Driving Data; More Facebook Real Estate

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The Driver’s Seat

Carmakers are firmly behind the wheel when it comes to controlling driver data, Reuters reports. The systems that link smartphones to “infotainment” systems in vehicles will pool user data, but Apple and Google could be boxed out. “We need to control access to that data,” said Don Butler, Ford Motor’s executive director of connected vehicles. “We need to protect our ability to create value.” And one VW spokesperson claims that Apple and Google “asked for more data than we are willing to share.” Read more.

Once Bitten

Facebook’s move last week to give users more control over what/who populates news feeds has created a stretch of prime real estate that brands are hoping to fill. Users can select from the brands that they’ve “liked” in the past to take the top spots on the feed. It’s a titillating opportunity for marketers, but analysts caution that Facebook has created similar openings before, only to slam the door shut. It used to be that an ad buy guaranteed “likes” and organic reach for miles, but Facebook has whittled away value. Read more via Ad Age.


Despite a push from premium publishers like The Financial Times and The Economist Group for attention-based metrics, not all advertisers are sold on the idea. “We’re not buying that way,” Media Kitchen president Barry Lowenthal told Digiday. “We’re buying clicks, impressions [and] audience. That’s the criteria we’re looking at when we’re evaluating performance.” But while attention metrics may have their limitations, advertisers could be less hesitant to adopt them when it comes to video advertising, where completion rates are key. Read more.

When The 800-Pound Gorilla Isn’t Strong Enough

Despite its utter dominance in cable TV –“trouncing” other channels, according to The WSJ – ESPN is tightening its belt as more users cut cords. Nielsen data shows that ESPN, which again is outcompeting its cable rivals, has lost over 3 million subscribers in the past year alone. ESPN would have to charge over $30 per month for OTT packages in order to earn what it does today. Many are looking to ESPN as an industry bellwether – or canary in the coal mine – as sports has been considered the great bulwark against the move to digital programming. Read on.

Digital Advertising 2020

Mobile is the fastest-growing ad channel, according to a report from BI Intelligence that predicts US mobile ad revenue will rise 26.5% by 2020. Digital video spend is also outpacing search and display, and it’s projected to rise at a compounded annual growth rate of 21.9% by 2020. “The rapid embrace of programmatic ad-buying tools is fueling a dramatic uptick in the share of digital ad spending coming through programmatic channels,” reports Business Insider in a summary of the findings. “Programmatic transactions will be a majority of total US digital ad spend this year.” Read on.

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