Google to sell display ads in Web videos

Google to sell display ads in Web videos

found via yahoo news / Reuters

Thu Feb 21, 1:35 PM ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Web search leader Google Inc plans to start selling ads to appear in Web videos and has signed up 20 customers, as it aims to do for videos what it has done for text.

Partners include YuMe, an online video advertising network, Brightcove, an Internet TV platform, and comedy site MyDamnChannel.

Brightcove, whose customers include CBS Corp, Time Warner Inc and Discovery Communications Inc, will begin offering the technology to its clients.

YuMe, a Redwood City, California-based start-up, said on Thursday, it will serve InVideo overlay adverts as part of Google’s AdSense for video beta advertising program.

Google has traditionally used AdSense for text-only advertising but said the video program extends its offer to targeted, contextually relevant video graphical ads and text overlays.

Google has been working on ways of developing advertising revenue for online video since it bought YouTube, the video-sharing site, in November 2006.

As Internet access speeds become faster around the world more television and Hollywood-produced video content is moving to the Web on sites like Hulu.com, owned by News Corp and NBC Universal, and Fancast.com, owned by Comcast Corp.

YuMe said Google is one of the third-party feeds accepted by YuMe’s Adaptive Campaign Engine, which helps Web publishers in its network match each video ad impression with the best money-making ad placement in realtime.

(Reporting by Yinka Adegoke and Kenneth Li; editing by Greg Mahlich, Richard Chang)

Marketing Strategies with Social Networking Sites

Performaincing publishes an article explaining some of the benefits, and various ways to use social networking for marketing. An excerpt:twiiter logo

Unfortunately, the fact is that being “social” is becoming an absolute necessity for online success for web workers, including pro bloggers. (Business Week has an extensive article on how social media will change your business, whether or not you’re using blogs. A lot of this article is an assessment of how certain large corporations or even formerly offline consultants/ marketers are faring using various types of social media.)

Still, there’s only so much time in the day to get all the other work done. Where do you draw the line? Personally, I believe it’s better to hire an SMM (Social Media Marketer) who can focus on the promotions side

Read the entire article for more info and informative related links at performancing.

What sort of ad agency does an entrepreneur need?

From the Tennessean Newspaper in Nashville, TN:

Sunday, 10/14/07
What sort of ad agency does an entrepreneur need?
Answer: One willing to take a few chances to help an owner score big

By RANDY MCCLAIN
Business Editor

Jeffrey Buntin Jr., the 34-year-old president of The Buntin Group, has seen the Nashville advertising agency started by his dad in the 1970s guide the accounts of some of this area’s and the nation’s most entrepreneurial companies.

The Buntin Group, marking 35 years in business this fall, has worked with Cracker Barrel, John Deere, Dollar General, golf pro Jack Nicklaus and others.

Buntin, who now heads the agency, said start-up companies in search of advertising help should look for advisers that can provide more than just flashy slogans or clever commercials.

“We say to potential clients, select someone who wants to be your business partner, not just your ad agency.”

Buntin’s take is that it makes sense to pick an agency that can weigh in on long-term strategy and help an entrepreneur better define his or her target customer.

“The idea is to establish intimacy with your audience, to understand what they want, not just to sell them a product,” Buntin said.

It’s easier to think big early: “In the early stages of a business, there’s an opportunity to think of a new company as a brand, not just as a means of delivering a product. We ask clients to think of the brand, ‘why.’

“There’s a purpose or a mission behind every brand. It’s alive and authentic and it helps when you’re able to put it into words,” Buntin said. “For an entrepreneur, the ‘why’ is what they wake up every morning thinking about as they’re brushing their teeth,” what drives them in the business world.

Companies can get it right from the outset or they can evolve.

Servpro, a clean-up and restoration franchisor, has been based in Gallatin, Tenn., since relocating there from the West Coast in the late 1980s. It started years before that as a painting company and morphed into a maintenance firm that worked with insurers to clean up after fire and water damage.

But in more recent years, the Buntin Group client evolved to work directly with homeowners in addition to the commercial insurers. Servpro now targets individual consumers who need big clean-up jobs after storms or other mishaps.

The brand — reflected in Servpro’s identifying slogan — is: “Like it never even happened.”

Reaching out to homeowners was a big change in strategy, but it helped Servpro keep growing, Buntin said. The common thread all along was “about restoring control,” he said. “That thought process allowed them to diversify and accelerate overall growth. It provided brand clarity.”

Trust your intuition or partner with someone whose intuition you trust: Entrepreneurs generally have a sixth sense about the direction their business should take, but “they’re also more willing to embrace risk,” Buntin said.

Don’t fret about starting small. You can still clobber larger competitors with deeper pockets and bigger budgets.

“Being a challenger brand is more about mindset than the dollars in someone’s budget,” Buntin said. “The key is to know your audience deeply, and to know them as people.

“It’s not enough to have a megaphone and talk loud. You want to build a three-way dialogue,” something that lets the customer talk back to the brand, while also spreading the word about the product or service to others who think, behave and spend like they do.

It’s a new world of delivering messages, Buntin said, and even more-established companies can benefit by thinking of customers differently.

One example: Goodyear hired Buntin’s agency some time ago to study women as tire buyers. Goodyear wanted to learn how to market to a customer that its brand at one time hadn’t truly embraced.

“Even established businesses can launch into a new entrepreneurial era,” Buntin said.

Business and marketing are all about thinking in win and outside the hum drum box in our opinion. Glad to see the are others out there following a similar path.

Store adds new dimension to online shopping

From Retuers

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) – Consumers looking to avoid crowded malls and the tedium of online shopping can now shop in a virtual 3-dimensional store.

Specialty retailer Brookstone Inc. opened the virtual doors to its 3-dimensional store, which combines a Second Life-like visual experience with real merchandise customers can buy.

“The 3-D brings that fun part of shopping back. When you go into a physical store, there is that sort of energy around ‘what am I going to find?’ and there’s always that discovery process,” Greg Sweeney, a vice-president at Brookstone, said in an interview.

The virtual store replicates the look and layout of a real store. Customers can move through the aisles and browse and zoom on products using a mouse and keyboard. Detailed information is available by stopping in front of an item.

“We think it really appeals to a younger audience for us, a demographic probably 25 to 40… because of the almost gaming nature of it,” said Sweeney.

Certainly those adept at navigating through a virtual world will find the environment familiar. For new users, it will take some getting used to, Sweeney added.

Brookstone.com will still offer its wares in the conventional way, but offers the 3-D store as an alternative.

“It really helps the evolution of the internet shopping experience,” said Sweeney.

(Reporting by Naomi Kim; editing by Patricia Reaney)

Ad dollars flood Web, but will they go far enough?

An article from yahoo news / Reuters

Ad dollars flood Web, but will they go far enough?

By Paul Thomasch Fri Oct 12, 12:42 PM ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Companies will spend a record $31 billion this year to advertise everything from toothpaste to home loans on the Internet, supporting countless news sites, social networks, video exchanges and blogs.
ADVERTISEMENT

But some media veterans worry that expectations for online advertising may be getting out-sized.

Increasingly, they say, too much media depends on advertising as the only source of revenue. With new players from software makers to cable operators also trying to cash in, the dollars simply may not stretch far enough.

“I’m getting to the point where I feel like every answer to every business development pitch is ‘We’re going to be advertiser supported’,” said Beth Comstock, president of Integrated Media at NBC Universal, which this year set up a fund to invest in media and digital companies.

“It’s just not going to be possible,” she said at a recent advertising conference. “There are not going to be enough advertising dollars in the marketplace. No matter how clever we are, no matter what the format is.”

NBC Universal’s television networks, cable channels and Web sites compete for advertising dollars with everything from niche blogs to big media peers like Time Warner Inc and Walt Disney Co. In addition fast-growing Internet companies like Google Inc are snatching up advertising budgets.

But new rivals are entering the market. Comcast Corp., the largest U.S. cable operator, expects at least $1 billion in online advertising in the next five to six years.

Verizon Communications and AT&T are looking at advertising opportunities on their video and wireless services, while startups like social network Facebook are seen as a new frontier for Web marketing.

Even Microsoft Corp has made a bold move into advertising with its purchase of Web marketing firm aQuantive.

THE MONEY FLOW

Until recently, the focus was squarely on how much money is moving into online advertising, rather than whether too many companies are making a grab for it.

There is little doubt today that a hefty portion of advertising dollars will shift to the Internet from TV, radio, print and elsewhere in the coming years. ZenithOptimedia forecasts that online ads worldwide will rise 28 percent in 2007, while the rest of the market grows at 3.7 percent.

Next year, ZenithOptimedia forecasts it to rise by 21 percent, and climb another 13 percent to $43 billion in 2009.

At that point, Web advertising would represent almost 10 percent of the $495 billion spent on advertising worldwide — yet would trail spending on newspapers, magazines, and TV.

“There are billion of dollars that can still move,” said Craig Lambert, Chief Digital Director of Colangelo, an integrated marketing agency based in Darien, Connecticut.

“Is there enough money flowing to support the businesses out there? I’d guess there is, just because there’s so much money that has always been spent on TV and print,” he added.

BIG SITES GET BIG DOLLARS

Others also take the position that there should be sufficient advertising money to spread around.

Jeff Brooks, Chief Executive of digital and direct marketing agency Euro RSCG 4D, sees a “huge gap” between the amount of time people spend on digital media and the amount of advertising money it attracts.

“The thrust of ad spending online, while dramatic in its growth quarter over quarter, still represents a disproportionately small percentage of total advertising dollars,” he said.

The catch, according to some, is that much of the money flowing toward the Internet is concentrated on a few dozen of the most popular sites. That has left smaller, less well-known sites at a severe disadvantage when it comes to attracting advertising money and surviving.

In the United States, the top 50 Web sites accounted for more than 90 percent of the revenue from online ads in the first half of 2007, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers. The top 10 sites accounted for 70 percent of the revenue.

All the while, the number of Web sites continues to grow, creating more competition for audiences — and advertisers — who can also choose among video games, movies, TV, portable music and every other type of media entertainment.

“It’s not like the old days, when it was ‘if you build it, they will come,”‘ said Jonathan Sackett, Chief Digital Officer at Arnold Worldwide, a Boston-based advertising agency. “Now if you build it, they probably won’t.”

One alternative for Web sites would be to bank on subscriptions rather than advertising revenue, but few existing outlets have been successful with that model.

The reason is that unless the site offers extraordinary content, people simply refuse to pay for it, said Mark Miller, president of RMG Connect, an advertising and marketing agency.

“If Warren Buffett wanted to put out his own subscription newsletter online, well, I’m sure he’d get a bucketful of people to subscribe to it,” Miller said.

WE actually believe that the numbers will be much higher for internet ad dollars. Many small companies will see the light with google adwords and similar programs, and advances in technology will bring more viewing time to the internet as well. With cell phones and cheaper laptops getting more and more internet time, people habits will shift more to the web and so will more advertising for the companies who want to get their message out!

Social networks eye the myspace phenomenon – targeted ads and privacy issues move to forefront

Social networks seems to be all buzz this year, and for good reason. There have been many social network startups, and many social network software platforms (and even more) arriving for would be myspace clones. Boing Boing has added commenting to their posts, and digg has recently added profile pages to their already social posting site. Yahoo recently launched it’s mash social network (wonder what is going to happen to the 360 social network they had started?). Google has added some kind of google dating search to their dating search results. Social, personal, user generated data, it’s all exploding everywhere, and many people do not know the privacy consequences of their postings.
Myspace recently announced that they will be better targeting ads to the individual based upon profile information. I for one am still interested to see stories coming out about further data mining things like bulletins and chain posts that often contain a lot of personal information, and some of those questionares appear to have a few questions of interest to insurance companies, more disclosure would be prudent I believe.

A recent article found via yahoo / AP:

By GARY GENTILE, AP Business Writer Tue Sep 18, 7:06 PM ET

LOS ANGELES – News Corp.’s MySpace social networking site is using personal details contained on users’ profile pages and blogs to sell highly targeted advertising, the company said Tuesday.

The Web site started the first phase of its “interest targeting” experiment in July, culling likes and dislikes from its users’ pages to sell ads in 10 broad categories such as finance, autos, fashion and music.

MySpace advertisers can now get much more than the basic demographic data contained in site registration forms, Peter Levinsohn, who heads Fox Interactive Media, told an investor conference.

The site has more than 3 million users in each category and can place ads based on responses to questions about users’ likes and dislikes, favorite movies and music. Data is even extracted from blog entries, where users write at length about their lives.

Targeting ads well can be lucrative for MySpace and its corporate parent, but it can also backfire if users believe their personal expressions are being misused.

When MySpace rival Facebook last year introduced a feature that allows users to more easily track changes their friends make to profiles, many users denounced it as stalking and threatened protests and boycotts. Facebook had to quickly apologize and agree to let users turn off the feature so that others can’t easily see what they do.

Levinsohn said MySpace would only use information users have freely expressed on their pages.

MySpace should inform users it is using their profile information to sell more targeted ads, Beth Givens, director of the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse, a California-based nonprofit, said.

“Many young people don’t seem to have privacy protection instincts,” Givens said.

Levinsohn used the example of a user named “Jill” who identifies herself as a fashionista and wrote in her blog about the new fashion lineup.

“She even goes so far as telling us she needs new boots for the fall,” Levinsohn said. “How would you like to be an advertiser selling boots to her?”

Next, MySpace plans to broaden its categories so it can market ads for a movie such as “Fantastic Four,” for instance, to people who said they have an interest in comics, action films and even the film’s star, Jessica Alba.

“This is really just the beginning for us,” he said. “No one else in the marketplace can offer this kind of concentrated reach.”

At a conference in New York, News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch remarked on the importance of creating categories for advertisers to buy on MySpace and vowed “to build it better than anybody.”

Sales of targeted ads could help Web sites earn more per ad sold. Earlier this year, Yahoo Inc. launched SmartAds, a platform for delivering customized display ads, while Time Warner Inc.’s AOL bought the behavioral-targeting company Tacoda.

The research company eMarketer projects that spending on behavioral targeting will nearly double to $1 billion next year and hit $3.8 billion by 2011.

Advertising is getting more targeted, but I have already seen some backlash in the form of people swearing to put all fake information in their profiles, and more use of adblock software. Sometimes too personal is just too personal. More people are blogging about the info that advertisers are using from web surfing habits, and google recently announced that serious privacy decisions need to be made within 5 years, although I think that is a realistic timeline, really, much should be decided and publicly presented much sooner in our over connected world.
google privacy article from Reuters: * Links added by co-author of this post, not original author!

By David Ljunggren

OTTAWA (Reuters) – National regulators need to agree on a basic set of global privacy protections for the Internet within the next five years, a senior official with web searcher Google said on Monday.

Peter Fleischer, the firm’s global privacy counsel, said three quarters of countries had no Internet privacy standards at a time when the amount of sensitive personal and financial data on the Web was soaring.

Google — itself criticized for the threat it poses to personal privacy — says the firm’s business agenda, the world economy and the Internet could suffer unless more is done to ensure basic privacy on the Web.

“What we’re saying is that the Internet is making this particularly urgent and that the Internet develops at a different speed than the speed at which traditional lawmaking and policy-making discussions take place,” Fleischer said.

“I think this is something that needs to happen within five years. That’s just us saying what we think is realistic as an urgent action,” he told Reuters in an interview.

Google, unhappy with what it calls a patchwork of conflicting privacy rules in some countries and a complete lack in many others, is pressing for action amid criticism about the enormous access to personal information on the Web.

“I think everyone has acknowledged that the status quo is not good enough any more,” said Fleischer.

Google wants countries to adopt privacy principles agreed by several Asia-Pacific countries. Fleischer said some backed this idea while others wanted to focus on what the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development is doing.

“That’s fine. The important thing from Google’s perspective is that there is a focus and debate around moving forward on global privacy standards,” he said.

“If we can … improve the standards in three quarters of the countries in the world, regardless of which model they follow, that is a huge step forward.”

He said perfect harmonization was unlikely, but the basic model could combine laws, codes of conduct and best practices.

Even if nations did not agree on standards within five years, Google would consider it progress if some countries without Internet privacy rules took action, said Fleischer.

“We’re playing a very long game here. We believe we’re working for the success of Google services over a very long period of time … and one of the things that everybody needs to improve is an understanding of privacy,” he said.

There have been some articles about people who are shocked that employers, and police are using myspace, facebook and similar social networks to look into your life, but I do not think there has been enough in the media about it, nor easy to use options to stop info you want to share with friends from being put out into the public. Ex lovers and future love interests of course may also be stalking your myspace page, as well as your friend’s kids I come to find out.
from the college recruiter blog:

Facebook and MySpace Used by Employers, Schools, and Police

If you’re like most college and even high school students, you have posted your profile to Facebook, MySpace, or another social networking site. But did you realize that your profile can easily be accessed by potential employers, schools, law enforcement agencies, and others? As much as that revelation may be a shock for students, it also came as a shock to those who set up the sites because they never intended outsiders to use the information for purposes other than benign social networking.

The terms of service of these sites typically prohibit their use for commercial purposes. Facebook’s terms of service page, for example, states that users understand that the service is available for “personal, non-commercial use only.” No reasonable person could argue with a straight face that recruitment is a non-commercial use, but just because such use is prohibited doesn’t mean that it isn’t happening.

Let me be clear that I love Facebook, MySpace, and the other social networking sites. They’re wonderful tools to help students and others connect with people who share their interests. But they also must be used carefully. You should assume that anything that you post on-line is going to be read by your old-fashioned grandmother. If you’re fine with her reading your profile, then its contents should be fine. Few would talk with their grandmothers about getting drunk, sexual experiences, breaking laws, etc. so why would they post such information on-line for anyone and everyone to read? Perhaps it is our exhibitionist culture. Today’s college students have grown up in an era where the most celebrated stars are on reality TV shows, so how can we blame them for believing that such behavior is to be celebrated rather than pitied?

Young ad stars show old pros new tricks

In an article found recently via reuters / yahoo news it is finally noted that newer marketing people may sometimes be years ahead of older more established marketing people and companies. This is why I think companies should use several marketing choices to cover many possibilities, and marketing companies should employ teams of people to work on projects and ideas.

Some excerpts from the article:

By Gavin Haycock Sat Jun 30, 12:58 AM ET

LONDON (Reuters) – To court new generations of consumers, advertising executives are discovering that experience has become an impediment.

It is a far cry from the glory days of advertising, when newcomers spent years working their way to the top. But unprecedented change in media and technology has given teenagers and kids an advantage in forecasting what products will appeal to consumers.

Put simply, too many executives have grown up with traditional media — television and newspapers — which is now losing audience and revenue to Web sites, cell phones, chat rooms, social networking sites and online games.

“I would say you have experts at the age of 14 of fantastic value because those people are extremely intelligent, they have time and they produce a lot of very good counseling on technological issues,” said Pierre Bellanger, chief executive and co-founder of Skyblog, Europe’s top social network site.

-snip-

HOLLYWOOD IN THEIR POCKET

Younger people spend more time online than watching television, have access to millions of on-demand content channels and are fueling a boom in video gaming, an industry that is bigger in terms of sales than Hollywood’s box office.

As some media executives note, who needs Hollywood when almost every teenager carries a personalized film studio in a phone in their back pocket?

“The people coming into and out of college don’t look at things in terms of media or marketing. They look at what is cool,” said James Hilton, co-founder and executive creative director of advertising consultancy Akqa.

This was borne out at the Cannes’ Advertising festival earlier this month, where thousands of advertising executives met to brainstorm on the next big idea.

Akqa held a creative competition at the festival inviting young talent to draft an ad campaign using tools not available five years ago.

Art director Todd Parker, 27, and copywriter Peter Trueblood, 26, picked up joint trophies for an Earth Day campaign using 3-D City-making imaging and Google mapping to show the future impact of global warming.

Interacting with the campaign triggered snow falls on mountain peaks to symbolize how action makes a difference.

“Technologic advances, changing media landscape and the way messages are consumed has turned convention on its head,” the two said in an e-mail response. “There are only two possible reactions to this — terror or excitement. We choose both, we’re terrified about how excited we are.”

-snip-

David Brown, who studies at the Miami Ad School, picked up a trophy for an interactive campaign he created for Prevent Child Abuse America. One element of this showed a digital billboard whose image changed as donations were texted to a specified phone number, transforming a sad child into a happy one.

Although Brown is only 25, he looks to his teenage brother for inspiration.

“The scary thing is that, when I watch my younger brother and his friends, I’m amazed at the stuff they pull off with their camera phones and cutting video and editing and making songs,” said Brown. “It’s great to be in this industry now when you never know what’s going to happen tomorrow.”

Stylehive gets rave reviews at TechCrunch; for it’s style.

Stylehive gets rave reviews at TechCrunch; for it’s style.

Stylehive is a social bookmarking site that is focused on shopping. I believe that there is promise in this space, which includes the just funded Kaboodle, as well as Wists and the upcoming Plum. Why? Because 80% of online shopping is “research” and only 20% is actually “buying”. Stylehive addresses the 80% piece of the market.

Stylehive, designed by Emily Chang and Max Kiesler at Ideacodes, is also a visually stunning site – just check out the home page. They are focusing specifically on hot designs and trends.

Read the whole post and comments about stylehive at TechCrunch.