Monthly Archives: May 2015

Next to Now: BEA Edition

Here’s what we’re reading this week in ad tech and online trends that matter to the book publishing industry.

In a coup, would this be a strategic guerilla base? Is somebody who looks like Gary Shtynegart getting better treatment than you? Take the quiz to find out if you are at BEA or the world’s worst airport! (via LitHub)

Mary Meeker, Mary Meeker! The latest edition of the most prominent internet trends report is out. We particularly like what she has to say about the evolution of content discovery (slide 7), business growth in sharing businesses over product businesses  (slides 120-123), and “Key Design Concepts that Have Made a Difference” (slides 182-184)

Hub Spot breaks out the top eight charts from the Meeker report, including acceleration in mobile video watching, increase in vertical viewing (thanks to mobile), and the increased male usage of Pinterest.

Where social meets search:

“Facebook has begun testing a feature that offers reviews from publications like Bon Appétit, Conde Nast Traveler, and the San Francisco Chronicle to rival Yelp’s crowdsourced reviews.”

Assuming this works well, can a version involving books be far behind?

The press discovers the book business (must be BEA again):

“Publishers embrace ‘bookiness.’”

Relevant clickbait, “7 Bookstores Too Beautiful for Words.”

The best thing about this Snapchat article (*another* Snapchat article?) is the chart about social network user share, by age group.

Podcasts are broadening the reach of public radio (this good news for podcast advertisers, too): “NPR podcasts are reaching younger, more diverse audiences.”

Photo of the Javits pigeon published on Twitter by Patrick Brown

Next to Now: Start-of-Summer Edition

Got some time on your hands as you head into the long weekend?
Here’s a list of good, quick reads on book-related advertising. This week featuring video on Spotify, new ads on Pinterest, thoughts on why calendars suck, & more . . .


Looking to sell directly? YouTube gets an upgrade to allow for shopping within videos.

When “Listen up” cross-fades into “Take a look”: Spotify moves into video.


Benedict Evans shows how the roles of PC and Mobile computing have switched:

“…We should rather think of the PC as having the basic, cut-down, limited version of the internet, because it only has the web. It’s the mobile that has the whole internet.”

Should you develop an app or a Web site? It all comes down to your relationship with the consumer.

When a debate about calendars turns into a debate about workflow, creativity, and getting things done:

“All calendars suck. And they all suck in the same way. Calendars are a record of interruptions.”

Tips on retargeting and why it’s important:

“Only 2% of traffic converts on the first visit to a website. I repeat, 2%.”



Next to Now: Grow Your Presence


Mobile ads are sucking up our data plans (says mobile ad blocker, Shine): “Shine estimates that, depending on your geography, ads are using up 10-50% of user’s data plans (and not to mention sucking up battery life, and making load times slower.)”

Despite Concerns, Interest in Mobile Audience Targeting Rises.

Pandora or Spotify? Spotify or Pandora? In the race for digital music subscribers, it’s a two-horse race. We know who has the most listeners. But the scrap for the best listeners is ongoing.

From the brilliant Web scourers at Dark Matter: “File under ‘what we all knew already, but can now prove with data’ : Pinterest is a great predictor of life events.”

If personalization seems “invasive and robotic” to your customers, just call it “relevancy.” Easy peasy! (We would file this under ‘marketing hooey,’ a language we think does a disservice to consumers, clients, and the marketing agencies that practice it. Stop trying to outsmart customers, and start treating them like you’d like to be treated. Is that so hard?

Facebook carousel format now available for mobile app ads. We’re looking forward to trying this out!



Mad. Sq. Art: Teresita Fernández

Next to Now: What Do You See on the Horizon?

This week’s feature image is from Teresita Fernández’s “Fata Morgana” up now at Madison Square Park.

Good news for advertisers who need more room to work with on mobile: Phablets on the march. (via Benedict Evans) #mobile

New Pew data suggests the mobile tide has turned: “At the start of 2015, 39 of the top 50 digital news websites have more traffic to their sites and associated applications coming from mobile devices than from desktop computers”

(via Benedict Evans) #mobile

“Brands to Spend More on Original Digital Video but Worry about Its ROI”: This is particularly an issue for book publishers who have tighter budgets than many businesses. We’ve been through the cycle of producing a lot of video but not always seeing the return on investment. Until there’s a cheaper way to do it (and there will be soon, we bet), book publishers will probably be relatively low on the scale of video ad spending, even though video ad performance is always tops. #video

There’s a new Snapchat share feature for Discover. #mobile

Facebook creates “native ad” template that runs “programmatically.” At a certain point these terms become meaningless. #native #programmatic #meaningless

“Are newsrooms going to behave more like advertisers?” They already are (and in some ways, not all but some, this is a good thing). #mobile

Snapchat “Discover” ads down to 2 cents per user. We’re not sure how this Discover platform is working—it started off strong but the numbers fell off pretty quickly—but it’s worth watching. #mobile #social

Updates to Facebook, Snapchat, and Google mobile ad platforms, worth watching. #mobile #social

Type as eye candy! We like. #mobile #design

Next to Now: What Are You Building?

A Week in Reading Book-Related Ad Tech, Link by Link

For the Week Ending May 1, 2015

New data on who’s gaming now. This has been true for a long time but it’s always worth reminding people (and by “people” we mean ourselves): teen boys aren’t the only one’s gaming. Also, there’s new data on how people are gaming, which is important to note:

Smartphones may have been used less than PCs and consoles among gaming households in the ESA study, but among the population as a whole, mobile is far more popular.



Laura Olin has been running an amazing, unclassifiable newsletter, every week something different, for a while. She’s just started doing it under the auspices of The Awl. Here’s where you can find out how to subscribe.



In the rush to reach audiences on mobile, don’t forget desktop. While a large percentage of purchase research is done on mobile, the bulk of online buying still happens on desktop—behaviors that point to the importance of cross-device targeting.



Snapchat’s Discover traffic drops. That’s not surprising. The question is how will it evolve as the platform matures.



“Creatives need more data” says this article lead—but what the creatives really say is that they need more time and money.



Is Joseph Mitchell still one of the all-time greats in creative non-fiction if his non-fiction was more “fiction” than “non-”?



Good news from Hulu: Subscribers up 50% in 2015, Total streams up 77%, New investments in content, Programmatic and Custom ads coming.



“At NewFronts 2015, BuzzFeed introduced POUND, which allows advertisers to track distribution across social media, and a new distribution analytics platform to show how videos perform over time.”



Do you have a strategy for interacting with readers during “micro-moments”?



With Viacom’s “Vantage,” is TV media buying getting the data boost we’ve been waiting for? “Vantage is a bit of like a computer dating service. The client inputs the sort of traits it looks for in a customer, and Vantage’s proprietary algorithm spits out a list of shows where the two are most likely to intersect.”

#tv #data


Amazon experiments with ads on Kindle. Among the new ad offerings, William Boyd writes a “brand-relevant” story sponsored by Land Rover, distributed for free on Kindle.



An interesting new mobile video ad unit—with content keyed to the article the user is reading. The more relevant tech can make our ads to users the better.

#mobile #video