Express Launches Commission-Based Program For Fashion Influencers

As social commerce and influencer marketing continue to hold sway over brand strategy, Express has announced a new influencer program called Express Community Commerce that will enable a group of fashion enthusiasts to sell and earn commission on exclusive seasonal collections.

Express will coach a network of entrepreneurial fashion influencers, called Express Style Editors, who will promote Express collections among their followers. According to a press release, one of the brand’s goals is to help these fans turn their passion for style into a successful business or side hustle.

“Building upon the strong performance of our influencer marketing programs, along with our brand purpose which is to create confidence and inspire self-expression, Community Commerce will be a powerful and innovative way for customers to engage with Express,” said Tim Baxter, chief executive officer of Express.

Baxter told Glossy that the network of Style Editors will have the opportunity to create their own storefronts on a webpage that they can then promote on their social media accounts. The perks, he added, will be enabled via an exclusive app that they’ll have access to.

Though the influencer program is still in the pilot phase and isn’t launching nationwide until this fall, the retailer is looking to drive digital revenue and acquisition in anticipation of hitting $1 billion in ecommerce sales by 2024.

As many other retailers, Express was hit hard by the pandemic. The Express Community Commerce program could contribute toward a rebound. In Q4, its net sales plummeted by 29 percent while its Q4 comps declined by 28 percent.

In January 2020, Express said it would close 100 store locations by next year. While the company expects closures to reduce sales by $90 million, the decision will also save them $80 million per year over the next three years and in the long-term due to lower operating costs and the increasing share of revenue from ecommerce.

Late last year, Express reduced the corporate workforce at its Columbus, Ohio headquarters by 10 percent, which resulted in an estimated cost savings of $13 million.

According to the company’s first-quarter earnings, ecommerce transactions increased over 40 percent compared to 2020, with sales conversions up 19 percent and web traffic up 18 percent.

In turning fans into brand ambassadors, Express joins the likes of Sephora, Lululemon, Xbox and countless other brands trying to engage consumers, 80 percent of which say that social media directly impacts their purchasing decision and 35 percent who say they’re “very” or “extremely” likely to buy influencer-endorsed products online.

What We’re Reading—Week Of August 2nd

What you need to know for the week of August 2nd, 2021.

The Postpandemic Board Agenda: Redefining Corporate Resilience

McKinsey & Company

When asked about this year’s agenda, board directors at the most adaptable boards imply they’re shifting away from overall resilience as a topic—the share citing it has decreased 20 percentage points.

Why it matters: According to McKinsey’s survey results, these boards will spend more time looking at the types of risks that can test a company’s overall resilience, including geopolitical and macroeconomic risks (up 19 percentage points since 2020), political risks (up 15 percentage points) and climate-related risks (up ten percentage points).

Three Marketing Lessons From A 19th-Century Horse


In the 19th century, Wilhelm von Osten owned a horse named Hans. Von Osten trained the horse in math problems, answers to which Hans gave via tapping his hoof. The story of Clever Hans provides a valuable lesson for modern-day marketers—if you’re using digital platforms to nurture leads and generate new customers, you should be in a continuous state of experimentation, testing and adjusting based on your learnings.

Why it matters: Other lessons to be learned from Von Osten and his horse include drawing simple, likely conclusions about marketing data before drawing accurate ones and avoiding confirmation bias when studying your data.

Moving The Needle On DEI

Harvard Business Review

Shelly McNamara, head of equality and inclusion at Procter & Gamble, advises those leading diversity, equity and inclusion efforts to get clear on what they aspire to create or do and determine who the change agents will be. To ensure this strategy happens on the ground, McNamara emphasizes the importance of leadership behavior, accountability, and capability and culture.

Why it matters: P&G aims to have its US organization be represented by 40 percent of multicultural employees. And globally, it aspires to have equal gender representation at every level. McNamara notes that for some time, P&G has been doing work for areas such as the LGBTQ community and people with disabilities. It launched a new data platform that expands the data fields so that employees have the opportunity to self-identify, an update that will help P&G determine where it has challenges and opportunities to address.

What Brands Should Know About TikTok’s Ban On Sponsored Crypto Content

Ad Age

TikTok recently issued a ban on influencers promoting cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency-related financial services through branded content. The ban lumps cryptocurrency, pyramid schemes, bail bonds and get rich quick schemes under the “All financial services and products” category. However, TikTok’s policy permits ads related to the “exchange, management, or investment of virtual funds,” so long as the ads comply with applicable law.

Why it matters: Brands could face suspensions or get locked out of TikTok’s advertising platform if they violate the branded content policy. When sponsoring content, cryptocurrency brands should immediately review, revise and update their influencer agreements, and/or consider other platforms.

Why Jack In The Box Hosted A Comic-Con Afterparty On Discord

Marketing Dive

To engage attendees of this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, taking place digitally for the second consecutive year to the pandemic, Jack in the Box hosted an afterparty called “Jack’s Late Night Discord” on Discord.

Why it matters: The event saw a total of 5,560 members—more than five times Discord’s benchmark for members on a branded community—and 7,664 users across the entire weekend. In addition, the event generated more than 27,000 messages via several elements.

How Marketers Are Preparing For The Holiday Season

In 2019, Thanksgiving Day ecommerce sales reached $4.13 billion. This year, eMarketer expects the figure to hit $6.21 billion as a growing list of retailers including Walmart, Target and Best Buy announce Thanksgiving Day store closures.

EMarketer’s latest report explores holiday marketing trends through interviews with executives from Banana Republic, Norwegian Cruise Line and more about their holiday shopping learnings and how they’ve adapted to consumers’ evolving digital behavior.

Even with the ability to shop in-store this year, retail ecommerce sales are projected to grow and comprise 18.9 percent of total holiday retail sales – an increase from 17.5 percent last year–according to eMarketer’s data. 

Retailers offered online promotions earlier than usual last year in order to maximize holiday sales, and the digital push will likely set off an earlier holiday season again. Amazon, for example, postponed Prime Day to October, causing other retailers to introduce promotions at the same time, thereby expanding the traditional holiday shopping period.

According to Banana Republic’s vice president and head of stores, Jen Mullen, last year Banana Republic focused on its online presence and ensured customers could shop for every family member in a single online session. This year, the retailer is focused on utilizing online services to get the customer back to in-person shopping. Mullen tells eMarketer that 2021 will see more one-day deals and more excitement generated around weekend activities to entice people to visit brick-and-mortar locations.

Guitar Center’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Jeannine D’Addario, said the music retailer is meeting market demands this holiday season by offering “more than just the instrument” to individuals who are purchasing an instrument for the first time. The retailer engages in meaningful dialogue with customers across its social channels with the understanding that the musical journey is about sharing, talking about it, gaining insights and learning from others, according to D’Addario.

The National Retail Federation originally estimated that total consumer retail spending in 2021 would reach $4.33 trillion, a 6.5 percent growth. In light of increased consumer spending, NRF raised their estimate to between 10.5 percent and 13.5 percent YoY growth. According to Ali Haeri, MNTN’s vice president of marketing, this heightened expectation comes with greater competition. He said that advertisers must add connected TV – with a focus on direct-response performance – to refine their strategies, differentiate themselves from the competition and deliver strong ad performance. 

Haeri’s suggestion to invest in CTV comes as 49 percent of streaming television viewers prefer a low-cost ad-supported mode and as Apple’s iOS 14.5 update reduces the effectiveness of audience targeting and measurement.

During its 16 months in port, Norwegian Cruise Line launched a holiday campaign called “Break Free” to address consumers’ desire to “break free” from the pandemic. Isis Ruiz, the company’s senior vice president and chief marketing officer, said Norwegian will be leaning into that approach even more in Q4 2021 with a big Black Friday campaign as people start socializing and planning vacations.

In addition, Norwegian’s 2021 holiday campaign will focus on activities travelers can look forward to, including reunions, planned vacations or the planning of future vacations. Online streaming and visuals via social media will be two core elements of the cruise line’s holiday campaign, according to Ruiz. 

eMarketer spoke with the Boston Red Sox chief marketing officer Adam Grossman to learn how the team engages with fans during the holiday season and the offseason. Given that the World Series ends as the holiday season begins, Grossman notes that the Sox must tailor their holiday messaging to capitalize on the celebration depending on whether they’ve won or lost. 

Keeping fans engaged during the offseason is another story – content creation is at a minimum as they focus on “Gift of Sox,” a campaign that involves thanking fans, granting wishes and having fun with the community. During the pandemic, the post-season also saw cookie-making lessons for families. In addition to its focus on service, the Sox team highly prioritizes digital marketing and personalizing the experience for each fan. The Christmas at Fenway event, for example, is the first time tickets go on sale for the following season, giving the Sox an opportunity to offer loyal fans choice seats and games.

Making Your Product Marketable, Valuable, And Usable With Innovatemap’s Christian Beck

Christian Beck is an executive partner at Innovatemap where he focuses on growth strategy and design. He is also the host of the podcast Better Product.

While Christian doesn’t consider himself a marketer, he and I discuss design, user experience, and how marketing is tied closely to his role. Throughout the rest of our conversation, we also touch on how the scale of technology is outpacing human cognition, why that matters, and what making a good product is all about.

According to Christian, a “better product is marketable, valuable, and usable.” Since technology is evolving rapidly, companies must be intentional about sticking to the fundamental design principles—designing around human behavior. What can marketers learn from design and vice versa? Listen to the full conversation to find out.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How technology scale is outpacing human cognition
  • Why a better product is marketable, valuable, and usable 
  • The push for community in product spaces

Key Highlights:

  • [01:24] Why Christian doesn’t see himself as a marketer
  • [02:15] Why he started with design 
  • [06:20] Technology scale outpaces human cognition
  • [11:47] Who is Innovatemap? How did it begin?
  • [15:10] What makes a good product?
  • [18:36] How the Better Product podcast was born
  • [22:22] The push for community
  • [26:32] An experience that defines Christian makes him who he is today
  • [28:22] Christian’s advice for his younger self
  • [30:02] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [33:58] The brands and organizations Christian follows
  • [36:35] The biggest threat and opportunity marketers face

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on opportunities around brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine startups.

Marriott’s Brian Povinelli On Post-Pandemic Consumer Travel Behavior

The pandemic proved the most challenging year in Marriott’s 93-year history, as it ended 2020 with an annual loss of $267 million—the second largest after its 2009 annual loss of $346 million. While hotels shuttered and countries closed their borders, travel wanderlust grew stronger as consumers longed to get away both locally and abroad. Due to pent-up demand for travel, Marriott is hopeful that rising vaccines will boost a rebound. We spoke with Brian Povinelli, senior vice president, brand, loyalty, and portfolio marketing, Marriott International, to learn more about the company’s new global “Power of Travel” campaign, how consumer behavior changes are affecting its media placements, how current occupancy figures are shaping up and more.

If there’s been one key pandemic learning so far for Marriott’s portfolio of brands, what would you say it is?

There’s been cultural learning [about] just how critical travel is to our personal well-being, to a greater sense of community and toward encouraging more openness and acceptance on a global scale. We didn’t realize that and took it for granted in normal times. But after being stuck in your own home for a year, I think people realize the power of what we deliver as a hospitality company that enables some of that cultural well-being and healing.

From a marketing lens, we asked whether we need to be much more nimble in our marketing strategies, in the way we approach putting our message in the market. During the pandemic, we had to pivot [messaging] almost weekly… and have an ear to the ground on customer sentiment. Sometimes the message was dictated by government regulations and opening and closing markets. Most brands would define that strategy as nimble.

We’ve pivoted to create a nimble strategy that will continue even past recovery of the pandemic, especially because customer sentiment is changing on a much more frequent basis today than it did even a couple of years ago.

Are there any other consumer behaviors that Marriott has observed over this past year that you will incorporate into your strategy moving forward?

Staycation for sure. One, I think going a little further afield would be the explosion of the road trip. It was partly driven by the fact that airlines were out and we saw a huge movement to road trips and people flocking to more remote, outdoor destinations like the national parks. 

Then this whole concept of “work from anywhere,” a new phenomenon that we’ve seen that continues strongly today—people realizing that if they didn’t have to go into the office and could do everything through a Zoom-type platform, that they could relocate for a while. And especially with the younger generation who are less tied down with families and other commitments. A huge amount of people were using our hotels and homes and buildings as a place to work remotely for weeks or months on end.

How has marketing budget allocation changed based on these behaviors?

Yes, I would say we have. With the whole underpinning of being nimble, we are still utilizing occasion-based viewing on linear TV. So take something like the NBA Finals or the Olympics, we will utilize those platforms, but we’ve also shifted significant amounts of our investment into the streaming platforms. Not only because that’s where viewers have shifted, but also because there’s a lot more real-time data that we can get back from those platforms. We’re testing some shoppable ad units where people can literally click on the ad unit on the streaming platform, view more information and book a trip from that. So I think you’ll see us leaning more into connected TV OTT and the broader digital platforms, as well as experimentation in the social platforms.

We did our first foray into Tiktok and we’ve done a unique partnership with Pinterest. The amount of travel and wanderlust that’s gone on with consumers over the last 18 months has been taken to a new level because they were deprived of that opportunity to get out and see different parts of the country or the world, with the effect that they’ve been much more engaged with travel content on social platforms.

So we’ve been leaning into that and trying to put out inspiration to then lead to user-generated content and help amplify our message. It’s been quite successful over the last couple of months. And in this campaign launch specifically, we’ve seen that user engagement because people are so hungry for inspirational travel stories and images.

Marriott Bonvoy’s recent Power of Travel campaign includes many firsts for Marriott. Walk us through the brand’s thinking behind the partnerships with influencers and the shoppable Hulu ads.

We’ve tried to find influencers who grounded their storytelling on the idea of wanderlust. Some have a large following and some have more niche followings, but they’ve all got a very engaged audience in this one topic. This isn’t the first time we have worked with influencers, we’ve been doing that for years. But I would say it is definitely the first time that we’ve used Tiktok as a platform. We thought it would be more grassroots and authentic than us creating content and just pushing it out as more of an advertisement on that platform.

The shoppable ads are definitely a first. The goal came from the insight that we are seeing our booking window over the last 18 months shrink significantly. We’re seeing a lot of travelers literally booking and staying within 24 hours, almost like it’s become much more of an impulse purchase. And I think it relates to vaccine roll-outs and people hitting that point where they’ve had their two weeks of post-vaccine quarantine and then say to themselves, “That’s it, I’m going to leave tomorrow and go somewhere.” That short booking window has led us to look at some of our media placements a little bit more as an impulse buy.

So think about the grocery store. You go down the checkout aisle and there are all of the candy bars and the gum and the magazines that you just grab even though you didn’t plan to buy that when you went in. We thought we could have a similar dynamic here where if people were watching a show on a streaming platform and then they were introduced to our marketing, engaged with that ad, and go book that trip, whether it’s for the next day or the next week or the next month. And where before, people might spend three or four weeks and look at 20 or more websites in order to make the decision of where to go and stay, now we’re seemingly seeing people willing to do it on a whim and with a lot less research than they had prior.

Marriott’s recent social listening research saw a year-over-year uptick in searches for one-of-a-kind stays. What role has social listening played in Marriott’s strategy in the past year and is there one tool in particular that has proved especially useful?

A few years ago we implemented a new capability within Marriott called “M Live.” It’s a group that focuses on social listening through the worlds of data and creative. They put out polls, scrape social sites, and collect data from other third parties that we then turn into segments, use for specific targeting and to identify emerging trends. 

That is where we’ve focused over the last 12 months as things have changed so dramatically week in and week out. We’ve leveraged those analytics and that social listening group within our organization to help guide what markets we should be going after. For example, we saw in the US, markets like Arizona and Florida open much more quickly than those in the Northeast or other parts of the country. So we were able to validate that there was that interest through these tools and the data, and then we were able to craft messaging specific to those markets or those trip types.

How is Marriott responding to the finding that people are looking to experience more one-of-a-kind stays?

We’re looking at that in two ways. One is working with properties to create those unique experiences. Luckily, we were doing that pre-pandemic. So it was ramping up the availability of those types of experiences and doing a little bit more of that. You will likely find that in a luxury or upscale hotel and with brands like Westin or the Ritz-Carlton. And even our select-service hotels that are in more rural destinations and those by national parks have put together more experiential-type packages. We even formed a partnership with the national parks where customers could use their Marriott Bonvoy points to buy annual park passes. So that was one way. 

Then the other is a real continued focus on growing our collection of brands. We have about 450 independent hotel offerings that a lot of people weren’t aware of. Those tend to be your smaller, more boutique, more experiential-type properties; again, a destination that connects you much more closely to the local destination and cultural experience. We opened 70 new properties in those collections this year. So continuing to fuel that pipeline and look for conversion opportunities and new growth opportunities in that segment.

What are some of the updates Marriott has made to quell travelers’ concerns around cleanliness and face-to-face contact?

We sprinted very quickly to elevate some of the contactless opportunities. Mobile Key is one that we really accelerated and are now at over 4,000 properties, and that allows you to check-in via your phone, skipping the front desk entirely. 

We’re also piloting a check-in kiosk in several of our hotels in New York City. Think about how airlines have had travelers check in at the airport kiosks. It never found its way into the hospitality space, but we felt that in this environment that was another option where people could engage with a kiosk and minimize the contact they might have while checking in or out.

So those are some of the new initiatives that we either accelerated or are piloting during this period. And then the cleaning protocols—we already had very stringent cleaning protocols in place pre-COVID. We just elevated those and made them more public-facing with hand sanitizer in all the public spaces. 

The customer response has been great. Mask mandates are the one thing that has been a bit tricky for many businesses and industries to navigate because they became political, but we just stayed within the CDC guidance and followed their directives.

Beyond cleanliness, how has Marriott’s portfolio of brands responded to other consumer trends spurred by the pandemic? For example, I read that some Westin properties introduced recovery stations in response to people’s heightened focus on self care. 

It gets back to a little bit of the social listening and data that we were looking at during this period. Wellness was one trend that was significant. Wellness was compromised all of a sudden with the pandemic so it became a much bigger focus and people were stepping back and re-evaluating their lifestyles in a lot of ways. So we asked how we can elevate our wellness experience given that we built our whole brand positioning around well-being for the last 10 years. This was a great opportunity to take that foundation and introduce a new initiative all-around recovery. 

So through the partnership with Hypervolt, we put up a new station built around recovery within the fitness centers. That’s one example of a “work anywhere with Marriott Bonvoy” strategy where we’ve created a specific package around that wellness dynamic. We rolled out different levels of packages. For example, we implemented day passes, which you couldn’t get prior. To do that, we re-engineered our booking portal to be able to accommodate that and also to accommodate extended check-in and check-out hours. Then there was a stay pass, which was an overnight stay that came with other amenities, snacks and meeting supplies if you needed them, for that “working from anywhere” environment. The last was the play pass, which was built around this blend of leisure and business where your family is at the pool while you might be working in the room.

According to the company’s Q1 earnings, in Marriott’s largest regions, the US and Canada, occupancy started the year at 33 percent in January and reached 49 percent by March. Do you have any current occupancy figures you can share?

I can see demand definitely varying by market, but we’re encouraged to see a strong rebound. US and Canada occupancy for May was at 55 percent, so definitely seeing continued momentum. I have a couple of other examples here—in Greece, bookings were up 6 percent versus the same two weeks in 2019. So they’re actually outpacing 2019 numbers. And then we’re also seeing special corporate demand, at about 50 percent of 2019 levels, which is a significant uptick from where we were a month ago. So we’re seeing positive momentum on both the leisure side, which is leading the recovery, but also on the corporate or B2B side.

The leisure market is poised for a rebound, but how does Marriott plan to acclimate to the drop in business travel?

We’ll have to see how it continues to play out. I would say we are optimistic that there will be a notable recovery in business. We are, like I said, seeing special corporate demand, and we’re seeing people start to get back to the office, and I think we’ll see a significant boost there. 

So it’s going to be about keeping a pulse on how this hybrid work model plays out. Despite not seeing the same amount of business travel that we’ve seen pre-pandemic, we think there could be a different dynamic happening where because of hybrid work models, people now have several days free where they could take a long weekend away. They could do Friday and Monday working remotely, and then take the weekend for leisure time. We’ll be keeping a real close eye on how consumer behavior evolves as we continue getting higher vaccination levels.

We’ll also have to see how the corporate workplace and these hybrid work models play out. But I think we will see a lot of people taking longer trips. Even over the holidays, there’s this dynamic shaping up where instead of taking a week off, if you have the flexibility to work remotely, you could be taking a month off.

Tell us more about Marriott’s recent partnership with Uber. 

Our partnership with Uber was great because we had been looking for ways to strengthen engagement with the rewards program. A big pivot we’ve made over the last year is positioning Marriott Bonvoy as a travel marketplace that has a loyalty program and offers 30 hotel brands, homes, villas, tours, activities and partnerships like with Uber.

The idea behind partnering with Uber was that traveling through a destination means you need a rideshare service to get to and from the airport or your hotel. They go hand-in-hand. And with what we’ve seen through the pandemic with the proliferation and success of things like Uber Eats, this partnership is just another opportunity to keep people engaged with our platform through earning and redeeming points, and, in some ways, to keep them engaged with us when they’re not in a hotel. So it’s all about bringing added value to the overall program and your interaction with Marriott. 

How is Marriot approaching the first-party data conversation and delivering personalized experiences to customers while protecting their information?

Like every company, we’re navigating all of the data privacy laws and remaining compliant with all of the rules that are out there. The nice thing for us is that with over 150 million members, we have a lot of first-party data. We obviously go through the right protocol to get the marketing message to the people who are engaged and have agreed to receive it.

The more reasons we can give people to engage with Marriott Bonvoy, not just for hotels, but for things like the partnership with Uber or tours and activities, or dining out options, the greater ability we have to grow from 150 to 200 million, 250 million members.

There are various ways that members can interact with us and varying degrees of information they opt to give. Some are more willing to share than others and will tell us directly what their preferences are, what they’re looking for. That helps us personalize the experience even more. Even if it’s just basic information like their name and the type of hotel they want to stay in, we can personalize their experience based on their history with us.

We’re also making efforts with the Marriott Bonvoy app. We launched a new update with a lot of new functionality, not only for contactless engagements but even for a road trip finder where you can see all of the hotels along your route and what they cost. So getting that type of engagement allows us to better personalize the experience and engage with people on that platform as well.

What’s one trend hotel marketers will need to embrace as they return to the next normal?

I’ll go back to build a little bit more on this idea of the importance of flexibility and nimbleness in your marketing strategy. I think that the trend that we’re seeing is that people’s behaviors and sentiments are shifting much more quickly than they have in the past. Social media plays a significant role in that because there’s so much access to information which can lead to quick shifts in sentiment or feelings about a topic or about a brand in particular. So there needs to be a focus on having your ear to that social sentiment through social listening and other data sources, and then having the ability to pivot your message and create many more versions of that message, and also doing a lot more A/B testing of what you put in market to see what’s resonating with people at any given time.

New LinkedIn Guide Shares Best Practices For Brands

This week in social media news, LinkedIn’s new guide offers tips boosting your long-term brand marketing strategy, Snapchat launches a new section for self-serve scientific campaign experimentation called Campaign Lab, major brands reimagine their iconic ad campaigns with creators under TikTok’s Re:Make program, Facebook posts $29 billion in revenue in Q2, LinkedIn exceeds $10 billion in annual revenue for the first time and more.

LinkedIn Launches Guide To Balancing Long And Short-Term Brand Marketing

According to a new LinkedIn guide, marketers previously invested about 45 percent of budget into brand marketing; today, the recommended split is 60/40 in favor of the brand. In its new guide, ‘Brand to Demand: Harmonizing Long-term Brand Strategy with Short-term Activation Tactics,’ LinkedIn offers tips on balancing long-term marketing investment with short-term demand objectives.

Why it matters: The pandemic has forced marketers to be nimble and quickly shift their messaging, as LinkedIn shows 96 percent of marketers wait no longer than three months before attempting to measure the impact of their brand campaigns. Yet research from Binet and Field found that marketers should allow their campaigns to run for more than six months before seeing an impact.

The details: First up, LinkedIn suggests considering two heuristics when improving your brand’s future position — the availability heuristic and affect heuristic. The former points to how readily available a brand is in a consumer’s mind when they’re ready to move. The latter states that if a consumer likes a brand, their views of the brand’s solutions and benefits will be positively impacted.

Next, LinkedIn found that 69 percent of marketers don’t believe that broad targeting is more effective than hyper-targeting. The key takeaway here is to balance narrowly focused and broader targeting for branding efforts.

In addition, LinkedIn’s research highlights the importance of balancing the usage of rational and emotional ads to build growth over time. It found that marketers are 2x more likely to produce rational ads vs. emotional ads, regardless of objective.

Lastly, brands should execute brand and demand strategies in conjunction as LinkedIn’s research also found audiences exposed to both brand and acquisition messages on LinkedIn are 6x more likely to convert.

Snapchat Rolls Out New Campaign Lab To Enable Self-Serve Scientific Experimentation

Snapchat has announced a new section within Ads Manager called Campaign Lab, where advertisers can set up and act on scientific campaign experimentation in a self-serve way. 

Why it matters: Snap first launched Split Tests in Ads Manager in 2020 to help advertisers run scientific experiments on their marketing campaigns. Now, with Campaign Lab, advertisers will get access to actions, insights and learning agendas to inform their campaign strategy.

The details: Advertisers can access Campaign Lab in their Ads Manager navigation bar. In the Experiments tab, they can create new Split Tests and get customized recommendations in the Learning Center. Campaign Lab will also include detailed reports and show scheduled, ongoing and previously run split tests all in one place.

Facebook Adds 30 Million More Daily Active Users In Q2 To 1.91 Billion

According to Facebook’s second-quarter earnings results, the company brought in $29 billion, a new record high, and 30 million additional daily active users (DAUs) — taking it to 1.91 billion on average.

Why it matters: Though Facebook added a considerable number of new users in the Asia Pacific region in Q2, DAUs stalled in the US and declined in Europe.

The details: Facebook’s ad revenue reached $28 billion, namely 98 percent of its overall $29 billion revenue. The company said ad revenue growth was driven by a 47 percent year-over-year increase in the average price per ad and a 6 percent increase in the number of ads delivered.

TikTok’s New Re:Make Program Reimagines Past Iconic Ad Campaigns With Creators

TikTok has launched a new program called Re:Make that involves brands such as Skittles, Snickers and Old Spice resurrecting their previous popular advertising campaigns with help from TikTok creators.

Why it matters: TikTok is encouraging users to join the Re:Make challenge by creating renditions of their favorite ads under the #TikTokReMake hashtag, which will provide brands with ideas on how to enhance their own ads and understand where influencers fit in the mix.

The details: As part of TikTok’s Re:Make program, Mars partnered with creator @rosssmith and his grandmother to recreate Snickers’ 2010 ‘You’re not you when you’re hungry’ Super Bowl ad featuring Betty White.

Mars’ Skittles teamed up with creator/animator @maddiwinter and science creator @nickuhas to recreate its ‘Touch’ campaign.

Lastly, Old Spice reimagined its ‘The man your man could smell like’ ad — which has garnered 37 Cannes Lion since its 2010 release — by partnering with @munyachawawa and @niall.gray, who were tasked with incorporating UK references and British humor.

Snapchat Debuts New ‘Open Your Snapchat’ Global Advertising Campaign

Snapchat is launching a new global ad campaign called ‘Open Your Snapchat’ to encourage users and advertisers to take advantage of its augmented reality (AR) features, reports Social Media Today

The campaign will extend to out-of-home and digital placements, which will include Snapcodes leading to custom creative and AR Lenses specific to major cities in the US, UK and Mexico, and eventually India.

Why it matters: According to Snap, about 200 million users engage with AR daily on the app while AR creators have made over 1.5 million AR Lenses.

The details: Snap’s new campaign will highlight its AR features via blanket billboards, buses, websites and more. Custom AR-driven experiences will appear in the following major cities: Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Denver, Detroit, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Minneapolis, Mumbai, New York City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Orlando and Tampa.

LinkedIn Surpasses $10 Billion In Annual Revenue For The First Time

According to parent company Microsoft’s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings report, LinkedIn has exceeded $10 billion in annual revenue for the first time. LinkedIn’s revenue grew 46 percent for the quarter to nearly $3 billion.

Why it matters: As per Microsoft chief executive officer Satya Nadella:

“In the past five years since our acquisition, revenue has nearly tripled and growth has accelerated.LinkedIn has become a leader across multiple secular growth areas spanning B2B advertising, professional hiring, corporate learning and sales intelligence.”

The details: LinkedIn’s quarterly ad revenue surpassed $1 billion for the first time in the recent quarter, representing a 97 percent increase.

In addition, LinkedIn now boasts 774 million members, and user sessions were up 30 percent in the quarter compared with a year ago.

Pinterest Reports Losing 24 Million Users In Q2 

According to Pinterest’s Q2 2021 Letter to Shareholders, despite reporting revenue growth of 125 percent YoY to $613 million, and monthly active user (MAU) growth of 9 percent YoY, the social media platform lost roughly 24 million users in the last three months.

Why it matters: As COVID-related restrictions ease and people spend more time outside of the house, Pinterest is no longer experiencing the “disproportionate” benefits it enjoyed during pandemic lockdowns. In essence, it couldn’t keep up with last year’s atypical growth.

The details: Pinterest reports that fewer MAUs ventured to Pinterest during Q2 than expected. Nevertheless, it maintains 454 million users after hitting 367 million in Q1 2020 and 416 million in Q2 2020, with MAUs on the mobile app having grown in the US and internationally YoY. International MAUs increased by 13 percent YoY while US MAUs decreased by 5 percent YoY. 

While Pinterest may not have as many users as projected, overall the users that remain continue to show their value as purchases made through the app and overall engagement remain solid.

Additionally, Pinterest said the number of Idea Pins — introduced in Q2 in 22 markets — created daily has grown by more than 7x since the beginning of 2021, and daily impressions from Idea Pins have grown more than 10x in the same period. 

Facebook Restricts Ad Targeting Of Users Under 18

Facebook decided to prohibit advertisers from targeting users under 18 years of age based on their interests or activity on other apps or sites. Starting sometime this month, advertisers can target users under 18 only based on their age, gender and location. The change applies globally to Facebook, Messenger and Instagram, and includes more protections for young users than just ad targeting restrictions.

Why it matters: Because young people may not be prepared or knowledgeable enough to make decisions on how to avoid targeted ads based on their interests or activities — for example through ad setting controls or use of third party tracking blockers — Facebook has taken it upon itself to err on the side of caution and limit how advertisers reach younger demographics.

This new stance is a welcome reprieve after the backlash Facebook received over its Instagram platform solely for children under 13 – something other platforms have already created, for example, Facebook’s Messenger Kids and Alphabet Inc.’s YouTube Kids. 

The details: Youth advocates have succeeded in convincing Facebook to take a precautionary stance on the issue of youth ad targeting. New Instagram users under 16 will automatically have their accounts set to private, with the option to switch to public, in order to prevent contact from predators. Pavni Diwanji, Facebook’s head of youth products, said that Facebook is also using artificial intelligence (AI) to improve age verification and removal of underage accounts. 

Reddit Taps Instagram, Facebook Executive Timo Pelz As VP Of Business Marketing

This week in leadership updates, Reddit taps Timo Pelz as vice president of business marketing, Global hires Cilesta Van Doorn as chief marketing officer, Twitch appoints Constance Knight as vice president of creators and more.

Reddit Hires Timo Pelz As Vice President Of Business Marketing

Reddit has named Timo Pelz as its first vice president of business marketing, according to Variety.

Pelz joins Reddit from Instagram, where he was head of business marketing. Previously, he was Facebook’s industry lead financial services, DACH.

Global Names Cilesta Van Doorn As Chief Marketing Officer

Global has tapped Cilesta Van Doorn as its next chief marketing officer, effective after current chief marketing officer Adam Johnson resigns.

Prior to Global, Van Doorn spent over three years at Virgin Media.

Twitch Taps Constance Knight As Vice President Of Creators

Twitch has appointed Constance Knight as its first vice president of global creators.

Knight was most recently working as Instagram’s global head of content curation, short-form video after having been at YouTube for over nine years.

STRATA Appoints Brent Cowgill As Vice President Of Marketing

STRATA Skin Sciences has recruited Brent Cowgill to fill the role of vice president of marketing.

Previously, Cowgill founded and managed Vantage Marketing.

Tire Discount Hires Chris Yapp As Chief Marketing Officer

Tire Discount has named Chris Yapp chief marketing officer and vice president of marketing.

Yapp joins Tire Discount from The Grass Feather Farms, where he was an advisory board member. Prior to that was Amazon’s head of marketing, Brilliance Publishing.

Topgolf Taps Geoff Cottrill For Chief Marketing Officer Position

Topgolf Entertainment Group has appointed Geoff Cottrill as chief marketing officer.

Prior to his new role, Cottrill held marketing and marketing leadership positions at Coca-Cola North America, Converse, Starbucks and Procter & Gamble.

The Alkaline Water Company Recruits Tom Hutchison As Chief Marketing Officer

The Alkaline Water Company has hired Tom Hutchison as chief marketing officer.

Most recently, Hutchison co-founded the online marketplace Oana. He has held marketing positions at Sprouts Farmers Market, Merchants Distributors and others.

Rare & Forever Diamonds Taps Chris Croteau As Vice President Of Marketing And Sales

Rare & Forever Diamonds has named Chris Croteau as its new vice president of marketing and sales.

Croteau joins Rare & Forever Diamonds from CD Peacock Jewelers and Hearts On Fire Company as store director and senior director of sales of North America, respectively.