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Article Watch April – 'Must Reads' Powered by MediaScope

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Each month Denise Shrivell from MediaScope curates a series of must read articles and insights for the digital media community to help you stay up to date and informed.

- Breaking News & Views from April – make sure you're across all the local Australian breaking media related news and views through this handy list.

- Programmatic Workflow MediaScape – new MediaScape mapping the flow of a programmatically traded impression between consumer, marketer and publisher.

- The Next Tech Bubble is About to Burst (The Kernel) - "My timer for the bursting of this tech bubble currently stands at nine months. That's when investors & venture capital markets will stop throwing around billions in Monopoly money, companies without any profits will lose their suspiciously optimistic valuations, and startups will crater. Unicorns will die, skies will fall, and parents' basements will be resettled".

- Enlightenment – The New Golden Age of Marketing (GroupM's Rob Norman) - "The 20th century was the golden age of supply side optimization. Less people, less plant, less energy, less everything. Less, manifestly, was more. From global brands to multi-model vehicle platforms and....television spots, even those that were not especially good, that worked by combining 10% inspiration and 90% repetition."

- Trust Issues: How Can Publishers Navigate the Opacity of Ad Exchanges (TheMediaBriefing) - "Programmatic trading has a trust problem. The proprietary nature of open ad exchanges means they are, by necessity, an environment in which parts of or the entire process is shrouded in opacity. As a result, the veracity of the transactions is questionable, to the point that there is still no real consensus on how much programmatically bought ad space is fraudulent. One such study at the tail end of 2014 found that over 70 percent of ad impressions being offered on the Financial Times' website were fraudulent, only ever to be viewed by bots."

- Confessions of digital ad pioneer John Battelle: We got a lot of grief for the banner ad (Digiday) - "A year and a half after we started HotWired. We brought up the question, should we charge people for the content? And we basically all agreed that was not going to work because people were already paying for their access to the Internet. We just thought that was impossible. And it was having to pay for that that we got the banner ad. We got a lot of grief for that. The first banner had like a 70 percent click-through rate. I think for the time we were right. I think now people are willing to pay, but they have to see the benefit. And the core benefit of a great publication is membership."

- Utter Doom: The Anniversary – (Bob Garfield – MediaPost) - "Ah. The death rattle. Right on schedule. This was published over the weekend, documenting a drop in U.S. broadcast and cable TV revenue in the first quarter of 2015: Overall TV -- all national TV, syndication, local TV, and cable -- slipped 1% for March and was down 6% for the first quarter of 2015. For the quarter, local TV spot revenues were down 12%, syndication was off 14%, and local cable ad revenues were up 5%. The 2014 upfront market was down. The 2014 scatter market was down. The 2014 gross ad revenue total was down -- from a 2013 number that was also down. Magna Global predicts a 7% decline in the 2015 upfront. The recession has been over for 4 years. But network viewing erodes year after year, and TV watching overall by the most coveted demographics is plummeting. Viewership is remaining stable only in the leading edge of the Baby Boom generation."

- The future of digital TV advertising, in 5 charts (Digiday) "The dominant players in online video advertising today are YouTube and other short-form content providers. But that won't last much longer. YouTube and its ilk will lose their lead to companies distributing television programming through "over-the-top" (OTT) connected devices, according to a new report from media research firm The Diffusion Group. That OTT programming is mostly the same long-form content people watch on a traditional TV broadcast — from AMC's "The Walking Dead" to ESPN's "SportsCenter" — but served through connected devices such as Roku, Apple TV and Chromecast that enable digital measurement and ad-serving."

- Every day realities of digital transformation (Which50) "We mostly hear about digital transformation in connection with big changes and disruption on a grand scale — how whole industries will change and the very business models companies are built on will have to change. To a large degree this is what digital transformation is about, but there is another side to it that is just as important: how companies and organisations will handle questions about employees' access to digital tools and how easy or complicated that access will be."

- Jumping In bed with Facebook: Smart or desperate? (MondayNote) - "Several major news organizations are said to be in negotiations with Facebook for a hosting deal. This throws the media sphere into an intense debate: Is this a path to prosperity or a dangerous surrender? The digital media odyssey's latest chapter: According to a March 23rd New York Times article, half a dozen news organizations are currently in discussions with Facebook for a distribution deal. Cited as candidates for the experiment: The NYT itself, but also BuzzFeed, the National Geographic and even Quartz. (No one actually confirmed the information.) Under the putative deal terms, instead of simple links, Facebook would host media contents. In exchange, the media would get a cut of the ad revenue generated by the arrangement."

- The Mice and Men of the Advertising Industrial Complex – (Andrew Reid – Dentsu-Aegis) - "I'm often held up by the question of advertiser-side programmatic media trading, where an advertiser chooses to invest in their own trading systems. Is it a concern, or more pointedly, an existential threat to the agency business model? Let me answer it this way: if there is a categorical threat, it will appear within an enterprise that falsely calculates an immediate cost-benefit as long-lasting, ignoring the opportunity costs of self-serve in a market that thrives on technology iterations, partnerships and economies of networking, and by extension, economies of scale."

For more insights and must read articles on digital media Follow MediaScope on Twitter and join over 1,950+ media 'influentials' by Subscribing to MediaScope's Weekly Newsletter.

Time in the digital industry: I’ve been in the advertising, media & publishing industry for almost 30 years (straight from school) & started taking an interest in online advertising through my role as Business Development Manager at Fairfax/Business Review Weekly (BRW) in the mid to late 90’s
My time at MediaScope: I’ve had my own solo-run business – MediaScope – for 4 years now. It’s been quite the journey
My mission at Mediascope: My main professional mission at MediaScope is to offer our market an independent, useful and evolving resource.  My personal mission is to stay an active and passionate part of our industry while still managing the needs of my family (4 months a year school holiday!). I’m very vocal about the challenges and opportunities for women and families in our industry
My special blog topics:  I’ll be presenting a series of topical and relevant articles, insights and opinions both unique to MediaScope and from international and local sources
Digital trend I'm most excited about: The increasing pace of change within our entire industry is fascinating, compelling and a little frightening. I’m especially excited about the opportunities converged media brings to marketers and media owners through emerging digital media platforms being applied to traditional media such as print, outdoor and tv. I also keep a close eye on new advertising and non-advertising media revenue streams and business models
Brand whose marketing I admire: I admire any brand which does something (anything) brave. Though we are increasingly seeing the take up of data-driven decision making. I think there is still enormous benefit to be realised in the ‘serendipitous’ marketing opportunity.  Several large marketers specifically allocate budget for innovative opportunities where outcomes cannot necessarily be predicted – or even measured accurately - but they can become a worthwhile part of a broader marketing mix, create enormous brand impact and achieve above average results .  I’d like to see more Australian brands taking marketing risks and move beyond the so called usual solutions
Favourite digital campaign of all times: The first one – AT&T’s first banner ad published by HotWired in 1994 with a whopping 74% clickthrough rate.  It’s become oh so complicated since then
Digital tool / gadget I cannot live without:  I’m seriously in love with my iPad - don’t tell my husband
If I wasn't working in digital, I would be:  If I was to think about my dream job I’d likely be a highly successful, genY, male, single professional golfer (or maybe surfer). Yep – if I wasn’t in advertising and media then I would like to be Adam Scott.  

Denise Shrivell has been a well known and active member of the Australian advertising and media industry for close to 30 years.  She has worked with major agencies and publishers and now runs MediaScope which offers resources and services in 3 core areas: a planning directory connecting buyers and sellers through 3,500 media listings with a focus on niche, alternative and emerging media; a range of resources with practical information on buying, selling advertising within our constantly changing media landscape - including the well-known ‘MediaScape’ guides & ‘Women in Media’ profiles; and tailored consultancy services for media owners and marketers as well as involvement in various industry projects.  MediaScope also produces a newsletter which is currently sent each week to over 1000 key media industry decision makers.

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