Analyst Says RTB Hurting Valueclick Network Business; Zynga Integrating Cross-Platform

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Dotomi Sets ValueClick’s Destiny

That’s the take from Piper Jaffray analyst Mark Zgutowicz on the negative impact of real-time bidding platforms on ValueClick’s ad network business. The display ad company finds itself in “the precarious position of having to bid up impressions among many,” Zgutowicz writes in an analyst note. “While it has and will continue to buy lower-priced exchange impressions to complement existing network inventory, economics here eventually go away as more and more exchange buyers outstrip supply.” ValueClick is lucky that it acquired ad targeting tool Dotomi, which is now setting its parent company’s course, as the ad network growth wanes. Read more from Bloomberg.

Singular Zynga

Zynga aims to strike a blow against platform fragmentation (and cut the cord to Facebook) with a tighter cross-platform integration. Reaching users across devices and websites (including Zynga’s O&O sites) could also bring ad value in the form of a unified online/mobile cookie. AllThingsD’s Mike Isaac focuses on the diversification play: “If multiple players aren’t forced to play the same games through the same platform, that means players have the option to disperse across multiple mediums — mobile devices, Facebook and And that also means revenues could potentially be more evenly distriubuted.” Get game.

Owning The Device

Entrepreneur Chris Dixon uses examples from the mobile world to discuss the difference between an integrated (where a company owns the device and the OS) and non-integrated strategy. He writes, “There is a trade off between integrated and non-integrated approaches to building devices. The non-integrated approach lowers costs, but adds friction between components that compromises performance.” Another nice thing about “owning” the device is you can control who targets off of a unique identifier and who doesn’t. Read more.


Cross-device, rich media mobile advertising and analytics company Celtra says that it has launched its new creative optimization solution. The release explains, “The ad formats natively adapt to where they are placed and display perfectly on the specific phone, phone size, screen size, particular game or app.” This echoes yesterday’s announcement of “polymorphic” ads by Microsoft. With so many devices, easy translation to formats old and new is important. Read the Celtra release.

Biddable China

On the UM blog, Yean Cheong reports on the recent RTB Global Summit in Beijing and says real-time bidding is a hot topic. Cheong examines the possibilities of China becoming #1 in real-time bidded inventory in the next year or two and writes, “I wouldn’t doubt this for a minute, if the enthusiasm and interest from last week was a good indication of things to come for RTB in China. Especially with the volumes of inventory available, this situation is not a matter of if, but a matter of when.” Read it. And that may be no coincidence as ecommerce in China is expected to explode – in a good way – according to a new study by analyst firm AT Kearney: “E-commerce has increased by a 78% compound annual growth rate since 2006 (…) and will reach $81 billion over the next five years.” Thriving ecommerce = more retargeting. Read it.

Project REVV

comScore released its latest pay-for-play ad network stats for the month of May. Coming in at #2 in the U.S. as measured by reach was Rubicon Project’s REVV Platform with 88% reach, or about 200 million uniques in the U.S. Get it (PDF). comScore says the total U.S. reach is 221 million people.

Atlas Hugged

Facebook has confirmed Atlas as a preferred ad tracking provider. The designation gives Microsoft’s ad server some fresh momentum in cross-channel tracking. In a blog post Microsoft says, “Atlas advertisers can measure impressions, clicks, and user interactions on Facebook ads, alongside the rest of their media campaigns [and] can now even track through to conversion on the advertiser’s webpages.” In a Q&A with AdExchanger, Microsoft ad solution VP Rik van der Kooi says the company is “continuing to develop on the Atlas stack… We do that now through a partnership program, where other parties can add capabilities on top of Atlas.”

News Split

It looks like Rupert Murdoch, probably the last high-powered media executive still in love with ink and paper, is facing the inevitable: with the newspaper business buffeted by shrinking revenues, and the entertainment business as strong as ever, it may be time to separate the two distant sides. Stories in both News Corp.’s WSJ and The NYT’s Dealbook, confirmed by News Corp., note that the hacking scandal at its British newspaper division helped promote a position by many News Corp. executives for years. So with newspapers likely parting from entertainment, it’s worth wondering how long many of the print operations will go digital-only.

Earned Media Tips

Buddy Media continues to crank out the whitepapers while the closing date for its acquisition by doesn’t occur until Q3. Earned media is the topic of this paper and since the ad tech ecosystem never met a Tweet it didn’t like, here’s a tip from Buddy, “Keep it short and sweet, and watch people Tweet. Our study found that Tweets containing less than 100 characters receive 17% higher engagement than longer Tweets.” Read more. Want more earned media tips? Try these from Experian about Pinterest – go now!

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