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Weekly Roundup: Ad Spend During Elections, US Podcast Ad Revenue, New Privacy Features in Chrome, and More

“This email may trigger the 30-day period for the business to cure their violation of the law which is a prerequisite of the attorney general, my office, bringing an enforcement action."

Summary

  • The Wall Street Journal reports an expected ad spend of $9 billion during the midterm elections. This year’s amount will be double of 2018’s ad spend.
  • eMarketer’s recent chart of the day shows News content received the major share of podcast ad revenue in the US in 2020. Comedy and Science were the next top earners.
  • The latest PwC forecast predicts a 2.6% annual compound growth rate in the Australian ad market till 2025. In monetary terms, the market size will reach $19.6 billion.
  • The Network Advertising Initiative has introduced a new tool to opt-out from hashed email-based identifiers. But people have to submit their emails if they want to opt-out.
  • The Department of Justice has brought a new tool for California citizens to crowdsource CCPA implementation. The citizens can use it to create and send emails to companies that may be violating the law.
  • Chrome has added new privacy features that allow users to change site permissions with ease.
  • Overtime is providing third-party verified metrics (in addition to internal metrics) to attract new advertisers. Doing so is helping the publisher build trust and bring an outside perspective towards its audience.
  • BuzzFeed is live streaming on Amazon and Facebook to provide live shopping. The company wants to build its live-shopping platform in the future.

Ad Tech Trends for Publishers

Ad Spend During Midterm Elections

The Wall Street Journal reports an expected ad spend of $9 billion during the midterm elections. This year’s amount will be double of 2018’s ad spend. While almost half of it ($4.57 billion) will go to Broadcast TV, digital formats will attract $1.29 billion.

Facebook and other fundraising tools will accelerate the spending in digital formats. Raising the funds online is much easier and more scalable than physical means.

US Podcast Ad Revenue Share by Genre

eMarketer’s recent chart of the day shows News content received the major share of podcast ad revenue in the US in 2020. Comedy and Science were the next top earners. Other genres like Society and Culture, Business, and True Crime were further below in the list.

The source of the chart is IAB and PwC’s U.S. Podcast Advertising Revenue Study. The study tracks the presently nascent podcast market, and it releases its findings annually. The ad spends in podcasts is currently expanding at full speed with double-digit growth expected to continue till 2025. 

Ad Spend Recovery in Australia

The latest PwC forecast predicts a 2.6% annual compound growth rate in the Australian ad market till 2025. In monetary terms, the market size will reach $19.6 billion. The growth will come after the market fell by 8% to $15.4 billion in the year to December 2020. (Src)

The 8% fall consisted mainly of losses by entertainment and out-of-home (OOH) channels. On the other hand, other media channels like digital news experienced growth in readerships. Moreover, digital advertising grew by $9.3 billion. The trend of consumer-generated revenue has also picked up and more ad-free content is available if the users are willing to pay.

New Privacy Tools for Consumers

Opt-out tool for email-based identifiers

While the industry is slowly adopting email-based identifiers, the Network Advertising Initiative has introduced a new way to opt-out from them. The non-profit, self-regulatory association requires its member companies to provide an opt-out from services using hashed or encrypted emails. But, not every identifier is the same. So, the question remains, how would the tool work with every other identifier?

The NAI member sites will have a link to the tool inside privacy policies or data collection choice areas. But the irony is that people have to submit their emails to it if they want to opt-out. Top players like Facebook and LiveRamp are already not supporters of the new mechanism (because they are not NAI members). Additionally, with opt-out links buried inside privacy policies, it’s least likely that the tool would have a significant impact on personalized ads.

Some notable names that’ll support the tool are Google, Neustar, Oracle Data Cloud, Inmar, and Verizon Media. They can all be seen on NAI’s opt-out page. Interested users can visit the page, submit their emails, and select the NAI members they want to avoid.

A New tool for CCPA Implementation

The Department of Justice has brought a new tool for California citizens to crowdsource CCPA implementation. The citizens can use the tool to create and send emails to companies that may be violating the law. It’ll ask a series of questions like “Does the business have a ‘Do Not Sell My Personal Information’ link on its website or its mobile app?” Once answered all the questions, it’ll draft an email accordingly. The receiving company has to act on the request and resolve it.

“This email may trigger the 30-day period for the business to cure their violation of the law which is a prerequisite of the attorney general, my office, bringing an enforcement action.”

California Attorney General Rob Bonta

There are concerns that the tool can cause email bombardments to the companies even when they are complying with the law. Such a situation can make it difficult for the companies to function efficiently towards the requests. Also, there are questions in front of the ad tech industry that need clarification. For example, whether the 30-day period starts when someone sends a letter or after receiving separate correspondence from the AG’s office? 

In the initial days of CCPA, we saw people complaining that the law was being implemented in a hurry. We hope that the same doesn’t happen with the new tool as well.

New Privacy Features in Chrome

Chrome has added some new privacy features that might affect your site. Here’s a quick update:

  • The users can click the lock icon on the left side of the address bar and check the permissions they’ve given to your site. From there, they can toggle the sharing options for your site. For example, location access can be blocked with just a click.
  • Users can now access security settings via Chrome Actions. It means they just have to type “safety check”, “manage security settings”, “manage sync”, etc., to open relevant controls and make changes.
  • Chrome’s site isolation feature will cover a broader range of sites. The feature limits data and process sharing capabilities if a site appears malicious. You can learn more about site isolation here.
  • Chrome’s phishing detection is now 50 times faster. If your site appears like a known phishing site, Chrome can prevent users from visiting it.

Make sure your site appears safe to Chrome so that it is not blocking users. If the location or any other information is important to you and your visitors are not allowing it, educate them about why it is needed.

Strategies from top publishers

Overtime: Third-Party Verification

Overtime is a sports publisher focussed on social video with 35 million unique monthly viewers. Currently, it is providing third-party verified metrics (in addition to internal metrics) to attract new advertisers. Doing so is helping the publisher build trust and bring an outside perspective towards its audience. Also, the data from third-party and social platforms can be used together to make better decisions about content creation.

Overtime is working with Tubular Labs for third-party verifications. Stephen DiMarco, chief strategy officer at Tubular Labs explains, “[To date], we probably ingest upwards of at least 5 billion videos across every content category. We’ve got 1,500 categories that map to 24 genres, one of those, of course, would be sports. And within that, we’re processing videos every day, creating a taxonomy that allows companies like Overtime to very quickly identify trending sports content that could be appealing to one demographic or one geographic. Overtime can then decide, “Do we want to create some content?” Or, “Do we want to partner with an influencer here?”

BuzzFeed: Livestream Shopping

BuzzFeed is creating hours-long programming that highlights shoppable products to its audience. The publisher is streaming the videos on Amazon Live and Facebook. Ultimately, the company wants to build a live stream platform that will work on BuzzFeed’s owned and operated sites.

BuzzFeed is creating live streams with the help of its in-house talents and other social media influencers. The content in the streams is tailored to promote sales. For example, live unboxing, live testing of products, etc. BuzzFeed is currently working on a revenue share model. As the project is at its initial stage, the publisher won’t disclose the details for now.

Live shopping isn’t a new concept. We have all seen hours-long TV shows that ask us to call their toll-free numbers to order the products on our screens. The digital format can give a lot more interactive experience through live chats, online carts, etc. It is a new avenue that publishers should explore.

Moments That Matter

AT&T scrambles to sell ad tech unit Xandr after months of mismanagement – Axios

Advertiser Perceptions Cookieless Future Report Captures A “Snapshot” Of Industry Evolution – Adexchanger

Shifts appear in the publisher-SSP union, as alternative identifiers proliferate – Digiday

Piloting a new ‘strikes’ system to address repeat ad policy violations – Google Ads Help

Automatad Team

At Automatad, we help publishers to monetize better without hampering the user experience. Our products are live across hundreds of publishers, earning them incremental ad revenue with every passing second. You can request a free audit to get an estimated revenue uplift today.

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