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Fiksu, Inc., the first mobile ecosystem-wide app user acquisition platform in the industry, has reported that in February 2012, there was an evening out of the downloading of mobile apps, after the post-holiday boom in January which broke all previous records.

The company’s data also showed that the price of acquiring new loyal app users experienced only a marginal increase during that month.

The Fiksu App Store Competitive Index showed that there was a decrease in the number of daily downloads by 6 percent, from January’s average of 6.79 million, to February’s 6.35 million. The Index is a measurement of the overall daily download volume among the leading 200 free American apps for iPhone devices.

On the other hand, the company also reported that the Fiksu Cost per Loyal User Index saw an increase of 15 percent from January to February, when it was $1.14 and $1.31 respectively.

The various measurements performed by the Indexes at Fiksu have shown that after a period in January, when spending had decreased, marketers had started to prepare themselves for brand new advertising campaigns to begin in February.

Despite the fact that the company was not functioning with robotic install traffic sources, it was still capable of measuring a decline in the app download numbers as a whole. This may have been a sign of the earliest indicators of the response of app marketers to the announcement that Apple made on February 6 which stated that it would be implementing new measures to cease tactics that involve robotic installation.

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Facebook just dealt a dangerous blow to Huawei amidst the technology company’s ongoing legal battle with the US government. According to Reuters, Facebook will now no longer allow any three of its apps – Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp- to be pre-installed on any future Huawei devices.

The ban will only effect devices that have yet to leave the Huawei factory, and users who already have Huawei phones will still be able to access and update the three social apps. Other popular apps, like Twitter and Booking.com also come pre-installed on Huawei phones, but neither company has made a comment about following in Facebook’s footsteps.

Last month, the US government banned any American companies from supplying technology to Huawei, including Google, which provides Android software to the Chinese tech giant. Google was granted a 90-day reprieve to continue working with Huawei, which ends in August.

For now, Huawei phone owners will be able to download the Facebook apps from the Google Playstore on their devices, but when the reprieve expires, the Playstore will no longer be accessible. As a result, future Huawei phones will lose access to any and all apps on the Google Playstore, including Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, unless the US government changes its stance.

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I think we can all agree last year was torrid for the tech industry, with increased concerns over data usage and consumer privacy in the spotlight thanks to scandals like Cambridge Analytica’s data breach. Alongside the subsequent increase in mobile ad blocking and the threat of tech taxations, there is a dramatic and sometimes bleak outlook for all corners of the industry. 

Despite this upheaval, investment in mobile advertising has continued to exceed analysts’ expectations, in large part driven by mobile’s versatility, convenience and the endless creative opportunities available for mobile browser and in-app advertising. And in keeping with the year just passed, 2019 is set to hold many challenges, but also giant leaps for many exciting technologies. So what are some of the exciting trends we’re keeping an eye on over 2019?

1. Full speed ahead

In the UK, EE is due to bring out the first 5G mobile connection across major cities by the summer. This will be followed by other major mobile networks, promising speeds of up to 20 times faster than 4G, making browsing online and streaming video a whole lot easier for consumers. In the short term, these increased speeds will provide plenty of opportunities for performance marketers wanting to test out innovative ways to reach consumers, from AR-enabled ad formats to ultra-high-definition creatives. 

In the longer term, the trusty mobile phone will arguably become the least exciting device in the world of mobile connected devices. The so-called ‘internet of things’ is frequently discussed, but with the advent of 5G more devices will be able to connect to the internet. This will enable marketers to obtain a far better understanding of the consumer across all the devices they use day-to-day, from voice-activated assistants to wearable devices. 

2. Augmented reality (AR)

With whispers of a new Niantic game release for Harry Potter – which will be replicating the same AR technology as its popular sibling Pokemon GO – 2019 will be another big year for AR. Prepare yourself for Potter fans everywhere wandering through the streets with their phones casting spells. 

There is a magic opportunity for performance marketers to tap into this new app – and they should be looking to develop innovative partnerships that add to the gaming experience through VR. This could include targeted money off vouchers and incentives based on completed levels, or relevant ad creative based on the location of the player.

It’s not just gaming where AR is taking off – advertisers across verticals are beginning to look towards AR to elevate their mobile initiatives in new ways. As a result, it’s not surprising that the projected value for augmented reality is staggering. Markets and Markets recently predicted that AR is set to be valued at $60.5 billion by 2023. More importantly, a whopping 77% of shoppers have reported an interest in using AR to shop products wherever possible, so this is certainly a trend to keep an eye on.

3. Insta shopping 

Many of our favourite social channels are morphing into digital shopping emporiums, offering lucrative opportunities for brands wishing to sell direct via the platforms. 2019 will be the year of “social commerce”, with Instagram introducing shopping features in its app this year, and Snapchat teaming up with Amazon to enable users to check and purchase products via its visual search tool.

The success of this will be chiefly driven by video advertising – in fact, 66% of ad impressions on Instagram are already the result of video content. Zenith predicts that online video advertising will grow by 18% a year between 2018 and 2021, twice as fast as other forms of internet display advertising, with targeted online video campaigns being the most effective form of global advertising over the next few years.

4. Personalisation in a world of GDPR 

You’d be hard pressed to have missed the GDPR legislation that came into force in the spring, and maintaining cut-through and convenience in targeted campaigns without becoming creepy will, therefore, continue to be a battle for marketers going into 2019. Consumers will still take themselves out of the reach of marketers, with research showing that they are choosing to adopt more privacy tools and opt-out settings. Yet many will still expect personalisation, with research from Salesforce showing that 62% of consumers expect companies to send personalised offers or discounts.

Meanwhile, following the Cambridge Analytica scandal, the government has said it will regulate the tech giants more heavily, and there is likely to be far more intense scrutiny of data collection throughout 2019. A key focus for marketers this year is to ensure they are committing themselves to fully transparent and compliant methods of data collection while using the data they can access to continue offering an excellent customer experience that is targeted and relevant, to deliver engaging ads. 

5. Exciting opportunities lie ahead

Above all, the future of advertising is a consumer-driven experience in which advertisers must anticipate changing needs. Brands that succeed will be those that continually innovate to find new ways to thrill and entertain their audiences and meet their needs while avoiding being intrusive. 

With so many exciting technological advancements and future trends in the new year, the mobile advertising ecosystem will be taking some huge leaps in 2019. But as the mobile world becomes increasingly familiar with these new formats and their potential, the competition will inevitably become stiffer.

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Bulk SMS is prominently one of the most implemented promotion strategies in election campaigns. This is consistently being in regular use as political parties can convey their messages instantly to the masses.

Bulk SMS will play an important role in almost every step of your promotion campaign during this election period. From promotions to notifications, sending SMS will prove to be the best choice.

Check out the Major Practices in Which you can use Bulk SMS Services to Promote Your Political Party:

Send Reminders:

Close to Voting Day! When time to cast the vote is so short, then the best way to ping the target people is none other than SMS. It will instantly land in their Inbox and they may consider it as well. So, you may gather supporters in bulk via a bulk SMS push.

Bulk SMS CampaignShare Future Vision in Short Crispy Form:

The masses must be well known about future prospects of your political party. Every political party has its own vision. The chances of winning increases if they are successful to share their ideas and future vision with the masses. All they need to do is present it in a short and effective manner. This way people will be more clear with their decision during voting.

Make Major Announcements like Rallies or Gatherings:

Any gathering or rally may get scheduled at any point of time and reaching out to maximum people who can indulge into them can be a great task. Bulk SMS is the best way to make announcements of sudden happenings.

Notify Your Supporters and Party Members:

In order to communicate with your party members and supporters, you would require a medium. Bulk SMS is undoubtedly the perfect approach to convey your message to them.

Send Your Message in Regional or Local Language for a Better Impression:

If you will send messages to the target people in their regional language then they will definitely feel more connected. It will make it convenient for them to read it and there are great chances that they will consider it as well.

Encourage People to Rally People up for Your Agenda:

For rally, you require a good number of people to involve. You can do it by sending SMS in bulk.

Bulk SMS Services would be effective enough to push you towards your winning step. Without a doubt, it’s a must-have tool in political context.

If you found this article useful then go ahead and check out more services that can do wonders for your political party in this election period.

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Liz Waldeck-Pinckert, director of publisher monetisation and strategy at AdColony, dicusses what the shift to the first-price auction model means for the industry

Liz Waldeck-Pinckert AdColonyEven though publishers and exchanges began moving to the first-price auction model nearly two years ago (in 2017), like so many other industry changes, it wasn’t ‘real’ until Google did it.

In March, the company announced that Google Ad Manager (aka AdX) would finally transition from second-price auctions, which awards the auction to the highest bid only slightly above the second-highest, to first-price, where the winning advertiser pays exactly what they bid.

Second-price auctions were standard for a long time because they helped advertisers avoid “winner’s curse,” where the winner of an auction simply overestimated the value of the inventory and was then stuck paying that price for it.

But the system was not perfect; some supply-side platforms would raise their price floors after bids came in, which allowed them to get extra money from advertisers and DSPs.

Ultimately, the benefits of second-price auction didn’t outweigh these negatives. One by one, supply-side platforms began adopting the first-price model. From December 2017 to March 2018, for instance, the share of impressions being sold first-price went from just 5.8 per cent to 43.3 per cent. And, now that Google (the dominant market leader) is going that route, it’s now clear that first-price auctions will now be the universal method for the $48bn programmatic market.

For both buyers and sellers, this means greater transparency. Buyers have more into pricing, though it’s worth noting that they still cannot see the bids of their competitors, and DSPs cannot track bids from other DSPs. Publishers will get more reporting on bids, but often will only have visibility into winning bids, and the SSPs cannot see all the bids that other SSPs receive. So while this is a step in the right direction, there is still a way to go to 100 per cent transparency.

What we will see in the meantime is a period of adjustment. Many DSPs have invested in algorithms and machine-learning to determine bidding strategies that fit in a second-price auction world. Those DSPs now find themselves having to adjust to an entirely different environment.

Publishers, too, will have more uncertainty. High bids that were previously bounded are now the ‘true value’, and that means some bidders are going to be priced out of the market, which doesn’t augur well for a publisher – the more buyers, the more competition, the higher the prices, the better. Those unbound high-priced bids, too, introduce a higher level of price unpredictability which can be unsettling for publishers.

In the short term, of course, all publishers are going to see an increase in revenue. CPMs and effective CPMs will go up because the price paid for inventory will match the highest bid, which can be significantly larger than the second. When publishers first shifted to the new model in 2017, 78 per cent of publishers experienced an increase in revenue. And last year, when an ad agency ran a test across 15 different publishers using first- and second-price auctions, it found that CPMs were 59 per cent higher in the former. That’s not just a bump.

But the market adjusts, and there will undoubtedly be a leveling out. From an ad buyer’s perspective, they are now paying more for exactly the same thing they were before. And their budgets are not magically increasing to meet this new price. Instead, they’ll just buy less, which will slow down the movement of inventory.

Or they’ll just bid less. Steven Levy in his examination of Google’s ad program found the hole in the argument for first-price auctions. Since advertisers pay the amount they bid, even when the next lowest bidder is offering so much less, they have an incentive to lower their bids in subsequent rounds, he explains. This means that in the long run, publishers and SSPs will be making less money, not more.

There’s always room for compromise – and that is where we stand today with a concept called ‘bid shading’. Bid shading is a technique in which the difference between the first- and second-price winning bid is effectively split in half, and the winner pays the middle price between the two. While this does lower the end cost for the advertiser, in a test run, CPMs were still found to be 54 per cent higher than those purchased the old way. There’s always room for improvement, though, and if bid-shading algorithms improve, it could be a strong choice to shrink the gap we have today between the two prices.

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Paul Fields, director of strategy at AdColony, looks at how brand safety continues to be a big problem for the industry

Paul Fields AdColonyEven 50-plus years ago, brand safety was a major issue – one that those who worked in advertising feared losing their job over. While not a documentary, an episode of Mad Men addressed it directly. We saw Sterling-Cooper media buyer Harry Crane get in major trouble because a TV episode referenced “communist agitators” just moments before there was a Maytag ad praising the agitators. Maytag was not happy.

What can Harry do, though? He’s just one guy, and when he asks for help reading TV scripts ahead of air dates, he gets no support from the higher-ups. “Figure out how to do the job yourself,” says Roger.

But at least Harry had scripts to read, and while daunting, it is a finite amount (especially in 1962). With 100 videos being uploaded every minute to YouTube, it’s physically impossible to review all of the material – if you tried to watch all of the videos that exist on YouTube today, it would take upwards of 60,000 years. If we’re talking about all video crossing the global IP networks, that number jumps to 5 million years. And while both Google and Facebook have tried to rework their algorithms to flag and remove dangerous content from their properties, both have struggled in doing so.

If you’re a brand in the digital era looking for full awareness and control over what content your ads are being placed next to, you’re in for a challenge. Harry felt overwhelmed by the volume of inventory he, as the client’s brand police, had to be accountable for. Imagine how overwhelmed today’s brands and agencies feel when considering the sheer volume of digital inventory. Specifically, the way that social media content is being created, curated and distributed each day – it’s incredible and awe-inspiring, but also terrifying at the same time.

AdColony recently ran a survey to learn more about mobile consumers’ mindset around various degrees of non-brand-safe content (e.g., fake news, offensive language) and how it impacted their perception of the advertiser. Some key findings:

Facebook and YouTube are rife with non-brand-safe content
Some 60 per cent of consumers reported seeing content that was ‘hateful, inappropriate or offensive’ on Facebook, and 31 per cent reported it on YouTube. It seems that YouTube has not fully recovered from its ‘moment’ two years ago when major brands pulled their ads from the platform. In fact, earlier this year, more companies including AT&T, Disney, Hasbro, Nestle, and Epic Games pulled their ads from YouTube… again. Even Google is still having issues, with 20 per cent of respondents seeing disturbing content there. Just 18 per cent of consumers reported issues with it in mobile games.

Brand safety impacts the reputation of the platform AND that of the advertiser
Advertisers must be vigilant about where they place their messages because one wrong move can result in a change in perception, tarnishing (or destroying) the reputation they’ve fought so hard to obtain. Nearly half (49 per cent) of consumers surveyed say that it “negatively impacts my perception of the advertiser” to see ads in proximity to non-brand-safe content. More than half (60 pe cent) said it negatively impacts how they view the platform on which it appeared.

‘Fake news’ is still prominent on Facebook – 49 per cent of users said they see it there
Fake news on YouTube is also still a problem, with one in four of those surveyed noting its presence. One in five said they’ve seen fake news on Google, and just eight per cent have seen it in the mobile gaming environment. 

In mobile games, one in four mobile users purchase advertised products & services
Despite Instagram’s recent moves to become more of a platform for e-commerce advertising, less than one in eight consumers purchase after seeing an ad there. In mobile games, however, one in four mobile users make a purchase after seeing an ad.

It’s clear that in 2019, consumers still care a lot about the ads they see, and especially where they see them. Advertisers are right to be concerned about where their ads appear in social media and the negative impact that misalignment might have on their brand. Perception is everything. And while it’s also clear that significant moves have been taken to remedy (or at least alleviate) brand safety concerns from advertisers, the problem has not gone away – far from it.

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