Brands want specific online engagement with consumers, so they need a very specific analysis of consumer habits on the web when planning and executing online display advertising. Read More
Tag Archives: online advertising
It’s difficult to talk about time without stumbling into cliched phrases, but it seems right to talk about the importance of time for two reasons. The importance of time-spent cropped up in a recent survey conducted by the IPA that ranked the best in the industry. I should take this chance to congratulate the guys at InSkin, who pipped us to the post by a mere 0.7%. Such a close run race shows that clients really do have a choice of quality partners.
But given that the technologies we use is broadly similar – it’s the X factors that create the differentiation, and most of these X factors are determined by the relationship with the client: the quality of brief responses, the delivery of innovative content solutions, proactive communication of opportunities, regular constructive contact with the sales team, and the all-important agency/media owner partnership. Read More
According to IAB UK, online ad spend in the UK grew by over 12 percent in the first half of 2012. While the market is unquestionably exploding, understanding of how it actually works can at best be described as evolving at a snail’s pace. This disconnect has its reasons – but also repercussions, especially when it comes to measuring how display ads online impact something as seemingly nebulous as brand awareness.
With established channels like TV and print, advertisers have long grasped the difference between a growth in brand awareness and an increase in immediate response. But in the digital world, that lesson has apparently yet to be learned. Read More
A milestone has been passed this year in terms of the growth of digital advertising in comparison to print media. Statista has published a chart that perfectly illustrates how the market has changed in the past decade and how great the decline of print has been across the board.
In the first six months of 2012 Google made $1.6 bn more in ad revenue than the entire US print industry — that’s not just newspapers, but magazines too. Google made $20.8 bn in ad revenue while US print media generated $19.2 bn.
This baton passing moment comes in the same year that the print edition of Newsweek was axed and others speculated about the future of papers like the Guardian. Read More
A few weeks ago I wrote a story about LinkedIn and their aggressive approach in turning their platform into Temptation Island when it came to moving jobs. My ire was drawn from all the fabulous new ways they’ve conjured up to move jobs. Clever display adverts that put my head under a fancy job title, jobs I might be interested in floating down my newsfeed and a daily digest of jobs I might like on a weekly basis, usually at my weakest on a Monday.
The post had quite a lot of interest from business owners, to recruitment consultants to, would you believe it, LinkedIn themselves. They got in touch and wanted the chance to explain their vision and why my view, though valid, might have different facets unconsidered in the original piece.
Print isn’t dead, not by a stretch, but print advertising is looking at the tail lights of internet advertising in the US for the first time. A significant moment, but TV remains much bigger than online.
Even though this has come ahead of predictions, it was expected later this year, it can’t be much of a surprise. Read More
According to the latest comScore figures Facebook is dominating the US display market with a 23% share and that domination, as it pushes towards one billion users, is only going to grow.
Facebook had more than double the share of impressions of Yahoo! at number two and almost five times as many as third placed Microsoft with top ten advertisers including AT&T, GM, Walt Disneyand Procter & Gamble. Read More
Last week we got the news that the ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) are due to extend their remit of internet control via the UK Code of Non-broadcast Advertising, Sales Promotion and Direct Marketing (the CAP Code). Now it will also apply to marketing communications online in non-paid-for spaces, such as publisher’s own websites and social networking sites.
CAP codes include the rules relating to misleading advertising, social responsibility and the protection of children. The remit will apply to all sectors and all businesses and organisations regardless of size.
I’m broadly in favour of this move, although it may be a case of preaching to the converted … As Patricio Robles at Econsultancy pointed out: “legitimate businesses aren’t behind most of the egregious online scams that ensnare online consumers. Scammers don’t care about the rules, and for consumers, the ASA’s ability to regulate won’t be nearly as important as its capacity to enforce.”
Defining what is, and what is not, going to fall under the new rules is going to be tricky, though the ASA have made a good stab at it. The new regulations apply to communication “directly connected with the supply or transfer of goods, services, opportunities and gifts, or which consist of direct solicitations of donations as part of their own fundraising activities”.
Journalistic and editorial content and material related to causes and ideas – except those that are direct solicitations of donations for fund-raising – are excluded from the remit.
Working for eModeration, a UGC moderation agency, I was especially interested in how this applies to user generated content. It would seem that in order to be regarded as a marketing communication and thus fall within the scope of the CAP code, the UGC must:
1. Be directly connected with the supply or transfer of goods … etc.
2. Be adapted by the brand and incorporated within their own marketing communications – i.e. be published by the brand and not the user.
So – in the case of a competition to submit a video which will, after winning, be used in an online campaign, the case is clear: the video used in the campaign must comply with the code.
But could it be argued that ALL UGC featured (for example)on a brand site or Facebook page acts as advertising for the brand, and ultimately promotes sales? (And if it doesn’t, then you have to wonder why brands are getting involved with social media at all …)
Ah, the thorny ROI argument. If the social media pundits are to be believed (and I do believe them), then the engagement with the online public ultimately, if indirectly, promotes business growth. That being so, should the CAP code be applied to all UGC published on a brand’s site, ALL UGC be moderated, and the moderation criteria need to be CAP code compliant?
I wouldn’t want to be accused of taking this position simply in order to drum up more moderation work for eModeration though … it’s a genuine question. What do you think? When does UGC published in a brand’s own space become a marketing communication? By the way, I’ve just read a good post on the subject from Tony Foggett, CEO Code Computerlove in NetImperative on the subject – take a look.
With the football season now upon us, there’s every chance you’ll soon be confronted in your front room by a mildly aggressive Ray Winstone cajoling you into parting with some of your money on an impulse bet. This would be the new bet365 TV ad campaign that airs during breaks in sporting events, flashing up current odds on bets that can be placed online. It’s all quite clever, with odds and variables such as next goal scorer, final score etc accompanying Mr. Winstone on screen, generated depending on the status of the game taking place at that time. Read More
to eModeration’s round-up of all that is intriguing, alarming or odd in
the world of social media, compiled by Kate Williams. For more social
media snippets, follow @emodkate – or for general twittery,
This week (a little later than usual, due to an unpleasant encounter
with The Lurgy): is Facebook sucking out our brains?; Google fumbles
‘evil’; and more Apple fun.
The social world is still blinking anxiously as it attempts to digest
the full import of Facebook‘s recent announcements at F8 (the
annual, erm, FaceFest, during which the ‘Book traditionally tells
mortals what to expect during the coming year.)
What it all boils down to is
this: Facebook, within an unspecified period of time, will be
transitioning from being an element
of the web – albeit one with a fair amount of heft and a considerable
social girth – to actually, like, being
I know. There is so very much
to think about there that we thought the subject deserved a blog post
of its own – so if you wish to scare yourself silly reading about
the new, Matrix-like Facebook,read it here, for a digest of what, at times, has been
the rather indigestable coverage.
Talking of evil (and we might have been) – here is Google -
the original ‘do no evil’ guys – following up their phased
withdrawal from China by posting
what it called a ‘refresher’ to its censorship policies. The global
searchmeisters are simultaneously launching what they call a Government
Requests Tool, which will allow anyone to discover the extent to
which governments are using their legal systems to ask about their
citizens’ web activity, or to censor content legally
available elsewhere (Britain, by the way, ranks
third – only Brazil and the US were more active).
It’s all very admirable: it stakes out Google’s position on the human
rights map, and goes some way to answering those critics who
accused it of inconsistency in singling out China, in a fit of
Rather awkwardly, however, the announcement was made in the same week
that a group of 10 nations wrote an
open letter to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, expressing their serious
concerns about the company’s attitude to individuals’ rights to privacy
– most notably the “disappointing disregard for fundamental privacy
norms and laws” displayed during the rollout of Google Buzz.
Google Street View also came in for sustained criticism from
the privacy tsars – and then came under further fire from Germany’s
Federal Commissioner for Data Protection, who professed himself ‘appalled
and horrified’ to discover that the Street View car is scanning
private wireless networks and unique Mac (Media Access Control)
addresses, as it wends its merry way through Germany’s bergs. The
commissioner calls this ‘unlawfully collected personal data’ and urges
Google to delete it immediately.
This evil thing? It’s tricky, darnit.
For a famously controlling and security-conscious company to
lose one next-gen prototype device may be considered a misfortune.
To lose two – well, you can probably see where I’m going with
Astonishingly, what appeared to be two iPod touch prototypes – fully camera’d-up, Touch-fans
– popped up on eBay at the end of last week, and were spotted by
and eagle-eyed 9to5Mac just before the auction was taken down.
Could be a hoax, for sure, but the pre-existence of an Apple patent
for an iPod Touch with camera – plus the fact that the latest Touch
3G was found to contain an
empty space for a camera – would suggest that Apple
really IS that careless.
Meanwhile, hapless Apple engineer Gray Powell, who lost the iPhone
prototype in a Bavarian-themed bar, has been contacted by those
wags at Lufthansa: they wrote offering him a free business-class
round-trip to Munich for an authentic Bier Keller experience – an offer
which we sincerely hope he doesn’t have the unexpected leisure to pursue
any time soon. Gray’s father told CNET that his son was ‘devastated’
by his mistake; it’s profoundly to be hoped that the fact that the poor
guy’s name is now in the public domain will protect him from a
And what of Gizmodo, the site which paid
$5000 for the ‘lost’ iPhone HD, and garnered publicity at least twenty
times that value in return, in the form of an extra
3.6 million eyeballs? Well, the New
York Times says California authorities are weighing up whether or
not to slam a felony charge on Nick Denton, boss of Gizmodo’s parent
company Gawker Media – and it now emerges that on Friday, officers from
Enforcement Allied Computer Team raided the house of Gizmodo editor
Jason Chen and sequestered computer equipment.
DailyFinance.com urges Apple to
launch a suit – according to them, the company has a super-tight civil
case that Gawker pilfered their trade secrets, inflicting
millions of dollars-worth of damage. And, with Apple’s Q2 figures revealing that
8.75 million iPhones were sold last quarter, it’s a fair bet they’ll be
taking that advice pretty seriously.
The whole sorry episode has had the unintended side-effect of shining a
very bright spotlight on Apple’s legendary secrecy, and the
ethics behind it. Apple thus far has kept an adamantine grip on its new
products, and vigorously pursued a strategy of strict control over
which members of the tech press are allowed advance access to them. And
– as Gizmodo say in
their own defence – ‘it’s impossible to argue that “access
journalism” has anything but a deleterious effect on the objectivity of
Sounds like it really is all
over between Adobe and Apple – in the tech equivalent of ‘collecting
their stuff’, Adobe have announced their intention to halt
development of their Flash-to-iPhone converter, and are calling on
their community of app developers to concentrate entirely on Android
devices from now on.
Meanwhile, in the continuing saga of AppleStore’s rejection of ‘adult’
apps, CEO Steve Jobs has fired off another of the quickfire
emails he’s lately been so fond of sending to correspondents. “We do
believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone,”
told one. “Folks who want porn can buy and [sic] Android phone.“
The AppStore’s decision-making process recently came under
scrutiny when it emerged that an app by a Pullitzer-Prize winning
cartoonist had been rejected by the increasingly capricious tech
giant – on the very
questionable grounds that it contained “content that ridicules public
figures.” In another
of those emails, Jobs was forced to acknowledge that the rejection
had been a mistake – the app was subsequently accepted.
Anonymous reviews seem consistently to be in the news – and the Guardian
reports on a rather astonishing
literary whodunit within the notoriously back-stabby academic
community. Historian Dr Rachel Polonsky noticed that an
anonymous commenter on Amazon had slated her recent book – and that
other leading academics had suffered similar attacks. One of the
pseudonyms of the spiteful critic – orlando-birkbeck – led (perhaps
inevitably) to the door of Prof Orlando Figes, 50, a historian at
Birkbeck College, who responded with legal threats to both his
colleagues and the media. In a surprise twist, the professor’s
barrister wife at first came tearfully forwards to claim responsibility;
thence to the final denouement, in which the Professor did the manly
thing and acknowledged that the poison-pen writer was, in fact,
Ach, what would we have done without that most
enjoyable YouTube memes of the last year – the
re-subtitling of the film ‘Downfall’, which depicts
Hitler’s desperate final hours, so that the Fuhrer appears to be having a
hissy-fit about any old tripe. Now, though, the film’s grumpy
producers are using YouTube’s Content ID system, which permits a
copyright owner to immediately
disable any video that contains its copyrighted content, to remove
them all! Interestingly, YouTube
is advising that the parodists claim ‘fair use’, which would
immediately restore the videos and force the film’s producers to issue
an official DMCA takedown notice. With delightful predictability, some
wag has uploaded a Downfall parody
about the parody controversy. So clever,
disinclined to trust the mainstream media, a fact confirmed last
week by the trending hashtag #nickcleggsfault, which predicted that a
panicked right-wing press would try to smear LibDem leader Nick Clegg,
following his surge in the polls. By midday on Wednesday it was the
second most-tweeted hashtag on Twitter, with ‘fake tan went wrong –
#nickcleggsfault’ and ‘dinosaurs extinct – #nickcleggsfault’ among the
sniggeriest – along with the inevitable ‘lost 4th-gen iPhone prototype -
And, in further weighty political news, ‘Poor’ George Osborne –
or rather, the hair of the same – became a trending topic this week: his
new brilliantined and Bunteresque ‘Do was the subject of much mockery
during the Chancellors’
Debate. The Shadow Chancellor’s decision to risk a ‘Lord Snooty’
was all the more puzzling since – as the
Guardian pointed out – it ‘can only add to the vague but
unshakeable sense of a man who has just had his jacket buttoned up by
A month or so ago, Marmite launched a rather smart
social media campaign which pitted the imaginary Marmitophile Love
party against the Marmite-loathing
Hate party. The leader of the Hate party was oleaginous and a bit
thick – though I’m sure this had nothing to do with BNP leader Nick
Griffin’s conclusion that he was being parodied. Aaanyways, in a
revenge which can reasonably be described as ‘spectacularly childish’, a
floating Marmite jar was superimposed upon the BNP’s recent party
political broadcast, causing Unilever to initiate
injunction proceedings in order to protect the integrity of their
The Round-up was rather purse-lipped about the freak-show frisson which
Boyle’s sudden elevation – we felt that it reflected rather
poorly on our national culture. But it seems that a model has been
established, without which popular culture will grind to a halt. We
therefore present to you the dual viral delights of portly Lin Yu Chun
from Taiwan, who turns out to have a rather sweet voice, and who here
duets Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” with William
See, this is the kind of grit
and vigour which you’d expect from an alliance between doughty
Britain and perseverant Australia. Brit Sean Murtagh and Aussie Natalie
Mead were unable to get back to the UK in time for their own wedding –
but were not ones to let the small matter of a volcanic eruption disrupt
their nuptuals. They invited their fellow stranded passengers to join
them in celebrating their wedding at Dubai’s airport, while their
official guests, assembled in the UK, watched the romantic union via
Skype. Tears? Good lord no – just a little ash in my eye, is all.
In related volcanic news: few would deny that here’s been a bit of
argy-bargy about the iPad’s usefulness, but no-one
has thus far suggested that ‘government of medium-sized Scandiwegian
country’ should be amongst
its functionalities. Nevertheless, Norwegian Prime Minister Jens
Stoltenberg, who was grounded last week by that pesky Icelandic
eruption, was reported by his press secretary to be “running the
Norwegian government from the United States via his new iPad.”
Still unconvinced that the iPad is a Good Thing? Gah – the global
supply of kitten/toddler/iPad interaction videos is running dry! Will
video do instead?
Apparently there are now 8.6 million robots in the world — or, as
reports, more than one automaton for every person in Austria. As a
contextualising device, I confess that leaves me none the wiser – you?
New documents filed in a suit against Pennsylvania’s Lower Merrion
School District allege that cameras embedded in school laptops
of unauthorized images of their pupils in their own homes. One
student says that his laptop took photos of him as he slept – and
according to court papers, one staff member described the images as a
window “into a little LMSD soap opera.”
More teens are texting, and they’re texting more often: new
research from Pew reports that 54% of American teenagers send
daily texts, up from 38% 18 months before. 72% of them text regularly
Meanwhile, a new study reveals that younger users care very much
privacy; quite as much as we Oldies. Overall, 88% of us have
withheld information from business due to privacy concerns, with a
comparable figure of 82% for young adults. 84% of them feel that
permission should be gained from the subjects of a video or photo,
before it’s posted online – only 2% lower than the overall figure. And –
most pertinently for Facebook and other companies who have recently
been trumpeting the ‘end of privacy’ – 40% of 18-24s believe execs
should face prison for their company’s illegal use of personal info –
exactly matching the figure for 35-to-44-year-olds.
have been accused of encouraging
sexting with a promo video for its Kin phones – pitched as
social devices allowing easy sharing of content with friends – which
shows a teenage boy sending a photo of his bare torso to a female
friend. Critics say that the company is aiming the devices at 13-18
year olds – and recent research found that one in four in this age
group have admitted sending explicit images to their friends.
The Telegraph reports that Microsoft is under further fire,
following accusations that a Chinese factory which makes Xbox
components is using
teenagers as slave labour. They quote an investigation by the
US’s National Labour Committee, which found that the factory was paying
its young workers as little as 37p per hour for 15-hour shifts in
desperately crowded workshops. One space, measuring 105ft by 105ft,
contained nearly a thousand teenagers working in 86 degree heat -
the factory is alleged to have turned on the air-conditioning only when
foreign clients were visiting.
A new virus has infected the PCs of thousands of Japanese users
who have illegally downloaded sexually-explicit hentai, according to
the BBC. The malware takes a screenshot of the victim’s web history
and publishes it – before demanding a £10 fee to ‘settle your violation
of copyright law’ and remove the user’s surfing history.
Party has weighed in on the current controversy surrounding Facebook’s
refusal to install a ‘panic button’, which would connect young
users directly to the police if they felt at threat from paedophiles.
The party is threatening
to remove their advertising unless Facebook reconsiders – but
critics accuse the Tories of electioneering, pointing out that Facebook,
which is on-track
to make $1.1 Billion in 2010, is unlikely to be overly-worried by
magazine has announced that it will be erecting a
Glasto-style paywall around all content beyond its homepage.
The iconic muso-mag will tax readers $3.95 for a month’s pass, or
$29.99 for an annual subscription. Elsewhere, Reuters announced that it
too is eyeing a limit to Free, and perhaps plans
to charge for “niche, high-value content”, according to Brand
The Wall Street Journal has joined the New York Times in cuddling
up to Foursquare: it’s now providing them with editorial
snippets and restaurant reviews, as well as three new badges, each of
which come with a specific New York Challenge.
It was perhaps inevitable that News Corp would throw its hat into
the social gaming ring, and last week it planted
its flag with the acquisition of social game developer Irata
Labs. It seems there are no plans to fold the company into
MySpace – it will be grown as a standalone, to be put to work with
NewsCorp properties as required.
Meanwhile the L.A.Times reports that Hulu, the video-site
part-owned by NewsCorp, might be launching its subscription model
a month. But at least one
commentator has noted that the figure might not be quite the ticket
– being both too much for the average consumer to stomach for free TV,
and too little to make much of a dent in Hulu’s operating costs.
New research by moneysupermarket.com suggests that superfast
broadband will actively encourage
users to illegally download copyrighted content. Already,
nearly a fifth of internet users admit to doing so – and 35% will be
more inclined to, once superfast broadband is rolled out.
has splashed out on the Montenegran Me.me domain name for its
micro-blogging site Meme, calling the purchase “an essential
component of our online branding strategy.” Commentators
predict that a wider roll-out of the surprisingly underpublicized
Twitter rival is in the pipeline; Search
Engine Journal further notes that Yahoo’s fortunes appear to have
turned. Citing improved ad spend and increased earnings in Q1 2010, the
journal wonders what else the company might have up its sleeve.
research finds that a vast 6.8% of all the URLs accessed by
businesses belong to Facebook, with 10% of businesses’ bandwidth
eaten up by YouTube. “IT managers are right to be concerned about
the amount of social network use at work,” says Network Box’s Simon
Heron. Well, quite.
Meanwhile, Facebook is responsible for
nearly 50% of global hits to websites from social media, with Twitter
punching above its weight in generating nearly one in ten. StumbledUpon
sits in between, with just under 25%, according to StatCounter.
In the States, 145 million Internet users access social web
applications, between them generating nearly 500
billion impressions on each other. A new report by Forrester also
finds that a mahoosive 80% of those impressions are generated by 16% of
web users – and more than 60% of them come via Facebook.
And a new
report predicts that nearly half of global mobile users will be
using their devices to pay for both digital and physical goods by 2014.
budgets are on the rise for the first time in ten consecutive
quarters, according to the latest Bellwether report.
Supermarket giant Asda, who recently signed up to Mumsnet’s
Let Girls Be Girls campaign, has consulted
Mumsnet users about whether one of their products was against
the spirit of the campaign, which calls on retailers not to sell
products which prematurely sexualise children.
As part of their
Live Positively campaign, Coca-Cola is teaming up with the
charity Ocean Conservancy to encourage their fans to ‘oceanize’
their Facebook profile image into a playful underwater photo.
And the brand has also kicked
off its World Cup celebration campaign with an ad which
stars former Cameroon star Roger Milla, famous for celebrating a goal
during Italy’s ’90 World Cup with enthusiastic on-pitch dancing. The
ads direct users to the brand’s YouTube channel, where they’re urged to
upload their own celebratory videos.
Meanwhile, PepsiCo and Microsoft’s World Cup campaign
features Lionel Messi and Frank Lampard, and an interactive game
Hero in which users can earn personalised video content, to be
distributed via their social media profiles.
has launched its Race
For Life social networking site – the brand’s first. It gives
those brave souls who are participating in Cancer Research UK’s annual
fund-raising run a dedicated space to share their experiences with their
is crowdsourcing their
latest campaign – they need to find a new Knitting Nana to
be the face of their brand. Meanwhile, Unilever is asking the public to
create ads for some of its best-known brands, including Lynx, Ben
& Jerry’s, Dove and Vaseline.
publishers of Horrible
Histories – the gruesome reading-matter of choice for
under-12s everywhere – are working with our social media agency partners
YoMego to build a
dedicated virtual world to support their range of titles, due to go live
in June 2011.