audience Ads extraordinary, contrasted and Google or Facebook? Google can expand look question information into show battles. Google likewise offers group of onlookers focusing on. Both Google and Facebook have AI and machine-learning resources.

Steve Sirich, general chief of hunt promoting at Microsoft, refered to a few elements: mark security, the Microsoft diagram and the nature of the MSAN. He likewise contended that the crowd diagram incorporates a huge number of individuals “you can’t reach on Google or Facebook.”

Microsoft says, for instance, that there are 63 million pursuit clients that Google can’t reach in the MSAN. Bing supposedly observes more than 20 billion month to month looks the world over and has in excess of 500,000 dynamic Bing promoters.

The Microsoft gathering of people diagram comprises of 120 million Office365 supporters, 1.5 billion Windows clients and 500 million LinkedIn clients. LinkedIn proficient information is an exceptional component in the blend. There’s additionally information from Outlook and Skype clients.

The organization hasn’t yet uncovered any outsiders taking part in the system freely. In any case, show promotions will show up on Microsoft properties, for example, MSN, Outlook.com and the Edge program.

As demonstrated, Sirich revealed to me that the Microsoft Audience Network will at first be accessible in the US, the UK, Canada and Australia. He included that it’s protection and GDPR-consistent for the UK showcase.

Sirich clarified that while there are broad crowd focusing on abilities, there’s “no touchy focusing on” (e.g., governmental issues, religion). As specified, Microsoft has additionally taken extraordinary care to secure brand wellbeing. He included this is being “oversaw deliberately and nearly.”

Beta publicists that have been trying Audience Ads incorporate Kohl’s, Lending Tree and HomeAdvisor.

Postscript: At the Bing Partner Summit Microsoft said that AOL and Appnexus will keep on selling “conventional show stock” for the benefit of the organization. However the MSAN will be the restrictive wellspring of local advertisement stock on Microsoft’s claimed and worked properties and AOL/Appnexus won’t approach Microsoft diagram group of onlookers focusing on information.

Digital advertising in 2018: 5 trends to watch

Evolving capabilities and changing regulatory dynamics will affect how marketers connect with and engage customers and prospects in 2018

Digital advertising in 2017 saw several major changes that will continue to influence and affect the work of digital marketers in the coming year. As we go speeding into 2018, here are five predictions about how the digital advertising landscape will evolve in the coming year.

US and EU (de)regulations put marketers on divergent paths

Brands that market online in the US and the EU will have to navigate those markets quite differently in 2018.

In 2017, the US and EU regulatory stances diverged in several significant ways. The stark contrast was summed up succinctly in a tweet from David Lee, who reports on Silicon Valley for the BBC, on the day the FCC voted to end net neutrality.

GDPR, which takes effect in May 2018, will have a dramatic effect on how marketers collect and use user data in the EU. In contrast, the US has essentially opened the floodgates on user data (more on that below).

The platforms and ad tech firms, too, are facing two very different environments. The biggest example of this is the record $2.7 billion antitrust fine the European Commission levied against Google for favoring its own Shopping engine to the detriment of competing comparative shopping engines. (Google is appealing the ruling.) It faces two more antitrust charges in the EU. One case is aimed at alleged restrictions in Google’s AdSense for Search contracts with publishers that limit the display of search ads from Google competitors. The other revolves around contract requirements for Android phone makers to pre-install Google Search and Google’s Chrome browser and set Google Search as default search service on their devices.

Retargeting backlash won’t materialize

A retargeting backlash has been a long time coming, but I don’t believe we’ll see a significant change in this area from the marketer’s perspective from Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention alone.

With Apple’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention and GDPR, there have been many doomsday predictions about the viability of retargeting. My prediction is that a retargeting reset won’t actually materialize. Yes, middle-man firms that are reliant on third-party data for audience targeting will struggle, but marketers can easily work around them.

I continued to be surprised this year when talking to (most, not all) marketers about retargeting practices and consideration for users. Very often, concerns about frequency caps and other user experience matters are taken into consideration only inasmuch as those factors impact conversion rates in the short term, despite talk of being customer-friendly. Marketers themselves have complained for years about being poorly or even obnoxiously retargeted, and yet it keeps happening.

However, there are some indicators that my pessimistic take will (hopefully) be proven wrong: The use of AI in predictive advertising platforms may reshape retargeting strategies (though my experience is so far is that if one of these systems “predicts” you’re a prime target, you are inundated with ads), and the adoption of standards set by the Coalition for Better Ads and the IAB’s LEAN Ads may improve retargeting experiences.

More than 50% of digital media time now spent within five mobile apps

The top 10 is dominated by Facebook and Google, though Snapchat ranks for those under 35.

The popular narrative around the rise of the mobile web and smartphone apps has been one of increasing audience fragmentation. But the opposite may actually be happening — concentration and consolidation.

More digital media time is concentrated in smartphone apps than on the mobile web or PC. And most of that time is spent in a small number of apps, led by Facebook. Users are also downloading fewer new apps, so it’s getting harder to break through. Earlier today, comScore published its 2017 US Mobile App Report detailing these trends.

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Twitter launches new apps; Versions of IOS now support Apple’s ad blockers

Twitter is switching its in-app browser to Apple’s Safari View Controller, which enables ad blocking and an ad-free Reader mode.

Twitter is cleaning up its look and enabling people to clear out ads on web pages opened within its iOS apps.

On Thursday, Twitter began rolling out a redesign of its mobile apps, sites and TweetDeck to make the social network look less cluttered.

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The Biggest Challenges In Programmatic Advertising

At the Digiday Programmatic Summit in Palm Beach, Florida, last month, attendees from agencies and brands were asked to jot down their biggest challenges in programmatic advertising. The mind map (below) lays out their major concerns. Among the big programmatic issues for brands and agencies are the number of vendors, the gap between creative and programmatic, audience overlap and more.

Answers are below, edited for clarity:

Problem #1. Telling the difference between vendors

“Right now, we are doing managed services for all clients, so we constantly get proposals back from vendors and hear the same reporting, capabilities and brand safety. We are sifting through which one is the best in the sandbox,” said a senior media planner from a digital agency. “We are a small team, so I really see vendors as an extension of my agency. I have worked with many vendors who see really high turnover. When new people come in, the attention to the campaign completely falls off, and the performance of the campaign just goes away with it.”


“I started doing programmatic back in 2009,” said an associate media director for a Boston-based agency. “Everything was easier at the very beginning because there were fewer players, but now there are just so many vendors with the same recipe. Everyone can be a demand-side platform. How to identify the best one is my challenge.”

Problem #2. Bridge the gap between programmatic and creative

“Creative is a challenge, and production is a bigger challenge. Our creative team may say, ‘OK, you need to make five different banners for this programmatic campaign,’ and our media team is like, ‘No, that’s not enough.’ Volume aside, you have certain creative freedom in programmatic, and there’s a difference in producing native, social and video content,” said a media director for a digital shop.

“From an agency perspective, it’s our responsibility to give brands the best creative recommendations. But there are many clients who want to play creative director, which directly affects the initial idea of a campaign. Too many clients put their hands on the creative: They change the headline, the copy and images, etc. And in some cases, it’s the agency that gets hit when things go wrong.”

Problem #3. Overlapping audience

“If you have two campaigns running at the same time, there’s always a chance — regardless of what tactics you are using — that you will be targeting the same person. So you want to eliminate that ad buy and set different restrictions with your DSPs or whatever publication you are using. That’s the main thing with audience overlap.”

“When you want to run programmatic across devices, you have to use someone like Tapad and keep adding different platforms for data integrity. Then clients are like ‘that’s 10 percent of your media spend’ so it’s a tough sell,” said a senior media director for a major media agency.

Problem #4. Platforms require different ad tracking approaches

“Each platform has its own pixel that you can use for ad tracking: Google pixel, Facebook pixel and ad server,” said a media executive from a big agency. “Whatever vendor you are using, you need to figure out a way to normalize their data sets and compare them against each other on a one-to-one basis, instead of looking at different KPIs. It’s always important to relate it back to one normal KPI. That’s the problem with a lot of different platforms. It’s hard to relate all back together and do A/B tests with various vendors.”

Problem #5. Vendors over-promise and under-deliver

“As an online e-commerce brand we have lots of first-party data,” said the company’s senior director of digital media.”I found that many vendors claim that they can onboard our first-party data and help us scale, but when we start working together, they cannot process our data properly or they don’t have the technology to do it. So I hope that people can be more upfront about their limitations.”

Problem #6. How to spend time to best serve clients

“We want to constantly look at new partners and tactics, but we need to balance that with how much time we have and how much we can spend on it without going over the budget,” said a media director for a big agency. “There are many things in programmatic we want to learn and test more: dynamic creative, sequential messaging, viewability, optimization and understanding audience overlap, etc. All that stuff takes time, but not everything brings the same benefit to the client.”

 

How to ensure human engagement in mobile advertising campaigns

2016 will be remembered as a landmark year for many reasons, but for the mobile industry it will be remembered for enabling us to refocus our energies on metrics that define campaign results.

A few of the biggest worries in the industry this past year were ad fraud and measurement discrepancies. The good news for advertisers is that it is possible to ensure human engagement with mobile campaigns if those who are paying shift their mentality and demand zero-tolerance on money wasted on fraud.

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Mobile display ad spend overtakes PC and tablet for first time, IAB says

The amount spent on mobile display ads overtook that of PC and tablet for the first time ever, according to new research by PwC and the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB).

Mobile display ads raked in £802m of spend, while PC and tablet were behind at £762m, the Digital Adspend report said – signifying rapid growth in time spent on smartphones.

Overall, digital advertising spend increased 16.4% in the first half of this year to £4.78.bn, which the report says is the highest first half growth rate in two years.

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The art of content creation and the science of measurement

Successful brands not only create engaging content, but they also measure the performance of that content. Columnist Jim Yu outlines four steps to help you balance the art and science of content marketing.

Half of all B2B and B2C companies say they will increase their spending related to content marketing in the coming year. This growth means there will be even more content, more competition and higher standards for those who want to succeed.

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Pokemon Go, augmented reality and the future of local marketing

Yesterday, as I was walking back from lunch, a middle-aged businessman stopped in front of me and took a picture of a dumpster with his smartphone — or at least that’s how it must have appeared to those uninitiated into the world of Pokémon Go. But I knew better, for at that moment, I happened to be playing the game myself. The businessman finished capturing his Pokémon, looked up at me and smiled sheepishly before scurrying off in pursuit of his next digital quarry. That’s when it occurred to me: The world of local marketing has fundamentally changed.

For those of you who have yet to play the game (and as such, still have some semblance of control over your life), let me give you a brief rundown of the magical app that has kids, teenagers and adults alike lurking in nearby parks after midnight just to catch a few extra Pokémon.

The freemium game uses your phone’s GPS and camera to turn the real world into a digitally augmented world teeming with wild Pokémon. To get started, you’ll need a smartphone and a good pair of walking shoes, because you’re going to have to leg some miles. After downloading the app, players (called “trainers”), wander aimlessly through urban jungle and countryside alike in search of little digital monsters known as Pokémon.

You use the map on your smartphone to navigate, and as soon as you feel your phone buzz, look alive, because a Pokémon or a location of interest is nearby. If you corner a Pokémon (or should I say, if you walk toward them), the screen on your smartphone, with the help of your phone’s camera, will seemingly project the digital creature onto the physical world. Move the camera on your phone side to side, and the creature will remain fixed to a given spot. Then, in a quasi-Fruit-Ninja move, you proceed to flick Poké Balls at the creature on your screen to capture it.

Now, here’s where it gets interesting — at least from a local marketing standpoint. The game includes places called PokéStops (where users can stock up on accessories and tools needed in-game) and Gyms (places where users go to train their captured Pokémon and fight them against other players). These virtual locations are paired with actual real-world landmarks. These real-world landmarks could be anything — a graffiti mural on a wall, a large tree in a park or the friendly confines of your local McDonald’s. See what I’m getting at?