Facebook Reveals Premium, Mobile Ad Products; Flite Adds To App Display Platform; The New Breed Of Planners

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Facebook Premium

The premium ads play by Facebook, originally broken by GigaOm last week, was made official. At The Facebook Marketing Conference, Facebook’s executive team rolled out the new, bigger ad format which includes bigger images. Also on display was the new mobile ad exeperience for its 425 million mobile users and the advertisers that want to address them. Reaching for those brand dollars, according to The Next Web, branded content will be a key part of the picture, “Starting today, brand stories will be eligible for distribution on the Facebook Newsfeed, to be displayed alongside updates from your friends and family. To put it simply, marketing on Facebook is going to feel like the rest of Facebook. And Newsfeed isn’t just on desktop, it’s on mobile and tablet too.” Content as ads or visa versa. Facebook is trying to balance between user experience and providing the advertiser a bigger, branded opportunity. There’s plenty more from the Next Web. And, Adobe’s Context Optional (originally acquired by Efficient Frontier) blog offers its take on today’s fMC (acronym = Facebook Marketing Conference). Read it.

Updating Display Apps

Update time. On Forbes, Tomio Geron reports on the latest update to Flite’s display advertising platform. Geron writes, “With the new cloud-based Flite Platform 3.0, brands can move quickly, like a presidential campaign, uploading new content every day and having it show up on ads in real-time. For example, videos, text and other content can be changed depending on what events or topics are trending online.” Read more. Flite was an early adopter – if not the first (only last September!) – of the app model for display advertising. Read even more on the Flite blog.

Creative Ad Valuation

Safeguard Scientifics reported its Q4 2011 earnings and, in the process, provided insights on its recent investments which include ad technology companies MediaMath and a newer one, Spongecell. From the release, “Safeguard deployed $10 million in Spongecell in January 2012 and has a 23% primary ownership position.” So, some back of the envelope math puts creative ad tech company Spongecell’s valuation at a healthy $43.5 million. For context – though not a perfect comparison -, dynamic creative optimization firm Teracent sold to Google for $36 million (36 mil is according to “sources”) in 2009. Read the release.

Breeding Planners

On The Makegood, (Publicis) Razorfish head of display Jayne Pimentel takes on the hot subject of agency trading desks. She, in turn, provides a fresh take on the changes afoot in the agency. She writes, “The art of planning has shifted from planning direct buys to planning a suite of technologies in order to access inventory sources efficiently, effectively and to analyze data to indicate top performing audiences and nuances that were not fully realized prior to running those technologies across biddable media. Media Technologists are the new breed of planners.” Read more.

DMP Chat

Buying platforms keep going more horizontal. Or is it vertical? In an update to its the data management platform (DMP) component of its Origin marketing platform to be launched on April 9, x+1 says that it will be adding “automated real-time decisions for email, SMS, call center, websites and chat.” Chat? Here’s how according to the release, “Triggered by a customer interaction on a web page, or any [x+1] Origin-enabled touchpoint, the DMP can invoke a client’s (…) chat service so that relevant, personalized marketing messages can be delivered to consumers in real time.” Read more.

Display Ad Lawsuit

According to a local television station in Texas, a 4 year old photo from a dating website, which belonged to a U.S. soldier who was killed-in action, was allegedly used in advertising recently from two dating websites – True.com and PlentyOfFish.com. The soldier’s parents are now suing. From NBC 5 in Dallas-Fort Worth, “‘Vancouver-based Plenty Of Fish told NBC 5 on Monday that it did no online advertising in December 2011 and that ‘hundreds of thousands of third parties advertise via POF.com every month, the majority coming through networks such as Google AdSense and ad exchanges.'” Read more.

Ad Network Research

ValueClick Media released results from its December 2011 survey of 267 advertisers – which presumably are or have been ValueClick clients – and advertisers were positive about ad networks coming into 2012. “The top media formats advertisers plan to spend more than 25% of their digital budgets include ad networks (45%), direct publisher buys (40%) and SEM/SEO (37%).” What’s more, the data showed that compared to spend with demand-side platforms, advertisers said they will increase their ad network spend even more. See it (PDF). ValueClick’s Dotomi advertisers could help tilt toward demand-side platform spend or direct-to-publisher spend (for first look access) in future surveys.

Agencies Report

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