Facebook Bets On The Real Estate Market; Companies Get Stuck In The Facebook/Google/Amazon Shadow

Here’s today’s AdExchanger.com news round-up… Want it by email? Sign up here.

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Facebook launched an ad product for real estate brokers and home sellers to retarget users who search property listings. By connecting Facebook’s ad platform to a brokerage’s search data, the brokerage can resurface homes on Facebook and Instagram. “Real estate is an area we’re betting big on as a company,” said Facebook’s real estate and financial services chief, Keith Watts. “We think it’s content that consumers want to see.” Who isn’t thrilled about the new product? Zillow, the residential real estate platform that lets brokerages advertise listings on its site. Zillow and Facebook inked a partnership in October, but this new product is competitive. More at GeekWire.

Made In The Shade

“As titans like Google, Facebook and Amazon hog the limelight,” deserving tech companies and business models have slid under the radar, The Economist asserts. One noteworthy example is Priceline, which has made keen use of emerging technology (the travel search company is reportedly the highest-spending Google advertiser and has deep keyword bidding expertise) without overinvesting in flashy products. Another one is Square, the mobile payments business that went public in late 2015 and has grown from single-digit share prices last summer to trade over $25 now. More.

YuMe’s Q2

Video ad platform YuMe is finally clocking programmatic revenue – $11 million in Q2, to be exact – after struggling to produce any material programmatic revenue for years. YuMe increased Q2 revenue 5% YoY to $42.8 million, with 64% of impressions coming from cross-screen: like mobile, tablet and connected TV. A day after competitor Tremor Video divested its demand business, YuMe said during its earnings that it continues to explore “strategic alternatives” for its business with Deutsche Bank to find ways to add value for shareholders. Whether that’s code for M&A is still unclear. Results.

Shutout

How can traditional media companies compete against Amazon’s push into sports content licensing? “With difficulty,” WPP CEO Sir Martin Sorrell said in a video interview on Bloomberg. Watch it. Sorrell, who has been outspoken about Amazon’s looming position in the ad world, said the platform’s acquisition of streaming rights to Thursday Night Football and other major sporting events foreshadows “a major bidder in content and content rights.” That’s troublesome for TV networks, which have to make up production costs solely on advertising, while Amazon can lean back on other revenue streams. But it’s not just Amazon that traditional networks should be scared of. Google, Facebook and Apple will push into the sports content arena too, Sorrell predicts.

Learning From The Machines

The IAB has assembled a working group of more than 100 member companies to chisel out definitions and best practices for artificial intelligence and machine learning. The group will be co-chaired by Patrick Albano, CRO at the machine learning ad tech firm AdTheorent, and Weather Company CMO Jordan Bitterman. Read the blog post. “Awareness and understanding of AI is still low,” writes Albano, even though the tech giants and startups that embrace AI and machine learning are likely to hold indisputable market advantages by 2020. [Check out AdExchanger’s Marketer’s Guide to Artificial Intelligence.]  “If you’re not thinking about it yet, hold your wallet, because the race is on.”

Agency Ordeal

Talk about an RFP snafu. British supermarket chain Sainsbury’s recently awarded its media account to m/SIX, a GroupM shop, only to return the $115 million contract to the incumbent, Omnicom’s PHD, after Omnicom complained to the board of an unfair review process. It was a bold move for PHD to go over the heads of its account reps to demand a rerun, and it likely came about only because the agency knew that Sainsbury’s values its reputation as a fair-minded client to suppliers, reports Gideon Spannier at Campaign. “A lot of other agency leaders privately welcomed OMG’s decision to stand up to Sainsbury’s, even though they felt sympathy for M/SIX, because of the way other brands have treated loyal agencies with disdain.” More.

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