Glam Media Buys Social Publisher Ning; Google Starts Display Ad Curation; WSJ Plunges Into Facebook

Glam and NingHere's today's AdExchanger.com news round-up... Want it by email? Sign-up here.

Glam Adds Ning

Glam says its entering the social realm. Yesterday, the company announced that it has bought Ning, an Andreesen-Horowitz-funded social networking company. All Things D's Kara Swisher says the purchase was for around $200 million. Glam says in the release, "the acquisition will create one of the largest social media content companies with over 240 Million Users & 100,000 publishers — creating the first paid, owned & earned media platforms for brands." Read the release. Glam has been a publisher - targeting women primarily - for a while with underpinnings of non-guaranteed, guaranteed and custom integration ad offerings through its own ad tech. Venture investor guru and Netscape founder, Marc Andreesen, will join Glam's board. He says on his personal blog about the deal, "I’m thrilled to be able to work with [Glam CEO Samir Arora] and his team at Glam, as well as Jason [Rosenthal] and his team from Ning, to build an amazing combined company." Or the next step to the Ning vision of social sites and Glam can provide a more mature, savvy ad revenue model? Or, is this a big acqui-hire? Glam, like other players, likely sees the need to be in social as Facebook continues to expand. Ning, could provide Glam its own proprietary social signal, as long as the Ning "fires" can be maintained and extended. The plot thickens - what are Arora and Andreesen thinking about ads? Pictela exec and Glam advisor Matt Straz offers his take here including the impact of Ning's subscription model.

Recommendations And Display Curation

Google announced on its Inside AdWords blog that it will begin adding Google +1 buttons to display ads. Check out the visuals of how this will look. As Google engineer Eider Oliveira suggests, this should improve performance: "Because a recommendation from a friend is such a strong signal of relevance, the Google Display Network gives ads that have been recommended an extra boost by including them in the auction for any page a friend visits." The implementation echoes Facebook's display ads, of course, via the "like." Also, this looks a bit like AdKeeper - you're essentially "keeping" ads to your +1 account. Additional potential impact could be more agency/publisher-like services from Google such as the development of promo mini-sites via the "+1" or perhaps some sort of offers or deals system (or extends its current effort). Once Google knows you like an ad on behalf of an advertiser, why not sell up? The most intruiging element is the display ad unit +1's link to search listings +1 button. It's all coming together for Google as leverages social signal. Better content rises to the top of search listings which drives clicks to pages with AdSense (GDN) where better display ad units (more +1's) are presumably rising to the top. Next stop - the ability to buy keyword targeting through AdWords that targets not only the search engine (as it does today), but the user who input those keywords on any publisher's page that runs display ads through Google. This extends the bottom of the funnel opportunity that search already captures. It also will help with campaigns looking to drive from the top of the funnel downward. You'll be able to efficiently extend the conversation with the user through search and display, generated demand, and thereby steadily work toward demand fulfilment. By the way, "+1" on display ads is optional according to the Inside AdWords post.

News Invades Social

The Wall Street Journal has boldly plunged into providing content on Facebook - not just links. It's free for a limited time and is ad-supported. According to PCWorld's Ian Paul, "WSJ Social Beta is an interesting experiment in merging the social aspect of news into the world's most popular social network, but the one thing I was missing was some kind of search function to find articles. It appears you are limited to reading Journal content that others surface by either liking articles on Facebook or on the Wall Street Journal site..." Read it. And, see it (you will have to "connect" through Facebook).

Adobe Earning It

Adobe beat Wall Street analyst earnings expectations with its third quarter financial results which ended on September 2, 2011. The company also said it was on-track to make $1 billion in earnings in Q4 2011.. Read the earnings release (PDF, of course). CNET paraphrases Adobe CFO Mike Garrett from the earnings call as saying, "The company also talked up HTML5, saying it was "doubling down" on its investments there." HTML5 developments remain key parts of mobile and video strategies across the ad world, not just Adobe. Read more. CNET also notes that Adobe has $2.7 billion in cash. Enough to make a few more acquisitions if it so desires. Listen to a recording of the earnings call.

Havas Powering Up Artemis

DG's MediaMind announced that it will help power Havas' Digital's Artemis analytics platform. The release states, "This integration combines MediaMind’s multichannel ad serving technology with the advanced attribution and analytics capabilities of Artemis." Read more. This news follows AudienceScience selection by Havas' Media Contacts for its data management platform services and includes integration with Artemis.

MediaTrust's New CEO

MediaTrust announced that CEO and founder Peter Bordes will be stepping down and current President and member of the Board of Directors, Keith Cohn, will assume the CEO mantle. Bordes will remain on as Executive Chairman of the Board. According to a press release, "Keith Cohn originally joined MediaTrust as President following the acquisition of Bardon Advisors, where Cohn was Founder and CEO." Read more.

New York Map

Gridley and Co. has released its own ecosystem map of sorts with its collection and segmentation of the New York media and tech scene. Get your New York flava here.

Whoa Conferences!

Love chatting about ads, listening to experts and partaking in a little bubbly? Have another sip. October in NYC may be just the month for you as Advertising Week festivities and other events from Ad Monsters, PubMatic, Yieldex, BrightRoll - even the OpenRTB group, among others - will be filling calendars industry-wide. See them all (or at least the one AdExchanger.com knows about) on the AdExchanger.com Events page.

But Wait. There's More!

 

Add a comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>