Facebook Announces New Products At Cannes; GroupM Lowers Its Ad Growth Project For The UK

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Facebook Cannes-Do

Surprise! Facebook announced some new products at the Cannes Lions advertising festival. First up is an API called Audience Insights, combining demographic and psychographic data, which was already available, with topical data from user posts about certain events, topics and/or brands. Facebook dishes this data out to help inform creative. For instance, the agency Egypt added electronic music to its Budweiser ads in Brazil because, apparently, Brazilians really dig electronic music. Want to give it a shot? Back of the line, sucka: The Audience Insights API is available to “select partners” between 2016 and 2017. Facebook also unveiled a bunch of other products and updates designed for creatives, including a mobile ad building interface called Creative Hub and improvements to Canvas ads and Slideshow ads. Do you love press releases? Then read more.

Brex-iety

GroupM downgraded its UK ad growth forecast by £220 million (US $322.9 million) due to uncertainty over Thursday’s Brexit vote, The Guardian reports. GroupM lowered its 2016 TV ad spend growth forecast from 7.1% to 2.6%, while newspapers, originally expected to decline by 6%, will now see 12% deceleration. The UK ad market has softened since the referendum vote was announced in February, according to GroupM futures director Adam Smith (seriously, WPP, the expert running point on this is named Adam Smith?), but a vote to remain in the EU would likely mean ad spend beats the original forecast. Wanna roll the dice? More.

Reincarnated With A Hulu

When Facebook shut down LiveRail, it pushed out a bunch of junk, as well as some perfectly nice advertising business, thank you very much. Now, whodathunkit, Big Blue “is looking to forge new deals with some former LiveRail customers,” reports Garett Sloane of Digiday. Hulu is named as a former LiveRail customer that Facebook is (re)pursuing, but the streaming service seems poised to move on with its business – which is large, high-prestige and comes with the kind of raw data that has the whole industry slavering for Netflix ratings. AppNexus, which unabashedly considered Facebook’s decision an opportunity to swipe some video ad customers, is also rumored to be making a big push for Hulu. More.

Vide-Oh, Please

Although video advertising is set to be the driving force behind digital growth, Twitter has suffered from its lack of actual video content to advertise against. Periscope has insignificant traction compared to Facebook Live, Snapchat or YouTube, and Vine’s early growth has fizzled. But it was only last year that Facebook kicked off its major platform focus on video, and that’s been a runaway hit, so Twitter isn’t just gonna go gentle into that videoless night. The social media company just bought a machine-learning startup explicitly to improve its video service, added a section dedicated to popular and recommended videos, uprooted Vine to allow 140-second posts and launched an app called Engage, which tracks video analytics for user accounts (and hopefully jumpstarts a latent influencer community). More at Recode.

Put It In The ‘Books

The lawsuit against Facebook by Havensight Capital, a private equity firm managing a small handful of consumer product lines, may be more significant than its (zero) media coverage indicates, according to one SeekingAlpha contributor. Havensight alleges Facebook over-attributes its performance and thus overcharges for its performance-driven campaigns. According to Google Analytics, Facebook overstates its web visits by 30% … but in the digital world, there’s plenty of precedent and legal grounding there (not just the black box performance of walled gardens, but on things like Nielsen and comScore rating discrepancies). “Facebook Inc. is currently the only viable social networking option of notable scale for online marketing,” Havensight bemoans in its argument. That’s true. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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