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Google acknowledge the mobile web is broken

WEB_Aray_Chen_GoogleOn 7 October Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) arrived from Google supported by some of the most prestigious names in publishing and technology. Google’s introductory blog revealed: “Publishers around the world use the mobile web to reach these readers, but the experience can often leave a lot to be desired. Every time a webpage takes too long to load, they lose a reader – and the opportunity to earn revenue”. Brands like the BBC, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, Twitter, LinkedIn and WordPress are all involved with AMP.

What this statement implies, supported by the authoritative voices in publishing and technology, is that the mobile web is broken from a revenue perspective. While mobile web usage continues to grow, its significance as a revenue stream is diminished by poor user experience.

This is a significant wake-up call. The companies mentioned have a profit incentive to make the mobile web work. It is reasonable to assume they have already deployed the best technology, the best brains, the fastest service providers, the right web standards and designs. The arrival of AMP tells us all of this was not good enough.

Infographic: How beauty vloggers hold the key to successful Christmas marketing

ZoellaBuzzMyVideos Online Video Barometer, conducted by OnePoll, has unearthed some staggering statistics on consumer affiliation towards beauty vloggers on YouTube. The online video content specialist’s study revealed that 85% of 500 UK consumers aged betwee 16 and 45 years old would trust a review by a YouTuber over any other method. This is more than 20 times that of its closest competitors, TV and radio adverts, both at 4%.

The increasing use of video among consumers is apparent, and this study reinforces this with 79% of respondents from the research saying they used online video at least once a week to find out how to use beauty products. And 98% of respondents said they had positive feelings towards beauty products featured in such online videos.

Adapt or die: How ad blocking is paving the way to next generation, consumer-led marketing

marketing digital This week ad blocking has dominated the news. Headlines have screamed of a ‘major blow to publishers’ following Apple’s green light to an IOS tool that blocks all ads. Google is up in arms, and advertisers everywhere have asked how it will affect them.

But does ad blocking really represent such a significant threat to the future of digital marketing? The bottom line is that consumers are frustrated at being blanket targets, which is why ad blocking came about in the first place. These latest developments should be seen as an opportunity to force a positive change into digital advertising.

Twitter introduces Moments: What does it mean for brands?

unnamedFor most of 2015 Twitter has been talking about Project Lightning, a major enhancement designed to bring in new users, retain Twitter’s core base and leverage Twitter’s strengths in both mobile and media. Finally, the public is getting to see what was only previewed to Twitter insiders and employees: a new way to discover rich media experiences that Twitter is calling Twitter Moments.

How Twitter Moments works

The first noticeable change for Twitter users is the Lightning Bolt that now lives on the toolbar on desktop, Android and iOS apps. This leads users to a rich media tab with auto playing (soundless) videos, categorised by verticals such as “Fun,” “Entertainment,” “News,” “Sports,” and “Today.”

Unlike Snapchat’s superficially similar Stories tab, the organisation of Moments is reminiscent of a newspaper’s distinct sections, and mixes various content sources (e.g. Buzzfeed) within categories rather than asking them to program separate streams of content.

Interrogating data requires a new lens

WEB_humans_data‘Data scientist’ was recently named the ‘sexiest job of the 21st century’. The process of understanding data can at times seem so complicated that mastering it could be likened to a superpower.

Britain is expected to create an average of 56,000 big data jobs a year until 2020. As campaign data swells in line with the creation of these jobs, there is an increasing expectation that the marketing team will have the support to quickly find the vital pieces of actionable information within it. This can create a heavy burden; regardless of how fast you work, data has a habit of continuously reproducing itself.

This volume and disparate nature of the data presents a significant challenge for marketers. Our research has found that a customer is likely to make 9.5 visits to a site before buying; it’s clear that brands need to understand their data in the context of the omnichannel purchase journey to gather accurate insights.

Six steps on how to turn brand ‘noise’ into digital assets

BigStockDigitalMediacloudThe growth of digital assets – from images, photos, video and audio to written articles and even office documents – appears unstoppable as the growing number of channels we all use increases. For publishers, the sheer volume of digital files being created is creating serious headaches as they struggle to store, manage and share them. For brands, the flood of content that seems to be freely available on the internet puts them in danger of brand damage.

Unless they provide an easy-to-use and searchable resource for brand imagery, they are ending up losing control as a result of wrong logos and old visuals being used as people simply use Google as an alternative means to find what they think they’re looking for.

Three things digital marketers need to know about consumers in 2016

ipad-820272Henry Mason, chief executive of consumer research group, is regarded as a trend expert by numerous publications including The Guardian, Financial Times and the Economist. At Ad:tech London (13-14 October), he will be talking about distinguishing between hype and need-to-know consumer tech trends. Here, he gives an insight into the topic ahead of the industry event.

Look past the clichés about how “business as usual is over” and “the relentless pace of change” and you’ll see the great paradox in today’s business arena: the truly exceptional has become wholly unexceptional. Indeed, the one constant is that customers share a common mindset: astonishingly elevated expectations, applied ruthlessly to each and every business, product, service or experience available.

The Daily Poke: First class employers

First class employersDelta airlines is doing pretty well thanks to fuel prices going down, so the company’s decided to offer staff some pick me ups. They’re opening a new Sky Spa that gives airline staff kushti discounts on spa, nail and hair treatments.

How to effectively use UGC to build brand trust and resonance

(Thinkstock/Sohel Parvez Haque)

(Thinkstock/Sohel Parvez Haque)

Big brands can’t get enough of research on millennial marketing. Why? Because this demographic loves to buy products. In fact, it is estimated that they spend $600bn (£395.5bn) a year and are predicted to have the biggest combined purchasing power in history.

One of the most important insights that brands can leverage is the fact that 50% of millennials trust their peers when it comes to recommendations, typically in the form of user-generated content (UGC). This could be a product review, a photo, or even a “like.” And while the concept of word-of-mouth advertising is nothing new, the UGC voice is growing steadily louder and brands need to listen up.

How ad blocking could be the saviour of the advertising industry



Apple’s introduction of ad blocking software into its latest iOS update last month has pushed the industry into overdrive as commentators from across the web share their opinion on why the public is becoming a community of digital thieves.

Suddenly, a morally righteous advertising industry is on the defensive – empowered ad blocking consumers are being branded as the reason why publishers are losing revenue and why adverts have had to become more aggressive.

But solving this ethical dilemma isn’t quite so simple. Just days after the launch of bestselling iOS ad blocker Peace, creator Marco Arment – who also founded blogging platform Tumblr – withdrew it, claiming its exponential success ‘just doesn’t feel good’.