Publicis And IPG Report Organic Growth; AOL Invests In Programmatic TV Quietly

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Transparent Earnings

Publicis Groupe and IPG reported Q2 earnings with organic growth of 2.7% and 3.7%, respectively. For Publicis Groupe, growth is a rosy turn of events; last year, the holding company cut revenue projections after a wave of account losses and organizational challenges. On transparency, CEO Maurice Levy called out the ANA for making “broad-based and unverifiable accusations” without naming names, as IPG touted itself as the holding company golden child. “We view it as a differentiator in the marketplace, and if you look at our net wins and losses on the media side, although I can’t point to it as being a specific reason, I think transparency and the reputation we have on treating our clients fairly on an advisory basis is reflected in those wins,” CEO Michael Roth told investors.

The Sum Of AOL’s Video Parts

AOL has “quietly invested” $500 million in programmatic TV advertising to date, reports Forbes. Although there wasn’t an itemized breakdown, that means AOL would have spent about $100 million on its other video-related acquisitions of Vidible and PrecisionDemand, given’s $405 million purchase price. “The programmatic advertising business has been growing exponentially, and AOL has a seat at the table,” AOL’s president of platforms and former Vidible honcho Tim Mahlman told Forbes. More.

Apps, Alive And Well

ComScore caused a stir earlier this year with its estimate that the average American smartphone user downloads 0 apps per month. Pushing back, Stewart Rogers of VentureBeat argues that the “apps are dying” narrative is way overblown. The most popular apps, like Facebook Messenger and YouTube, have seen their download rates slow, but they’ve also cleared a billion users, so their growth rate percentages aren’t such a useful a way to define the ecosystem. According to a Tune survey, over 50% of people in every age category download at least one new app per month, with in-app spending and conversational UIs (aka chat bots) picking up as well. “There’s still a long way to go before the App Store and Google Play need to start quaking in their boots.” More.

Ye Olde Video

“Even as the media business becomes more fixated on web video, some publishers are questioning whether YouTube is still worth their investment,” writes Mike Shields of The WSJ in a cutting look at YouTube’s value prop compared to social feeds, where sharing and personal profiles make it easier to develop an audience. “A lot of media organizations have struggled on YouTube. They wish it was more of a social network,” says former head of Bloomberg digital Josh Topolsky. Shields notes a slew of other publishers, and new media titans like Bleacher Report, which live and die on the social graph [AdExchanger coverage], don’t even consider YouTube a part of the emerging Facebook/Instagram/Snapchat/sorta-Twitter social media broadcasting network.

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