Content Recommendation Revolt; Google’s Global App Promotion Ads

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Recommendation Backlash

Outbrain and Taboola, content recommendation companies and direct competitors, are both battling some negative perceptions from the public, Fortune reported Wednesday. Publishers stand to earn a lot through Taboola and Outbrain’s services, as do advertisers – on the order of hundreds of thousands to tens of millions of dollars annually, according to Fortune. But the public tires of seeing what they consider to be poor-quality content at the end of their clicks. As a rebuttal, Outbrain CEO Yaron Galai says backlash comes from “people that are into ad blocking and think content for free is our birthright. That’s kind of whiny to me.” Read on.

Installing Globally

On its Inside AdWords blog, Google announced the global rollout of app promotion ads for Search and YouTube. They were launched in June on the Google Display Network. AdExchanger covered the first sprigs of the announcement back in April. On Wednesday, Jerry Dischler, Google’s VP of product management, blogged about one benefit: “You can deep link users directly from Google Search into specific pages of apps they’ve already installed.” Read more.

Flooding The News Feed

On Tuesday, news surfaced that Facebook increased its ad frequency cap. Part of Facebook’s policy update included the tweak that users would no longer need to “like” a brand in order for that brand to serve ads. Then on Wednesday, TechCrunch reported an eerily similar story regarding Twitter. Twitter’s tweaks on Wednesday also involved its news feed. Now users may see content from Twitter handles they don’t follow, some of which Twitter plans to inject into its feed algorithmically. The update is only running on Twitter’s iOS and Mobile apps. Read on via TechCrunch.

SMB Strategy

On Wednesday, domain host giant GoDaddy bought Mad Mimi for an undisclosed sum. Through the acquisition, Mad Mimi’s email marketing service will replace GoDaddy’s product, “Easy Email Marketing.” The move mirrors several recent GoDaddy buys (Locu, Media Temple, Ronin, Afternic,, Canary and Outright), all of which seek to expand the company’s SMB customer base and offerings. Read the press release.

Digital Supersize

On Tuesday, McDonald’s appointed Julie Vander Ploeg as the company’s first-ever US VP of digital, and in this week’s The Drift column, Doug Weaver take a step back to consider what it all means. McDonald’s didn’t make advertising the focus of the hire, says Weaver. But maybe, he says, digital advertising is less about serving ads and more about industrywide consolidation. “The bigger and more multi-dimensional we become (with social, native, data-driven decision making and more),” he writes, “the more anachronistic and restrictive the conventions of advertising become. … Brand engagement and enhancing the customer’s retail experience can’t even be contained by marketing, let alone advertising.” Read it.

More App Stores

Verizon is gearing up to launch its very own app store, The Verge reported on Wednesday. The mobile carrier’s digital boutique will compete directly with the Google Play store, in addition to Sprint’s newly established store, the App Pass. Verizon will have to entice developers away from the competition with something other than the ability to tack app purchases onto monthly bills, according the The Verge. Read more. But… Re/code gets a Verizon rep to say this is not happening.

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