Good morning and happy Monday!

Last week, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) announced a new division – Measurement for Marketers (MFM) — which aims to level the playing field in the ad measurement space. With the digital industry surging toward increased transparency and ad safety initiatives, ANA is taking a natural step to support it by making efforts to keep measurement standards in check.

For advertisers and marketers, this move could pave the way for a sanctioned baseline of measurement standards that could help contribute to a cleaner ad ecosystem. While the agenda and vision are still being fleshed out, ANA said the unit is expected to be fully operational by January 2020.

When it comes to developing creative for over-the-top (OTT) and connected TV, it can be challenging for marketers to determine which ad formats could drive the desired level of engagement. Les Seifer, head of creative at Tremor Video’s in-house Creative Studio, offers up a few tips for building the types of creative that will win over advanced TV audiences. From leveraging automated content recognition technology to advertising in high-trafficked screen inventory, Seifer says it’s critical that marketers are first able to recognize the available technical capabilities. By understanding all technical and creative possibilities, advertisers can develop the ad experiences that best reflect viewer behavior.

There’s more to read below, including why marketers should be focused on creating content for the critical moments of a customer’s journey rather than creating content for the sake of content alone. 

Taylor Peterson,
Deputy Editor


Your customers are everywhere, but here’s why you don’t need to be

We think brand leaders pay creative agencies for big, bold ideas. Ironically, they tend to pick the safest option: pushing piles of expected content through as many channels as possible. But just because there are more that agencies can do, doesn’t mean they should be doing it. In fact, research revealed the following conclusion: the future of effective content marketing is, well, less content. 

Blog content, for example, isn’t generating the kind of gains marketers expect given the time and money they put into it. A BuzzSumo analysis of one million blog posts revealed that 50% of randomly selected posts received only eight shares or less. New apps aren’t faring much better. In fact, few consumers find branded apps useful at all, with more than 90% of branded apps having fewer than 10,000 downloads. So, why are brand leaders still introducing content to new channels despite the low payoff? The competition for attention has never been steeper. 

Now, consider the impact of one of the most celebrated marketing acts in recent memory: Fearless Girl. Billions of impressions generated from a single, culturally relevant brand expression. And yet the marketing team for State Street Global Advisors only spent $250,000 – and that includes working media and production. This proves that by limiting your scope of work and focusing on the critical moments in your customer’s journey, two things happen: you increase your odds of delivering an exceptional experience (instead of a potentially mediocre one), and you avoid diluting your resources. It’s a win-win.

– Theresa Forman, president of the McMillan Agency


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Video Shorts

YouTube stops counting ad views to rank music videos

YouTube announced last Friday it would no longer count video views generated from paid advertising to calculate its music chart rankings. From here on out, it will only use organic views to rank artists’ videos. “Video advertising is an effective way to reach specific audiences with a song debut, but paid advertising views on YouTube will no longer be considered when looking at a 24-hour record debut,” writes YouTube on its official blog. 

Previously, YouTube Music Charts, a listing of the most popular new releases from bands and musicians on the platform, counted all views to rank the most popular music videos. Artists and production companies with ad budgets could potentially get their music video debuts further up the list by running the videos as paid ads — a tactic some would consider unfair since not all artists debuting new music have the same advertising budgets as major music labels.

By removing views generated from paid advertisements, YouTube aims to level the playing field for its music charts, adding more transparency to its ranking system and putting in place the same policies used by official charting companies like Billboard and Nielsen. 

“Our goal is to ensure YouTube remains a place where all artists are accurately recognized and celebrated for achieving success and milestones,” writes YouTube, “Videos eligible for YouTube’s 24-hour record debuts are those with the highest views from organic sources within the first 24 hours of the video’s public release.”  

YouTube defines “organic sources” as direct links to the video, search results, external sites that embed the video and YouTube features such as the platform’s homepage, watch next and trending sections. The company said the changes will not impact its existing 24-hour record debut holders. 

What we're reading

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

Can Facebook Conversational Ads Raise Click-Through Rates?  – CMS Wire

6 Things to Do Now to Get Your Ecommerce Site Holiday Ready – Multichannel Merchant

How UX Can Shape DTC Brand Strategy – AdExchanger

Majority of NFL fans watched opening week games via streaming, apps – Mobile Marketer

Spotify Cracks Down on Family Plan Misuse By Periodically Vetting Where You Live – Spotify

Microsoft is working on foldable Surface devices with liquid-powered hinges – The Verge

Pandora debuts a desktop app for Windows – TechCrunch