Facebook Claims 25 Million Fake Americans in Reachable Audience
September 10, 2017, 10:39 pm
Filed under: Programmatic, Social Media, Web

FB was also busted recently for claiming there are more 18 year old males in the UK than actually exist. They are quickly earning the nick-name Fakebook, according to the article below.

And if it appears FB is vastly over estimating the size of their B2C audience, I’m told their audiences are even worse when they try to target a narrow vertical like commercial-farmers-in-Canada. An agency shared a story with me about using FB to target commercial farms around Lethbridge, Alberta. FB tried to claim there were several times more farmers viewed the ads than could possibly have existed in the geotargeted area.

No idea what the cost per thousand commercial farms ended up being for that Lethbridge targeted campaign. I’d sure be interested to know.

It’s little wonder that FB refuses to be 3rd party audited.


Projected Rise in Purchases Of Programmatic-Direct Web Inventory
August 14, 2017, 1:05 pm
Filed under: Programmatic, Web

So what is Programmatic-Direct? Well, basically, it’s when a vendor has multiple, proprietary sites and they make the display ad inventory available “directly with a fixed price and inventory.”

The CEO of MediaRadar, gave his take, saying: “…there is a ‘flight to quality.’ And the reasons for this aren’t a secret; too much fraud and a lack of reliable targeting in the usual open-programmatic markets.

Consequently, advertisers who are concerned with real ROI and brand safety are moving to the only sure way to avoid that weak targeting and fraudulent reporting: stop buying inventory on the open-programmatic market.

It may take more time and resources to buy digital media this way, so will it be worth it? I’m saying yes. What do you think?

Proctor & Gamble’s Marc Pritchard: We are 40-50% of the way to cleaning up digital
June 23, 2017, 12:52 pm
Filed under: Programmatic, Social Media, Web

I think the really interesting part of this article is how Marc Pritchard addresses whether it’s important that ads appear adjacent to good content.

He says that marketers now need to turn their attention to the content around which brands advertise. He believes it is publishers’ responsibility to bring a “quality and craft approach” to the content and advertising space. “There’s a lot of crap there and we need to eliminate that so we can get better content to advertise on.”

Clearly Marc Pritchard believes that it’s important that P&G’s ads appear adjacent to content that is valuable, relevant, accurate, and acceptable. This is in stark contrast to the notion put forward Canadian Google VP Jason Kee who told the Globe and Mail that “all they [advertisers] care about is reaching a certain audience.”

Marc Pritchard is right. Jason Kee is wrong. Mic-drop.

Google is OK with Brand safety being a frustrating game of Whack-A-Mole
April 3, 2017, 1:38 pm
Filed under: Programmatic, Social Media, Web

In Jan 2017 Google Canada’s lead lobbyist, Jason Kee, was in Ottawa convincing politicians that Canadian websites shouldn’t be protected the same way other Canadian mediums are (See “Google fights proposed tax change to Canadian online advertising” Globe and Mail). His logic, “There is no way for advertisers to know if their ads are showing up on Canadian websites or not, all they care about is reaching a certain audience.” And there you have it, right from the horse’s mouth. Put another way, Mr. Kee is admitting there is little control onto which sites ad impressions are served and moreover; it doesn’t matter.

He’s wrong. It does matter.

Maybe it’s slightly less of an issue in the B2C world, but in the B2B world it’s critical that ads are adjacent to relevant, acceptable content because branding and awareness are still mission-critical advertising activities. B2B purchasers don’t spend, they invest.

This is where B2B advertisers need to be particularly cautious buying programmatically. The social media publishers and programmatic vendors struggle to keep ad impressions adjacent to relevant, acceptable content because of (a) their gigantic volumes of semi-vetted content and/or (b) the middle men that can make site blacklists ineffective. See article below.

The question then becomes; assuming a reader’s “affinities” have been accurately identified, are B2B advertisers comfortable with Mr.Kee’s assertion that in terms of serving ad impressions, adjacency to ANY web content is acceptable? I hope for the sake of the shareholders in that B2B brand’s equity, the answer is ‘no’.

Google under fire as brands pull advertising and ad industry demands action
March 21, 2017, 12:37 am
Filed under: Web

I would make the argument that in our B2B world of competitor’s websites and anti-industry rhetoric, protecting brand integrity with adjacency to acceptable content is even more critical than the B2C world.

And the push back begins. Check it out……

I’m not inclined to agree with this statement from the above article, “However, a 100% foolproof system may not be possible.” On the contrary, there are some very effective, 100% foolproof ways to ensure web ads are only adjacent to acceptable, relevant content……just none of them are programmatic.

Domain spoofing remains a huge threat to programmatic
March 1, 2017, 10:39 am
Filed under: Other, Social Media, Web

What’s domain spoofing and how does it mess up programmatic buying?

“The way it works is that a buyer may see the URL for (be it CNN or Huffington Post or any number of sites out there) but, in reality, is buying from a completely unrelated site,”

This is likely the most important line from this article because I talk to a lot of advertisers who think they are protected from programmatic fraud through their white or black lists of sites. “Blacklists and whitelists….wouldn’t help because those approaches can hardly verify an impression. Since a bid request has to go through many hoops (a tag within a tag within a tag), it is difficult for even verification vendors to catch fake domains….”

Marketing Across 3 Generations
December 11, 2015, 9:59 am
Filed under: Other, Web

Nice piece that tackles our two largest target demographics segments (by far): Baby boomers and Gen X’ers. They represent about 90% of commercial farm mangers according to our last email reader survey.

It’s always a little creepy to hear a description of your “generation”. But, as a proud former owner of an Atari 5200 game console, I’d say their characterization is pretty sound.