Tag Archives: outdoor

Next to Now – Late March Edition

THE POWER OF ELLIPSES

A few words — or even a few dots — can make a big difference. Compliments of a PAMA Facebook post, BookBub’s 8 Book Description A/B Tests You Need to See …

 

GETTING BOOKS TO THE PEOPLE

Emma Watson and the Station of Secrets.

Watch:

 

CASTING THE PODS MORE FAIRLY

Find out how the podcast boom can favor and disfavor diversity in this Columbia Journalism Review article.

Why are #PodcastsSoWhite?

Also check out:

10 great podcasts to diversify your listening lineup

 

UNDER THE SURFACE ON WHICH WE DWELL

Programmatic is like a planet. We live on the thin surface layer but most of the hot stuff is under the surface.

“Facebook just executed what might best be described as a digital advertising coup against rival Google and its DoubleClick empire” by letting publishers use header bidding technology. This could raise ad costs but increase yield, says AdAge.

Drill a hole and peek into the Magma

Or simply find out:

WTF is Header Bidding?

Next to Now for October 21

NEW SPOTIFY VERTICAL VIDEO ADS

Spotify announced a new product — Vertical Video Ads — which allows advertisers to sponsor playlists. Users agree to watch the full video in exchange for thirty minutes of free listening. These kinds of ads are wins for the advertisers, the users, and the platform. At launch, the branded moments are based around six categories: chill time, workout, party, dinner, focus and sleep—each of which could work well for books from novels (chill time) to cookbooks (dinner) to lifestyle (workout). As with any newly launched ad product, the initial minimums are too great for any but the largest brand budgets. But with time, costs will come down, making this an initiative to watch.

#spotify #audio #streaming

SNAP TO UNLOCK: A NEW FUTURE OR THE NEXT QR CODE?

The first outdoor ads targeting Snapchat users for movies are running now in subways in NY and DC:

“Universal Pictures, a longtime Snapchat advertiser, is among the first to test the Snap code marketing for its new movie ‘The Girl On the Train.’ Mysterious billboards will be showing up around subways in New York and Washington, D.C., and in parts of Los Angeles, according to Doug Neil, exec VP of digital marketing at NBC Universal.”

While the premise may induce a painful deja vu for marketers who went through the great QR code marketing hype of a few years ago, the fact that Snapchat is already being used and recognized by a sizable audience makes all the difference. For genres such as YA, a Snap to Unlock campaign could make a delicious teaser.

#snapchat #outdoor #YA

 

WHAT MAKES A GREAT MOBILE AD FOR TEENS AND TWENTIES?

A new study of teens and people in their twenties shows that users in this age range care about content that can be saved and accessed later and expect ads to be relevant to their interests. Here’s more from eMarketer on the survey. 

216997 #mobile #millennials

 

WHAT’S THE BEST TIME TO SHOW ADS?

A new study suggests that more users are inclined to engage with an ad in the middle of the day than at other times during the work week. While ad exposure is valid throughout the day, mid-day is when more users are taking breaks from studying or working and so more apt to click on an ad.

#time #engagement

 

 

Apples at Union Square Market (c) 2016 Martha Otis

Next to Now: Sept 16

MIC REIMAGINES SPONSORED POSTS

The Wall Street Journal reports on how the millennial news platform .Mic is rethinking video sponsorship. Mic is allowing advertisers to sponsor their highly popular videos on Facebook:

“Instead of selling…ads based on content genre or audience demographics, Mic is putting its editorial videos into categories, such as clips that elicit emotions or videos that celebrate innovation—two popular genres that typically incite people to share, and letting advertisers run ads next to these types of videos.”

While this kind of sponsorship is not useful for any book that needs time to tell its story, it could be very interesting for a book with immediate appeal to millennials with a high education and relatively high HHI.

#mic #facebook #news

 

GOOGLE DISPLAY BENCHMARKS

Have you played around with Google’s Display Ad benchmark tool recently? It can be very useful for setting expectations. Click-through rates seem to be going down across the board. If you set it for U.S. Book ads, the display CTRs range from .04-.6% depending on the size. Mobile only sizes such as 320×50 fare a little better with a .18% CTR. While this is certainly the case for the industry as a whole, Verso’s own click-through rates continue to beat industry averages—ranging from about .10% for desktop to twice that for mobile.

#CTR #Google #data #benchmarks

 

OUT OF HOME GAINS AN EDGE WITH DIGITAL

Long a staple of advertising plans for all manner of products, out-of-home advertising has gained a new edge with digital billboards. Digital capabilities mean advertisers can move much more quickly on campaigns instead of having to plan six to eight months ahead for each iteration. As CMO magazine puts it:

“The integration of data and technology means advertisers can tap into OOH like never before. ‘And it’s really shifting into bringing back the things that digital has kind of lost–the sensory experiences, feelings, and interactions.'”

There’s a reason spending on out of home advertising continues to grow.

#billboards #OOH #digital

 

ESPN BRINGS LONGFORM SPORTS JOURNALISM TO PODCASTS

As part of IAB’s recent podcast upfronts, ESPN announced that it’s bringing it’s acclaimed 30 for 30 series to podcasts. With in-depth reporting about sports news, 30 for 30 videos appeal to sports fans of a more thoughtful bent . . . which is to say, sports fans who might be inclined to buy books on a subject in an effort to go deeper than in-game color commentary or talk show style chatter.  For book publishers who might not be able to afford a :30 ad on ESPN, running mid-roll on a podcast might be a highly targeted ad solution.

#sports #podcasts #espn

 

Next to Now for July 7

SNAPCHAT MATURES

The Wall Street Journal reports that Snapchat is getting older—with 14% of US smartphone owners over 35 years old using the app. While they don’t use it with the same frequency and velocity we see with teenage users, the aging of the user population is a sure sign that the platform is going to give bigger rivals such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter a run for their money.

#snapchat #social

 

SNAPCHAT GAINS MEMORIES

As part of that maturing process, Snapchat introduced “Memories”—a way to save your own Snapchats for future sharing.

#snapchat

 

ADS ARE DEAD (LONG LIVE ADVERTISING!)

On Digiday, Copyranter asks the question “Does advertising even work anymore?” Then answers it: No! Then qualifies: Kind of. Then flips back to “No!” Then shows you how to sell to advertising-averse Millennials. See what he did there?

#advertising #millennials

 

GOOGLE HONES ITS TARGETING DATA

With their new “My Activity” page, Google is bringing together what they know about users from Search, Mobile, Browsing and more. This has everything to do with the advertising data wars and their fight with Facebook for supremacy.

#google #data #targeting

 

THE NEWS OF TUMBLR’S DEATH IS GREATLY EXAGERRATED

The New Republic does a deep dive into Tumblr that shows how the platform remains vital for teens (and, thus, vital for YA marketing strategy).

#tumblr #teens #ya

 

LOCATION-BASED ADVERTISING GETS AN UPGRADE

The Village Voice looks at whether or not the new LINK NYC systems are good for the city. For sure, they’re good for advertisers in general and Google in particular. Data collected at the kiosks from browsing history will tell advertiser a lot about the demographic profile of the outdoor audience and make for the best targeting we’ve seen from outdoor advertising yet. As consumers though (and we *are* citizens as well as advertisers), it’s worth remembering the internet adage: “If you’re not paying for the product, you are the product.” And it’s worth thinking through the “devil’s advocate” position on ad targeting if we’re to do our jobs as advertisers and citizens equally well.

#outdoor #google #targeting

 

photo (c) Martha Otis

 

Next to Now: The future is always unfinished

THE RISE OF THE MICROINFLUENCERS

Bigger is not always better when it comes to influencer marketing:

“For unpaid posts, Instagram influencers with fewer than 1,000 followers have a like rate of about 8 percent, while those with 1,000 to 10,000 followers have a like rate of 4 percent.”

That’s good news for book publishers and any advertiser whose budget is more micro than mega.

#targeting #instagram

 

NEW MEDIA TARGETING

Hulu’s SVP of Sales makes a good point in Adweek (caveat emptor: he’s a sales guy, so he’s trying to sell you something). It’s good to know how a site indexes for the target audience, what the most popular content is, etc., but . . .

“. . . those questions and answers come from yesterday’s play book. Hulu’s median age really doesn’t matter. What matters is that we can pinpoint any age group advertisers are trying to reach. It doesn’t matter how we index against millennials or any other audience segment. Why bother with indices? What matters is that we can deliver 100 percent of an advertiser’s target segment. And while popularity of programing is directionally interesting, what’s more interesting is the ability to buy against both heavily streamed shows and shows that are heavily viewed by your target audience.”

In the new media reality, the question becomes: where can we put our ad so it’s served to 100% of the audience and content adjacencies that are right for our book.  

#video #targeting

 

EXPERIMENTS IN OUTDOOR

Hubspot highlights seven interactive outdoor campaigns that caught their eye. We’ve noticed a couple of these on Next to Now over the past year — including the Women’s Aid poster in London — but it’s good to look at them in one place and remember how outdoor is changing thanks to digital innovation.  

#outdoor

 

YOUTUBE MOBILE

More stats from Google that will remind you why you don’t have to make broadcast TV spots any more, including the fact that YouTube reaches more 18-49 year olds on mobile alone  than any broadcast or cable TV network. 

#mobile #video #youtube

 

ADBLOCKOPLYPSE NBD

According to Mashable, fear of mobile ad blocking (FOMAB) outstripped the reality. The mobile ad business continues to do well. But it does look like the scare has helped publishers of all stripes take user experience a little more seriously; if so, then maybe it was a good thing.   

#adblocking

 

Today's image is Cy Twombley's "Untitled I-VI (Green Paintings)" Series on view in the "Unfinished" show currently up at the Met Breur

Next to Now: No Fooling Edition

April 1st is the first day of National Poetry Month, and, much to the delight of older brothers everywhere, April Fool’s Day.

 

 

In celebration of National Poetry Month, give Jonathan Galassi a call and let him read you a poem: 949-342-5374

 

In celebration of April Fool’s Day: Pigeons with backpacks.

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 2.39.05 PM

“Pigeons outfitted with lightweight backpacks soared over London from March 14 to 16, collecting air quality data across the city that was shared via Twitter. The Pigeon Air Patrol was a collaboration between Plume Labs and DigitasLBi to raise awareness for an even larger air pollution project to be crowdsourced from London’s largest moving flock: its humans.”

 

TIPS FOR REACHING PARENTS ON INSTAGRAM

An Instagram for Business post suggests that the visual platform is a great way to reach moms (and dads):

“Instagram found that 93 percent of moms access its network at least once per week, with 68 percent doing so daily.”

They also link to successful campaigns for Campbell’s and Gap Kids.

#instagram #moms

 

CRUZ AND SANDERS EXPERIMENT WITH FACEBOOK’S CANVAS

While brands have been slow to try Facebook’s new Canvas feature, the political campaigns of Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders have seen good success with it. Facebook client partner Chase Mohney told Digiday:

“Canvas is great for two big reasons. It provides these campaigns with the opportunity to tell an immersive story — their story — using video, stills and calls to action — really whatever works for them. And it’s designed for mobile, which is where the voters campaigns want to reach are spending their time anyway.”

One reason for advertiser reluctance that the article doesn’t mention? Cost. The CPM is in the $450-500 range. That’s just a *wee bit* higher than we normally see with Facebook ads . . . much less rich media available on blue chip sites.  

#social #facebook

 

SIMPLE IS BEST

A new study suggests that in the visually complex world of the current Web, simpler messages hold the key to ad effectiveness.

#creative #simple

 

INNOVATIVE OUTDOOR

A campaign for the upcoming release of Game of Thrones has dragons “landing” in major cities everywhere. As advertisers, we applaud the innovative nature of the advertising. As city residents, we suspect that if any marketer showed up outside our windows with another jack hammer, just in the name of pulling off a cool marketing stunt, we would ourselves turn into dragons.

#outdoor #creative

 

HOW MUCH DO WE LIKE OUTDOOR ADVERTISING?

Well, we like it a lot. For some reasons why, here is an article from Digiday pointing to smart, fun “conversation-starter” campaigns for Thinx and Caspar on New York subways:

‘We like subway ads because we want to create a presence in New York City where trends are set,’ Miki Agrawal, CEO and co-founder of Thinx said on stage at Marketing Unbound, the annual conference hosted by the Economist. ‘And we want our ads to be conversation starters for New York subway riders.’”

#outdoor

 

Next to Now: The News from SXSWi, Influencer Marketing & More

Spring 2016 unfolds with exciting new marketing platforms, a digital shout-out for an old but effective ad platform, new developments in looking at what readers want and more . . .

 

 

SXSW INTERACTIVE

Adweek points to the hot topics at the recently concluded SXSWi, and they’re not a surprise, but they do underscore areas all marketers need to be aware of as they develop on the near horizon: Messaging, VR, Snapchat.

#messaging #vr #snapchat

 

MICRO-INFLUENCERS FTW

Gnack, a start-up announced at SXSW is experimenting with ways to make labor-intensive influencer marketing work on a programmatic platform. They’re starting with micro-influencers, those with no more than 10,000 followers—the kinds of influencers, that is, that are more friendly to book budgets.

#influencer #programmatic

 

APPLE’S ENTRY INTO NATIVE ADS

Apple News is developing a native ad product, worth watching for:

Apple News will be updated as part of the latest version of iOS, expected to be released next week. Eddy Cue, the Apple executive in charge of online services, told The Wall Street Journal that 40 million people had used the Apple News app in January.”

#apple #news #native

 

HERE COMES THE READER DATA! BUT WHICH READERS?

Everyone in publishing wants to get data on how people read—at least to get information as good as what Amazon and Apple have via Kindle and iBooks. For that reason we applaud Jellybooks’ efforts to democratize this data and read the New York Times article on their presentation at DBW with interest. But there are big limitations with the data collected here. Jellybooks only counts readers reading on special e-readers, who have sought out the Jellybooks platform, read whatever few e-books are available there, and then agree to share the specifics of their reading habits for that particular book. This is a very different kind of person from the avid book buyer who buys, reads, and buys more copies, often in print.

#data #readers

 

VIDEO HABITS OF MILLENNIALS

An infographic on Adweek provides great insight into the video watching habits of millennials (as well as which video ads are OK with them, and which are not). Top three video watching sources are YouTube (85%), Netflix (66%), and Facebook (53%).

#video #millennials

 

IN PRAISE OF THE BILLBOARD

From Digiday, a little rant in favor of the ultimate non-digital advertising product:  

“These days, billboards are viewed as, mostly, for local businesses only. Bull. Brands, if you took just a small part of your worthless social media budget and put up one billboard in a high-visibility spot, you’d see some big-ass ROI in awareness and sales.”

#outdoor

TARGETING

Ad targeting that relies on user profiling makes many users uncomfortable, and not just tinfoil-hatted privacy advocates. But it turns out that people also hate seeing ads that aren’t right for them. The younger the user the more s/he is likely to expect ads that are better targeted.

#targeting

 

 

Next to Now: Improve Your Social Life Edition

This weeks’s Next to Now includes links to articles on standing out on Snapchat, partnering with Instagram, and checking out an experiment that gives people a real, human stake in an outdoor ad campaign. 
HOW TO STAND OUT ON SNAPCHAT

This article gives a good primer about strategies to get a presence on Snapchat without shelling out the $750,000 per day spend. We’ve noticed that many of our clients are on board with recommendation number one: Replace your Twitter Avatars with Snapcodes.

#social #snapchat

 

INSTAGRAM ANNOUNCES PARTNER PROGRAM

Instagram announces a partnership with forty outside companies to help with various phases of Instagram advertising: from planning and execution to content partnerships. This Business Insider article talks about what this means. 

#social #instagram

 

EXTREME OUTDOOR

Reality TV meets outdoor advertising with an Xbox campaign: eight people are standing outside on a London billboard undergoing arctic blasts and continual video streaming while viewers can vote on what kind of conditions they should be subjected to. Last one standing “wins.” The real winner, of course, is Xbox.

#creative #outdoor

 

MILLENNIAL MOMS BUY ON MOBILE

According to this eMarketer article, mobile is the way to reach young moms, not just with information, but increasingly with buy links:

“According to September 2015 research by Roth Capital Partners (ROTH), almost half (46.8%) of mother internet users ages 20 to 35 primarily made digital purchases via their mobile phone or tablet.”

#mobile #moms #millennials

 

WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BRAND AND DIRECT MARKETING?

This Seth Godin article articulates the difference between brand and direct marketing in a way that might have seemed self-evident 20 years ago, but has become increasingly clouded in a world filled with data where every ad budget has to respond in some way to data. This is a crucial question for book publishers, which used to be 100% clear that they were doing brand advertising — leaving the direct marketing to booksellers. But in the world of digital advertising and direct selling by book publishers (however low a priority it remains) those distinctions are getting cloudy.

#advertising

 

DON’T WORRY ABOUT BEATING AD BLOCKERS, WORRY ABOUT BETTERING YOUR GAME

The IAB makes the case that ad blocking is best addressed not by blocking ad blockers, but by fixing the “pain points” that cause people to want ad blockers: slow loading pages because of tracking software, roll-overs, endless surveys, etc.

#adblocking

 

SNAPCHAT GAINS ON FACEBOOK IN VIDEO

This article in the FT reports that Snapchat is generating 6 billion video views on its app every day. This is triple what they were seeing in May, and approaching FB’s 8 billion video views per day. This article in Business Insider is where you can read about it if you’re not an FT subscriber. 

#video #facebook #snapchat

 

PANDORA AIMS TO IMPROVE MOBILE USER DATA

As desktop use (and therefore use of cookies) declines, Pandora is taking steps to get better at identifying users on mobile devices.

#pandora #targeting

Next to Now: “Fall Back” Edition

With the end of Daylight Savings Time on Sunday, we enter the homestretch of the year. Here’s some of what we’ve been reading this week—looking forward even as we “fall back.”
SHOULD FOLLOWER COUNT DETERMINE WORTH?

It’s a question that depends on context. For regular everyday products like shoes, toasters, or books, the answer is a clear yes—more followers means your promotional dollar goes farther. But for “high art”—where value is supposedly determined by long-term aesthetic value more than short-term commercial ups and downs—the question becomes more complicated. A Dutch artist is playing with this line, and in the process reveals some uncomfortable truths about what’s behind some of those large follower counts.

Related from AdWeek: “How Celebrities’ With the Best Instagram Engagement are Helping Brands.”

#social #instagram #caveatemptor

 

SERIAL IS COMING TO PANDORA

The next edition of the revolutionary podcast “Serial” will be running on Pandora. That means there should be many more ways to advertise on it than through a single sold-out sponsorship. They aren’t saying when the second season will start yet, but Pandora has announced that season one will be available for listening as of Nov 24.

#mobile #pandora #serial #podcast

 

APPS OR BROWSERS?

In all the debate about whether the present and future of mobile is in apps or on browsers, it’s good to see an article that draws distinctions. That is, it depends. And in some cases, especially news, readers are split:

“For example, 36% of respondents said they mostly used apps to read entertainment news. But 37% said they mostly used a browser. For human interest stories, 36% turned to apps and 38% to mobile browsers. And for science or technology news, the breakdowns were identical, at 38% each.”

#mobile #browsers #apps #news

 

WILL LOUSY CREATIVE SPOIL INSTAGRAM FOR THE REST OF US?

As Instagram opens up its API, some marketers are afraid of the coming wave of ads. Will a billion terrible ads ruin our sandbox? The answer, as always, is to make creative that’s the best fit for book, reader, and audience platform.

#mobile #adtech #bepartofthesolution

 

PROGRAMMATIC OUTDOOR

Google recently announced a test of adding outdoor billboard inventory to their DoubleClick system. While there are various programmatic options available to us among current outdoor companies–including geo-fencing and app network buys tied into outdoor displays–the scale of Google’s reach make this a potential game changer. According to Business Insider,

 

“If the project proves successful, advertisers might soon be able to buy billboard ads using Google’s DoubleClick technology, which will pull in historical and real-time data signals — including audience, weather, travel information, sporting events, and scores — to decide which creative messages to display, which billboards to display them on, and the best time for them to run.”

File this under experiments to watch.

#outdoor #programmatic #experimentstowatch #media

 

BOOMERS UNDER-INDEX FOR SMARTPHONE ADOPTION

Next to Now focuses on the near-future of marketing, but it’s worth remembering that our bread-and-butter work comes from selling books right now to readers who are buying them right now.  And that means the Boomer generation. So it’s worth noting that Boomers are not as easily reached with mobile marketing as the Millennials. Only 42% of Boomers own a smartphone, and those that do own a smartphone do not live through it to the extent that younger generations do. Worth considering when you’re putting together a media plan.

#mobile #boomers #media

 

“BUSTLE HAS A BABY”

A nearly-slightly-but-not-all-the-way-snarky article on the New Yorker’s site announces that Bustle (a site and magazine we like a lot) is starting a new website for millennial moms, Romper. Bustle’s managing editor, Margaret Wheeler Johnson, provides the money quote:

“The media talks about millennials as if they are the kids, and, actually, they’re having kids.”

Good point.

#millennials #moms #media

 

THIS MUST BE SERIOUS

Even Facebook’s worried about ad blockers. From a new regulatory filing:

“Revenue generated from the display of ads on personal computers has been impacted by these technologies from time to time. As a result, these technologies have had an adverse effect on our financial results and, if such technologies continue to proliferate, in particular with respect to mobile platforms, our future financial results may be harmed.”

#adblocking #facebook

Next to Now: The End of Big Tent Marketing?

This week, new data from Instagram, YouTube, NPR and more suggests that the shift away from big tent marketing—where all your customers will hear your message at one, pre-determined moment—is well underway. Time to set up lots and lots of individual tents.

 

Instagram builds on its lead as the most important social network among U.S. teens.

Teen Social Net Prefs

 

 

 

Instagram announces that it will open its network to everyone this fall. Rates, minimum spend, and other requirements have not yet been released to us at Verso, but as soon as we learn more we’ll let you know.

 

What does a customer-first approach mean for marketing? “Marketing is no longer a department,” says IBM’s Michelle Killebrew:

“Businesses of all sizes are (truly) embracing the concept of customer centricity and understanding that marketing is no longer a department, because everyone (customers and employees alike) has a voice that can be amplified through social and mobile channels. Every interaction with a customer is part of their experience with your brand. It is why companies are focusing on employee engagement now more than ever—employees are the face of the company to the customer.”

This type of insight doesn’t easily map to book publishing, since every publisher is caring for hundreds to thousands of different brands (aka authors or series), but it’s undeniable that editors, marketers and publicists for every house are gaining public voices—and this is a good thing.

 

On the subject of one-to-one advertising, this outdoor campaign for a Swiss vacation spot is brilliant at literally starting a conversation.

 

YouTube viewing habits are going mobile: 50% (and growing) of YouTube views are mobile. 

 

TV viewing habits are changing: 28% of all TV watching is now streaming.

 

In another sign that the NPR audience is beginning to shift from live listening to on-demand, NPR podcasts have nearly doubled in hours downloaded over the last year.