Home Ad Exchange News Meta Pumps More Ads Into Instagram; Black-Owned Media Says No To Programmatic

Meta Pumps More Ads Into Instagram; Black-Owned Media Says No To Programmatic

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The Search Continues

Instagram now has ads in its search results.

Users will see sponsored posts for products when they conduct interest-based searches, such as for skin care, TechCrunch reports.

Search is just the latest ad format that Meta is cramming onto Instagram since the overall company’s revenue dipped for the first time last year.

In March, Meta rolled out “reminder ads” that let advertisers notify Instagram users about upcoming events. Meta also slapped ads into Instagram Reels and the Explore tab last year in an effort to increase ad revenue.

Raising ad loads is typical behavior for any platform that needs a quick hit of revenue. Streaming services are doing something similar as we speak.

And the strategy appears to be helping Meta turn the tables. Its Q1 revenue this year was up 3% YOY.

But will the turnabout last? A platform with too many ads is a less-than-ideal user experience, which ultimately drives people away.

Putting Up A Front

Most media companies are embracing programmatic, including at the upfronts.

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But a key sector is holding back: Black-owned media.

Advertisers will often shift a sliver of their budget to support diverse media programmatically, then walk away bragging about their dedication to inclusivity. 

Black-owned TV and media network Revolt doesn’t sell any media programmatically because it considers programmatic to be an “opportunity for brands to get away with performative activism,” CEO Detavio Samuels tells Ad Age.

Other Black-owned media companies are approaching programmatic, but cautiously.

Airport network Reach TV sells inventory through a private marketplace through which it turns off programmatic bidding and instead handpicks which brands and creative it will work with, says CEO Lynnwood Bibbens.

The point is, throwing money at an automated auction isn’t enough of a commitment to Black-owned media. These publishers prefer long-term partnerships with brands that are serious about understanding their audiences.

Marked Down

Retail media ad prices are dropping because ad tech is helping advertisers get smarter about how and when to buy ads, Insider reports.

Agency sources say they’re saving money by running ads during key promotional periods, targeting certain dayparts and capping their spend. And increased competition among retail media networks doesn’t hurt.

Optimizing for return on ad spend in the auction is also serving to drive down the cost per click (CPC). Because fewer customers are making purchases after clicking ads as a result of inflation, advertisers are paying less per click because they need to buy more ads to meet their sales goals.

In Q1, the average CPC was down for Amazon, CitrusAd, Criteo and Walmart, according to ad platform Skai. Only Instacart and Kroger saw their CPCs increase compared to Q1 last year.

CitrusAd CPCs fell 8% to $1.06 because it lowered prices to compete with Criteo. 

Meanwhile, Criteo’s CPCs fell 19% to $2.13 – still double CitrusAd’s prices. Advertisers say Criteo has minimum spending commitments (although Criteo denies this).

Walmart saw the biggest downturn – a 21% dip to $0.68 – after switching to second-price auctions.

And Amazon, as the most established retail media network on the scene, had the lowest drop in CPC: just 5% to $0.93.

But Wait, There’s More!

Meta is creating a Twitter clone app. Marketers are lukewarm about it. [Adweek]

TikTok videos are going out of home [Ad Age]. And, in other news, TikTok is testing an AI chatbot called Tako. [The Verge]

The long story behind Disney and Comcast’s tug-of-war over Hulu. [WSJ]

Apple is plotting a Cannes charm offensive. [Insider]

Kubient and Adomni – a cloud-based digital ad platform and a DOOH company, respectively, if you didn’t know – have announced a merger agreement. [Yahoo]

Getir’s acquisition of rival grocery app Flink is reportedly kaput. [European Supermarket Magazine]

You’re Hired!

Hearst hires former Amazon display ad product lead Jennifer Dorre as SVP of ad product and data. [release]

Bluecore appoints Jason Grunberg as CMO. [release]

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