Digital Ad Revenue Has Hit $23 Billion

In just the first six months of 2014, digital ad revenue has already increased 15 percent to total $23.1 billion, according to PwC US. This increase is in comparison to the same period in 2013 and shows that mobile revenue is largely responsible for this increase, rising 76 percent in just a year, or $5.3 billion.

A breakdown of mobile revenue shows that mobile search made up $2.7 billion and mobile display $2.5 billion, respectively. Such a large increase in mobile revenue in so short a time shows brands are making large monetary commitments to mobile, as it takes increased precedence in the digital landscape overall.

Social media revenue also saw big increases- 58 percent- rising to $2.9 billion. Search revenue, a big chunk of digital ad revenue, saw an increase of 4 percent, clocking in at $9.1 billion.

Performance-based advertising (65 percent increase) is increasing at a faster rate than impressions-based advertising (34 percent increase).



CREATIVE: FKA Twigs’ Stunning Ad For Google Glass

FKA Twigs proves to a multi-talented artist, using rescored versions of her songs “Video Girl” and “Glass & Patron” to elaborate choreography, showing Google Glass to be a creative tool as much as it is useful in queuing up a song. The result is both a music video and a promotion for the wearable device. Using an of-the-moment artist like FKA Twigs is another way Google is looking to eschew Google Glass’ nerdy connotations, beyond redesigning the frames.

The campaign uses the hashtag #throughglass, and this video alone has gotten nearly 300,000 views in a day. It will surely be interesting to see what else is lined up for the #throughglass campaign and what other artists have been tapped.


Vdopia Launches Programmatic Marketplace For Mobile Video Ads

by Sahil Patel

Vdopia has launched a programmatic marketplace dedicated entirely to mobile video advertising.

The platform, which goes by the name Chocolate, uses the company’s proprietary .Vdo technology, which enables advertisers and publishers to run video ads on mobile websites and apps without requiring Flash or plug-ins. Chocolate will provide inventory from more than 10,000 mobile apps and sites, altogether providing a potential audience reach of more than 150 million unique users in the U.S. alone, said Vdopia CEO Saurabh Bhatia.

Chocolate is device-agnostic and compatible with all major mobile operating systems. It’s also plugged into both Nielsen (mobile OCR) and comScore vCE, and all ads served through it are VAST compliant, Vdopia said.

“One of the unique advantages of Chocolate is the capability to provide real-time bidding to demand partners which have only basic VAST support but no RTB capability,” adds Srikanth Kakani, CTO of Vdopia.

Available now in the U.S., Chocolate will soon expand across Europe and Asia-Pacific.

This article was originally posted on VideoInk and is reposted on [a]listdaily via a partnership with the news publication, which is the online video industry’s go-to source for breaking news, features, and industry analysis. Follow VideoInk on Twitter @VideoInkNews, or subscribe via for the latest news and stories, delivered right to your inbox.

Programmatic, Meet Native

As the mobile device becomes the defacto screen for media consumption, it is critical for marketers to have a plan of action to reach and engage mobile audiences. On one side of the continuum is programmatic, where ad serving decisions are made so quickly and with so much complexity of data that these decisions can only be made through the automation. On the complete opposite end of the spectrum is content the consumer chooses to watch; native ads, content marketing and influencer content. Programmatic advertising is low touch and high volume. Native is low volume and high touch.

At the upcoming [a]list summit on mobile marketing, panelists will discuss how to integrate these two seemingly disparate parts of the advertising spectrum. As the mobile device becomes the defacto screen for media consumption, it is critical for marketers to have a plan of action to reach and engage mobile audiences.

According to eMarketer the U.S. programmatic market is $10 billion in 2014, and that’s expected to grow to $20 billion by 2016. Today 45 percent of programmatic media appears on mobile devices.  By 2016 that will be 69 percent of all programmatic media.

It’s no surprise that programmatic media is the predominant way that digital display related advertising is bought these days. Significant infrastructure build-up for this type of buying, ease of use, accessibility by marketers and the ability to efficiently reorganize marketing activity has made the programmatic approach a key part of advertising’s future.

On the other side of things, an eMarketer study from earlier this year shows that native advertising on social channels is expected to reach $3.1 billion this year, and $5.1 billion by 2017.  While there aren’t definitive statistics on the growth of influencer marketing specifically, it is clear by the abundance of businesses and individuals in the space that influencer marketing is a growing and very important part of the marketing mix. Recent purchases of Fullscreen to AT&T, Maker to Disney and investment into Machinima by Warner Bros shows enthusiasm for this space.

For marketers the opportunity is connect the automation and data of the programmatic approach and pair it with the native gatekeepers of audience on the web.  These gatekeepers used to be publishers, app developers and ad networks.  While these entities still exist they compete with influencers who distribute content across the social web.

The programmatic and native ecosystems overlap when we see through to the audience influencers reach, connect them to unique device IDs, model for lookalike behavior, identify larger pools of similar users and market to them.

In other use cases, ION remarkets to campaign specific audiences based on mobile and desktop tracking capabilities available by third parties.  Finally, we use syndicated data tools to select a curated list of channels and serve influencer-created True View native ads across YouTube.  By bidding on a small selection of highly targeted YouTube channels (often the same channels who have created videos for the campaign), we are able to expand reach and scale on-demand video campaigns.



Universal Is First To Have Sponsored Promotion On Snapchat

Snapchat has taken its first steps into sponsored messaging today with the debut of a new video ad for Universal Studios’ forthcoming horror film Ouija. The ad is currently located under users’ “Recent Updates” feed, where they would normally receive messages from friends.

This followed Snapchat’s previous announcement that it would begin looking into advertising, according to Adweek. The move, from what the company says, is an effort to “make money.”

“Advertising allows us to support our service while delivering neat content to Snapchatters. It’s going to feel a little weird at first, but we’re taking the plunge,” the company explained in a post.

The ad is a 20-second trailer for the film, which users can activate by pressing the prompted message in their screen. It’s optional to do so, and some are reportedly irked by the move, even going as far as heading to Twitter to voice their displeasure.

However, the choice to view the ad is completely optional, and those who don’t view it aren’t a problem, as Snapchat views it as “no biggie.”

Considering the film is rated PG-13 (instead of a hard “R” like most typical horror movies are rated), Universal hopes that the partnership with Snapchat will reach out to a teen audience. That should be an easy outreach for the social site, as most of its audience consists of female users in their teens and early 20’s.

This isn’t the first time that a movie studio has reached out to a social site for a unique video offering that ties in with a film. Earlier in the year, Lionsgate Films teamed up with Facebook to produce an auto-play ad for the film Divergent, although the move did leave some users feeling irked.

In addition to a Snapchat tie-in, Universal and Hasbro also teamed up with Thinkmodo to produce a video titled “Ouija Psychic Terror,” in which unsuspecting viewers are given a scare when psychic mediums use a Ouija board and reads the word “RUN”, only to have her scream, bug-eyed and all, while a zombie bursting through the floorboards. Video of the promotion – and their effects – is below.


Big Numbers For ‘League Of Legends’

Competitive eSports activities are on the rise, as we’ve covered in great detail in our previous report. And this past weekend’s latest tournament for League of Legends showed that its growth will continue onward for some time to come.

Riot Games hosted a World Championship match series that was held in Seoul, Korea, and the event was a hit, drawing 40,000 fans in a sold out World Cup Stadium. Fans cheered on a battle between Korea’s own Samsung White and China’s Starhorn Royal Club.

The venue is a huge change for the tournament, as it was held last year at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, where approximately 11,000 fans filled the seats and watched the events unfold. That shows nearly a four-times increase in size with this year’s numbers, with a possibly bigger venue planned for next year, if all goes according to plan.

The tournament was an even bigger hit with viewers. Although specific numbers weren’t reported, many folks logged in to watch the ongoing tournament and watched live on ESPN 3. The numbers should easily eclipse what 2013’s tournament brought in, as Forbes is reporting that the 2013 tournament attracted 32 million in all, with 8.5 million watching concurrently. The only thing that could possibly affect the total is the fact that the tournament took place in Korea, meaning it went on well into late evening on a Sunday evening. Still, there’s no question that avid devotees had no trouble tuning in.

For this year’s event, Riot Games went all out with its presentation, including opening and closing ceremonies, as well as a live performance from the band Imagine Dragons, who teamed up with the company for an original song devoted to the game, “Warriors.” Some would say it even rivaled the presentation from other big-name events, even the Super Bowl.

Look for bigger events to come in the later years, as well as more progress from Riot Games, who are actually hiring more staff to support merchandise sales, as well as a possible outreach to media as well as support for its other games. And definitely look for more players as well.

YouTube Stars Enter The World Of ‘The Hunger Games’

To help promote its forthcoming blockbuster The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1, Lionsgate has teamed up with an unusual partner to bring a distinct message alongside the film. In this case, YouTube.

The movie studio announced its partnership with Google, which will help produce a week-long video series titled “District Voices” and feature several YouTube superstars that will lend their creativity when it comes to telling original stories inside the dystopian world that the film takes place in.

The video promo, as you see below, will kick off the series starting today, and will feature a new episode running through Friday, featuring such user as iJustine and Veritasium, along others. The videos will be featured on a devoted YouTube channel, along with Capitol TV’s website.


Chartbeat Goes Public With Web Metrics

Sometimes, when you’re doing business, it just helps to keep things honest. While some companies may prefer to trump up certain facts or hide things behind “smoke and mirrors,” so to speak, Chartbeat prefers to take a different approach – with the truth.

The founder and CEO of the company, Tony Haile, believes that a lot of companies still utilize tricks when it comes to reporting web traffic or other reported items within metrics. That’s why his company has opted to reveal all its metrics publically, including every bit of metrics, standards and methods of measurements that it uses within the company. This will also include an explanation of any weaknesses and limitations that get in the way – something most companies tend to turn away from.

Speaking with Giga Om, Haile explained the reasoning behind the decision to go public with metrics, wanting everyone to follow suit. As a result, he explains, he hopes that online publishing and advertising will improve over the long run.

“I’m in the business of change, I actually want this industry to get better, and I think what will help the industry do that is if we can all be a bit more open and transparent about these things. We’re going to get out there and say this is exactly how we do everything,” he explained.

Chartbeat has been in the news for some time with its metrics. Last month, the company became the first to have metrics based on information credited to the Media Rating Council, which determines what standards can be used in terms of advertising with online means. As a result, the information utilized to get accredited, including all matching documents and reference material, are available to the public.

Considering most companies keep metric information to themselves, Haile admits that the move is a risky one, but one that will certainly have rewards. “The lack of clarity around how metrics are actually measured, their methodologies, advantages and limitations has led to immense confusion. This opacity has led to publishers and agencies each choosing the vendor that spins the data into the best story, regardless of accuracy, and then fighting over who’s right. That’s a lousy way to do business,” he explained.

Success will come from being open with numbers, according to Haile, and less “smoke and mirrors.”

We’ll have to see if this move pays off – or changes things – over the next few months.

Mobile Is Big Business With Games

Digi-Capital recently revealed a list of the top 32 ranking Internet companies out there, and, in a surprise twist, game companies play a big part.

The report, originally posted by GamesIndustry International, indicates that social apps rule the roost, with first place easily going to Twitter and second place to the messaging app WhatsApp. However, there are a number of game companies that have earned their place in the world as well.

GungHo Interactive, the publishers of the popular Puzzle & Dragons, leads the pack in 8th place with an estimated $4.9 billion, while other companies like Colopi, Ourpalm and King are closely behind with anywhere between $3.8 to $3.2 billion, respectively.

Other game companies that made the billion dollar list include Supercell, Youzu (based in China), Cyberagent, DeNA and GREE, as well as Gumi, Kabam and FunPlus, barely breaking over the billion dollar mark. The full chart is below.

A number of these companies have shown impressive growth over the past few years, while others have been holding steady, with business still adding up.

“Digi-Capital’s Mobile Internet Billions list has grown to 32 ‘billion dollar’ companies, adding $11.4 billions shareholder value in Q3 2014 alone,” said Digi-Capital founder Tim Merel. “That’s $125 million value added every day of Q3 to reach a combined $163 billion valuation, only seven years after the launch of the iPhone.

“As well as adding huge value collectively, there has been a lot of movement in the rankings. Daumkakao (merger of Daum and Kakao) leapt 15 places, followed by Mixi, Square, Tango and AirWatch. Youzu Interactive, Momo, Com2Us, Gumi, Kabam and FunPlus are new to the list, while DeNA, King, GREE, Gungho, Pandora, Waze, Zillow, Snapchat and CyberAgent all lost places.”

Another chart, posted below, breaks down the categories for these companies, and, as you can see, games holds a huge chunk of the market with 12, while social is close behind with 5 and messaging follows with 4. Other categories, including music, utilities, mCommerce and lifestyle, rank a little lower.

So, indeed, it looks like games are here to stay.


‘Karen’ Knows More About You Than You Would Like

A new mobile game created by Blast Theory takes over where Siri left off. Karen is your digital counselor, getting to know you and your psychological profile by means of utilizing data that you may not know is being collected and asking you probing questions. What results is a growing personalized relationship with Karen that would be vastly different from user to user.

“We’re always looking at where technology is going, and what that might mean for culture and storytelling. At the moment we are really fascinated with big data, and particularly how governments and large companies such as Facebook are collecting data on us secretly and using it without our consent,” says Blast Theory on their Kickstarter page for Karen.

Take a look at the Kickstarter video for the project below: