Posts Tagged ‘media’

Donald Trump’s Lack of Ad Spending Is Leaving a Hole In Local Media’s Pocket

October 20, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

The presidential debates provided plenty of free airtime. Gif: Dianna McDougall; Sources: CNN, Shutterstock The presidential election has been momentous and memorable: the first woman nominee of a major party, a businessman/reality show candidate, leaked emails, bigly, Ken Bone and Billy Bush. But local media will remember the 2016 race for what it didn't provide: significant ad revenue. Media forecasting firm Magna originally projected this year's political ad spend to be 15 percent above 2012, which would have set a new record. But current forecasts put the ad buy in line with the 2012 campaign. "[Donald Trump] is not nearly spending what Mitt Romney or John McCain's campaigns did eight years ago," said Mark Fratrik, svp and chief economist for BIA Kelsey. "That disappointed the outlooks of local media companies." Local TV ad sales were underwhelming despite a 10 percent increase this year. "Good, but it fell below our anticipations," added Vincent Letang, evp of global market intelligence for Magna. Around $2.8 billion was booked in local political TV ad sales this year, up 3 percent from 2012 dollars. It's particularly not impressive because a total of $20 billion was spent on local TV ads overall, excluding political ads. "When Trump was a candidate in the primaries, he spent very little," said Letang. "We thought once he got the nomination and gained more access to GOP fundraising, he'd spend closer to what Romney did during his general election [of 2012]. That didn't happen." But it's not just Trump's underwhelming spend that surprises analysts. "We all thought Virginia would continue to be a battleground state for the campaigns. But it just isn't

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How Jeff Bezos Is Turning the Washington Post Into a Digitally Driven Publisher

October 19, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

SAN FRANCISCO—When Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos took over the Washington Post in 2013, many wondered what a tech exec's leadership would look like at a 140-year-old newspaper. But with a growing digital business and new practices in the newsroom, the Washington Post's executive editor, Martin Baron, talked about how the paper approaches its deep reporting—like having 20 reporters cover this year's presidential election—during a panel at Vanity Fair's New Establishment Summit. "Jeff came in not only with financial power, but he came in with intellectual power and I think forced us to think more profoundly about how the internet changed the way that we deliver information to people," Barron said during an interview with Vanity Fair's special correspondent Sarah Ellison. Baron said the paper talks to Bezos once every two weeks for about an hour, and one of the first things he did after buying the paper was getting the newsroom to think differently about aggregation and curation. "One of the first things he talked to us about is, 'Look, you do these big, narrative stories. You do these deep investigations, and then some other media outlet in 15 minutes [has] rewritten your story, and they've grabbed your traffic. How are you going to think about that?' That's a hard question to answer," Baron said. That conversation left Baron with the impression that Bezos' ownership "will not allow us to do the deep, narrative stories—but that's not what happened." Instead, the paper started aggregating itself with staff members looking for parts of stories they could pick out and compile into one story. The publisher has also started aggregating from other news outlets.

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Even as TV Creators Come Around on Integrations, Buyers Are Starting to Look Elsewhere

October 17, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

After years of treating "integration" as a dirty word, the people behind many of TV's biggest shows have changed their tune and are embracing them as something beneficial to their shows, rather than a punishment that must be endured. "We like having that extra money that allows us to do some scenes, or buy music, we otherwise wouldn't be able to," said Modern Family co-creator Steve Levitan. "In some cases, it actually helps the scene. It sounds more natural to say, 'Who wants to go to Target with me?' than, 'Who wants to go to the department store with me?'" Yet in a surprising role reversal, as TV's showrunners (including a dozen that spoke with Adweek) are more receptive than ever to integrations, buyers and brands no longer have the same enthusiasm for them. "It used to be the showcase in a buy, to say we brought in integration," said Neil Vendetti, president of investment at Zenith. "Now we're talking about integrations with clients a bit less." That sentiment is reflected in new data from Nielsen TV Brand Effect, which indicates that the number of integrations in original, nonsports prime-time programming on the five broadcast networks has fallen each year, from 4,701 in the 2013-14 season to 4,538 in the 2015-16 season. That's not to say that TV integrations aren't still plentiful, or high profile. In last season's most successful partnership, Empire featured a multi-episode arc in which rising star Jamal Lyon (Jussie Smollett) was wooed by Pepsi to endorse the soda. As the cast sat down to watch the ad, Empire cut to commercial where the actual spot played. "That was pure kismet because we broke a story in the [writers] room where we said, Jamal is going to get a major endorsement, and it's going to be a threat to [his father] Lucious because it means he's going to be a bigger star," said Empire showrunner Ilene Chaiken.

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These West Coast Agencies Are Fearlessly Embracing Change as Advertising Evolves

October 9, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

New York has long served as the heart of the media and advertising industries. Los Angeles, by contrast, pumps out a steady flow of popular culture and has its own agency scene to match. This global headquarters for the entertainment and production industries—with a dash of tech innovation—creates a wealth of opportunities for trend-smart ad shops that aren't afraid to draw talent and collaborators from outside the "traditional" marketing world. As clients cut budgets and the storied broadcast TV model evolves, these organizations are increasingly comfortable moving beyond the familiar. Thankfully, their hometown has a wealth of alternatives to offer. R/GA "The idea that the commercial should be interrupting [your viewing experience] is no longer accepted," said R/GA founder Bob Greenberg—and for his agency's L.A. office, this means more partnerships with local production companies like Maker Studios and Fullscreen that specialize in influencer-driven content. "Hollywood's unbundling creates opportunities for both agencies and clients," added R/GA vp and managing director Alex Morrison, noting that eight of today's top celebrities among teens are YouTube stars, and that a near-majority told a recent poll that such "creators" understand them better than their own friends. "There's no better place to have those conversations than in L.A.

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Here Are the TV Shows and Networks People Watch Live Most and Least Often

October 7, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

While broadcast viewers are thought to represent a more traditional TV audience than those watching cable, a new report says they are actually less likely to watch programming live than their cable counterparts, especially if the network in question is The CW. That information comes from TiVo Research's Q2 State of TV report, which was released today. The quarterly report tracks time-shifting using TiVo's Media TRAnalytics data set, which anonymously aggregates set-top box data from more than 2.3 million households including TiVo owners and other cable providers. According to the study, while the vast majority of TV viewing continues to be live, broadcast network prime-time viewing is more likely to be time-shifted than cable programming. Twenty-six percent of broadcast prime-time programming was time-shifted during the second quarter (23 percent overall was watched in the C3 window, from the same day to three days later; the other 3 percent was time-shifted four to seven days). In total day viewing, 20 percent of broadcast programing was time-shifted. For cable prime-time viewing during the quarter, 88 percent was viewed live, with total day viewing even higher at 91 percent. The CW is the most time-shifted of the broadcast networks. Only 56 percent of its viewers watch live in prime time.

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ANA Asks Facebook to Open Up Its Platform for More Third-Party Measurement

September 29, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

One week after details about Facebook inflating its video metrics for advertisers were discovered, the Association of National Advertisers has called for an audit and accreditation of the social platform's metrics. The ANA's qualms stem from a report in The Wall Street Journal last week finding that Facebook overestimated the amount of time users spend with videos by anywhere from 60 to 80 percent, according to a letter from Facebook to Publicis Media that the publication acquired. Facebook has since apologized, with multiple execs at Advertising Week discussing the mistake and a blog post from David Fischer, vp of advertising and global operations, explaining how the metric should have reflected the total amount of time spent watching a clip divided by total number of people who watched it. Instead, the faulty metric showed the total time divided by views of videos. In a blog post, ANA president and CEO Bob Liodice, wrote, "While ANA recognizes that 'mistakes do happen,' we also recognize that Facebook has not yet achieved the level of measurement transparency that marketers need and require." The trade organization's specific concern is that Facebook metrics are not vetted by the Media Rating Council—the industry watchdog that creates standards for advertisers to buy media against. Unlike other publishers and media companies, Facebook's so-called walled garden limits the amount of data that brands have into their campaigns, and the company has held back on giving third parties significant access into the platform, meaning that brands have to rely heavily on Facebook for insight into their campaigns. "With more than $6 billion of marketers' media being directed to Facebook, we believe that it is time for them—and other such major media players—to be audited and accredited. That is the standard of accepted practice that marketers and agencies have relied on for decades," Liodice wrote. "Internal viewability measurements employed by digital media owners should not be used for the purposes of conducting outside commerce." Liodice also cited an ANA report from last year that found that 97 percent of marketers think their ad inventory should be measured by a third party

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AOL Chief Tim Armstrong Defends Twitter, Saying Marketers Need to Catch Up

September 27, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

AOL CEO Tim Armstrong took to the Times Center stage on Monday for a conversation with NBC's Stephanie Ruhle to discuss the current and future state of media through the lens of brand building—something the exec has made a name for himself doing during his seven-year tenure at the storied internet company. Part of the 60-minute chat was about content-business acquisition, which wouldn't have been complete without addressing future buys. Ruhle suggested Twitter, the content behemoth with a monetization problem, would be a good project for Armstrong's team if parent Verizon could make the purchase. He didn't address the question, but he did defend the microblogging platform, saying its marketing is a lot better than it gets credit for, and it's actually the marketers that are behind. "If you're a marketer, should you be upset that Twitter isn't up to snuff or should you be upset at yourself that you're not talking to consumers in real time?" he posited to the packed auditorium of brand execs and marketers. "I don't know that much about Twitter's ad program, but I do know that marketing real time might be a more effective use of getting consumer engagement." The majority of the discussion was spent reviewing the entrepreneurial spirit of the brands in AOL's portfolio, including ones acquired during Armstrong's tenure like the Huffington Post, Makers and Build. Though, the conversation often turned toward the meatier issues facing the media world. Unlike many of his media contemporaries, Armstrong isn't wringing his hands over the content creation explosion taking hold in the industry. Describing AOL as a "content company," Armstrong doesn't see Facebook and Google as posing a threat to brands like TechCrunch and HuffPo. "People want to eat news everyday. People want a curated, trusted voice, and I think that's not going away," he said. "Do as much social media as you want, but at the end of the day, people want a trusted voice." AOL's current iteration operates under the idea that content is king, and Armstrong clearly believes his platform is heir apparent. He even sees it as the solution for digital advertising, adding that the ad-tech world was responsible for the current dismal state of digital advertising. "I think the industry got incredibly lazy—I think AOL got incredibly lazy—by not worrying about what they put in front of consumers, but worrying about the tech platforms behind those," he said. "I think it led to ad blocking, and AOL has to innovate ad formats. Consumers are really good at spending their time—they're better at spending their time than their money—and we should not be putting things in front of them that aren't great pieces of content." Another of Armstrong's ad-tech prognostications is that, contrary to many media forecasts, online advertising will become more expensive in the future, owing this theory to the difficulties in unhooking the convenience provided by digital platforms—think recurring monthly Amazon order where a year's supply of brand products is decided with one click.

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OMD’s Digital Head Wants to Foster Cooperation Between Media and Creative Partners

September 19, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Specs Current gig OMD, chief digital and innovation officer Previous gig Meredith Xcelerated Marketing, chief innovation officer, general manager Twitter @dougs_digs Age 41 Adweek: You've been OMD 's chief digital and innovation officer for about three months. What's that role like? Doug Rozen: On the digital side, it's really about ensuring that all clients, as well as ourselves internally, are delivering against the fullest and widest array of digital possibilities. For me, what this comes down to is that digital today is not any particular thing or any specific channel—it really stretches across all [channels] and is about rising above talking about TV, print, radio, desktop, etcetera, as channels, and start talking more about formats like audio, video, visual and how then digital allows those formats to be addressable. Now coupled with that is the innovation side, and innovation is not just big media breakthroughs—although they are awesome and necessary—to me it's about every client [having] an innovation agenda. What do you mean by that

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Mode Media Shuts Down, Leaving Freelancers Unpaid

September 16, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

Just two years ago, Mode Media founder and chief executive Samir Arora described his Silicon Valley startup (formerly known as Glam Media) as "a pioneer of native advertising and content marketing," and boasted that after just 10 years it had grown to become "the 7th largest U.S. media company, reaching 50 percent of the U.S. digital population." Thursday evening, The Wall Street Journal reported the lifestyle content company once valued at $1 billion had shut down operations—leaving a network of content creator "partners" owed tens of thousands of dollars. Crissy Page, an Ohio-based writer who served as a contributing editor for Mode Media's parenting vertical, Tend, says the company owes her $17,000. Page says the shutdown came without any warning. "Work was ongoing right up until the last moment. I was receiving feedback about content for clients as recently as two days ago, which tells me that the account managers had no idea that the doors would be closing." Calls to Mode late Thursday went unanswered. Page says she reached one company contact at home, who gave her little hope of ever being paid. "She told me that all employee email accounts were immediately cut off when they sent people home." The company has pulled some of its content off the web—along with access to financial documents that Mode Media's content partners used to track what they were owed. "Personally, I did not see this coming," said writer Jaleesa Howard.

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Time Inc. Enters Streaming Space With Launch of People/Entertainment Weekly Network

September 12, 2016  |  Media Week  |  No Comments

With everyone from ESPN to Turner set to launch new over-the-top networks, the OTT video space is getting more crowded with every passing day. But that's not stopping Time Inc., the publisher of storied titles like Time and Sports Illustrated, from entering the fray. This Monday, the company is officially launching the People/Entertainment Weekly Network, a new ad-supported long-form video-on-demand network (AVOD) that purports to be the first solely pop culture- and celebrity-focused entry in the category. First announced at Time Inc.'s NewFronts presentation in May, the network—PEN for short—marks a major investment for the 94-year-old media company, which has spent the past several years aggressively expanding its digital and video businesses in an effort to combat the industrywide problem of declining print ad sales. "If you look at the subscription business, there are a lot of niche brands that have recently launched, but if you look at the straight AVOD business, it's definitely an interesting area," said Bruce Gersh, svp of brand business development. "These two brands coming together as the first blue-chip brands entering the ad-supported OTT space is a really great opportunity for us." Of course, there's already plenty of other similar celebrity- and Hollywood-themed content at consumers' fingertips on every platform. But Time Inc. is betting that the People and EW names—and their combined cross-platform audience of more than 108 million, according to the MPA—will set its offerings apart.

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