Winners and losers in a rapidly consolidating digital advertising market

Good News for digital ad sellers:  Digital Advertising is expected to finish the year with a year-to-year growth rate of 11.5% in 2017 and grow again in 2018 by 11.3%.  That information comes from GroupM/WPP, the world’s largest buyer of advertising.  Magna (IPG Mediabrands) pegs 2018 digital growth at 13%. Bad News for digital ad … Continue reading Winners and losers in a rapidly consolidating digital advertising market

Every single day, 10,000 Facebook users die

“…in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” — Benjamin Franklin (1789).   Benjamin Franklin would never have anticipated anything like social media. From chronicling the mundane (what I ate for lunch) to the monumental (Trump as President), Facebook has become the background of life for many. As more and more people began using … Continue reading Every single day, 10,000 Facebook users die

Major changes to online privacy – except in the U.S.

Some big changes are coming to online privacy, especially when it comes to companies like Google and Facebook.  The European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) establishes a new set of rules designed to give people more control over their data. Think about how much of “you” is online.  Things like who you associate with, … Continue reading Major changes to online privacy – except in the U.S.

Former Facebook President says Facebook is designed to be addictive

There are now documented cases of social media addiction.  It’s a real thing. According to Facebook’s first President, it’s no coincidence.  Sean Parker started up Napster and later served as Facebook’s President.  The billionaire told an audience at Axios in Philadelphia recently that social network are designed to stimulate and “hook” users. “The thought process … Continue reading Former Facebook President says Facebook is designed to be addictive

Just as you always suspected, 260 million Facebook accounts are fakes

That means roughly 10% of Facebook accounts either aren’t real people or they belong to people that have multiple accounts.  Why might you want more than one social media account?  You might want to ask Golden State Warriors All-Star B-Ball player Kevin Durant. Facebook made the announcement during a recent earnings call, saying it had … Continue reading Just as you always suspected, 260 million Facebook accounts are fakes

10 Steps to Creating Effective Social Media Ads

You can’t just set up a Facebook page and wait for it to attract customers.  It takes an active, and consistent, approach to work. Here are 10 strategies for success: Define your goals Define your target market Decide how much you want to spend Create your Facebook ads Optimize your ads and placement Use strong … Continue reading 10 Steps to Creating Effective Social Media Ads

Is Facebook looking at moving media content out of the news feed?

Facebook is thinking, apparently, about moving Page feeds out of the newsfeed everybody sees and moving them to a new Explore Feed that’s buried under the More menu on the mobile site.  That means publishers and media companies that have spent years building an audience and gotten hooked on using Facebook for promotion, branding, and … Continue reading Is Facebook looking at moving media content out of the news feed?

How much control should social media companies have over public discourse?

You may not care that President Trump’s twitter account went dark for 11 minutes recently. Regardless of where you are on the political scale, maybe you should. Trump has used Twitter for a way to bypass traditional media and get his message out unfiltered.  When someone working with a social media company can effectively mute … Continue reading How much control should social media companies have over public discourse?

A Closer Look: Facebook over-estimates reach by dramatic numbers

Maybe you saw the headline:  Facebook claims it reaches more people in the U.S. than actually live in the U.S.  It’s pretty startling when you realize, according to a report from the Video Advertising Bureau, that Facebook claims to reach 39 million U.S. adults age 18-24… when there are only 31 million that live here … Continue reading A Closer Look: Facebook over-estimates reach by dramatic numbers

Can 2 second video views actually drive sales?

P & G – acknowledged as the world’s largest advertiser – says their data reveals the following about digital video ads: The average ad is viewed for 1.7 seconds. Remember, that’s the AVERAGE Only 20% of all ads are viewed for 2 seconds That means that 80% of all ads are viewed for less than … Continue reading Can 2 second video views actually drive sales?

Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?

Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?  It’s fair to say it’s nearly universal.  Nearly 87% of small business owners say they use Facebook for marketing, according to a new survey from G2 Crowd via eMarketer. So, how’s it going for them? There are mixed results here.  38% said it was the most … Continue reading Just how prevalent is social media for small businesses?

Facebook, Apple join the billion dollar club for spending on original video content

Everybody, it seems, wants to be in the TV business.  OK, it’s really the video business, but it’s the same thing the TV networks have been doing for years:  producing original television content. The WSJ reports that Facebook is looking to spend A BILLION DOLLARS on original video content for its Watch video platform.  Recently, … Continue reading Facebook, Apple join the billion dollar club for spending on original video content

For publishers, the Facebook Freefall continues

Since January, the average amount of engagement brands and publishers are getting with Facebook posts has fallen 20% since the first of the year, according to Buzzsumo.  After analyzing 880 million FB posts, Buzzsumo reports that image and link posts had the largest drop off.  Videos now get twice the level of engagement of other … Continue reading For publishers, the Facebook Freefall continues

Can 2 second video views really be effective at driving sales?

P & G – acknowledged as the world’s largest advertiser – says their data reveals the following about digital video ads: The average ad is viewed for 1.7 seconds. Remember, that’s the AVERAGE Only 20% of all ads are viewed for 2 seconds That means that 80% of all ads are viewed for less than … Continue reading Can 2 second video views really be effective at driving sales?

Facebook vows to fight back against foreign interference in US elections

CEO Mark Zuckerberg laid out his plan to protect the integrity of US election.  He says he wants to make sure “Facebook is a force for good in democracy.” “I don’t want anyone to use our tools to undermine (our) democracy,” Zuckerberg said in a video address.  In order to do that, he said, Facebook … Continue reading Facebook vows to fight back against foreign interference in US elections

Facebook: Tracking your in-store visits and serving ads?

When ads target you on-line from where you’ve gone in the real world If clicking on a website once and having its ads stalk you wherever you go on-line wasn’t enough, now there’s real world targeting.  Go to a physical store and they’ll re-target you online. Now Facebook appears to be getting in the game.  … Continue reading Facebook: Tracking your in-store visits and serving ads?

Dominating Digital Ad Revenue: Google, Facebook, Amazon, and … ?

Amazon has gotten a lot of attention lately for its move into the advertising sales space, but another online retailer is making moves as well.  Wal-Mart is now in the advertising business.  Both companies have a dizzying array of consumer information in their databases to target consumers. Wal-Mart is positioned to offer display, native ad, … Continue reading Dominating Digital Ad Revenue: Google, Facebook, Amazon, and … ?

Facebook to punish slow loading websites

Here’s another reason to make sure your website loads quickly.  Facebook will give priority placement to sites that load fast. “…we’ll soon take into account the estimated load time of a webpage that someone clicks to from any link in News Feed on the mobile app. Factors such as the person’s current network connection and … Continue reading Facebook to punish slow loading websites

If Programmatic Ad Buying is the future, why are advertisers not buying it?

We’ve heard so much about “Programmatic Ad Buying” in the past two years, it’s almost become a joke around our place.  Everybody tells us it’s coming and we’d better be ready. If you’ve ever bought a self-serve Google ad or a Facebook ad, that’s really the kind of thing we talk about when talk programmatic … Continue reading If Programmatic Ad Buying is the future, why are advertisers not buying it?

FCC signals rollback on net neutrality rules; Nearly 11 million comments filed

Before the Federal Communications Commission takes action, it puts out proposals and asks for public comments.  When it comes to net neutrality rules, the public commented big time.  Nearly 11 million comments have been filed. There’s no question the issue is a lightning rod.  In 2015, the FCC voted in the rules which prohibit broadband … Continue reading FCC signals rollback on net neutrality rules; Nearly 11 million comments filed

Facebook discussing metered paywalls for publishers on platform

Publishers that have tried out Facebook’s Instant Articles have been pleased with the speed in which pages load, but not necessarily pleased about the economics.  By keeping readers within Facebook’s walled garden, publishers didn’t see the activity translate directly to page views – and exposure to the accompanying ads.  Ad space on Instant Articles have … Continue reading Facebook discussing metered paywalls for publishers on platform

Facebook refuses to release political advertising data

Television stations must disclose to the public which politicians bought advertising on which station, how much they spent, and where the ads run.  It’s available for anyone that wants to go the station’s section on the FCC website for all to see. Not so for the internet.  Facebook, not known for its transparency when it … Continue reading Facebook refuses to release political advertising data

News organizations ask Congress for authority to collectively bargain with Google, Facebook

The New Media Alliance represent almost 2,000 news organizations, primarily newspapers.  This week, the organization starting asking Congress for some help in taking on the big internet companies.  Call it a pre-emptive strike for collective bargaining with Google and Facebook. It’s no secret that Goo-book dominates digital advertising.  In the third quarter of 2016, 99% … Continue reading News organizations ask Congress for authority to collectively bargain with Google, Facebook

Insights: Analyzing 105,000 Facebook pages for emoji’s

Facebook places weight on reactions – those love, sad, angry, lol emoji’s – when determining what to put in your news feed.  It values them more than likes.  “Over the past year we’ve found that if people leave a Reaction on a post, it is an even stronger signal that they’d want to see that type … Continue reading Insights: Analyzing 105,000 Facebook pages for emoji’s

Man fined $4,000 for clicking the Like button of defamatory Facebook posts

Here’s a twist.  A Swiss man has been fined roughly $4,000 bucks for clicking the Like button on Facebook.  Yup, you read that right.  Fortune reports that the man (not named in court) clicked the Like button on what a judge termed defamatory comments on Facebook. By clicking the Like button, the judge said, the … Continue reading Man fined $4,000 for clicking the Like button of defamatory Facebook posts

Instagram growth is exploding

ICYMI, Instagram growth has exploded.  It’s now exceeded 700 million active users monthly.  The growth rate itself is incredible, adding more than 100 million users already this year. The growth has come at the expense of SnapChat, which has seen growth slow down some 82% since Instagram launched Stories – a virtual clone of SnapChat’s … Continue reading Instagram growth is exploding

New study links social media use to less gray matter in your brain

Too much Facebook = less brain cells, according to a study in the medical journal Behavioral Brain Research. The researchers did MRI scans of active 85 Facebook users. “Higher daily frequency of checking Facebook on the smartphone was robustly linked with smaller gray matter volumes of the nucleus accumbens," the study said. Nucleus accumbens are … Continue reading New study links social media use to less gray matter in your brain

Social Media: “More addictive than cigarettes and alcohol”

Researchers from the Royal Society for Public Health in the U.K. interviewed 1,500 some teens and young adults (age 14-24) to quantify the impact of social media on their health.  They looked at thing like depression, loneliness, body image, sleep, self-identity, and bullying. The conclusion?  Instagram is the worst offender when it comes to mental … Continue reading Social Media: “More addictive than cigarettes and alcohol”

Social media companies facing fines for failing to remove hate speech, illegal content quickly enough

Social Media is under attack again in Great Britain as government officials debate fines if Facebook and Twitter don’t remove illegal content fast enough. Britain’s home affairs committee unleashed a scathing report, going so far as to suggest the social media companies pay for policing.  They compared it to a soccer team that pays for … Continue reading Social media companies facing fines for failing to remove hate speech, illegal content quickly enough

Every generation is the Facebook generation… for now

Every generation is the Facebook generation, proclaims a new survey by Sprout Social.  It’s hard to argue. The study looked at the social media habits of 1,000 Millennials, Gen Xers, and Baby Boomers.  Facebook was the overwhelming choice of all demographic groups, although Xers and Boomers picked Facebook about twice as much as Millennials. For … Continue reading Every generation is the Facebook generation… for now

It’s over: Mobile has won

We passed the tipping point in 2014.  Since then, the use of mobile has exploded.  If you’re still focusing on your desktop website first, you’re way behind. 71% of web traffic in the United States is mobile, according to ComScore.  Mobile usage is larger than desktop in almost every country.   Developing nations see an even … Continue reading It’s over: Mobile has won

Media outlets hits by massive “fake like” campaign; Facebook purges 200 million

USA Today lost nearly 6 million likes in April.  They were fake Facebook accounts that had liked the paper.  Parent company Gannett said there are still more than two million more fake accounts floating around.  That adds up to roughly 38% of all likes, according to a CBS analysis of the USA Today Facebook page. … Continue reading Media outlets hits by massive “fake like” campaign; Facebook purges 200 million

Heavy social media use = depression in young adults

University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine's research shows the more young adults spend on line with social media, the more likely they are to suffer from depression. Maybe it’s that “everyone else seems to have all those friends and do really interesting things and all I do is sit here and look at Facebook” syndrome that … Continue reading Heavy social media use = depression in young adults

Self-serve Snap Ads coming to Snapchat

Snapchat is about to launch a self-service ad platform.  Digiday reports the interface will allow you to do Snap ads.  Snap ads are full-screen videos (vertical) that show up between stories. Previously, you had to buy these through a Snapchat ad partner that would manage the process.  That left a lot of small businesses out … Continue reading Self-serve Snap Ads coming to Snapchat

Facebook’s 10-year road map includes typing with your brain, listening with your skin, and no more smart phones

Mark Zuckerberg laid out his 10-year road map at the F8 Facebook developers conference and hinted at some of the projects in the works at the social media company.  It’s either genius or madness. Cameras, Zuckerberg said, were really the first augmented reality platform.  Michael Abrash, Chief Scientist of Oculus Research, shared his vision for … Continue reading Facebook’s 10-year road map includes typing with your brain, listening with your skin, and no more smart phones

Facebook adds a rocket to its lineup

  You may have noticed a little rocket icon pop up on your mobile version of Facebook.  Tap it and it will take you to alternative news feed.  No, not “alternative facts,” but an algorithmic design feed of content similar to what you interact with on your regular feed, but from sources you don’t follow.  … Continue reading Facebook adds a rocket to its lineup

Social Media sites under increasing pressure to police themselves – or risk huge fines and prosecution

  It’s not just advertisers putting increasing pressure on social networks and platforms that share user-generated content.  In Germany, the government is considered legislation that would fine Facebook, Twitter and the like fines of tens of millions of dollars for failing to remove hate speech quickly enough. In the UK, they are debating prosecuting Google … Continue reading Social Media sites under increasing pressure to police themselves – or risk huge fines and prosecution

Should Google & Facebook be regulated, pay license fees for news content?

The British government has officially opened an inquiry into “fake news.”  Damian Collins MP, Chair of the Committee investigating, summed it up: “The growing phenomenon of fake news is a threat to democracy and undermines confidence in the media in general.” Now British publishers have responded.  The newspaper group News Media Alliance is advocating regulation of … Continue reading Should Google & Facebook be regulated, pay license fees for news content?

Facebook “Reactions” more important than “Likes”

Facebook has now admitted it places weight on reactions – those love, sad, angry, lol emojis – when determining what to put in your news feed.  It values them more than likes.  "Over the past year we've found that if people leave a Reaction on a post, it is an even stronger signal that they'd … Continue reading Facebook “Reactions” more important than “Likes”

How to label something Fake News on Facebook and have the fact-checkers take a look

Have you seen the “Disputed News” flag on Facebook articles yet? If not, you will soon. It hasn’t rolled out to everyone yet, but Facebook now has a way for you to report Fake News. To mark a news story as fake: Click next to the post you’d like to mark as fake Click Report … Continue reading How to label something Fake News on Facebook and have the fact-checkers take a look

Is it time for a Digital Detox?

It’s not just you.  86% of adults in the U.S. say they “constantly check” email, text and social media, according to the American Psychological Association (APA), and it’s just plain stressing us out. Guilty as charged, your honor.  Bet you are, too. How crazy can it get?  Think about how many times you touch, click, … Continue reading Is it time for a Digital Detox?

You can now run ads in your Live Facebook videos

Facebook is opening the door to video ads for publishers.  In a blog post, Facebook announced it is opening up its video ad networks to place and monetize publisher websites.  Eligible publishers can now make money from in-stream video ads on their own websites and apps through Audience Network, Facebook said via a blog post. … Continue reading You can now run ads in your Live Facebook videos

Google/You Tube, Facebook agree to audits from Media Rating Council

Amid industry clamor, Google is joining Facebook in announcing they are willing to do an independent audit by a third-party.  The Media Rating Council (MRC) is an independent industry group that accredits media measurement and isn’t afraid to deny that accreditation if the measurement isn’t up to industry standards.  They’ve denied or withheld accreditation from … Continue reading Google/You Tube, Facebook agree to audits from Media Rating Council

With growing advertiser complaints, Facebook agrees to third-party measurement

With rising unhappiness among advertisers and ad agencies with Facebook’s measurements and its resistance to third-party verification (see list below), Facebook blinked. It now says it will commit to an outside audit to verify data accuracy. “We are committing to an audit by the Media Rating Council (MRC) to verify the accuracy of the information … Continue reading With growing advertiser complaints, Facebook agrees to third-party measurement

Facebook is taking on the music industry

YouTube is the world’s largest music service.  With Facebook’s big push into video, the social media services wants in on the music action, according to Bloomberg Technology. It’s important to Facebook for several reasons:  There’s money to be made there. There’s an audience to be gained. User-generated videos often contains music that neither Facebook nor … Continue reading Facebook is taking on the music industry

Facebook launches “TV app” and makes big changes to video in newsfeeds

Here’s Facebook’s next big foray into the world of video:  a new Facebook video app for TV.  Facebook announced the app will roll out soon to app stores for Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Samsung Smart TV, with more platforms to come. With the app, Facebook says you’ll be able to watch videos shared … Continue reading Facebook launches “TV app” and makes big changes to video in newsfeeds

Even people that get their news from Facebook don’t believe it

A majority of adults say they see news on Facebook, but they don’t trust it.  That’s the topline from an Ipsos Public Affairs survey for BuzzFeed News. Broadcast TV news (as opposed to cable news) was the top place US consumers saw news at 56%, but Facebook was right alongside at 55%.  But when the … Continue reading Even people that get their news from Facebook don’t believe it

World’s largest advertiser tells digital agencies to fix the problems or else

The largest advertiser in the US (and the world), Procter & Gamble, just shook up the digital advertising industry. "The days of giving digital a pass are over," said Marc Pritchard, Chief Brand Officer at P&G, at the IAB Annual Leadership meeting.  He’s mandating new requirements for digital agencies and media if they want to … Continue reading World’s largest advertiser tells digital agencies to fix the problems or else

Facebook video views drop 94% in wake of Nielsen “recalibration” – per Mumbrella

It was bad enough when Facebook said it over-reported video views on its social media platform by as much as 80%.  Now this:  A change in the way video streams are measured, Australian website Mumbrella reports, has FB video numbers dropping off a cliff. Nielsen “recalibrated” its Facebook video streaming reporting after Facebook’s revelation that … Continue reading Facebook video views drop 94% in wake of Nielsen “recalibration” – per Mumbrella

Senior marketing execs: Virtually no proof social media ads are working

First, some facts: Spending on advertising on social media in just the first half of 2016 topped $7 billion dollars, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) study done by PricewaterhouseCoopers. Spending continues to grow. eMarketer projects US 2016 social media ad spend at $15.36 billion for the year. Ad Age reports that marketers are … Continue reading Senior marketing execs: Virtually no proof social media ads are working

Google ad changes hurt organic search

When Google announced expanding text ads in April allowing publishers more characters to use in text ads, it claimed it could lead to up to a 20% increase in CTR (click-through-rates) for advertisers.  So how did it do? Expanded Text Ads have yet to clearly outperform older text ads, Merkle reports in its Q4 2016 … Continue reading Google ad changes hurt organic search

At what point does Facebook stop adding users?

In its earnings report this week, Facebook said monthly users of its social media platform now top 1.86 billion people.  That’s roughly 25% of the entire world’s population that users FB regularly.  In total more than half the world’s population that have Facebook accounts (although to be fair, a lot of those that want to … Continue reading At what point does Facebook stop adding users?

Trouble in Paradise? Digital ad spending growth rates plummet

Standard Media Index (SMI) unveiled its review of online digital ad spend in 2016 and the numbers show some warning signs for publishers. After years of high double-digit growth in online ad sales, the market slipped into mid-single digits in 2016.  By 4Q 2016, the number slipped into the low single digits, and in December, the … Continue reading Trouble in Paradise? Digital ad spending growth rates plummet

How to get engagement on Facebook: Insights from examining 800 million posts

That can't be a fun job: analyzing 800 million social media posts. Lots of dog pictures, food photos, and LOL's. Still, there's an awful lot of insight to be gained. The folks at BuzzSumo did the work so that we can get the benefits. Want to increase engagement with your content?  Post during off peak … Continue reading How to get engagement on Facebook: Insights from examining 800 million posts

Facebook testing targeted ads in Messenger app

A test in Australia and Thailand this week may lead to more ads from the folks at Facebook.  This time, they’re testing adding advertisements to its Messenger app. “This means that a business is able to place an ad in an area of Messenger below your recent conversations, similar to how we surface birthday notifications … Continue reading Facebook testing targeted ads in Messenger app

Facebook hit with another lawsuit over misrepresenting video ad metrics

You may not have heard of the high-tech company, Quirky, which filed for bankruptcy and then starting selling off its assets in 2015.  You may, however, have heard of Wink, a home automation hub.  Quirky was an early innovator and high flier in the home automation business, but it couldn’t survive on its own.  It … Continue reading Facebook hit with another lawsuit over misrepresenting video ad metrics

Can students tell the difference between fake news and real news?

This fake news thing is bigger than just election results.  “Fake news” has become a label people freely put on facts they don’t agree with.  People will call something “fake news” when in fact it’s true.  They just disagree.  But call something by a label enough and it often sticks.  Source:  this past election. But … Continue reading Can students tell the difference between fake news and real news?

Fake news might actually be a good thing for real journalism

Everybody is up in arms about fake news these days. Politicos that think it swung the election are crying foul. Advertisers that had their ads show up on fake news sites are unhappy. Journalists talk about how it continues to undermine public trust. Wait a minute, though. How does fake news hurt journalism? I mean, … Continue reading Fake news might actually be a good thing for real journalism

Facebook adding mid-roll ad breaks in videos with publisher rev share

In January last year, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said half-a-billion-people watched video on Facebook every day, accounting for 100 million hours’ worth every single day.  This was before all the push for live began in earnest. Now they are trying to figure out how to make money off of it.  Facebook is going to test … Continue reading Facebook adding mid-roll ad breaks in videos with publisher rev share

Facebook ads are “far less viewable” than expected

Ever since Facebook admitted it had problems with key measurements, advertisers and agencies have been looking more closely at the metrics and what they mean.  What they’re seeing is not that great. Drew Heuning is the director of digital ad buying for Omnicom, one of the world’s four largest ad buying agencies.  Speaking at a … Continue reading Facebook ads are “far less viewable” than expected

Has Facebook hired someone to fix its “fake news” problem? Uh, no.

There was a short window of excitement when a TV newsie announced she was hired to lead Facebook's News Partnerships team. Campbell Brown, former NBC News anchor and White House correspondent, and prime-time CNN news anchor, announced - on Facebook - that she's taking on a new role at the social media platform to  “help … Continue reading Has Facebook hired someone to fix its “fake news” problem? Uh, no.

2016’s top apps were all owned by Facebook or Google

Nielsen’s report on the most widely used mobile apps in 2016 showed one major thing:  the top 8 apps were all owned by either Google or Facebook. So not only do they control the digital ad market, they also own the app market as well.  Facebook grew double digits – 14% - last year with … Continue reading 2016’s top apps were all owned by Facebook or Google

Twitter now admits flawed video ad counts, some off by 35%

Bad metrics have many advertisers worried about whether they’ve been spending their dollars smartly on-line.  Facebook’s multiple admissions that the numbers were wrong hasn’t done anything to assuage the worry.  Now it’s Twitter’s turn in the barrel. Twitter admits it incorrectly measured video ads running on Android devices.  The measurements were off by as much … Continue reading Twitter now admits flawed video ad counts, some off by 35%

Life (and death) on social media

“…in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” — Bejamin Franklin 1789 Benjamin Franklin would never have anticipated anything like social media. From chronicling the mundane (what I ate for lunch) to the monumental (Trump as President?), Facebook has become the background of life for many. As more and more people … Continue reading Life (and death) on social media

Proof that Facebook users live longer (says Facebook)

Ok, you have to consider the source, but Facebook is now reporting that using Facebook can extend your life. Follow the logic here:  People with lots of friends tend to live longer.  BTW, Facebook calls these “strong social networks offline.”  Social relationships, they say, are as predictive as smoking, obesity, and physical inactivity.  So, does … Continue reading Proof that Facebook users live longer (says Facebook)

Top 15 Smartphone Apps in the US

I figured Facebook would be the #1 app, so that was no surprise.  I was, however, surprised who was #2 on the list. It's Facebook Messenger coming in at #2, beating out YouTube, Google, Gmail, Snapchat, Instagram, and the rest.  It’s been just over two years since Facebook pulled messaging out of the core social media app … Continue reading Top 15 Smartphone Apps in the US

Brand loyalty is not dead, even for Millennials and new parents

Brand loyalty dead?  It makes for a catchy headline and fits the narrative new-age brand marketers are selling: 90% of the leading household goods brands are losing market share on consistently low-growth categories – Study by Catalina The story goes that in the post-media age (whatever that is), consumers – especially Millennials – aren’t flocking … Continue reading Brand loyalty is not dead, even for Millennials and new parents

Are you really, really concerned about this fake news stuff?

  We all should be concerned about this fake news stuff. Regardless of where it comes from or where you might run into it, spreading falsehoods makes all of us dumber. It appears most Americans agree. 73% of American say they are concerned about fake news Civic Science released a survey of 2,000 adults after the … Continue reading Are you really, really concerned about this fake news stuff?

Cyber Criminals now spreading ransomware through Facebook, LinkedIn

If you find a graphic or image on your computer and you don’t remember downloading it, stop before opening! Experts have seen a dramatic increase in what’s Locky Ransomware being shared by unsuspecting victims, now through social media platforms LinkedIn and Facebook. Ransomware is insidious. It locks up your computer and the only way to … Continue reading Cyber Criminals now spreading ransomware through Facebook, LinkedIn

Here we go again: Facebook estimates “bug” overstated unique reach by 55%

Facebook announced yet more problems with its own metrics.  They call it a bug, but in light of the recent admission that video views were incorrectly reported for a two-year period, it’s one more confidence shaker for Facebook’s platform for the people spending money on FB.  When people are spending $6 billion dollars a quarter … Continue reading Here we go again: Facebook estimates “bug” overstated unique reach by 55%

Facebook bans fake news ads, but can the algorithm detect it?

Facebook says it can’t effectively detect fake news or misinformation in its news feed, although it is working to improve it. But apparently Facebook can detect fake news or misinformation in its advertising feed. Because… it’s now banned fake news publishers from using its ad network. That means fake news now joins gambling, porn, adult … Continue reading Facebook bans fake news ads, but can the algorithm detect it?

Mark Zuckerberg responds to criticism that Facebook let fake news impact the election

When so many people get their news from social media, what’s the responsibility of Facebook? Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, has responded to criticism that Facebook helped skew the election results by allowing fake news to populate the site. Here is his response, in how own words, right from his Facebook page: I want to share … Continue reading Mark Zuckerberg responds to criticism that Facebook let fake news impact the election

Facebook ends ad practices that target/exclude users based on race

It seems like Facebook is getting battered a lot these days, but I’ll give the folks at Facebook some credit.  Most companies, faced with a lawsuit – especially one that claims you are violating the Civil Rights Act and excluding minorities from opportunities – would lawyer up and shut up. Facebook is taking a little … Continue reading Facebook ends ad practices that target/exclude users based on race

The battle for the online throne: Content vs Platform

Content may be important, but it’s more like The Prince. The King, of course, is Platform. Think about it for a moment. What’s the world’s largest social media? Facebook. Largest search engine? Google. Biggest video site? YouTube. Notice a trend? They are all aggregators of content, not content creators (with a few exceptions). The internet … Continue reading The battle for the online throne: Content vs Platform

Study: Misleading info 90% more popular than accurate info on social media

Admit it. You sometimes read weird stuff on Facebook — even if you know it might not be true. Combine the facts that more people say they get news from Facebook and that Facebook isn’t in the business of verifying truth and you get a potentially dangerous combination of bad info being put out there and spreading … Continue reading Study: Misleading info 90% more popular than accurate info on social media

Facebook blows away earnings report, so why did stock prices drop?

I can’t imagine any company in the world that wouldn’t be happy with these results.  Revenue in the third quarter – which set a record last year – was up 56% this year.  And it beat projections with 3Q revenue of $7.01 billion dollars vs. projections of $6.92 billion, Facebook reported in its earnings call. … Continue reading Facebook blows away earnings report, so why did stock prices drop?

Is Facebook allowing illegal, discriminatory advertising practices?

Facebook ads lets you exclude users from ads based on race When you're as big as Facebook is, everything you do is going to be under the microscope - from what stories you feature in the Trending section, to what pictures you allow to be published, to how you count video views, to the nuances … Continue reading Is Facebook allowing illegal, discriminatory advertising practices?

What’s on your ballot? Easy way to find out before going to the polls

OK, so you know who's running for President and maybe the local school board (maybe). Do you know what statewide initiatives are on the ballot and what the language means?  It might help to look at the info ahead of time so you're not trying to decipher legalize in the voting booth. Some states publish … Continue reading What’s on your ballot? Easy way to find out before going to the polls

FCC on privacy – Internet Service Providers will no longer be able to share data without your explicit consent

The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) voted to require broadband/internet providers to get “explicit consent” before sharing data with marketing companies.  That means no more forcing people to “opt out” of obscure user agreements.  In other words, if they want to share our data with advertising companies, they’ll need to ask us… and we’ll have to … Continue reading FCC on privacy – Internet Service Providers will no longer be able to share data without your explicit consent

Digital marketing needs dramatic improvement

Almost three-quarters of marketers surveyed say they are unhappy with the state of online advertising.  73% of brand marketers and media agency executives say the consumer experience with digital marketing needs to be improved. The report is from the IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau) that’s bullish on digital media.  In its study of 280+ brand marketers … Continue reading Digital marketing needs dramatic improvement

Facebook says it will now publish news even if it violates it standards

Facebook maintains it’s not a news organization.  When the majority of people get their news from you, you are whether you want to be or not. RELATED:  Facebook is in the news business whether it wants to be or not A Knight Foundation study shows 63% of Facebook and Twitter users say Facebook “serves as a … Continue reading Facebook says it will now publish news even if it violates it standards

Instagram appears to be readying live streaming by users

Is it any surprise that Instagram would be playing around with the idea of live streaming in its app? Some users have seen a Live icon pop up according to Russian website, TJournal (Thank goodness my browser will translate Russian), which published pictures showing a “Go Insta” button on the camera and a section titled … Continue reading Instagram appears to be readying live streaming by users

Facebook wants you to order your next meal without leaving Facebook

Some major announcements this week from the Facebook Newsroom. Facebook really is trying to make it so you never need to leave the walled garden to do anything, like, you know, have a life.  And it is taking on other apps at the same time. Like Yelp or Trip Advisor.  Soon, you’ll be able to … Continue reading Facebook wants you to order your next meal without leaving Facebook

Google News adds Fact Checking to top stories

In the world of social media and online aggregation, the one thing that is most rare is truth.  Every day I come across stories and posts that stretch the truth or obliterate it completely.  I believe it’s a big part of why the trust in media in general has plummeted to historic lows. RELATED: Trust … Continue reading Google News adds Fact Checking to top stories

Google loses accreditation for viewable impressions

You may have never heard of the Media Rating Council (MRC).   It was established in the 1960’s as part of US Congressional hearing on accuracy of audience research.  The MRC’s mission is to make sure the audience measurements being used by media are valid, reliable and effective. So when the MRC pulls its accreditation for … Continue reading Google loses accreditation for viewable impressions

Facebook Live: Man commits suicide during live broadcast

You knew it was going to happen sooner or later:  someone committing suicide on Facebook live. 22-year old Erdogan Ceren from Turkey was in front of his computer camera holding a shotgun.  He told anyone watching that “No one believed when I said I will kill myself, so watch this.”  Ceren was reportedly distraught over … Continue reading Facebook Live: Man commits suicide during live broadcast

14 year old sues Facebook for allowing naked picture to appear on shaming pages in so-called “revenge porn” case

It could lead to significant changes in how social media deals with the situation. Every day, approximately 1.8 billion photos are uploaded to the internet.  Microsoft estimates some 720,000 of these pictures contain online child sexual abuse.  Every single day. If the exact image is uploaded to sites multiple times, it can be blocked.  But … Continue reading 14 year old sues Facebook for allowing naked picture to appear on shaming pages in so-called “revenge porn” case

Digital advertising is under fire right now

Yes, digital advertising is under fire right now.  I know some of my friends that work at traditional media and legacy media companies are enjoying it a bit right now and maybe even piling on.  But what we’re seeing isn’t so much a problem with digital advertising as it is businesses and marketers waking up … Continue reading Digital advertising is under fire right now

Facebook has been providing inflated video metrics for the past two years

Facebook has now publicly apologized for overstating video metrics for more than two years.  That’s nice.  But not not so nice if you’re one of the people that’s been relying on those metrics to place advertising buys on the social media platform. Overestimated by 60%-80% One of the world’s largest advertising agencies, Publicis, says Facebook … Continue reading Facebook has been providing inflated video metrics for the past two years

One Facebook Reaction beats all others

Big brands get most engagement from Facebook Reactions If you were hoping those emojis were going away anytime soon, I wouldn’t hold your breath.  Facebook’s dive into using enhanced “like” buttons – Facebook Reactions – appears to be taking hold. Facebook Reactions was a response to user complaints about only have Like as a choice … Continue reading One Facebook Reaction beats all others

Hey folks, Snapchat is a serious player in the advertising world

Sure we know Snapchat is popular, especially with Millenials and Gen Z, but the app has quietly started attracting serious ad dollars. eMarketer pins this year’s ad revenues at Snapchat at $366 million with growth next year to $935m.  That’s nothing to sneeze at.  95% of the ad dollars come from the US.  “To engage … Continue reading Hey folks, Snapchat is a serious player in the advertising world

After charges of bias, Facebook Trending section now fueled by AI

The entire team that has been deciding what stories to feature in the Trending section – you know that little section you never noticed before it became controversial – has been dissolved and replaced with AI. Facebook says the product will now be “more automated” and will no longer require people to write summaries.  When I … Continue reading After charges of bias, Facebook Trending section now fueled by AI

See how Facebook labels your political views: Liberal, Moderate, or Conservative

You know Facebook is gathering information on you all the time, right?  What you click on, what you like, what you share is all compiled in some hard drive somewhere.  With that information, Facebook makes decisions about what to show you – or what not to show you. So it only makes sense that, based … Continue reading See how Facebook labels your political views: Liberal, Moderate, or Conservative

Are people being honest about why they use ad blockers? We may soon find out

The majority of people that use ad blockers claim that it’s about avoiding overly-intrusive and ads that clog up - and slow down - their web experience.  We may get a chance to see if that’s true, or whether it’s just a more politically correct way of saying I don’t want any ads at all. … Continue reading Are people being honest about why they use ad blockers? We may soon find out

Small businesses just don’t get social media

Most small businesses I talk to say the biggest reason they don’t embrace social more is time.  I get that.  They have a lot of other things on their plate besides posting on Facebook. A new study by The Alternative Board,  a peer-to-peer advisory board network of more than 3,000 entrepreneurs, gived us some greater insight into the … Continue reading Small businesses just don’t get social media