Programmatic Discrepancies; Facebook Rules The Login

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Programmatic Smoke Screen

Programmatic trading helped boost holding companies’ organic growth rates in Q1, the WSJ reports, but inconsistencies in reporting methods are causing confusion in the market. While some firms account for revenues and profits earned from reselling inventory to clients, others do not. “None of our competitors to date have given a revenue number and a net sales number,” said WPP chief Martin Sorrell during an earnings call last week. “We find that immensely puzzling.” Meanwhile, IPG’s leadership continues to affirm its agnostic approach. The discrepancies are confusing investors, according to Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser. “For the better part of the last year and a half, direct comparisons between agencies have been difficult to make,” he said. “You have to make a subjective interpretation of what’s going on. Investors are confused. … What was peer-level growth? You can’t define it.”

Dominating Social Logins

This may come as no shock, but Facebook is king of social logins, owning 63% to 72% of the market, depending on who you ask. According to Gigya, Facebook grew its share of logins in Q1 2015 to 63% of the total market, whereas data from LoginRadius puts Facebook’s share closer to 72% in 2015’s first quarter. Social login data is the holy grail of advertising, according to eMarketer, who predicts that global social network users will swell to 2 billion this year. EMarketer adds that “[f]ully 62.4% of social networkers globally will use Facebook in 2015, and 70.1% of Facebook’s user base will access the site on mobile phones.” Read on.

Digital Upfront Boom

This year’s digital content NewFronts are hitting a historic high, the NYT reports, with 33 events scheduled in NYC over the next two weeks. The voluminous growth reflects a mad dash to capitalize on digital video buying, as it gradually siphons off a portion of traditional TV budgets. TV raked in $68.5 billion in ad spend last year, while digital video advertising grew to $5.8 billion in the US and is projected to grow to $12.8 billion by 2018. “This is really reacting to not where the world is going but where the world is,” said Dermot McCormack, president of video at AOL. Programmatic is also playing a role, according to Starcom US President Amanda Richman. “The impact of programmatic is definitely being felt across budgets that might have been invested during the upfronts, as more marketers move to real-time decisions about where they want to spend,” she said.

Sprint To The Wrist

As app developers and brands race to nail down marketing plans for the Apple Watch, Kochava is the first firm to support app analytics and mobile campaign tracking. The mobile attribution company is integrated with more than 1,200 publishers and networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Google and Pandora, and offers real-time visualization of campaign data. “As the Apple Watch, and other wearables, becomes an essential part of customers’ lives, measuring app activity and understanding performance is crucial,” said Kochava CEO Charles Manning. “This is going to be huge for advertisers and is just the beginning for what is sure to be an explosive wearables market.” Read the release.

America’s Pastime Meets The Future

Stadiums and venues are starting to incorporate DOOH platforms and beacons into their revenue strategies. Ad Age takes a look at the Mets’ six-year-old Citi Field, where the team is embracing marketing tech to fill sponsorships gaps. “‘We're trying to get the Burger Kings and the McDonald's to think of us as more digital,’ said Wes Engram, VP-corporate sponsorships for the Mets. The team is encouraged by new digital signage, which raises 300% more revenue than static billboards. The Mets are also increasing their in-stadium beacons from 20 to 60, enabling more sponsors to deliver messages to fans during the game.

Diversifying Digital Video

Snapchat is pushing advertisers to embrace videos that use a vertical aspect ratio, and minor as that may sound, Adweek points out that it’s a legitimate concern. “It's no small challenge,” writes Adweek reporter Garett Sloane. “Snapchat, even with 100 million-plus users, has to teach [brands] how to create ads from this new vantage point.” And it’s not just Snapchat – popular streaming platforms like Periscope and Meerkat also rely on vertical video. Facebook’s digital video boom led to a rise in silent video, as their autoplay ads don’t autoplay sound, and it seems like other platforms are similarly pushing advertisers to fit their medium.

Visualizing Viral

BuzzFeed publisher Dao Nguyen introduced what the company is calling Pound (Process for Optimizing and Understanding Network Diffusion) as a new kind of metric for online content. According to Nguyen, “Traditional web analytics are fundamentally unable to capture what actually happens on the social web today; they obliterate its inherent tree structure.” Pound replaces the “tree structure” model for the sharing of viral content in favor of a broader vision across networks – a forest, as opposed to a single tree. BuzzFeed also said that users share sponsored content the same way they do for editorial (though it’s worth noting that viral sponsored content happens to be BuzzFeed’s bread and butter). TechCrunch has more.

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