Get ready to start seeing more local ads on YouTube

YouTube’s video ad creation service aimed at helping small business reach YouTube viewers is now available more broadly across the U.S. The company announced this morning that YouTube Director onsite, as the service is called, is now live in over 170 U.S. cities, up from only 9 previously – Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington D.C., New York, Tampa and Seattle.
This is significant expansion, in terms of reaching potential YouTube advertisers who would have otherwise not had the resources to write, film and edit a professional ad for YouTube. The service is kind of a bargain for the small businesses, too. Hiring a pro to create a professionally produced video could cost $1,000 or more. But YouTube is basically doing it for free – well, free with a catch. It’s available at no charge for any business that commits to spending at least $350
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Pinterest is slowly rolling out its automated shopping ads to more marketers

Pinterest is looking to continue to increase its portfolio of ads, though sometimes that can take a little while to see the light of day — and that includes a new-ish tool called Shopping Ads that’s slowly getting opened to more marketers and advertisers. Getting new ad formats is important for a smaller company looking to build out an advertising business, as it has to show potential advertisers it can offer an array of tools to play with as they experiment with that service. The company said today that it’s expanding those shopping ad tools to hundreds of additional advertisers after launching a pilot program last year as it looks to continue to ramp up that tool. Pinterest has to be able to convince marketers that it should be a mainstay advertising purchase alongside Facebook and Google, which are able to routinely show returns in value for their advertising spend.
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Google is launching playable in-game ads

Maybe you’ve seen this kind of ad in a game you have played: your character dies and then the game asks you to watch a short video ad in return for an extra life. That’s actually a feature of Google’s AdMob advertising service, and today it’s extending this with playable ads, a new type of ad that fits far better into a game. Google calls these types of ads “rewarded ads” and with the Game Developers Conference coming up next week, this is the perfect time to launch these new playable ads. More than 45 percent of AdMob’s top 1,000 gaming partners already use rewarded ads to monetize their apps, and the new playable ads will work just like rewarded video ads. In return for playing a mini-game — and either doing well in that or potentially installing the full game — players can get an extra life or maybe
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YouTube TV will be all over the World Series for two more years

 As promised last month, YouTube TV is today launching the MLB Network on its streaming TV service, and with it, comes the announcement of an expanded promotional partnership with Major League Baseball. YouTube TV will again serve as the “presenting” sponsor of the World Series for two more years, and will debut a season-long sponsorship as well. In addition, YouTube TV subscribers… Read More

Kidtech startup SuperAwesome is now valued at $100+ million and profitable

 Technology companies like Facebook and Google are scrambling to catch up to the fact that the kids have joined a web originally built for adults, and are using it the way adults do – by liking and commenting, sharing, clicking through on personalized recommendations, and viewing ads. But the technology underpinning apps and sites built for kids can’t operate the same way as it does… Read More

The Most Valuable Brand in Each Country in 2018

Map: The Most Valuable Brand in Each Country in 2018

Map: The Most Valuable Brand in Each Country in 2018

Last year, we covered the world’s top brands based on the measure of brand value, and one thing stood out. The top of the list was dominated by U.S. brands like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Visa, AT&T, and McDonald’s, but only one non-American brand (China’s Tencent) was able to crack the top 10 list. Today’s infographic comes to us from HowMuch.net, and it helps to make the international brand value picture a lot clearer. Using updated rankings from Brand Finance’s Global 500 Report, it shows the top brand for each country in 2018. It’s worth noting, however, that there are many countries that are not represented here, as they do not have a brand large enough to make the top 500 list.

A Steep Dropoff

Keeping the aforementioned U.S. dominance of brands in mind, there is
Brand Value Over Time
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Visualizing the Changing Landscape of Big Media

Big Media is in the middle of a monumental shift. With immense pressure on revenues, market share, and distribution stemming from platforms and the migration to digital, the traditional big media players are scrambling to find new models and tactics that work. In addition to forcing companies to evaluate new ways to monetize and distribute content, this industry turmoil has also served up the perfect environment for massive mergers and acquisitions. Big conglomerates aren’t going to go down without a fight, and as a result they are willing to “bet the farm” on M&A to try and compete.

The Big Media Landscape

Today’s visualization comes to us from Recode via media reporters Peter Kafka and Rani Molla, and it does an excellent job in summing up the changing landscape of Big Media. Notably, it helps visualize the significance of the recent $52.4 billion merger between Disney and 21st Century
The Big Media Landscape
Global ad revenue chart
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Google cancels UK ads from shady rehab clinic referrers already banned in US

 Another day, another way tech giants are found to be profiting handsomely from unsavory ad practices. Today brings the news, as reported by the Sunday Times, that Google has reaped “millions” from shady companies advertising online as help lines for people suffering from addiction, but in reality funnel those people to expensive private clinics, earning huge commissions. Read More

Some apps were listening to you through the smartphone’s mic to track your TV viewing, says report

 There may be a reason why that ol’ “Facebook is listening to you talk” conspiracy theory refuses to die – and not just because Facebook’s ad technology has gotten so good, it’s downright creepy. As it turns out, some apps are actually listening. Well, kind of! According to a recent report from The NYT, a number of apps using software from a company called… Read More

Thousands of major sites are taking silent anti-ad-blocking measures

 It’s no secret that ad blockers are putting a dent in advertising-based business models on the web. This has produced a range of reactions, from relatively polite whitelisting asks to dynamic redeployment of ads to avoid blocking. A new study finds that nearly a third of the top 10,000 sites on the web are taking ad blocking countermeasures, many silent and highly sophisticated. Read More

Apple introduces a new pay-per-install ad product called Search Ads Basic

 Apple today is introducing a new way for app developers to acquire users for their apps: it’s launching a pay-per-install advertising product called Search Ads Basic. The “basic” branding signals that this product is being aimed at smaller developers compared with the existing Search Ads product, which is now being renamed to Search Ads Advanced. Launched last year, Search… Read More

Facebook will temporarily disable a tool that lets advertisers exclude people of color

 Facebook has been under fire for its practices and policies that enable advertisers to exclude “multicultural affinity” groups from the audiences they reach via the social network. Now, in light of a ProPublica investigation and pressure from the Congressional Black Caucus, Facebook says it’s committed to taking a closer look at its advertising policies, its COO Sheryl… Read More

The Influence of Instagram

The digital advertising landscape has changed dramatically over the past decade. Social media platforms are now some of the most heavily trafficked places on the internet, and sharing hubs such as Instagram are increasingly becoming a cultural touchpoint for millions of people around the world.

Tapping into Instagram Influence

Instagram is closing in on a billion monthly active users, and with such a massive audience, social influencers (i.e. people with large, engaged audiences) are raking in the dough from paid brand endorsements. Today’s infographic, from XCart, walks us through the multi-billion dollar phenomenon known as influencer marketing.

The Influence of Instagram

Chasing Attention Spans

It’s estimated that 65% of adults in the U.S. use social networks – a figure that spikes to an astonishing 90% for young adults. Social media has become a fixture in our everyday lives and where attention spans wander, advertising is sure to follow. And follow it
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Pinterest rolls out its own version of QR codes

 If you are walking around a retailer, you might have seen a sign or something along those lines posted to check out its Pinterest account for additional content or products – but there was not really a seamless way to get to that account without a lot of tapping around. Taking a cue from some of the prevalence of QR codes around the world, like China, Pinterest said today that it is… Read More

The World’s Fastest Growing Brands in 2017, by Value

The Chart of the Week is a weekly Visual Capitalist feature on Fridays. In a modern business era of near-constant disruption, which brands are winning the hearts of consumers the fastest? Today’s charts look at the brands that are trending upwards. See below for the brands that have gained the most in brand value since last year, as assessed by BrandZ in their report on the world’s 100 most valuable brands.

Onwards and Upwards for Tech

As many big name brands try to find their footing in today’s fast-paced consumer environment, it’s not surprising to see up-and-coming tech brands skyrocketing in value. Biggest Movers in Tech In line with growing revenues, tech brands like Amazon, Facebook, and Netflix are also flying high with their brands. Amazon, for example, had its brand value soar 41% since last year to make it the fourth most valuable brand in the world at $139 billion. Chinese tech companies
Biggest Movers in Tech
Biggest Movers in Tech
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Covert influence is the new money laundering

 As more media companies realize Russia bought advertising space or promoted news stories — fake and otherwise — on their platforms, covert influence has become the new money laundering. Both activities hide below the surface of legitimate enterprises, cast a shadow of disrepute on those very enterprises and can be neutralized through transparency and accountability. Read More