Publicis Groupe And Tencent Strike A Deal; What Pubs Can Learn From Facebook’s Past

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Eastern Frontiers

Publicis Groupe inked a partnership with Tencent, the first deal of its kind between the Chinese search giant and a global agency network. [Read the release.] The deal will give Publicis access to Tencent’s “vast and rich online behavioral data, benefiting clients through improved programmatic offerings, cross-screen planning capabilities and conversion performance.” What that programmatic offering entails is still unclear, but full access to all 11 of Tencent’s properties gives Publicis major leverage in China’s increasingly important mobile market. “What we want to achieve … is a full agreement between all Tencent assets, and all Publicis assets in order to best serve our clients,” said Publicis CEO Maurice Levy in an interview with CNBC.   

History Lesson

Pubs should take a hint from Facebook’s past relationships to avoid suffering from its recent algorithm change. Facebook lured gaming companies onto its platform with free traffic. After building up a juicy business, it squeezed them by charging for ads while taking a cut of their revenue, until it decided gaming was no longer a priority. “Left unchecked, it will only be a matter of time before Facebook also chokes publishers’ business viability by recycling the same traffic tactics it used with social gamers: increase dependence on the platform, make traffic more expensive, repeat,” writes Justin Choi of Ad Age. To avoid a similar fate, pubs will have to distribute their content across more platforms or band together for greater scale. More.

The Banner’s Fate

Even though mobile interstitials are technically viewable, “it’s equally clear that they might as well not have been there,” says Paolo Gaudiano, an analyst at WPP agency Light Reaction, in an interview with Adweek. In a study of 30 adults, the agency found the average time spent looking at mobile interstitial ads is a meager 800 milliseconds per view. Even worse: Research found that most of that time was spent looking for the “x” button. Despite the push for viewability, users were more frustrated by interstitials than banner ads, which are more visually appealing but interfere with the user experience. More.

Belle Of The Ball

LinkedIn benefitted from more than just Microsoft’s interest in executing its $26.2 billion acquisition. A Wall Street Journal report says that during the two-month negotiation window before Microsoft bought LinkedIn for $26.2 billion, Salesforce bid up the price by more than $5 billion. “Even after LinkedIn entered an arrangement to negotiate with Microsoft exclusively, Salesforce persisted on pushing its bid.” And Recode reports Google and Facebook were also among the potential suitors. Facebook passed pretty quickly, but Google went farther into the process.

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