BRAND MARKETING

Connected TV Advertising Companies VideoByte and VideoBridge Announce Merger

VideoByte | November 09, 2021

VideoByte and VideoBridge, leading providers of digital advertising technology, today announced the merger of the two companies creating a global best-in-class Connected TV (CTV) advertising experience. The combined company will operate under the VideoByte brand effective today and merge full business operations through Q4 of this year.

Our organizations share a similar outlook as we look to further enhance the overall CTV experience. We are perfectly positioned to increase efficiency in demand-path optimization (DPO) efforts in the CTV ecosystem as audiences and spend continue to shift dramatically from traditional linear TV services to the CTV marketplace. We look forward to providing our industry leading solutions in the market together."

David Naffis, co-founder of VideoByte.

CTV advertising continues to be one of the most rapidly growing markets in the U.S. According to a June 2021 report released by BMO Capital Markets, CTV ad spending in the U.S. is anticipated to reach nearly $21 billion this year and about $100 billion by 2030.

"We are thrilled to join forces as the marriage of our sales and operations leadership with best-in-class technology and product opens a new door for the fresh VideoByte team," said Nick Frazee, co-founder of VideoBridge. "Just in time for holiday campaigns, our technical assets have seamlessly transitioned into more transparency, controls and spend for our agency partners. We are excited to expand our work towards bringing more value to our clients as we draw on our decades of experience."

The combined operation provides a viewer-first experience across CTV and over-the-top (OTT) platforms through data driven advanced technology delivering memorable brand messaging moments for advertisers. The merger brings the newly formed VideoByte to now serving more than 100 direct CTV customers with over 50 active advertisers. Notable partners include AMC, MLB, NFL and Plex. Overall, the goal of the merger is to offer an even higher return on investment for clients and ultimately reimagine the viewing experience for everyone.

"Media16 is uniquely positioned to work closely with the new VideoByte platform to leverage better transparency and campaign management for our growing advertiser base," said Joe Evea, founder of Media16 and VideoByte client. "We look forward to the integration."

Under the new merger, Naffis will operate as CEO and Frazee will undertake the chief revenue officer role. The privately held entity will be headquartered in Austin, Texas, the original VideoByte base, with a satellite office in New York City, VideoBridge's former headquarters. Together, the combined company will serve over 1 billion impressions annually. For more information, go to videobyte.com.

ABOUT VIDEOBYTE
VideoByte is a privately held and operated revenue-first video advertising platform focused on a viewer-first experience across connected TV (CTV) and over-the-top (OTT) platforms. Founded in 2020 with company headquarters based in Austin, Texas, the ad serving platform provides advanced technology delivering memorable brand messaging moments for advertisers at a higher profitability for publishers. As experts in CTV technology, VideoByte is known to provide strong performance for its variety of publisher clients including notable partners AMC, MLB, NFL and Plex.

Spotlight

There has been some debate over whether native advertising is the savior of the publishing industry. Digiday argued in a recent article that native ads damage the trust between publishers and readers, creating long-term damage for a short-term gain. But The Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University recently released an infographic which maintains that native advertising can provide a positive experience for readers and drive revenue for publishers. The key is that native ads must provide real value to readers. From the infographic: “Native ads are ushering in a new approach that, when done correctly, follows through on the promise of advertising: an experience that resonates with consumers and expands the storytelling power of brands.”


Other News
SOCIAL MEDIA ADVERTISING

Global Social Media Ad Spend Jumps 19% Year-over-Year

Emplifi | August 05, 2022

Emplifi, the leading unified customer experience platform, revealed the findings of its Q2 2022 analysis of social media spend across thousands of brands worldwide. The report findings highlight a rebound in median monthly global ad spend compared to the same period last year, a decrease in the median monthly click-through rate (CTR), a slight uptick in median monthly cost-per-click (CPC), and steady engagement on Facebook and Instagram. The data also shows a slight decrease in brands’ response rate to customers who ask questions on social media. Brands increase investment in paid social media After seeing a notable post-holiday drop in Q1 2022, median global monthly ad spend among brands rebounded by 18% in Q2 2022, climbing back above USD 4,200 – a figure close to the year-high level that was seen in Q4 2021. With this quarter's rebound, median monthly ad spend has increased 19% YoY, suggesting that brands are allocating more budget to reach their target audiences via paid social. Click-through rate (CTR) continues to decline Emplifi data shows that median monthly CTR has been steadily decreasing over time, dipping below the 1% mark in Q1 2022. This past quarter tells a similar story, with CTR lowering to 0.93%, signaling a 11% drop YoY. Despite this decrease, businesses can continue to depend on social media advertising to return value, as engagement remains fairly stable when consumers interact with paid social posts. Median cost-per-click (CPC) remains stable While CTR has steadily decreased, Emplifi data shows that CPC remains relatively stable despite some fluctuations in recent quarters, hitting $0.20 in Q2 2022. With average CPC rebounding this quarter after seeing a drop at the beginning of the year, it will be interesting to see whether this is a quarterly fluctuation or the start of an upward trend. Instagram still dominant in engagement After seeing a steady decrease since Q2 2021, median Facebook post interactions saw a slight bump quarter-over-quarter, reaching their highest level since Q3 2021. However, Q2 2022 levels remain notably lower than Q2 2021, with brands generating approximately 5.2 interactions per 1K impressions on Facebook, a 15% decrease year-over-year. When it comes to industries, the strongest performers for engagement on Facebook were brands in the Industrial (9.79) and Accommodation (9.04) sectors, while the lowest performers were Ecommerce (2.80), Retail (3.64), and Fashion (3.90). Instagram continues to show much stronger engagement than Facebook, with about 32 interactions per 1K impressions in Q2 2022, which is on par with what has been seen across the past year. Brands in the Beverages (47.37), Alcohol (46.83), and Software (45.11) sectors saw the highest levels of engagement, with Retail (17.71), Telecom (21.58), and Ecommerce (22.81) brands lagging. TikTok versus Instagram In an analysis of sister TikTok and Instagram accounts across 330 brands from January-June 2022, Emplifi data shows that brands post more often on Instagram (68%) than on TikTok (32%) in relative posting frequency. While reach and interactions were higher on Instagram, video content had greater engagement on TikTok. Either way, both platforms have shown an upward trend over six months in terms of engagement rate, peaking in June 2022, reconfirming user interest for engaging video content. “Brands need to connect with their audiences where they are and social media is an integral part of the marketing mix,” said Emplifi CMO, Zarnaz Arlia. “Brands need to connect with their audiences where they are and social media is an integral part of the marketing mix,” said Emplifi CMO, Zarnaz Arlia. “It’s no secret that TikTok's surge in popularity is continuing – we’ve found that brands post more often on Instagram than TikTok, and video content has higher engagement on TikTok. It will be interesting to see how this trends in the months ahead. What is certain though is that in today’s world, having and maintaining a solid presence on both TikTok and Instagram is essential.” Twitter shows the fastest response times to questions Emplifi data shows that median response rates for brands answering questions on Facebook and Instagram decreased slightly in Q2 2022. On Twitter, after some mild fluctuations, response rates have returned to a similar level from the same time last year. When looking at engagement by industry, Beauty, FMCG Food, and Home & Living brands had comparatively higher response rates to user questions on social, while Automotive brands had lower response rates across all three social media platforms. In terms of the time it took for brands to respond to questions, Instagram and Twitter saw slight bumps quarter-over-quarter, while Facebook saw a decrease for the second straight quarter. Examining the data by industry, some brands have the slowest response times on Facebook (alcohol, beauty, FMCG food, home & living, service), while for other brands, it's on Instagram (automotive, ecommerce, electronics, fashion, retail). However, except for one industry (FMCG food), Twitter typically sees the fastest response times among the three networks examined. Methodology Emplifi's analysis is based on Q2 2022 data and year-on-year comparisons downloaded at the beginning of July 2022. About Emplifi Emplifi is the leading unified CX platform that brings marketing, commerce, and care together to help businesses close the customer experience gap. More than 7,000 brands, including Delta Air Lines, Ford Motor Company, and McDonald's, rely on Emplifi to provide their customers with outstanding experiences at every touchpoint. For more information, visit www.emplifi.io.

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ADVERTISER PLATFORMS

Fiverr Makes a Move into the Advertising Industry with Togetherr™

Fiverr, Togetherr | June 09, 2022

Togetherr™, a new platform for building world-class creative teams and connecting them with leading global brands and agencies, launches today. The platform, designed and built by Fiverr (NYSE: FVRR), and backed by industry-leading visionaries, uses proprietary technology, the Creative Genome, to construct award-winning teams, from an exclusive group of creative talent. These teams will be curated and matched to support brands and agencies on specific projects and campaigns. The advertising world has gone through massive changes in the last few decades. The emergence of new digital platforms, the fragmentation of media, the rise of tech giants, e-commerce, and science-based marketing, all dramatically influenced the relationships between brands and agencies. It has also now influenced the way creatives feel working for agencies which ultimately impacts the outcomes of marketing and advertising campaigns. Clients, creatives and agencies are now looking for better ways of working. “Long before the pandemic, our industry was stuck in a rut, slowly choking the creative energy and ambition that once defined our industry,” said Amir Guy, Togetherr’s General Manager. “The agency-of-record (AOR) model, based on hefty retainers, bloated head-counts, overheads, and complex processes, is not meeting today’s client needs. Clients need a lot more for less, and faster. Trying to meet these needs without changing our industry's complex system resulted in broken spirits, lack of bravery, lack of excitement, and short-termism. We lost our creative icons, our magicians, our storytellers. Creatives were driven out of our industry, and clients are now looking for them elsewhere. The last two years taught our clients that they can find creativity elsewhere, and produce campaigns better and faster.” “With new and important marketing channels continuing to impact the industry, brands are re-thinking how to maximize creative output in the simplest way,” said Micha Kaufman, CEO of Fiverr. “Togetherr is a platform that aims to enable and accelerate new ways of working in the creative industry. When you allow yourself to look beyond the old system and challenge the way things have been done forever, you realize that talent can be found everywhere, on a global scale. You also find that diversity, which is so essential for creativity, becomes truly possible when you go beyond old constructs. Leading brands today often build their own creative capabilities in-house, and they need easy ways to augment them with outside independent talent and micro agencies on a project-by-project basis.” Togetherr builds on Fiverr’s long-founded mission of revolutionizing how the world works together. This groundbreaking new platform puts talent and creativity at its core and uses technology powered by a cutting-edge AI engine to help leading brands engage with and manage teams of top-tier independent creatives to meet their project goals. The Creative Genome Talent on Togetherr is vetted manually and through the Creative Genome’s powerful technology - ensuring clients have access to the best and brightest in the industry. Creatives on the platform have won awards, worked on campaigns for some of the world’s top brands such as Nike, Coca-Cola, HBO, Apple, and Netflix, as well as agencies, and have won accolades from their peers, clients, and colleagues alike. All of these data points are collected by the Creative Genome in order to assemble top-notch teams to ensure that brands work with the most optimized teams possible, something no agency in the world can offer. For Brands Togetherr is flipping the agency model on its head. Brands will no longer be bound by bureaucracy, agencies-of-record, and long RFP processes to bring campaigns to life. With Togetherr, the platform obtains the brief from the client, and the powerful AI engine will build a team specifically curated for that particular project. They get access to world class talent at the click of a button - to enhance the capabilities of their in-house creative teams - a space we see a lot of brands building out - or to build an entire freelance creative team to deliver new ideas or test new approaches. Advisory Board Togetherr has been built alongside an advisory board of industry-leading visionaries including Per Pedersen, Mark Tutssel, Eva Santos Bouzos, Greg Hahn, Karin Onsager-Birch, Nellie Kim, David Sable, Mariam Banikarim, Craig Brommers, Amy Fuller, Shelley Diamond and more. “In my mind, size and scale are not the keys to success, but rather talent, perseverance, and passion are the ultimate keys to unlocking creative success,” said Greg Hahn, Co-founder and COO of Mischief and Togetherr Advisor. “I’ve worked with big agencies and small agencies and founded a boutique small agency that does things differently. There’s no right or wrong way to unlock creativity, however, by putting talent and ideas over profits, you remove the pressure and make way for beautiful, bold, and diverse ideas. This is what Togetherr is all about - using technology to unlock people’s creativity and putting talent first. I am thrilled to have been a part of building this incredible platform and am excited to tap its potential myself.” The platform currently has over 1,100 creatives and ad industry leaders as well as 30 micro-independent agencies, and it is adding award-winning talent every day. Campaigns and projects start at an average price of $50K and go up from there. About Fiverr Fiverr’s mission is to revolutionize how the world works together. We exist to democratize access to talent and to provide talent with access to opportunities so anyone can grow their business, brand, or dreams. From small businesses to Fortune 500, over 4 million customers worldwide worked with freelance talent on Fiverr in the past year, ensuring their workforces remain flexible, adaptive, and agile. With Fiverr’s Talent Cloud, companies can easily scale their teams from a talent pool of skilled professionals from over 160 countries across more than 550 categories, ranging from programming to 3D design, digital marketing to content creation, from video animation to architecture. Fiverr companies include Togetherr, ClearVoice, CreativeLive, Working Not Working, SLT Consulting and Stoke Talent. Don’t get left behind - come be a part of the future of work by visiting fiverr.com, read our blog, and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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AD NETWORKS

New Report from Comcast Advertising Finds Optimal Balance for TV and Streaming Advertising

Comcast Advertising | June 10, 2022

Today, Comcast Advertising released a new, cross-industry report titled “The Comcast Advertising Report 2022: Actionable Insights for the Modern TV Advertiser.” Relying on proprietary data, the report provides a unique view into the current landscape from the perspective of viewers, buyers and then sellers – culminating in a specific and fact-based recommendation for the optimal balance of TV and streaming advertising. Comcast Advertising, the advertising division of Comcast Cable, is comprised of Effectv, its advertising sales division, and FreeWheel, its media and technology arm. Both parts of the business contributed to the extensive findings in the report, providing a broad perspective for readers. “The TV advertising landscape is incredibly complex now, and there are more players in the space than ever,” said Marcien Jenckes, Managing Director, Comcast Advertising. “The TV advertising landscape is incredibly complex now, and there are more players in the space than ever,” said Marcien Jenckes, Managing Director, Comcast Advertising. “While most reports focus on a single view of this complexity, Comcast Advertising is in a unique position to see it from all angles – how viewers are viewing, buyers are buying, and sellers are selling. With this perspective, we are able to truly see what works and what doesn’t in today’s landscape, and provide fact-based insights and predictions about how advertisers can optimize their spend.” Below are some of the key findings included in the report’s inaugural edition: Viewers prefer live content on both TV and streaming. In fact, 89% of traditional TV viewing is spent watching live TV and 54% of digital video viewing is live Viewers are exposed to more digital ads than ever before, as ad views on digital services increased by 45% from 2H20 to 2H21 Audience targeted campaigns have increased by over 50% year-over-year, as advertisers turn to audience targeting to reach viewers, at scale, across viewing platforms Programmatic ad views have grown 80% year over year, as advertisers see programmatic buying as a way to reach specific audiences more efficiently. There was also an increase in programmatic campaigns bought on a guaranteed basis. As sellers move to programmatic models, they are working with an average of 13 different programmatic partners – and up to 30 in total Following its focus on the latest trends for viewers, buyers and sellers, the report delves into an actionable “formula for success” for modern advertisers. Based on a study of more than 20,000 campaigns, Comcast Advertising recommends that advertisers allocate 20-30% of their TV budget towards streaming advertising, and the rest to traditional TV. “For years, advertisers have been asking us how to best balance investments across traditional TV and streaming platforms in order to enhance campaign performance,” said James Rooke, General Manager, Effectv. “Advertisers shouldn’t be making a guess or ‘going with their gut’ on this; rather, they should focus on the data. By looking at tens of thousands of campaigns across verticals and across budget amounts, the data is quite clear – TV should still act as the foundation for most advertisers, but reach is highest when 20-30% of the budget is allocated to streaming.” The report concludes with a look at predictions for the years ahead. Included among these predictions is what’s next for streaming, the importance of first-party data, the shift to audience-based buying, the scaling of addressable advertising and the growth of programmatic. “This has been an incredible year for TV advertising’s progress and innovation, and this is clearly evident in the discussions we’ve having every day,” said Mark McKee, General Manager, FreeWheel. “From addressable, to programmatic, to first-party data – the opportunities are there for advertisers to do more with their budgets and connect better with sellers. It’s critical for them to look at the industry from all sides to understand where the opportunities lie, and this report can help them do that.” About Comcast Advertising Comcast Advertising is the advertising division of Comcast Cable. As a global leader in media, technology and advertising, Comcast Advertising fosters powerful connections between brands and their audiences as well as among publishers, distributors, MVPDs, agencies and other industry players. Effectv, its advertising sales division, helps local, regional and national advertisers connect with their audiences on every screen by using advanced data to drive targeting and measurement of their campaigns. FreeWheel, its media and technology arm, provides the technology, data enablement and convergent marketplaces required to ensure buyers and sellers can transact across all screens, across all data types and all sales channels, in order to ensure the ultimate goal – results for marketers. Comcast Cable, along with NBCUniversal and Sky, is part of the Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ: CMCSA). Visit http://comcastadvertising.com/ to learn more.

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BRAND MARKETING

PPC Profit Pros Teams Up with CallRail to Offer Brands Profit Maximization of Offline Phone Calls

PPC Profit Pros | July 01, 2022

Top Digital marketing agency PPC Profit Pros, founded and led by performance marketing expert, Aaron Adamson, is adding in CallRail software into their powerful mix of deep pay-per-click marketing experience, and proven expertise in three of the world's top artificial intelligence and machine learning marketing platforms, Skai (formerly Kenshoo), Adalysis, and Unbounce. This digital marketing firm has a track record of growing profits, 25% to 327%, across all industries and for B2C and B2B brands. Now, with CallRail in their toolset, PPC Profit Pros will be able to track your offline call center type conversions and tie them back to the PPC keywords and ads that produced your leads and sales allowing for offline profit maximization. With CallRail, PPC Profit Pros can set up personalized call routing for all of your tracked numbers, give your customers options for text messaging, and allow you to engage your customers with automated responses so that your customers know when they will hear back from you. "CallRail has a lot of great features for our clients, but from our standpoint, the best one, is the ability to send the call lead into our clients CRM with special tracking that tells us what Google PPC keyword, ad and landing page was involved. This gives us something really special. We can finally tie these offline transactions to the online places that our clients are spending money on, and dial the whole system into maximum profit! We have seen amazing profit increases with our clients, whereby we typically can double their profit on call center calls,We use specific tools for specific purposes, at each point from ad impression to lead and sale. These tools are complex, but we've become experts with them, which allows us to give valuable time back to brands; time that they can use to work harder on their businesses." - Aaron Adamson Founder and CEO,PPC Profit Pros. About PPC Profit Pros- PPC Profit Pros is an online marketing firm that combines vast experience, exceptional tools, and robust analytics with exceptional marketing techniques to maximize performance in the following areas: Paid search marketing, social PPC, retargeting, performance display, and conversion rate optimization.

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Spotlight

There has been some debate over whether native advertising is the savior of the publishing industry. Digiday argued in a recent article that native ads damage the trust between publishers and readers, creating long-term damage for a short-term gain. But The Newhouse School of Communications at Syracuse University recently released an infographic which maintains that native advertising can provide a positive experience for readers and drive revenue for publishers. The key is that native ads must provide real value to readers. From the infographic: “Native ads are ushering in a new approach that, when done correctly, follows through on the promise of advertising: an experience that resonates with consumers and expands the storytelling power of brands.”

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