Here's today's AdExchanger.com news round-up... Want it by email? Sign-up here.
Social Ads FTW
TechCrunch says social ad network RadiumOne is looking for a $50 million fundraising round at a $500 million valuation. Not bad for a company that started in late 2010 (AdExchanger 2010 Q&A). TechCrunch's Leena Rao adds, "We’re hearing that the company is on track to surpass $100 million in revenue this year. And clearly the company’s valuation has increased since its last round in 2011 (AdExchanger 2011 Q&A), which pegged the company at $200 million." Read more.
Reviewing The Paywall
Russell Adams reviews newspaper paywall strategy success or a lack thereof in The Wall Street Journal. He shares some stats for what seem to be some of the winners compared to other lowly numbers offered, "The Star Tribune in Minneapolis has attracted 14,000 digital subscribers—equivalent to about 5.7% of its existing weekday print subscribers—since it started charging readers for its website in November. The Boston Globe has sold about 16,000 digital subscriptions, which include those for mobile devices, in the three months after it launched a paid website last fall, compared with its daily print circulation of about 200,000." Online ads isn't making up the difference. Read more (subscription).
If you're tracking the digital-out-of-home (DOOH) market, then you're likely intrigued by Verifone's acquisition of LIFT Retail Marketing Technology. From Bloomberg: "LIFT’s digital displays, which sit next to cash registers at gas stations and convenience stores, assess items consumers have in their shopping basket and suggest additional products they might want to buy." Verifone says that this can lift sales 5%. Read more. You may recall, Verifone is active in other DOOH areas such as a taxi cab network. Is the next step online (and cross-channel) for Verifone and its ads strategy?
Mashing The Display Data
Ad verification company AdSafe Media has released its semi-annual review of display ad data pulsing through its plaform. Good news for ad networks and exchanges - kinda. A snippet from the report: "Impressions that represent a low degree of brand safety are deemed moderate- to very-high-risk content. For publishers, the overall proportion of risky content increased by 25% in the fourth quarter while it decreased by 14% for platforms/exchanges and by 40% for networks. Despite the overall increase in risky content for publishers, the portion of very-high-risk content for this channel is still significantly low compared to that of platforms/exchanges and networks." Download it (PDF).
Reviewing "Ad Tracking Firms"
Last week, senior editor, Alexis Madrigal at The Atlantic published a feature on the data-driven online ad ecosystem titled, "I'm Being Followed: How Google—and 104 Other Companies—Are Tracking Me on the Web." Among the highlights Madrigal finds the number of companies in the space "dizzying" while using the LUMA Partners ecosystem map as reference; and, he does not trust self-regulation in the least. He concludes, "...We know that this data is not going away and yet machine intelligence is growing rapidly. The results of this process are ineluctable. Left to their own devices, ad tracking firms will eventually be able to connect your various data selves. And then they will break down the name wall, if they are allowed to." Read more.
Display Ad Alliance
In an article late last week for Adweek, Mike Shields says Yahoo! is trying a new tactic to fuel its display ad alliance, "How badly does Yahoo want other publishers to join its fledgling sales alliance with Microsoft and AOL? So much so that it’s holding content distribution deals over the heads of some prospective partners, while looking to entice others with the promise of getting their content on Yahoo’s traffic-heavy homepage." Read more.
Federated Media is bringing its well-developed flavor of data-driven, "Signal" events to Procter & Gamble headquarters on March 8. P&G announced in a release last week, "During Signal P&G, we'll bring together a powerful list of digital leaders from across the digital spectrum, from major platforms like Google, Twitter and Facebook to innovative startups in advertising technology, mobile services and cross-media data providers." See who the lucky winners are!
Ad Ops Insides
In the first of a two-part post, Adopsinsider's Ben Kneen returns to Adzerk's Run Of Network blog and gets down to "brass tacks" on conversion tracking. The how-to includes this from Kneen, "Simply put, a conversion is success; it’s whatever a marketer wants to measure from their ad campaign. For some marketers, a conversion might be driving a user to make a purchase at their online store, for others, it might be getting a user to fill out a form, submit their email address, download a coupon, or maybe even as simple as just making it to their website. You might ask, why wouldn't a conversion always just be a sale?" Read the answer.
Coming And Going
All Things D's Kara Swisher reports that Yahoo! Labs chief and stategy exec, Prabhakar Raghavan (AdExchanger 2011 Q&A), is leaving Yahoo! to take on a yet-to-be-revealed role at Google. Swisher writes, "[Raghavan] was very well respected within the company, which seems to be curtailing its commitment to research as it attempts to turn itself around under the new leadership of CEO Scott Thompson." Read more.
Yelp Worth A Lot
In case you missed it, local reviews site Yelp went public on Friday and now has a stratospheric valuation of $1.5 billion on $80 million in revenues with no sign of profit. More millionaires mingle among the digerati. But, The Business Insider's Henry Blodget is not impressed, "We realize that investors are starved for growth stories. But wouldn't they prefer to wait for an opportunity to buy these growth stories at a cheaper price? Look what happened to Groupon's stock after the IPO. Look what happened to Demand Media..." Read more.
- Being tracked by Google isn’t bad — it’s actually good - GigaOm
But Wait. There's More!
- Initiative's Worldwide CEO to resign - DM News
- Facebook Warns Brands that Scale in Social Won't Come For Free - Ad Age
- The new targeting strategy you should know - iMedia Connection
- The Rise of the 'Brogrammer' - BusinessWeek
- Bing Buys Up The First Mega-Sized Facebook Log-Out Ad Placement - Marketing Land
- What is the right age to found a company? - Lightspeed Venture Partners blog
- Microsoft Expands Its pubCenter Advertising Platform To India - MediaNama
- Disruptions: No More Innovation for the Fun of It - The NY Times Bits blog