January 26, 2017

Weekly Roundup - 04/17

∞ A survey of top-spending advertisers shows that confidence in digital and social platforms - with the exception of search advertising - is well below 50%. Many advertisers report planning independent audits of their Facebook investments; 36% plan to move spend from Facebook to Google in 2017, while only 8% plan to do the opposite.
[Advertising Age]

∞ Amidst the overall gloomy outlook from Edelman Trust Barometer 2017, there was a rise in public trust in Owned Media (+2, 43% overall), search engines (+3, 63% overall) and Online-only media (+5, 51% overall). By contrast trust in traditional media fell by 5 points to 51%. (1/2)

∞ If the bump in trust in online media in a year dominated by fake news is surprising, it's probably because fake news is not as transformative or widespread a phenomenon as claimed. A study by two economists demonstrates that a given percentage of the population (8% in the survey from the study) is willing to believe anything that fits their priors, instead of fake news actively shaping their - or anyone else's - worldview. (2/2)
[New York Times]

∞ Messaging & social app usage on smartphones grew 44% by number of sessions and 394% by time spent in 2016. This growth surge also comes at the expense of other app categories including Games and News & Magazines which saw YoY declines of 15% and 5% respectively.

∞ Google's new algorithm penalizing mobile webpages with pop-ups and interstitials ("problematic transitions") officially went live early January. (1/2)

∞ Don't mistake this for an eradication of pesky pop-ups though. For one, the changes in Google's algorithm do not affect desktop pages. Two, the changes only apply to the first click on a page from a Google search results page - these penalties don't apply once a viewer is on the page and follows another link. Finally, it is going to take Google time to figure out all the different ways that interstitials can be programmed into webpages. (2/2)

∞ Snapchat is going to offer advertisers the option to buy audiences based on TV-style ratings - by age group & gender and get a guarantee of delivery as measured by Nielsen.

∞ Bloomberg's decision to ditch infinite scroll at the end of articles and send viewers to a vertical's homepage (at the moment only in the technology section) has reportedly boosted page views by 7x and engagment by 28% compared to the algorithm-driven infinite scroll. (1/2)

∞ This runs counter to the media (and ad) industry's fixation with personalization. In this case, a mixed bag of options does seem to be better than one wrong choice confidently predicted by an algorithm. (2/2)

∞ According to estimates, there were between 700 and 1,100 Alexa-voice-controllable products on show at CES 2017. If it can be connected to Alexa, it seems that it will be.
[Advertising Age]
About the author:
Iqbal Mohammed is Head of Innovation & Strategy at a digital innovation agency serving the DACH and wider European markets. He is the winner of the WPP Atticus Award for Best Original Published Writing in Marketing & Communication.
You can reach him via email or Twitter.


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