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This is a great summary on StreamDaily about how digital communities and broadcasters can benefit from partnership programs.

Niche is just a starting point: Check out some life lessons from lifestyle MCNs that have formed strong partnerships with traditional broadcasters.

Let’s talk media and money: It should come as no shock that linear broadcasters have seen a decline in ad revenue. On the flip side, while digital advertising on video has increased exponentially, it still doesn’t command near the same premium as traditional broadcasts.

Is there a happy solution somewhere in the middle of these two seemingly different formats?

Traditional channels suffer from a decline in viewers, particularly in the millennial and Gen Z cohorts. The Canada Media Fund, in its Keytrends Report 2016: Entering the Age of Experience report that while TV consumption has been relatively stable, with Canadians typically viewing 27.4 hours of television per week in 2013-2014, while millennials, who represent more than 25% of the adult population, watched 20.6 hours per week. Nearly all of them (96%) say they watched YouTube in the past month.

Many linear players are turning to digital companies for help in navigating this new reality.  The blending of traditional and digital players isn’t new: there have been a number of significant moves from traditional companies into the space over the past two years. Disney’s Maker 2014 announcement, Warner Bros’ investment in Machinima and CBC’s partnership with Fullscreen demonstrate this demand.

When it comes to finding success in these marriages, while these mass-reaching organizations have scale on their sides (Maker alone has more than 10 billion views across its network monthly), it’s worth seeing how niche players in the space make these partnerships work.

The partnership between Toronto’s Corus, a network of specialty channels geared at women and children, and San Francisco’s Kin Community, an MCN geared at women and lifestyle content, began as a way for Corus to deepen its presence in digital and respond to increasing advertiser demands, says John Macdonald, its EVP head of women and family at the broadcaster.

Corus isn’t new to digital, he adds. The media company has long created online series, but they were largely treated as a way of promoting linear content. It received a fair bit of success for its existing TV franchises (which include hit titles like Property Brothers and Love it or List it), but Macdonald admits it struggled to find success with digital-first content.

WHILE NOT STRICTLY BROADCASTER-RELATED, READ CMF’S FASCINATING STUDY ON WHY HONDA’S VENTURE INTO YOUTUBE CONTENT FAILED. ONE OF THE KEY TAKEAWAYS THAT’S VERY APPLICABLE TO ALL PLAYERS WHO ARE STEEPED IN TRADITIONAL MEDIA: “IT’S A YOUTUBER’S WORLD, SO LEARN TO COLLABORATE.

”Around the time these major mergers were happening with the biggest MCNs, Corus began looking for a partnership, he said. Kin and the network shared an audience and the content was complimentary. (While complex, scripted and unscripted content works on linear, shorter more task-oriented DIY works best on digital, he says. But the two fall neatly into the “lifestyle” category, targeting women, 25 to 45.)

The partnership works, first and foremost, because it helps assuage advertiser’s fears of digital video, Macdonald says. Though more brands than ever are working with YouTubers (finding the opportunity to grow reach and get closer to audiences appealing), advertisers have long been cautious when delving into the online video space – despite its popularity. It’s too new, too unproven for many advertisers, and metrics are still difficult to tie back into sales results.

“Advertisers are used to buying ads in a certain way – they know how to buy radio, television print,” Macdonald says.

What’s more, a targeted media buy can seem difficult to achieve: YouTuber popularity crosses borders – one of Canada’s top stars Lilly Singh, for example, is hugely popular in India. But why would a marketer want to use their limited media spend on a YouTuber when there isn’t a guarantee of how much of his/her audience will actually be in a position to purchase the goods?

“There’s a lot of spillage of ads that are served into video impressions that aren’t truly monetized, which means (there are people who are watching these ads that the brand isn’t paying for,” Macdonald says.

But, “the absolute scale of business is big enough to matter, if you will, to advertisers,” he adds.

For brands looking to dip their toes in, the traditional media buy is enticing – a safety net, so to speak, he says. For something like Corus and Kin, it offers an opportunity to narrow the target audience – women, interested in lifestyle content.What’s more, the tie in with the traditional media gives advertisers the assurance that its content will still be seen by the more familiar mass audiences linear can deliver.

Already the partnership is bearing fruit. A handful of new-to-Kin and -Corus advertisers have come on board, including Kumon and LG, which Macdonald believes is directly attributed to the partnership. The LG partnership …read more

Source: Finding the value in linear and digital marriages » StreamDaily

Digital Influencer Martín Migoya Of Globant:

Reinventing Marketing With Consumer Journeys

Jason Bloomberg CONTRIBUTOR

As today’s brands scramble to reinvent themselves for the digital age, they have two places to look for assistance: technology-oriented consulting firms and advertising/marketing agencies – two professional services industries that are both struggling with their own digital reinvention.All this digital blocking and tackling leaves an opening for pure-play digital consultancies like Globant SA (NYSE:GLOB). Founded in Argentina and headquartered in Luxembourg, this now-public global firm rocketed to a leadership position in a mere handful of years, with blue-chip clients like American Express AXP -0.65%, Coca-Cola KO -1.73%, Google GOOGL +0.83%, and Southwest Airlines LUV +0.82%.

Heading up this billion-dollar multinational with over 4,700 employees is CEO Martín Migoya, who is releasing his new book, The Never-Ending Digital Journey, coauthored with Globant colleagues Andres Angelani and Guibert Englebienne.

The book, however, is icing on the digital cake. How Globant grew from four people in Argentina in 2003 to the digital powerhouse it is today is the story that qualifies Migoya as our next digital influencer.

Digital Before it was Digital

Migoya’s focus from the early days at Globant was reinventing the customer experience. “We went to prospects with a clear message,” Migoya recalls. “If you need to engage your customer in different ways, work with us.

Globant’s strategy has been to target B2C brands – with an emphasis on the ‘C’: consumer. “Consumers are disrupting the market,” Migoya explains. Even before today’s use of the word ‘digital’ came to represent a renewed focus on the customer, Globant was beating this drum of disruption.

Globant’s big break came in 2006, when Google hired it to help test the new Google Checkout payment system. The results so impressed Google that Globant has become one of Google’s favorite partners.

The success with Google catapulted Globant into a dominant position in the marketplace. “With Google as a customer, it became easier to introduce ourselves to other companies, so our growth exploded,” Migoya told Bloomberg Business in a 2011 article that further cemented Globant’s position as digital wunderkind.

Today, the global digital disruption story has caught up with Globant and their relentless focus on the digital journey – a term that indicates all the interactions a consumer has with a brand over time. “We create ‘digital journeys’ that really matter for millions of consumers,” Migoya explains. “We help brands interact with consumers to create emotional connections.”

How brands interact with their customers has traditionally been the purview of marketing, so Globant could be considered a digital marketing firm at its core. Migoya, however, disagrees with this characterization. “We’re an engineering company for the brand,” he says. “That’s a new paradigm.”

Whether Globant is transforming or supplanting marketing is beside the point. “Marketing used to go through traditional channels,” Migoya explains. “Ads were considered to be content marketing, competing against traditional content.

”Globant’s focus on digital journeys changes this equation. “In the new era, digital journeys are also part of the content consumers desire,” Migoya says. “Creating experiences for consumers is what brands need and are looking for.”

Migoya has found that many brands are sorely lacking in the digital capabilities necessary to provide such consumer experiences. “Lots of interactions with your bank or mobile phone provider aren’t considered ‘smart’,” he says. “With CPG [consumer packaged goods] customers in particular, interacting with teenagers, for example, is not a technology game. It’s a much broader digital journey.”

Globant, therefore, is an engineering company that isn’t simply playing a ‘technology game’ – and a digital marketing firm that isn’t doing anything their customers might recognize as marketing. Such is the nature of market disruption.

Globant, of course, is not alone. There are several other hot digital consultancies today (see my article on Photon and their client Walgreens as an example). All of the large advertising and marketing agencies are beating the digital drum as loudly as they can as well.

Perhaps, then, Globant is battling the agencies? Not so, says Migoya. “We don’t compete with agencies,” Migoya insists. Furthermore, he also says that “we’re not reinventing the agency model. What we do is much deeper.

Today’s agencies are likely to disagree (see my article on at McCann Health, a McCann Worldgroup agency, which is owned by advertising giant Interpublic Group, for example), but Migoya is making an interesting point nevertheless. “Globant is helping to give birth of a new alternative to marketing,” Migoya opines. “Consumers don’t think of this as marketing, they think of it as content.”

Migoya, therefore, isn’t simply talking about new ways to market. He’s talking about a paradigm shift in how to think about marketing in the context of digital-centric customer journeys – an entirely new channel for reaching the customer. “There’s a new channel, a new way to interact with consumers – new for everybody,” Migoya concludes.

Reinventing marketing is a tall order, but there’s no question the marketplace is validating Migoya’s enthusiasm. “Brands are jumping into this,” he says – and if you find yourself wanting to learn more, his new book is sure to please.

Intellyx advises companies on their digital transformation initiatives and helps vendors communicate their agility stories. As of the time of writing, Photon is an Intellyx customer. None of the other organizations mentioned in this article are Intellyx customers. Image credit: Globant.

Follow Jason Bloomberg on Twitter or LinkedIn.

Source: Digital Influencer Martín Migoya Of Globant: Reinventing Marketing With Consumer Journeys – Forbes

Ad blocking is cementing brands’ content roadmap

by Stephen Gill

Last week, Randall Rothenberg created tidal waves across the industry in his evangelical scorn of ad blockers, decadently indulging his peers in a diatribe about ad blockers’ profiteering and subversion of freedom of the press. Though the significant rise in ad blocking has caused painful billion-dollar revenue losses for publishers and extreme divisiveness over potential solutions, the fresh introspection into our industry is more than welcome and long overdue.

Brands, too, are re-thinking their content strategies as a result of ad blocking. While consumers choose to subscribe to ad blocking for numerous varied reasons, three explanations we all can sympathize with include: ads no longer provide value to the consumer, ads have become disruptive to consumers’ online experience, and finally, ads no longer resonate with consumers at an emotional level.

Fortunately, over the past year brands have taken this time as an opportunity to reverse the tide and explore innovative content ideas. Here are some emerging trends that marketers can apply to stem ad blocking inertia.

Long-form storytelling is making a comeback

Women InmatesThe Ascent, and Cocainenomics: What do they have in common?

These are all ground-breaking branded content campaigns that Netflix sponsored in partnership with The New York Times, The Atlantic, and most recently The Wall Street Journal to promote their hit shows Orange is the New Black, House of Cards, and Narcos. Each of these long feature articles demonstrates outstanding and delicate journalism on thought provoking subjects with beautiful graphics and deeply engaging videos.

Netflix’s Orange is the New Black native 1,500-word ad included short-form videos that gave rare insight into individual profiles of women who, for example, transitioned from “a Hermes scarf, a Tahari coat dress, a pair of high heels” to shackles on the first day. Rather than cornering this ad to a 300×250 ad slot, the paid post appeared on the Times’ homepage, “among editorial links to an article about a town’s fight against pollution, an op-ed about the Frick Collection, and a travel story about Bolinas, Calif.”

For advertisers, custom native ads like these are paving a new model for branded content. By delving deeper into interesting subjects and delivering value that readers expect alongside editorial content, brands will ensure consumers come back thirsting for more.

Deliver the right experience, not just the right message

Over the years, intrusive, repetitive, and data-intensive (rich media) display ads have led consumers to associate online advertising with annoying experiences and slow load times. Therefore, it has become incumbent upon brands more than ever to reset this perception by creating contextual, non-interruptive experiences.

This imperative couldn’t be more relevant than in the context of mobile. When the Times reviewed how much of consumers’ mobile data came from advertising in “The Cost of Mobile Ads on 50 News Websites,” the study astoundingly found that “more than half of all data came from ads and other content filtered by ad blockers.” No wonder why consumers glommed onto ad blocking when Apple made it easier on iOS.

For “mobile-first” brands, crafting a light, yet engaging content experience will be vital. Additionally, Mobile Marketing Association found that marketers who ran mobile native campaigns at lower frequency (fewer placements and exposures) contributed to better overall ROI. Therefore, as advertisers plan branded content campaigns across both desktop and mobile channels, prioritizing non-interruptive, relevant experiences at less frequent times will remain key to keeping consumers engaged.

Along these lines, publishers should also think about how they can serve advertisers as a better conduit for good user experiences. Publishers such as Forbes are already experimenting with offering “ad-light” experiences that will likely prove to become sustainable, revenue generating models.

From pushing marketing messages to pulling on consumers’ heartstrings

Jeff Bander, president at Sticky, perceptively pointed out that marketing is entering an era focused on emotion, so it behooves brands to adjust their measurement to align with this new reality.

There are many examples of digital campaigns that are following this trend. In a brilliant social example geared towards environmentally conscious millennials, the nonprofit World Wildlife Fund launched a Webby Award-winning #LastSelfie campaign that featured nine-second Snapchat pics of endangered animals. The pics included captions such as, “better take a screenshot / this could be my #lastselfie” and “Don’t let this be my #LastSelfie.” As a result of this campaign, the WWF achieved its monthly donation target within three days and animal adoptions through its site.

This campaign illustrates how anchoring content in consumers’ passions and interests can be extremely effective in mobilizing consumers to take action, rather than block ads.

The ad-blocking phenomenon rang alarm bells against a slowly degrading user experience, and sparked new, vital conversations in our industry. As a result, brands have begun laying the groundwork for new models of consumer engagement. The key will be to partner with publishers that are also evolving their monetization strategies to offer lightweight and impactful user experiences. In this new “ad-light” world, publishers will no longer rely on volume and instead realign their product strategies to the shifting landscape. I look forward to seeing how brands, publishers and the tech ecosystem will band together to innovate a brand new content roadmap.

Stephen Gill, CEO, Tiller

Stephen Gill is a visionary technology entrepreneur and leader, whose passion for the digital marketing space inspired him to found Tiller in 2015. His passion? To make advertising better.

Read more at http://www.imediaconnection.com/content/39823.asp?imcid=nl#qEgvF8lj43QeU6Yy.99

Source: Ad blocking is cementing brands’ content roadmap – iMediaConnection.com

A great infographic!  An interesting point in it: “Nearly half of the top marketers have been unable to demonstrate social media spending’s effect on their business”  That almost sounds like I know half of the money I spend in advertising is wasted, I just don’t know which half.

Infographic: Social Media Marketing

By John Delaney on November 30th, 2015Posted in Infographic,

We’re happy to publish our latest infographic, which highlights key social media marketing trends for both B2B and B2C companies. Among other things, the infographic points out that, although companies continue to increase their social media marketing spend, they don’t do a particularly good job at engaging consumers through social media, and they still struggle to determine the return on their investment. Enjoy! And please feel free to share this infographic with your marketing colleagues.

Source: Infographic: Social Media Marketing | Socially Aware Blog

 

JANUARY 26, 2016

Details on the Viceland roll out north of the U.S. border emerged Friday, with Canadian telco Rogers Media and Vice revealing the launch date, carriers and preview strategy for the new, youth-facing channel.

The companies have inked agreements with 25 BDUs across Canada to carry the 24-hour  channel, which launches on Feb. 29. It will be offered with a three-month free preview to each company’s current subscribers.

The list includes Rogers Cable, Access Communications, Bruce Telecom, Cable Cable Inc., CityWest, Cogeco Connexion, Eastlink, Execulink Telecom, Hay Communications, Mitchell-Seaforth Cable TV, Northwestel, Novus, Riondel Cable Society, SaskTel, Shaw, Shaw Direct, Sogetel, Tbaytel, Telus Optik TV, Videotron, Westman Communications Group, Wightman Telecom, WTC Communications and YourLink Cable BC.

The combined total of these channel carriers will give Viceland a reach of 7.5 million households in Canada, according to Rogers Media.

Among the Canadian titles to be produced out of Vice’s Toronto-based studio are documentary series Cyberwar and Terror (with Vice co-founder Suroosh Alvi, pictured). In all, the channel will carry nine Rogers-commissioned series, along with original content developed and produced in-house by Vice staff. Director Spike Jonze, creative director with Vice, has been overseeing the development of the new channel, from show creation to production.

Vice announced in November 2015 that Viceland would be taking over Rogers Media’s bio channel licence. A month later, the edgy digital brand onboarded David Purdy, a former senior Rogers executive, to lead its push into international linear and digital markets.

Vice has been busy prepping for expansion, which includes a major push into Europe. Company CEO Shane Smith confirmed in October Vice is in talks with several linear and digital brands to launch European channels over the next year. In November,  the company announced Viceland will air in the U.S. market in early 2016  following a deal with A+E Networks.Story courtesy of Jordan Pinto at Playback, with files from Darah Hansen, StreamDaily

Source: Viceland to launch across 25 carriers in Canada » StreamDaily

Fullscreen is definitely on a roll.  A glimpse into a piece of the future of advertising talent acquisition and TV production.

Fullscreen, GroupM Ink Deal to Form Influencer Marketing ProgramAgency’s Clients Get Access to Fullscreen’s Technology, Dedicated TeamBy Tim Peterson. Published on January 05, 2016.

Source: Fullscreen, GroupM Form Influencer Marketing Program, Playa | Digital – Advertising Age

For more brands to put money toward video deals with digital celebrities, or influencers, it needs to become easier for the brands to pick out which influencers to work with. “It’s much harder for brand owners to keep up with the velocity of celebrity and influence than it was before,” said Rob Norman, global chief digital officer at WPP’s media-buying arm GroupM. That’s a problem for companies that operate networks of influencers, but it can also be a selling point, one that digital video network Fullscreen has parlayed into a multiyear deal with GroupM.

Fullscreen and GroupM have created an influencer marketing program called Playa that will coordinate exclusive deals between the agency’s clients and Fullscreen’s global roster of more than 75,000 digital celebrities.

An agency signing a deal with a company that operates a network of digital celebrities, or influencers, isn’t necessarily newsworthy. GroupM already works with Twitter’s influencer marketing firm Niche, andOmnicom signed an eight-figure deal with Disney’s Maker Studios in 2014. And the fact that GroupM’s parent company WPP is an investor in Fullscreen makes the deal less of a surprise. But what really helped the deal come together, according to Mr. Norman, is that GroupM gains access to Fullscreen’s tool that helps brands identify and assess the company’s influencers and their audiences as well as Fullscreen employees that have experience in mediating deals between brands and influencers.

For advertisers, dealing with digital celebrities isn’t the same as traditional stars. For starters, digital celebrities have a higher bar for which brands they’re willing to promote, recognizing that their own reputations are at stake when they back a brand. And large as digital celebrities’ fan bases can be, they can also be pretty niche. A digital star may have millions of subscribers on YouTube and thousands of fans mobbing her at an event like VidCon, the annual Comic-Con-like confab of digital video stars and their fans, then walk into a Starbucks a few blocks away and go unnoticed.

“This really started at VidCon for me,” Mr. Norman said. “Obviously I knew what the scale of the YouTube ecosystem was. But what I didn’t really know was how mandolin-sliced that celebrity has become.”

That niche-at-scale dynamic can make it hard for brands to pick out which digital celebrities they want to work with, especially as more of these so-called influencers crop up across YouTube, Instagram, Vine, Snapchat and elsewhere. But Fullscreen has built tools that catalog these creators and measure the paid and organic reach of the creators’ own videos and the ones they made for brands, with WPP’s Millward Brown and Tubular Labs on board for third-party measurement verification. Now it is opening up those tools to GroupM “so that they on their buying desks can actually look at people and creators in the same way they would look at other media channels,” said Fullscreen CEO George Strompolos.

“It’s systematizing what was previously unsystematizable,” Mr. Norman said. He added, “What they’ve got is an influencer management system that allows you to identify who’s trending up and who’s trending down, what their interests are, what their audiences look like, what the intersection of their channel viewers are with other channel viewers and also about the kinds of work they do with brands.”

Digital video analytics companies like Outrigger Media and ZEFR offer similar tools that examine digital celebrities’ audiences for advertisers and present that information in a dashboard. But thanks to its network of influencers, Fullscreen is able to take things a step further by connecting advertisers with those celebrities and helping to put together the deals.

In the case of Fullscreen’s deal with GroupM, Fullscreen will be setting up a dedicated team of employees that specialize in influencer marketing campaigns to work exclusively with GroupM’s clients. Those employees will spend their time “managing everything from the creative ideation to the contracts to dealing with the personalities involved — whether those are agents, managers, lawyers, parents — to the nuances of maybe a certain creator recently worked with a competitive advertiser or maybe a brand has shown a tendency to reject ad integrations and also respecting and honoring the creative vision that the talent has,” Mr. Strompolos said.

Those employees will be headquartered in New York and also located in London and Los Angeles. They will work primarily out of Fullscreen’s offices but also spend time at GroupM’s digs. That shared-space strategy will be especially easy in Los Angeles where Fullscreen and GroupM have offices in the same building in Playa Vista, the emerging epicenter of the L.A. tech-and-media scene that also inspired the Playa program’s name. In addition to the team of specialists, Fullscreen will offer up its in-house production team to work with the influencers and GroupM’s clients.

The deal may sound as simple as GroupM gets to pick stars from Fullscreen’s stable to appear in one-off videos, but it can go the other way as well. Mr. Strompolos said GroupM’s clients will get first dibs on sponsorship opportunities in one-off videos and original shows that Fullscreen’s creators initially come up with that could include one or more brands.

As part of the deal, GroupM’s clients will receive some exclusive deals on campaign pricing, Mr. Strompolos said, declining to get into specifics about the deal’s financial terms. Mr. Norman said there is “no hard commitment” in how much money from GroupM’s clients that the media-buying group needs to funnel Fullscreen’s way. But if GroupM isn’t able to spark enough deals between its clients and Fullscreen, then some exclusive aspects of the deal will be made available to other agencies and advertisers.

And that’s the looming question: whether Fullscreen’s expertise and the ease of its technology will be able to entice GroupM’s clients, who may be more comfortable spending their money on traditional channels, to see Fullscreen’s creators as the next generation of those channels. Mr. Norman said clients want to do more of these influencer deals, but “if I was Walt DisneyCorporation or NBC, I wouldn’t be quaking in my boots.” At least not yet.

 

This is an inevitable evolution for Facebook.

Facebook quietly tested a Yelp competitor and Yelp’s stock plunged 9%

Jillian D’Onfro Dec. 15, 2015, 5:27 PM 5,174

Facebook has quietly started testing a new recommendation service that lets users find the top-rated and reviewed local businesses in their area.

The service looks similar to Yelp, which saw its stock plunge nearly 8% this morning. It finished the day down more than 9%.

Although Facebook hasn’t made any formal announcements on the feature, the Facebook Services site is live right now, which we found thanks to Search Engine Land.

“We’re in the early stages of testing a way for people to easily find more Pages for the services they’re interested in,” a Facebook spokesperson told Business Insider via email. Earlier this year, the company completely overhauled its Pages to make them more useful for small businesses, which can list their services and hours and communicate with potential customers through them. Facebook recently announced that it’s gotten more than 50 million businesses on board. Here’s what the new site looks like:

screen shot 2015-12-15 at 10.51.20 am

 

Source: Facebook tests new way to let people find the best local businesses – Business Insider

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