Congresswoman Takes On Regulators Over Privacy; Millennium Cashes In; Google’s Survey Wall

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Measuring The Outcry

AdWeek reports that Rep. Mary Bono Mack (a Republican) said during a congressional subcommittee hearing that she’s wondering if online consumer privacy concerns are being made up by regulators and the Obama administration (a Democratic administration, of course). Playing politics? Sure – at least, in part. This is Washington D.C., after all. Still, Bono Mack is quoted as saying by AdWeek, “Before we do any possible harm to the Internet, we need to understand what harm is actually being done to consumers. Where is the public outcry for legislation? I haven’t gotten a single letter from anyone back home urging me to pass a privacy bill.” Read it.

IPO For The Millennium

Mobile ad network Admob sells for $750 million in 2010 to Google. Quattro Wireless sells to Apple for a rumored $275 million in 2010. Pundits everywhere said the exit had been capped if not closed for mobile ad network players who had not been acquired, including Millennial Media. Yesterday, Millennial Media had the last laugh – pending market gyrations. On its first day of trading the company’s market capitalization hit $2 billion. Read all about it on TechCrunch. The IPO gates are open.

Survey Wall

Google has found a new way to do the paywall without having you login and pay for a subscription. The “Survey Wall” requires that once a user hits the landing page in order to read an article, for example, a user must answer a question if they want to read the entire article. According to paidContent, publishers get .05 for each click. On the other end, Google is arbitraging market research needs and charging, for example, .10 a question. Google therefore makes a nickel. AdWeek says it’s gonna give it a try. Read the announcement on the Google News blog.

Q1 In Review

Unable to wait for the first quarter of 2012 to end, The Jordan-Edmiston Group has released its review of Q1 2012 deal flow. According to the release, “Marketing & Interactive Services accounted for 7 of the 14 largest deals of the quarter – those with over $100 million of value.” Tops among the deals was SingTel’s acquisition of Amobee for $321 million in cold hard cash. Read more.

GRP’s Online Tentacles

Video demand-side platform TubeMogul announced an agreement with Nielsen “to provide actionable gross ratings point (GRP) data from Nielsen Online Campaign Rating.” Who cares? Product Manager Mark Wagman at OMG trading desk Accuen does. He claims in the release, “GRPs change the calculus by letting us allocate budgets purely based on where viewers are and make apples-to-apples comparisons with television. And unlike television, where ratings can vary day-to-day, advertisers can know exactly what they are getting for a given budget given the optimization available online.” Read the release.

Viewing Impression

Cory Trefeletti continues the debate on Viewable Impressions on Mediapost. He sees a possible solution for pricing impressions depending on the viewability: “My suggestion would be that only ads above the fold are able to be priced on a CPM basis, and any ads below the fold of a standard website should be priced on a CPC or CPE (cost per engagement) basis.” Read more. Yieldex’s Tom Shields responds to Trefiletti’s idea in the comments of his own post on AdExchanger: “If you measure cost per unit effectiveness, then intermediate metrics are only about shifting risk between the advertiser and the publisher, and I don’t think we need a new one.”

Crossing The Channel

DataXu has published the results of a survey of 300 digital marketers conducted by Society of New Communications Research (SNCR) and consultancy Human 1.0. The survey found that marketers do not feel they have their arms around their own first-party data. Among several nuggets that may be of interest to data miners panning for insight “gold”: “Respondents report that the lack of a single cross-channel digital marketing platform was a significant obstacle to their efforts, and was most commonly identified as preventing the allocation of additional budget. (…) 20% of respondents report that increased measurability was a key driver in the rise of digital marketing.” Download the whitepaper (pay with some PII).

Mobile Ad Trends

Good news for mobile ad inventory owners. User acquisition costs are going up (resulting in higher CPMs for publishes(, but it may be at the expense of smaller mobile app developers who still need to promote their apps. VentureBeat’s Dean Takahashi looks at new February data from Fiksu (AdExchanger Q&A) and writes, “That’s a sign that mobile app makers are placing more ads to promote their products in the Apple App Store. If the costs keep rising, then smaller developers may find that it is going to cost too much to promote their apps, given the amount of money they can generate in revenue from those apps.” Read more on VB. And, read the release.

Online And Offline Comps

In a note to investor, J.P. Morgan analyst Doug Anmuth tries to do some look-alike modeling with the latest Best Buy financial data and says that the closure of 50 stores by Best Buy is positive for Amazon. However, quoting his own fellow JPM analyst, who covers Best Buy, Anmuth writes, “The [Best Buy] expense cuts are designed to right size the operating structure of Best Buy to the new reality of competing in a price transparent, online world. So these cost reductions are likely to be used to fund BBY’s investment in price – driving increased competition with AMZN over the long term.” Offline stores are restructuring – they don’t completely go away. And at some point, they will grow as online companies look for a brick-and-mortar toehold and its valuable data.

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