As IPO Nears, Reddit Signs Agreement With OMG; Facebook Asks Federal Judge To Dismiss Antitrust Suits

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Team Work

Reddit is moving to give advertisers deeper access to its platform – and rake in some dough. The social platform has signed its first-ever enterprise partnership agreement with Omnicom Media Group, a deal that encompasses OMG’s media-buying shops, including Hearts & Science, OMD, PHD and Resolution. Read the release. The deal means that OMG clients will have access to Reddit’s creative strategy team, education and training tools, early ad product and feature testing, measurement and reporting, data, and other offerings to more effectively engage with Reddit’s 52 million daily active users. Marketing Dive reports that the deal comes as Reddit seeks to expand its advertising revenue to help support the company’s valuation as it prepares for a possible initial public offering. Reddit has more than 100,000 communities, called “Subreddits,” which give advertisers a way to interact with an audience that can include brand loyalists or consumers who are most likely to convert into customers. With the expected deprecation of audience tracking technologies like third-party cookies and device identifiers in the near future, Reddit is leaning into its strengths in contextual-based advertising to its communities.

Cookie Crumbles

The death of the third-party cookie may not have agencies as concerned as brands are about the change hurting their business. According to a Digiday poll of 146 buy-side professionals across advertising agencies, consultancies and brands, close to half of brand-side respondents this year agreed the changes would hurt, while close to one-third of agency-side sources agreed. Digiday also looked at how media professionals are preparing for the end of third-party cookies in the first quarter of 2020, including their ability to target and measure ads without third-party cookies. Seems that the buy side’s concerns about those challenges have subsided somewhat — from 76% last year to 69% this year for the ability to target ads, and from 76% to 70% for the ability to measure their effectiveness. Still, it’s expected to hurt, and the IAB says brands are not ready for the looming data restrictions from Apple and Google, and that publishers risk losing $10 billion when the cookie crumbles. 

Saving Face

Facebook is pushing back. The company said that the Federal Trade Commission “utterly ignores the reality of the dynamic, intensely competitive high-tech industry in which Facebook operates,” and asked a federal judge Wednesday to dismiss antitrust lawsuits by the FTC and state attorneys general. Facebook maintains the government has no valid reason for alleging the company is suppressing competition, according to The New York Times. Facebook took things a step further and filed a second motion arguing that the states’ case “does not and cannot assert that their citizens paid higher prices, that output was reduced, or that any objective measure of quality declined as a result of Facebook’s challenged actions.” The filings in U.S. District Court in Washington marked Facebook’s first legal salvo since the FTC and 46 states sued Facebook in December, claiming that it has essentially operated as a monopoly by freezing out and buying up potential competitors (Instagram, WhatsApp). 

But Wait, There’s More!

U.S. Rep. Suzan DelBene has introduced the Information Transparency and Personal Data Control Act, legislation that would create a national data privacy standard to protect personal information. [release]

Facebook is testing a way for creators to make money through Stories: sticker ads. [The Verge]

Parler tried to get back on the App Store last month, but Apple rejected its application, citing Nazi symbols and hate speech from users. [Business Insider]

Marketers are evaluating their media spend to BIPOC outlets in the upfronts. [Ad Age]

Advertising inventory in NCAA’s Men’s College Basketball Tournament – “March Madness” – is “virtually sold out.” [MediaPost]

Check out the state of TV viewing across Comcast properties. [Effectv]

HBO Max is launching a Latino audience initiative, HBO Max Pa’lante. [CampaignUS] And in other HBO Max news, WarnerMedia will highlight the service’s debut with a SXSW installation that offers an immersive look at its library. [Adweek]

Integral Ad Science has announced that Xandr’s buying platform, Xandr Invest, now offers IAS’s contextual targeting and contextual avoidance capabilities across all programmatic buying. [B&T]

You’re Hired!

BEN has appointed Vanessa McCullers vice president, DE&I and strategy. [release]

GainShare has appointed Matt Kelley as senior vice president of customer experience. [release]

Teads has appointed Heather Unsinger and Ben Eason as group directors in the US to oversee the growth of strategic CPG and Auto clients, and grow Teads’ agency partnerships, respectively. [release]

Programmatic media solutions provider MiQ has appointed Giles Ivey as EMEA CEO, Van Sidera as EMEA COO and Freddie Turner as managing director in the UK. [release]

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