2016.11.18 Last Week in Digital Media

Happy Thanksgiving week! Here’s the news you may have missed last week:

  • Facebook had a bad week. Firstly it had to overhaul reporting and publicly admit to bugs that resulted in ads misreporting numbers. The 4 bugs covered Page Insights, video products, Instant Articles and referrals in Analytics for Apps. So while not all affected media, they may have influenced client internal decisions and broader post-campaign insights. It’s worth getting clarity from your Facebook rep. to understand if any of your client work was impacted.
  • Having admitted to bugs, Facebook later in the week announced it was dropping the Atlas Ad Server product. This is disappointing for the industry, as it further consolidates Google’s hold on the market (Sizmek, Medialets being increasingly niche players). Atlas will now be purely a measurement tool, taking advantage of Facebook’s social graph data. This could be good news for our clients, as tagging with Atlas measurement could give you digital reach figures on Facebook and the open web. It may also help you optimize digital media plans across publishers by understanding duplication. This all assumes that Atlas tagging is cost-effective to make the cost of getting the insights worthwhile.
  • In spite of the above, Facebook did have some positive news. This includes the acquisition of an emotion detection startup (perhaps another step in the compete with Snapchat plans); and announced a plan to buy back $6Billion in stock.
  • twitter’s expansion into live original shows is gaining traction. The shows will be produced by Turner Sports and twitter has confirmed that Amex and JBL Harman will be advertisers.
  • It was the second time Harman made the news during the week – with Samsung announcing they are acquiring the company for $112 per share. This is interesting for UM clients in auto and retail, as Harman is a serious player in in-car the connected car space. Given Samsung is building out ad-product media teams on their other connected device businesses e.g. TVs, mobile this could pave the way for a future of embedded in-car advertising.
  • As Thanksgiving approaches and people connect with friends, family and loved ones, I know there’s always the downtime where you’re looking for a fun post-Turkey distraction. So in the interests of that, check out Google’s latest neural network AI ExperimentQuick Draw with Google. This is best played on a mobile device and you will see just how smart a neural network is at guessing a picture (and in my case, how bad of an artist I am!).

Have a great Thanksgiving!

Joshua