Digital Media Services Grow At Amazon; Defining Moment At Aol; MEC's Astley On Cross-Channel Opportunity

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Amazon Reports, Invests

Another day, another earnings report as Amazon.com said that it earned $9.91 billion in revenues and $191 million in profits for Q2 2011. Bloomberg says both numbers beat Wall Street analyst predictions as the company's e-book reader (Kindle) and "digital media services" helped put the company over the top. Read more. And, read the earnings release. Regarding digital services, Bloomberg's Douglas MacMillan reiterates Amazon's own prognostications, "Amazon Web Services, which lets customers rent computer capacity to house data and run computer applications, may one day be as big as the retail business." Amazon is investing in its future rather than gunning for profits today. Read more on The WSJ.

Defining Moment?

Mike Shields covers the Aol sales re-organization and Jeff Levick's departure over on DIGIDAY. He writes, "In the end it may just be that Levick -- whom Armstrong personally brought over from Google -- was never the right fit, something Armstrong finally realized, and acted upon. 'This had to be very tough for Tim Armstrong,' said [Robert Peck, a managing partner with Quasar Capital Advisors]. 'In some ways it could be a defining moment.'" Read more.

The Mobile Ad Serving Challenge

Last week on the Microsoft Atlas blog, Microsoft Atlas's Greg Cristal looks at all the challenges with third-party ad serving in mobile. There's a bunch of them according to Cristal such as: "Non-standard mobile ad formats; which build a vastly complex tagging requirement for the media agency to manage; and, multiple browser types, firmware types, and devices; processing data in unexpected ways and conflicting with server calls." Read more.

Dawn Of The Data

In a think piece on MediaPost titled, "Dawn Of The Data-Driven Decade," Rich Astley of media agency MEC cuts right to the chase and says, in fact, the data-driven decade may not need so long to transpire if one challenge can be solved, in particular. He writes, "The challenge for marketers in 2011 is to bring together display, video, mobile search and potentially even addressable TV in a single data driven decision-making platform." Read more.

Display Mapping

Calling it a "fundamental guide to data, targeting and the future of display," Dentsu's Netmining has released "Mapping the Display Landscape." A generous aggregation of articles, data and even a glossary or two, the new whitepaper aims to provide "more clarity" in the world of data-driven display advertising. Read the release. And, download the report (PDF).

Morose About Mobile

ReTargeter marketing maven Samir Soriano puts it succinctly on VentureBeat saying, "Mobile ads aren't effective." Yes, but tell us what you really mean, Samir... and then he does, "Mobile ads are annoying, ugly and often irrelevant to the end user." Read more. He sees mobile hitting its stride soon - in 4 years.

Verifying The Content

Slightly changing the terminology, MPG Media Contacts has announced that it has launched content verification (a.k.a. "ad verification") technology from Double Verify across its display ad serving operation. MPG tells New Media Age's Gina Lovett, "The technology to track this has only recently become available for non-exchange inventory. [An MPG spokesperson said], "Previously content verification was based on trust with partners and now this technology gives us the chance to see for ourselves..." Read more.

Meetings For Startups

When setting up a startup from seed stage financing, investor Rob Go suggests on his personal blog a few important steps include setting up a board - however informal it may be. In VC lingo, Go writes about proper board meeting process for the young startup, "Pre-wire and focus. The goal of your 2-hour board meeting should be to spend as little time as possible on general updates and non-critical governance issues. Regular business updates should already be absorbed by your investors through your written updates. What you do want to spend time on is the 1-3 most critical strategic issues that you are facing and need practical help on." Pre-wire and go.

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