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Facebook is now the most popular places that advertisers are putting their video ads, even beating YouTube.

By MediaStreet Staff Writers

Top marketers know that digital video is one of the most powerful tools to increase consumer engagement and brand loyalty. In fact, according to a new study from Clinch, brand marketers are ramping up their production of digital videos with an emphasis on creating campaigns specifically for Facebook and YouTube.

The study found that 78 percent of marketers plan to increase their production of video ads in 2018, while only 43 percent of marketers plan to increase their production of static banner ads this year.

Social is Video

When it comes to digital video campaigns, Facebook reigns supreme, representing 46 percent of all video ads produced. When adding Facebook-owned Instagram into the mix, this number leaps to 74 percent. YouTube comes in a close second at 41 percent.

Says Oz Etzioni, CEO of Clinch, “It’s no secret that Facebook and YouTube dominate the digital media landscape and we don’t expect this to slow down, particularly with the Facebook algorithm change which requires brands to pay in order to be seen. In 2018 brands will increase spend and leverage the rich data that these platforms provide. However, the data and platform are just two pieces of the puzzle. Creative is the critical third piece. If brands aren’t uniquely tailoring their creative specifically for each platform and by audience, opportunities will be missed and ROI will be lowered.”

Nearly three quarters of marketers are adopting online video from their TV commercials. 44 percent indicated that they don’t shorten commercials for each platform’s suggested length. While TV ads remain a critical source of video content, the user experience of each social platform is very different than traditional TV. For example, TV ads are 15 to 30 seconds long but Facebook and YouTube recommend six-second videos.

Etzioni continued, “We were really surprised to learn that marketers were taking a one size fits all approach to video. In 2018, marketers will awaken to the fact that investment in creative will increase ROI and personalisation at scale, and will become the norm for digital video as it has become for static ads.”

Defining Social Personalisation

While 50 percent of respondents say they personalise their video campaigns, brands can be doing a lot more. Those that are personalising their creatives based on data are seeing big results. Nearly 90 percent of respondents who have customised Facebook or YouTube video ads reported seeing benefits. Furthermore, 70 percent of those who customise said that they have seen improvements in their key performance indicators (KPIs).

According to Etzioni, in the next few months, the definition of personalisation will change. “Rather than creating a handful of versions – one for men, one for women, one for the East Coast and one for the West Coast, we expect brands to be using data insights to personalise at scale. This means hundreds if not thousands of versions of videos where the message and creative is tailored to their specific needs and interests. This will create a more meaningful experience for the consumer and transform video campaigns from simply brand awareness to direct response opportunities,”

The full report, “How Leading Brand Marketers are Using Personalised Video to Drive Sales,” is available for download here.

 

 

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Make sure to keep an eye out for these five social media marketing trends that are taking over the digital marketing world in the upcoming year.

Did you know that on an average, we scroll through at least 300 feet (90 meters) of content daily? Not every brand’s campaign grabs our attention. It is a difficult and competitive game, as brands are trying harder to grab our attention, while our attention span has been reduced to a mere eight seconds. Brand strategy in the coming years will try more than ever to connect with their audiences across a variety of social platforms. It becomes imperative that your campaign works, more so taking into account the speed of feed. We have curated a list of five trends that we believe will impact your social media strategy in 2018.

Adopt Chatbots

https://giphy.com/gifs/11FyVJOvLleR5S

Gone are the days when chatbots meant unresponsive, hilarious and outright ridiculous software. Today, chatbots can do a lot more than just solve customer issues or order pizza for you. Various studies state that 20% of business content could be machine generated by next year. When we teach machines how to create authentic and engaging stories, the potential for advertising and marketing will become multifold. Chatbots interact with the users and deliver the solutions that they are looking for at the speed of light. Bots are developing to become smarter and empathetic. This engagement feels personal, from the user’s perspective. Chatbots are definitely a must-try social media marketing strategy in 2018 for your business.

Momentary content makes for good engagement:

Streaks GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Snapchat was the early adopter of momentary content. Instagram and Facebook followed suit, owing to the huge popularity of Stories format in a short time. These content are ephemeral and disappear in 24 hours. Brands are creating a whole new digital marketing strategy for their momentary content marketing. Having your stories appear at the very top of your follower’s feed keeps your brand at the top of their mind. Many brands do a live story session with a subject matter expert. This helps the user look out for the brand more so as to not miss an informative session. Ephemeral content marketing strategy is something that you should try in 2018!

Augmented reality boom

Augmented Reality Technology GIF by Wikitude - Find & Share on GIPHY

Augmented reality blurs the line between reality and computer-generated content by enhancing what we see, and hear. The adoption of augmented reality on mobile phones is a quick and easy way for brands to reach their target audience. Many brands are taking their products right inside the homes of users through exclusive filters. IKEA has released an app called Place which allows users to preview how the furniture would look in their homes before they buy. As more people get warmed up to augmented reality, more people will start to feel like they are missing out on things and want to become a part of it. However, you would also have to check where your strategy fits. Make sure your AR adds value for the user and don’t simply create one for the sake of it.

Influencers are here to stay

Social Media Instagram GIF by Much - Find & Share on GIPHY

Influencer marketing has grown so much over the last two years that the popularity has made it difficult to know whom to trust. Consumers expect genuine reviews from genuine influencers. Brands must seek to work with relevant influencers with industry background or knowledge. Viewers are already bored of seeing brands engage popular influencers who promote teeth whitening and a mobile phone app with the same vigor. In 2018, try and create worthwhile relationships with influencers and maintain them. Influencer marketing is going to become more authentic with brands moving to real experts instead of social influencers.

Make more videos

Film Scene GIF by Alexander IRL - Find & Share on GIPHY

We are addicted to mobile phones, and we love our videos. In 2017, 90% of the most shared content on social media was in video format. If you are not using videos yet, you will have to quickly start using them and master the art of capturing the user’s attention in the first 3 seconds. Video is the quickest and the closest way you will come face to face with your target audience. As with everything, you need to have a clear strategy before creating a video. Taking advantage of Facebook Live and Instagram Live is also a smart strategy. Ensure that the video is of the highest quality and engaging. You will also have to consider making the best design and make sure to add subtitles to attract users when they are watching with sound off.

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Social media preferences differ by generation, but most users spend their time consuming – not creating – content on social media apps.

More than half of millennials (53%) say they check Snapchat daily, which is three times more than Generation Xers (18%) and eight times more than baby boomers (7%), according to new data from The Manifest.

Baby boomers prefer Facebook over Snapchat, and they check Facebook more than millennials. More than 9 out of 10 of baby boomers (93%) open the Facebook app at least once a day, compared to 85% of millennials.

The findings indicate that preferences for certain social media apps differ by age group. However, Facebook’s overall dominance – with nearly 90% of all social media app users saying they check it at least once a day – demonstrates how Facebook made its platform appealing to a variety of users.

“Facebook invested considerable resources over the last 10 plus years in making an experience where everyone can find value in the platform,” said Josh Krakauer, founder and CEO of Sculpt, a social media marketing agency.

In contrast, Snapchat’s emphasis on short-lived content and the camera as a communication tool attracts younger users, and millennials in particular, who want a more personalised and unfiltered social media experience.

Snapchat appeals to younger generations who are used to getting the specific information they want, when they want it. Older social media app users may be more comfortable consuming content television-style, where what you see and when you see it is partially decided for you.

“As Facebook has catered to everyone in the world, Snapchat has doubled down as being a place that still feels raw, unfiltered and personal,” Krakauer said.

What Are Smartphone Users Doing on Social Media Apps?

While users spend a lot of time on social media apps, they don’t often publish content. The largest percentage of respondents (36%) say they most commonly use the “like” or “favourite” features on social media apps.

This finding correlates to the “90-9-1” rule of internet content, say experts. “[The rule] says that 90% of the time we just consume content, 9% of the time we interact with content, and only 1% of the time we actually share something,” said Sheana Ahlqvist, lead UX researcher at PhD Insights, a user research agency.

Simply liking or favouriting content on social media is a relatively seamless behaviour, requiring little motivation. The easier an online action is, the more likely a user is to complete it.

“The liking and favouriting is like saying ‘bless you,'” said Alex Levin, co-founder of L+R, a Brooklyn-based creative agency. “You can do it in an action that isn’t offensive.”

In addition to exploring app user behaviour, the survey helps businesses interested in building an app learn from the success of social media apps.

 

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The new study highlights that the huge economic impact is just “tip of the iceberg” with independent creators.

By MediaStreet Staff Writers

So here it is, another study from the USA about the power of the new economy. While it doesn’t feature what Europeans are doing, we can use the information to see just how fast the new creative economy is moving. Put it this way: that horse has bolted.

The new report released by the Re:Create Coalition finds that 14.8 million independent, American creators earned a baseline of almost $6 billion from posting their music, videos, art, crafts and other works online in 2016. The research is only a snapshot of the entire New Creative Economy, analysing just some of the biggest online platforms: Amazon Publishing, eBay, Etsy, Instagram, Shapeways, Tumblr, Twitch, WordPress and YouTube.

Despite the study being conducted in the USA, YouTube’s top earner is British. Daniel Middleton (DanTDM) brought in $16.5 million in 2017 alone. 26-year-old Dan, otherwise known as TheDiamondMinecart, posts daily reviews and gameplay videos plus some other silliness that kids love.

“Before the internet, a creator was forced to rely on traditional gatekeepers like movie studios and the recording industry to be successful. Today, anyone with a creative idea and a wifi signal can be successful and make money on the internet, reaching millions of people around the globe almost instantly,” said Re:Create Executive Director Joshua Lamel. “This analysis is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to understanding the full economic impact of the New Creative Economy. However, its findings demonstrate that millions of Americans rely on the balanced copyright policies that support internet platforms like YouTube, Instagram and Etsy in order to earn billions of dollars from their creative work.”

Selena Gomez is the number one person on Instagram, with close to 70 million followers, more than any other celebrity.

Said study author Dr. Robert Shapiro, “The development of this multi-million user network and multi-billion dollar ecosystem for independent new creators reflects the power of the internet. Even with these highly conservative estimates, this study demonstrates the economic power of the new creative economy and its enormous potential for continued growth.”

For each platform, only a single component of how users can earn income was studied, due to limited public data and insufficient information. Independent creators earn billions of dollars each year online through website ads, sponsorship/influencer compensation, social media traffic, direct sales and other methods, but this study analysed only one revenue-sharing model per platform.

For the full report is here.

 

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Before you dish out money to bid for a top-ranked ad position on a search engine, you may want to pause and make sure it’s actually going to pay off.

By MediaStreet Staff Writers

New research out of Binghamton University, State University of New York suggests that instead of just spending to get that top spot, advertisers should be considering other factors as well to ensure they are getting the best results from their sponsored search advertising campaigns.

Sponsored search advertising involves paying search engines, like Google and Bing, to bid for placements on the search results pages for specific keywords and terms. The ads appear in sponsored sections, separate from the organic search results, on those pages.

“The common belief in sponsored search advertising is that you should buy the top ad position to get more clicks, because that will lead to more sales,” said Binghamton University Assistant Professor of Marketing Chang Hee Park. “But the fee for the top position could be larger than the expected sales you’d get off that top position.”

Park, with the help of Binghamton University Professor of Marketing Manoj Agarwal, analysed data collected from a search engine and created a model that can forecast the number of clicks advertisers could expect in sponsored search markets based on four factors:

  • Rank in the sponsored listings
  • Website quality
  • Brand equity
  • Selling proposition

The model gives advertisers a way to quantify the expected clicks they’d get by adjusting these four factors, while also taking into consideration how their competitors are managing these four factors. This could enable advertisers to find a perfect blend of the four factors to ensure they are getting the most out of what they are paying for their ad positions.

It may also indicate that they should be spending more money to bolster their brand or website rather than amplifying their offers in top ad positions.

“Using this model, you may find that paying less for a lower ad position while investing more in improving your website is more effective than spending all of that money strictly on securing top ad positions,” said Agarwal.

This applies especially if your competitor has a poorer-quality website, but is spending more than you on securing top ad positions.

Their model found that poor-quality advertisers that are ranked higher in ad positions drive consumers back to the search results page, leading consumers to then click on advertisers in lower ad positions to find what they are looking for.

In contrast, they also found that a highly-ranked good-quality advertiser results in significantly less clicks for all the advertisers ranked below them.

“It’s more likely that in the top position, all advertisers being equal, you’ll get more clicks. But depending on these four factors, as well as the quality of your competitors, you may find that you’ll get more clicks in the second or the third position,” said Park.

“Conceptually, this is not a new idea, but now the model can help determine this by accounting for multiple factors at play at the same time.”

Advertisers aren’t the only ones who can benefit from this research.

Park and Agarwal’s model found that simply reordering the listed advertisers could result in significant changes in overall click volume (the total number of clicks across all advertisers) for search engines.

“Because they often charge on a pay-per-click model, search engines can now simulate which ordering of advertisers in a sponsored search market results in the most overall clicks and, therefore, most revenue” said Park. “Search engines may want to consider charging advertisers in a way that gives the search engine more flexibility in determining the order in which the ads in sponsored sections are displayed.”

 

 

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Not all “likes” are equal.

By MediaStreet Staff Writers

While the trusty “like” button is still the most popular way to signal approval for Facebook posts, a computer model may help users and businesses navigate the increasingly complicated way people are expressing how they feel on social media.

In a study, researchers developed a social emotion mining computer model that one day could be used to better predict people’s emotional reactions to Facebook posts, said Jason Zhang, a research assistant in Penn State’s College of Information Sciences and Technology. While Facebook once featured only one official emoticon reaction – the like button – the social media site added five more buttons – love, haha, wow, sad and angry – in early 2016.

“We want to understand the user’s reactions behind these clicks on the emoticons by modelling the problem as the ranking problem – given a Facebook post, can an algorithm predict the right ordering among six emoticons in terms of votes?” said Zhang. “But, what we found out was that existing solutions predict the user’s emotions and their rankings poorly in some times.”

Zhang added that merely counting clicks fails to acknowledge that some emoticons are less likely to be clicked than others, which is called the imbalance issue. For example, users tend to click the like button the most because it signals a positive interaction and it is also the default emoticon on Facebook.

“When we post something on Facebook, our friends tend to click the positive reactions, usually love, haha, or, simply, like, but they’ll seldom click angry,” said Zhang. “And this causes the severe imbalance issue.”

For social media managers and advertisers, who spend billions buying Facebook advertisements each year, this imbalance may skew their analysis on how their content is actually performing on Facebook, said Dongwon Lee, associate professor of information sciences and technology. The new model – which they call robust label ranking, or ROAR – could lead to better analytic packages for social media analysts and researchers.

“A lot of the commercial advertisements on Facebook are driven by likes,” said Lee. “Eventually, if we can predict these emoticons more accurately using six emoticons, we can build a better model that can discern more precise distribution of emotions in the social platforms with only one emoticon – like – such as on Facebook before 2016. This is a step in the direction of creating a model that could tell, for instance, that a Facebook posting made in 2015 with a million likes in fact consists only 80 percent likes and 20 percent angry. If such a precise understanding on social emotions is possible, that may impact how you advertise.”

The researchers used an AI technique called “supervised machine learning” to evaluate their newly-developed solution. In this study, the researchers trained the model using four Facebook post data sets including public posts from ordinary users, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, and showed that their solution significantly outperformed existing solutions. All four sets of data were analysed after Facebook introduced the six emoticons in 2016.

The researchers suggest future research may explore the multiple meanings for liking a post.

“Coming up with right taxonomy for the meanings of like is another step in the research,” said Lee. “When you click on the like button, you could really be signalling several emotions – maybe you agree with it, or you’re adding your support, or you just like it.”

And we as marketers know, the more you understand how your market feels, the better you can tailor your advertising to them.

 

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Late last year, in an attempt to reverse the apparent downward trend that plagued it throughout 2017, Snapchat announced a major redesign, which splits content from professional creators and content from friends onto two separate pages. While the new look isn’t yet available in the US, it has launched in nations like the UK, Australia, and Canada, and the initial response has been negative, to say the least. According to TechCrunch, which cited data from Sensor Tower, 83% of people who have reviewed the new layout on the App Store have give it either one or two stars.

More than any other issue, detractors are protesting Snapchat’s decision to place stories and messages from friends — which were previously kept separate — into the same feed. The resulting interface has been described as “unorganized, confusing, and overwhelming.”

The response to the new layout has been so negative that some reviewers are urging consumers to stay away from it entirely. One recent YouTube video, from creator Simple Alpaca, features the ominous title “DON’T UPDATE YOUR SNAPCHAT!”

It’s important to keep in mind that people, as a general rule, tend not to like change, and the vitriol aimed at Snapchat’s design team could eventually subside. The reaction to this rollout, however, is probably not what the company’s execs had in mind. Us Americans will get a chance to formulate our own opinions at a later date, though Snapchat still has not revealed an official date when its big change will come to US shores.

By

Sourced from tubefilter

Snapchat seems to be sliding down the list of prefered ways for influencers to reach their fans. A new report had shown that not one influencer surveyed chose snapchat as their favourite platform.

By MediaStreet Staff Writers

New research released today by Carusele and TapInfluence uncovered some surprising results about how influencers feel about various platforms heading into 2018.

Of the 790 influencers surveyed, none answered Snapchat to the question, “What is your favourite channel to use for branded content?”

Personal blogs were the favourite of 36% of respondents, followed closely by Instagram at 35% and Facebook at 12%. Twitter (9%), Pinterest (6%) and YouTube (1%) also received votes.

Even when asked to name their second favourite choice, Snapchat collected fewer than 1% of the responses, while Facebook ranked first at 26% and Instagram second at 25%.

“Two things are clear from this part of our survey,” said Jim Tobin, president of Carusele. “The first is that blogs aren’t going anywhere, which I think is a good thing for both brands and influencers. And second, Instagram’s moves over the last year or two have really outmanoeuvred Snapchat, which had been a hot platform for creators two years ago.”

Influencers also plan to be in the space for the long haul, with 97% of influencers surveyed planning to continue their work “as long as I’m able.” This despite fewer than half surveyed reporting working full time in the vocation (46%) while 24% work full time elsewhere and 13% part time elsewhere. The balance report being full time parents or caregivers.

“Our earlier research legitimised influencer marketing as a sales driver. This new research supports the fact that it remains a viable career option for content creators,” said Promise Phelon, CEO of TapInfluence.

Carusele won the 2017 Small Agency of the Year Award at the Shorty Awards. It utilises a hand-crafted network of content producers to produce premium influencer campaigns for leading brands and retailers.  TapInfluence is an influencer marketplace connecting brands with social media influencers. And if they say that Snapchat is no longer cool, then it probably isn’t.

 

 

By John Andrews and Ted Rubin

Ad giant WPP recently reduced its full-year earnings for the second time this year with CEO Sir Martin Sorrell citing a myriad of challenges… from consumer goods company spending cutbacks, to Trumponomics (disappointed by this reference to say the least). Sorrell’s comments over the past couple years, and in the Cheddar interview here, highlight the challenges facing the ad industry and its clients as media consumption increasingly migrates to digital channels and on-demand consumption and the “me” media evolution. Sir Martin also points to the fact that Google, and now Facebook, have become the largest investment pools WPP is deploying for their clients. Maybe the problem lies in the fact that Facebook and Google are tactical vs. strategic decisions but are being treated as overarching, and all encompassing, approaches. Many media decisions currently being made in digital seem to be retreads of traditional media tactics where bigger is better… and interruption is still rules the day (a strategy fast facing extinction).

WPPs chief has astutely pointed out many times that Google, Facebook and their kin are media companies. What Sir Martin and others don’t speak much about is the fact that they are also competitors. Individuals, small business, and now large companies, are all realizing that agencies aren’t required for digital marketing and capable in-house teams can be much more efficient and effective… especially with the platforms offering state of the art content management and analytics tools. Compounding the challenge for agencies is that a combination of desperation for relevancy among publishers, and lack of controls, has resulted in 1/3 of digital ads being fake or bots… according to WPP’s own research. The agency business has a digital trust problem, one that is being exploited by Facebook, Google and individual “Age of Influence” publishers.

Owing to its brand strength, Facebook has become the default for brand advertising dollars. The platform did a masterful job of transitioning to mobile and is simply where the most eyeballs spend the most time… and “engagement” is native to the platform. It also has leveraged its Instagram platform to become a perfect medium for brands to connect with consumers… with more visual, story-telling, and native-based content that adds value to the user experience, vs. a constant stream of interruption. Finally, its ad pricing punishes brands for bad ads, a simple strategy for success. Other channels, the highest profile one being Snapchat, have been less successful at integrating and balancing the needs of users and advertisers alike. Snapchat, for instance, has struggled with creating advertiser value while staying true to its platform vision. Snapchat has a robust audience of valuable younger consumers but in its current form, it does not have the brand engagement capability that marketers are seeking… nor the loyalty with Instagram Stories effectively competing for market share. As with agencies, brand trust is challenged by the lack of transparency, metrics, and measurable brand impact needed to justify scaled brand investment.

All of this friction will bring increased pressure on all parties in 2018 as investors, advertisers, and consumers all seek enhanced value from digital channels. Investment will increasingly flow in the direction of engagement driven by utility for all parties. For example, with 60% of product searches now starting on Amazon, it too will become greater competition for media dollars by bringing branded content closer to the point of purchase. Look for brands and retailers to also explore their own digital media capabilities beyond simple ads and into deeper content-rich experiences.

By John Andrews and Ted Rubin

Sourced from Ted Rubin

By Ross Benes

Snapchat’s ad rates have taken a hit since it started selling ads programmatically.

CPMs for Snapchat inventory that’s sold in open auctions run between $3 and $8, according to three ad buyers requesting anonymity. Those rates are similar to what’s found on Facebook, but the difference with Facebook is that it has much more scale. Snapchat reported 178 million daily active users in the third quarter. Meanwhile, Facebook claims to have 1.4 billion daily active users.

Programmatic buyers typically seek audiences more than context. But Snapchat’s targeting and reporting is pretty basic, said Michael Racic, president of media operations for ad agency iCrossing. Facebook and Google attract a ton of programmatic buyers because they provide hypertargeting across demographics and device type. Snapchat has lots of location data, but the platform is still mostly used by advertisers just to reach millennials. And that’s not a unique enough proposition to boost ad rates, Racic said.

Despite ad buyers pleading Snapchat to open up its application programming interface, there wasn’t much pent-up demand once the company did so, Racic said. Media executives recently told Digiday that Snap plans to bring in more programmatic ads after struggling to fill ad space inside its Snapchat shows. Snapchat declined to comment for this story.

Allowing automated buying helped Snap bring in more advertisers, but the drop in its ad rates is concerning for a company that was once considered a viable challenger to the Facebook-Google duopoly. Back in 2015, Snapchat asked brands for $750,000 a day for its disappearing ads. Those days appear to be over.

On Snap’s quarterly earnings call this week, the company said its CPMs in the third quarter were down 60 percent year over year. Snap reported third-quarter revenues of $208 million, which is a 62 percent increase year over year. But its stock price dropped after its last earnings call because Snap’s revenue growth was below analyst expectations, and the company posted a net loss of $443 million on the quarter. As of this writing, its stock is selling for about half the price as it did on its first day of trading back in March.

About a year ago, Snapchat opened up its API so that advertisers could buy Snap Ads — 10-second vertical video units — programmatically. Previously, advertisers had to work directly with Snapchat’s sales team to get ads on the platform. But few agencies had the resources to create custom ads for the platform, so Snap opened up to automated buying before its IPO in an effort to bring more advertisers in. Its filters and lenses are still sold directly at a premium, but about 80 percent of Snap Ads were sold programmatically in the third quarter, according to Snap.

“Snapchat previously had the market cornered, explosive growth rates and a hard-to-reach audience squarely in its grasp,” said Melissa Wisehart, director of biddable media at ad agency 22squared. “They were able to charge a premium for inventory to limited buyers. But as their leverage for this cost was reduced from pressure by Facebook and Instagram, they simply just flooded the market with supply by opening up inventory to more players.”

A few ad buyers said Snap’s tech stack has yet to catch up to older and larger competitors like Facebook and Google, and until it does, advertisers will have a tough time showing the return on ad spend is great enough to push Snapchat from experimental budgets to a must-have on media plans every quarter. Snap is trying to change that perception. In the past year, it purchased ad tech firms Metamarkets, Placed, Flite and Vurb, which could improve the platform’s attribution and analytics.

“The ad tech acquisitions show that they are now serious about selling advertising the way marketers already buy it, rather than trying to bend the market to their platform,” said Marcus Pratt, head of technology at media-buying shop Mediasmith.

By Ross Benes

Sourced from DIGIDAY UK