Latest Posts Subscribe to this blog RSS

Infographic: 20 years of eBay

Ebay -- the changing face of the eBay logoThis week marks 20 years since e-commerce site eBay launched, which now has more than 157 million active users. The brand was originally known as Auction Web when it launched in 1997 and two years later the company renamed to eBay.

In this infographic created by, take a look at some of the key milestones in the brand’s career including the one millionth item sold on the site, as well as the financial figures behind how eBay makes its money.

The Daily Poke: Worth the wait

Worth the waitUntil recently, the only waiting taking place in McDonald’s has been in the queue to get to the counter. But now, customers at selected locations worldwide can walk in, take a seat and have their meals brought to the table by a bona fide waiter.

Here’s the thing about Google’s new logo: It’s not about the logo

WEB_Google_new_logo_videoNobody likes change. Or so we’re told. It’s a fair bet that the very powerful human desires for familiarity and comfort have been bred into our DNA through millennia of evolution, making us particularly resistant to change, a condition known as ‘status quo bias’ in psychology. The end of a relationship, moving homes, or even the sadly unpreventable act of ageing are all changes that we deal with notoriously poorly.

But, frankly, we don’t fare much better with relative trivia; just look at the response whenever Facebook redesigns its interface, or a football club tweaks its crest. Sometimes these concerns are addressed, but usually — inevitably — the changes are absorbed, and we look back and laugh at the way things used to be.

In fact, when change is extremely gradual, we don’t even notice at all — when eBay shifted its background colour from yellow to white, it was flooded with complaints, and was forced to rescind the adjustment. Undeterred, it changed the background one shade at a time, over a period of months, until it was completely white. No one complained.

Getting to grips with unused content

(Flickr/Sebastien Wiertz)

(Flickr/Sebastien Wiertz)

According to PQ Media’s Global Content Marketing Forecast 2015-19, $145bn (£95bn) was spent on content marketing in 2014 with B2B taking 52.7% of the share of that spend. That means more than $76bn (£50bn) was spent in the B2B content marketing space last year.

These figures become even more eye-watering once you realise just how little of the content that that $76bn is spent on sees the light of day: SiriusDecisions suggest that “60-70% of content produced by B2B companies goes unused”, whilst Corporate Visions say it is even higher (90%).

At Forrester’s Sales Enablement Forum this year, the head of marketing operations at GE Healthcare admitted “82% of the content we’ve created have never been used.” Michael Brenner, founder of Business 2 Community and a former SAP exec, told us that his audit of the German multinational’s content revealed “over 60% of the content created by marketing – for one product area alone – was never used by anybody.”

The Daily Poke: Wine by numbers

Wine by numbersLack confidence when it comes to choosing wine? Intimidated by snooty sommeliers? Always default to the Cabernet? Well, why not let an algorithm make a selection for you instead? That’s the thinking behind the online wine subscription service, Bright Cellars.

Google’s new logo: The industry reacts

WEB_Google_new_logoWe asked the digital marketing industry what they thought about the new-look Google logo, what it means for the brand moving forward and whether it will be a benefit or burden. Here, they respond.

Jacques De Cock, faculty member from The London School of Marketing

Google has updated its logo not for the first time. For many people the reaction will be negative as change to something that familiar feels strange and disconcerting. However, the change is both relevant and timely. It is enabling Google to tell the world that they are much more than a search engine but a multitude of tools and applications to assist in making sense of and using all the digital information around us.

Programmatic for posters

ThinkstockPhotos-458355307Spend for programmatic digital display advertising reached the $21bn (£13.7bn) mark globally last year and is predicted to increase to $53bn (£35bn) by 2018, according to Magna Global. But some segments of the advertising industry have been considerably slower in the uptake of programmatic than others.

Programmatic in the out-of-home (OOH) industry is yet to develop despite the significant investment in digital screen technology. So what’s the problem? In short, some 95% of OOH’s audience delivery relies upon manual paper and paste posting of classic posters, not exactly ripe for real-time trading.

And there are other issues too. The OOH sector has never had quite the same reliance on tech as other media. In order to make the shift to programmatic, the industry needs to begin to develop standardisation in software and inventory management systems.

Mobile advertising has a measurement problem

Tape measure by Randen PedersonBrand investment in mobile advertising is growing quickly — spending is projected to reach $46bn in 2019, according to Forrester — yet only 1% of those ads receive any type of engagement.

What tools and resources do advertisers and agencies have to report and analyse the 99% of unclicked impressions? These ad impressions have value, but there are only flawed and debatable tools for measurement.

Impressions shouldn’t be wasted

Unclicked ads should not be universally discounted as wasted impressions. A recent mobile advertising neuroscience study from Sharethrough and Nielsen showed how impressions can influence brand perception. Analytics platforms, from Moat to IAS, have focused heavily on viewability by making certain that ads are viewable. Contrary to the IAB standard for viewability, which is “a minimum of 50% of pixels in view for a minimum of one second,” WPP agency GroupM and Unilever announced earlier this year that they would only count video impressions when 100% of the ad player is in view.

Consumers’ mobile ad value revealed

WEB_mobile_phone_thumbs_upHaving discussed consumers’ ad attitudes and ad appeal, Stephen Jenkins, global vice-president marketing and communications, EMEA, Millennial Media, takes a look at ad value and consumers’ self-perceived worth to advertisers on mobile.

It’s important to note we are not talking about a figure that consumers believe they should be paid, but their perceived worth to advertisers for letting them into their most personal devices.

Consumers expect mobile advertising, but in a timely fashion

We started off by asking whether consumers were happy to receive advertising in exchange for keeping mobile services free, or if they would prefer to pay for such services and avoid the ads. From our 4,000-plus consumers, three quarters (72%) said that they expect to receive some advertising in a one-hour time frame to keep content free. Only 3% of consumers said that they pay in order not to have ads.

The Daily Poke: Not made by people

Not made by peopleThere’s already been much discussion following the warning that traditional methods of food production won’t be able to support a rapidly increasing global population. One solution that’s stepped out of science fiction and into reality is the liquid meal replacement, Soylent.