Weekly Digital News Roundup: September 20-24
Pinterest Announces First Ad Product: Promoted Pins
- According to Mashable, it’s been a long time coming: Pinterest, the heavily funded, 3 year-old image and video-sharing network, announced Thursday that it is going to begin experimenting with paid advertising. The product is called “promoted pins,” and it borrows from Twitter’s and Facebook’s ad products of the same name. Essentially, businesses will be able to pay to show certain pins at the top of search results and category feeds.
- In a blog post announcing the product, Pinterest founder and CEO Ben Silbermann promised the ads would be “tasteful” and “transparent.” There will be no “flashy banners” or pop-up ads, he wrote, and the site will clearly differentiate sponsored and organic pins. They’ll also aim for relevancy: A search for “Halloween” might produce a pin of an outfit from an online costume shop.
- Pinterest has investors — who have put in $338 million into the company — to pay back, and a $2.5 billion valuation to justify. With such a large audience base, advertising is an obvious place for Pinterest to seek out revenue.
A Google Cookie Replacement Could Upend Online Advertising
- According to AdAge, publishers and others worried about the decline of cookies, the web’s foundational technology for targeting display advertising, may welcome an effort by Google to come up with a replacement. But such a move would also drastically grow the search giant’s grasp on the industry.
- Google is looking to create an advertising-specific identifier to replace the third-party cookies that companies now use to track browsing behavior across the web and target ads, people familiar with the effort said this week, confirming a report in USA Today on Tuesday. A Google spokeswoman said the company has “a number of concepts” to improve consumer privacy while keeping the web economy intact, but said they are all in “very early stages.”
- Google has already made some headway toward cross-channel targeting and attribution. Users of its Android mobile operating system and Chrome desktop and mobile browsers are usually logged in and can have their activities connected, especially after Google consolidated its privacy policies last year so that users’ behaviors across Google’s various products could be tied together. “In order to pay for a better and more expensive internet we need to continue to improve online advertising,” said Zach Coelius, CEO of automated ad buying company Triggit. “There are only two ways we can do that: One is to make the ads more intrusive, bigger and in your face, or two, we can make them more targeted so that we no longer have so much waste with the wrong ads going to the wrong people. Google and most of the rest of us think the second option is much, much better.”
Facebook Adds Mobile Measurement Tool To Aid Telecom Marketers
- According to MediaPost, in its latest effort to link advertising on Facebook with offline sales, the social networking giant has introduced a new service that analyzes users’ mobile phones and wireless providers. It determines which ones switched devices or carriers after viewing an ad.
- Facebook said the new Telco Outcome Measurement tool has shown telecom ads displayed in the desktop news feed are seven times more effective than right-side placements, while those in mobile are nine times more effective than ads on the desktop. The new service, which Facebook said keeps users’ personal information shielded from marketers, is rolling out [this week] to telecom industry advertisers widely in nine countries, including the U.S., with a goal of 25 by year’s end.
- “We can provide our partners with insights regarding ROI, differences in adoption rates of devices or carriers segmented by demographic groups, and the types of ads and frequency of placements that yield the best ROI for carriers and operators,” stated a Facebook blog post. Since going public last year, Facebook has taken greater steps to convince marketers that advertising on the social network pays off in real world sales.