RSS FeedArchive for the ‘Social Media’ Category


Can LinkedIn Link Content With Business Results?

penry pricePenry Price has a long legacy as an advertising exec. He went from Google to Dstillery and, as of eight months ago, assumed the role of VP of marketing solutions at LinkedIn.

Compared to his previous roles, Price has a slightly different imperative at LinkedIn. Because of the social network’s audience of 300 million business-minded registrants, he is building out the company’s native advertising and content marketing products. There's plenty of work to be done, and a lot of opportunity – from streamlining the buying process for LinkedIn’s native ads to connecting messaging with business impact within content marketing.

Certainly LinkedIn isn’t the only company trying to quantifiably link creative messaging with business results. This is why so many like-minded tech folk have swarmed the Cannes Lion advertising festival, traditionally the sacred ground of the creative class.

“The ad tech companies all have a much bigger presence,” Price told AdExchanger. “Two years ago, none of them were here. They might have had a few people here last year. Now it’s like they’ve jumped the shark in that everybody is here.”

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Civolution, Brand Networks Team Up On Twitter TV Ads Pilot

CivolutionAs advertisers seek ways to extend their broadcast media buys through cross-platform campaigns, cross-screen ad-delivery companies are bridging the technical gap.

Such is the case with cross-screen tool Civolution, which has teamed up with Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer Brand Networks to help brands buy social ads in conjunction with live television events. Omnicom’s Resolution Media is the first agency on board to test drive a campaign beta.

Twitter rolled out Amplify last September to straddle the gap between social ads and broadcast spots; the program largely began with the network side as a means for audience extension. It was not until recently that agencies and the vendors that promise to help them predict real-time trends synced up on accounts.

“TV is still a huge medium to get your brand message across – it’s very significant and will be for a long time,” Civolution’s CEO Alex Terpstra told AdExchanger in a recent interview. “But at the same time, TV has its limitations. It’s often hard to create any sort of direct response to TV, (where your call to action is often limited to) dial in this 1-800 number or copy and paste this URL.”

Advertisers are seeking ways to extend live TV events to mobile experiences where users can easily interact with ads “by tapping them or driving them to a microsite or converting them to purchase immediately,” he added. “I think combining those … together is more what advertisers want than moving dollars away from one to the other.”

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Is Yahoo Tumbling In The Dark With Tumblr-Centric Ad Units?

tumblr

Yahoo will try a new way to monetize Tumblr, via the introduction of posts that can be promoted as ad units across Yahoo’s network of owned and operated sites.

While neither Yahoo nor its Tumblr subsidiary confirmed to AdExchanger that this is in the works or when the product is scheduled to debut, the existence of ads designed to promote Tumblr posts is an open secret in the agency community.

"We do know that they are going to be offering the ability to push Tumblr content across Yahoo," said Cindy Stockwell, EVP and chief media officer at Hill Holliday.

Since Yahoo’s $990 million (not $1.1 billion, as many outlets originally reported) acquisition of the social media/blogging platform, many industry watchers have speculated why Yahoo would hook up with Tumblr in the first place. It could be a play for the millennial audience that frequents the platform, or even a way to manage identities in a cookieless environment.

Agencies have responded with cautious optimism. Vik Kathuria, Razorfish’s global chief media officer, said that Yahoo’s ability to leverage its owned and operated network was one of its reasons for purchasing Tumblr in the first place.

“There is an interesting opportunity for marketers to use Tumblr as a creative platform and the immense power of Yahoo’s distribution and scale to target the right users at the right time,” he said. But he was also wary: “(Yahoo) needs to be incredibly sensitive to the user experience, which could be severely impacted with the high-impact ad units.”

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Salesforce.com’s Social Marketing Evolves

MikeLazerowSalesforce.com released Tuesday the Radian6 + Buddy Media Social Studio, indicating new life for a string of social acquisitions the company has made in recent years.

“For the first time, you can listen, publish content, and track it through to results all as part of a stack that also includes email, Web, and mobile,” said Salesforce.com ExactTarget Marketing Cloud CMO Mike Lazerow.

Radian6, Buddy Media and marketing automation company ExactTarget constitute the Salesforce.com ExactTarget Marketing Cloud. While Salesforce.com went to market with this solution as a consolidated stack, industry insiders suggested silos still existed between the products.

It seems Social Studio is attempting to address this issue – at least when it comes to content marketing. With the announcement, Salesforce.com said existing users of both Radian6 and Buddy Media point solutions have access to a single, unified product that combines a social listening and publishing platform with third-party partner APIs.

Social Studio has four parts that include: collaborative listening tools for teams built on Radian6; a module to plan, source and publish brand-safe content; tools designed to scale content and maximize consumer engagement; and reporting and analytics.

The company also ushered seven vendors into the Radian6 Buddy Media Social Studio Partner Program, which includes such content discovery and marketing tools as Kontera, Nexgate, Pressly, Rallyverse, Shutterstock, Getty Images, ShopIgniter and Trendspottr.

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Facebook Unveils Cross-Platform Tools, Plans To Stop Breaking Things

f8Over the last decade, Facebook has evolved from a forum for college students to poke each other to a company trying to position itself as a maturing, cross-device communication platform for marketers and consumers.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg certainly hopes this maturation is reflected in the company’s evolving slogan, from “move fast and break things” to the more staid “move fast with stable infra.”

While buzz around Facebook’s f8 Developer Conference largely focused on its mobile ad network, the Facebook Audience Network, the company also revealed an assortment of cross-platform tools.

App Links, for instance, is an open-source SDK for app-to-app deep linking intended to work across different platforms like Apple, Google and Windows operating systems. A number of vendors have already signed on to use the standard, including Spotify, Dropbox, Pinterest, Hulu, Flixter, Vimeo and Flickr.

The company also unveiled a mobile "like" button that users can click to share pieces of content from an app on Facebook and allow apps to receive more earned exposure. Facebook will show app publishers the number of people who have liked their content, but it is unclear how many impressions each "like" will receive and how Facebook will determine who sees the shared content.

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Facebook, Twitter Ads Partner Unified Acquires Awe.sm

unifiedUnified, a company that helps brands with social ad buys, has acquired social analytics startup Awe.sm for an undisclosed sum, the companies announced Thursday.

Unified is a Facebook Preferred Marketing Developer and Twitter Ads API Partner. The core of its product is a “Social Operating Platform,” a cloud-based tool that combines social marketing capabilities ranging from audience and performance analytics to automated ad-buying on Facebook and Twitter.

Unified was one of five social ads platforms to be inducted into LinkedIn’s Certified Sponsored Updates Partners program last week.

Now with the acquisition of Awe.sm, Unified could potentially gain access to broader marketing datasets beyond the social sphere. Awe.sm’s CEO Fred McIntyre told AdExchanger in a recent interview that the company, yes, connects brands and agencies with users in a social context, but also tackles “multichannel attribution” challenges, such as tracking the trail of social shares and links that led to an in-dealer purchase in the case of customer BMW.

Awe.sm, which was founded in 2009, is backed by a number of investors like Foundry Group and kbs+ Ventures. The Awe.sm team is small (Startuply.com pins the number at around 10) and a Unified spokesperson says five members will join the acquiring company. Awe.sm CEO Fred McIntyre, a former AOL exec, will support the transition and remain on as an advisor to the company.

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A New Star At Facebook: David Jakubowski To Head Atlas Solutions

jakubowski atlas

UPDATE: Facebook has confirmed that David Jakubowski will be joining the company, and that he will have a role that extends beyond Atlas.

UPDATE 8:15PM ET: Jakubowski, through Neustar's public relations agency, released the following comment via email: "I have been presented with an opportunity that I simply couldn’t refuse. I can assure you that Neustar has a very talented team and the right technology and people in place to provide marketers with a complete workflow solution. I’m more confident than ever in the strengths of Neustar’s technology and assets."

Facebook’s Atlas Advertiser Suite has a new boss – one that solidifies the importance of the ad server in a tech stack (which includes an ad server, an exchange and, as of Wednesday, a mobile ad network) that pushes beyond the confines of the Facebook social network.

David Jakubowski will leave his position as SVP of marketing services at Neustar to oversee the ad tech solution, acquired from Microsoft in early 2013, AdExchanger sources said.

Atlas was originally Microsoft’s answer to Google’s DoubleClick acquisition, functioning as an ad server and as a measurement platform through which advertisers could evaluate their digital campaigns.

But the product never took off the way Microsoft envisioned; it sold the suite to Facebook, where it had seemingly been gathering dust until recently when, in a flurry of sudden activity, the social network launched a new logo as well as product updates including support for programmatic direct buys and a rich media API program. (more…)


LinkedIn Launches Ads API, Certified Content Partners Program

JonWilliamsLinkedIn has been ramping up its marketing offerings over the last year in the form of self-serve Sponsored Updates and brand Showcase Pages. The professional social platform moved forward Thursday with the roll-out of a Sponsored Updates API the company has alluded to in recent months. It has also formalized two new Certified Marketing Partner programs.

First, the ads API. What marketers can do that they couldn’t do before, according to LinkedIn, is enable targeting of native, in-stream ad units through a new Certified Sponsored Updates Partners program that includes AdStage, Brand Networks, SHIFT, Unified Social and the Salesforce.com ExactTarget Marketing Cloud. Marketers were looking for ways to scale their Sponsored Updates campaigns by using the social ads dashboards brands and agencies had previously invested in, the company said.

Although LinkedIn worked with companies such as AdStage prior to this deal, the extent of the ads platform partnership only covered LinkedIn Text Ads; the Sponsored Updates API echoes steps Twitter and Facebook have taken toward programmatically enabled native ad placements in-stream.

LinkedIn has also created a LinkedIn Certified Content Partners program to increase brand access to publisher content. On the flip side, publishers see value in LinkedIn's business-attuned audience.

What differentiates LinkedIn, according to publishers, is its audience specificity on 300 million professionally minded people.

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Facebook's Q1: Mobile Contributed 59% Of Ad Revenue In Q1

fb-q1Facebook reported first-quarter earnings Wednesday, exceeding analyst estimates with ad revenue growth of 82% to $2.3 billion. In contrast, Google's Q1 revenues were seven times larger at $15.4 billion, but its growth was only 19%. Read the earnings release.

Mobile was the star of the show, from both an audience and revenue standpoint. The number of users accessing Facebook via a mobile device jumped 43% year over year to 609 million globally, and monthly active mobile users surpassed 1 billion for the first time. Mobile now contributes 59% of the company's total ad revenues, up from 30% in Q1 2013.

As part of that shift to mobile, Facebook showed fewer ads in Q1. Its total impression volume declined 17% year over year – offset by price increases.

"We don't have a strategy to decrease ad impressions," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said during its earnings call with investors. "We have news feed ads which are higher quality and perform better, and we have this legacy of right-hand ads on desktop that perform less well. As we shift to news feed, raw impressions are decreasing but value is increasing. Overall, we're trying to make it so the individual load on a per-person basis isn't increasing; instead we're … increasing quality especially on news feed ads."

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Twitter's MoPub Rolls Out Native Ads To All Publishers, Includes Direct Sold Inventory

mobile-twitter-mopubFour months after first introducing support for native advertising, Twitter's mobile exchange MoPub is pitching the solution to all publishers.

Consisting of an native ads SDK, a publisher-side ad server,  and an RTB extension, the MoPub native product is a "a complete solution for direct sold and exchange traded native ads, delivering the same control and transparency to publishers that we are known for," according to Twitter.

Here's a little more detail from the blog post:

  • The native ad SDK, which can be used to create a customized ad unit inside of your app
  • The ad server, which allows you to traffic your own ad campaigns into your native inventory. Publishers have full budgeting support, a rich array of targeting options, integrated reporting and a full order and line items system for trafficking native ad campaigns for in-house campaigns and direct sold campaigns alike
  • Our native ad extension to OpenRTB, which allows demand partners to bid on your native ads no matter how they are rendered in your app

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