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On NBCUniversal’s Content Investments; PayPal Buys Modest


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Ad Age’s Jeanine Poggi asked some observers what NBCUniversal’s investments in BuzzFeed and Vox mean for advertising. Jesse Redniss, co-founder of media consultant Brave Ventures, says the deals are mutually beneficial. NBCU lends BuzzFeed and Vox credibility as destinations for news, while BuzzFeed and Vox get NBCU closer to millennial audiences and fresher ad strategies (think: native). Alan Wolk, senior analyst at The Diffusion Group, says the investment also creates opportunities for cross-device campaigns. “To combat some of the device usage that takes place during commercials,” Poggi writes, “NBCU can create ad packages that include ads to run on those sites at the same time they are airing on TV.” Read it.

PayPal’s Modest Purchase

PayPal snapped up mobile commerce platform Modest, its first acquisition since becoming a standalone company. Notably, Harper Reed is a Modest co-founder. (Reed served as chief technology officer for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign.) Speaking to VentureBeat, Reed says the exit’s about scale. “If we can build a great product, but can’t push this out to millions, then it’s boring,” Reed said. “We found this amazing cheat code to get to scale.” For its part, PayPal will use Modest for contextual commerce. Terms were not disclosed. Read on.

Sunny Skies

Digital out-of-home ads are up almost a third since last July, according to recent research. The Journal’s Nathalie Tadena reports that, despite representing only 4-5% of total ad spending, OOH sales have increased at a faster rate than other sectors. The market is bolstered by concerns in TV and digital that ads are easily blocked or skipped. The overall trend is still that TV budgets melt at a glacial pace, but it isn’t just mobile and desktop absorbing the runoff. More.

Spell Data With A “C”

According to a survey from Experian and Loudhouse Research, more than half of CIOs expect the volume of data they’re responsible for to grow by at least 33% in the next year. The surge of data at brands’ disposal is leading to another addition to the C-suite, as four out of every 10 CIOs without a CDO expect to add a data-specific executive to the top ranks. According to the research, companies with CDOs excelled in using data to drive decision-making and, interestingly, managing exposure to regulatory risk. More via Marketer.

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