Blog

Joshua Lowcock publishes a weekly email newsletter for his colleagues summarizing the latest news in digital media, marketing and technology of the week. Copies of the email are published as a blog on this page, primarily so there is a fully searchable archive. Use the search box to the right (it will search the whole site, not just the newsletters).

The email newsletter has been published for over a year. At the moment this blog is not a complete archive as old issues are still being added. Updates are being added regularly. So please visit again.

The blog is currently published every Sunday afternoon U.S. EST (New York). There is no newsletter during major US holidays, vacation days, or in the event of a major business or personal conflict.


2017.08.14 Last Week in Digital Media

Before I begin, a correction to last week. I incorrectly said that Instagram was introducing public stories. It is Facebook that is introducing public stories. Instagram stories have always been public. the UK Government published a statement of intent on data protection which would make it a criminal offense to re-identify anonymized data. There is a 30 page PDF document available. While it may not seem relevant to the US, European and UK Privacy laws can have an impact in the US if you are working with European based media partners or servers are based in Europe. Please note, this ...
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2017.08.04 Last Week in Digital Media

Here's a wrap of last week in digital media. In the update last week, I neglected to mention that during Facebook's Q2 earnings update, there was mention of Facebook bringing 6 second videos to market. This would align Facebook with YouTube and Fox who are also offering 6 second spots. The big news of the week was Discovery's offer to buy Scripps for $11.9B. There is plenty of coverage across WSJ and the New York Times with various perspectives (better audiences, scale, new streaming player, to a sign cable is dead without mergers). The deal is subject to regulatory approval and, if approved, wouldn't close until early 2018. A Doubleclick update you need to know is ...
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2017.07.28 Last Week in Digital Media

Now back to the news. Google's parent co. Alphabet released Q2 results during the week. Ad revenues are up around 18% to $22.6B. Most of the growth coming from mobile and YouTube. The biggest negative impact to revenue came from the $2.74B EU fine and there is no impact from brand safety issues earlier in the year. Facebook also released Q2 results. The earnings presentation (PDF link) shows revenues of $9.1B in ad revenue. ARPU was up in all markets but Facebook did warn that ads were reaching saturation (i.e. running out of space in the feed). Which makes last week's WhatsApp monetization ...
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2017.07.21 Last Week in Digital Media

There is a lot of news this weeks. Here's what you might have missed across the digital, media, marketing and tech landscape. News from Amazon during the week was the launch of a social network-like (think Pinterest/Instagram) like experience called Spark within the main Amazon main app. Only available to Prime subscribers, Spark curates posts around your interests and everything can be tagged for shoppable items. Spark solves a problem on Amazon (it's hard to discover products) and positions Amazon as a media environment for influencers. If your clients sell on Amazon, you need to play with and understand Spark ...
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3 Areas to Partner with CMOs to Drive Transformation and Digital Innovation

This article was originally published on CIO Review, July 20, 2017. CIOs are often asked to help drive organizational transformation and digital innovation. The challenge is finding the right sponsors within an organization. Over the past several years, it’s increasingly the CMO who is the champion of digital and transformation. Why? Because the media and marketing landscape is more digital, fragmented, data rich, and competitive than ever. The modern battleground in marketing is for customer attention and to capture this, CMO’s have had to transform the way they, their teams, and agency partners work and the skills needed are more ...
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2017.07.14 Last Week in Digital Media

A shorter update this week: Developers are having fun with Apple's Augmented Reality tool (AR Kit). There are some great GIFs showing demos of what has been made so far. Worth looking at and getting inspired about the future and what it could mean for brands, marketing and advertising. Facebook cut the price of their Oculus VR headset. This is the second time this year the price has dropped. For the next 6 weeks Oculus is $399 (previously $599). You still need a dedicated VR-ready PC to make Oculus usable. Expect further price drops as there are also rumors that ...
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2017.07.07 Last Week in Digital Media

Here's what you may have missed in the shorter 4th of July week. Facebook is introducing household targeting, which as the name suggests, let's you target everyone in a household across each of their individual accounts. Household targeting will also work with custom audiences. Household targeting has a number of benefits. You could target holiday clothing/fashion if you know someone in the family has already booked a holiday; or you could reduce waste by not targeting everyone in a household with ads to subscribe to Hulu if you know someone already has a subscription. The feature will be available on ...
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2017.06.30 Last Week in Digital Media

Here's what you may have missed. An update I neglected to share last week, is that Netflix, is testing pre-roll promotional videos before you watch a show. The videos are limited to promotions for Netflix original content. It's a limited test at the moment, but also gives a good example of how advertising could one day work on the platform. Google's division that experiments with new products offerings (Area 120) released some experimental apps. The first is Uptime, which allows co-viewing and chats while watching YouTube without the need to be in the same room. Another Area 120 experiment announced ...
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