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Every Friday, The Big Smoke looks at industry news curated by MediaScope. This week we look at the five trends to watch in 2017, the successful company that moved its digital to AI and a reality check for those who love social media.
SMI US – Numbers are in with five trends to watch this year (James Fennessy – MediaVillage)
SMI’s January 2017 US findings include a growth rate of +5% year-over-year in US media spend. This uptick is significant as it occurred in a historically slow month during a non-election, non-Olympic year marked by economic and political uncertainty.
Intrigued by this development, we have highlighted five trends to watch.
1. Digital ad spend continues to experience single digit to low double digit growth.
2. Linear TV remains a powerful and reliable driver of ROI.
3. The Trump Effect on TV assumes many shapes and forms.
4. Increased competition for Sports ad dollars.
5. Out-of-Home (a transformed industry) becomes highly relevant.
Why Cosabella replaced its agency with AI and will never go back to humans (Emily Tan – CampaignUK)
In October, US lingerie retailer Cosabella replaced its digital agency with an AI platform named “Albert”. Since then it has more than tripled its ROI and increased its customer base by 30%.
Cosabella decided to engage Adgorithms (the creator of Albert) out of frustration with its digital ad agency.
As a first test, Adgorithm’s Albert was tasked with identifying and converting high-value audiences. It was given Cosabella’s paid search and social media marketing efforts to manage and was allowed to autonomously execute Cosabella’s digital marketing efforts using creative and KPIs provided by the brand.
In terms of fees, Albert is no cheaper than an agency, Courtney Connell, marketing director of Cosabella, said. “An ad agency will charge 15-20% of your media spend. Albert charges 18% and had no monthly cost or implementation fee.”
Working with Albert has been seamless with no development or down time. “He doesn’t sleep, he’s fast, he doesn’t get into a fight with his girlfriend and lose focus.”
Tim Berners-Lee: I invented the web – Here are three things we need to save it (Tim Berners-Lee – TheGuardian)
“Today marks 28 years since I submitted my original proposal for the worldwide web. I imagined the web as an open platform that would allow everyone, everywhere to share information, access opportunities, and collaborate across geographic and cultural boundaries. In many ways, the web has lived up to this vision, though it has been a recurring battle to keep it open. But over the past 12 months, I’ve become increasingly worried about three new trends, which I believe we must tackle in order for the web to fulfill its true potential as a tool that serves all of humanity.
1) We’ve lost control of our personal data.
2) It’s too easy for misinformation to spread on the web.
3) Political advertising online needs transparency and understanding.”
France just passed a new advertising transparency law the entire global ad industry should pay attention to (Lara O’Reilly – Business Insider)
Currently under French law, media-buying agencies are not allowed to work as both the buyer and seller of advertising for their client. In other words, it means they can’t bulk-buy media inventory ahead of time and sell it back to their client at a later date. The law also requires that the agency can only be paid by the advertiser – meaning they can’t receive rebates from a publisher or media owner.
On February 9, a new decree was passed, which includes digital advertising services. Specifically, it now covers: “Any medium connected to the Internet, such as computers, tablets, mobile phones, televisions, and digital panels.”
Agencies can no longer continue to buy and resell digital media to their clients and media owners will be required to send invoices and detailed information about the services they performed directly to the advertiser.
There is the possibility that programmatic advertising spend in France could decline as a result of the new law coming into play as it will make it more difficult for agencies and ad tech vendors to boost their margins through rebates, inventory markups, and other opaque practices.
Social media reality check (Bob Hoffman – The Ad Contrarian)
“Remember those heady days when the answer to every marketing problem was social media?
It was just a few years ago that one famous Silicon Valley zillionaire had this to say, “If you can harness social media marketing, you don’t have to pay for advertising any more.”
He wasn’t particularly dumb, he was just reading from the Book of Stupid which was issued to every marketing expert sometime in 2006.
Time moves slowly in adworld. But sooner or later the facts catch up to the fantasies, and yesterday’s miracle becomes today’s punchline. You remember QR codes, Google glasses, and moving sidewalks, right?
Let’s have a look at the state of social media marketing as it exists today.
First we have to distinguish between social media and social media marketing. There’s no question that social media is a huge worldwide phenomenon. But social media marketing – the idea that consumers want to “join the conversation” about brands and spread their enthusiasm for furniture polish and frozen chicken wings all over the web so “you don’t have to pay for advertising any more” – is about as dead as dead gets.”