The brand New York is hardly dying. New York magazine’s web traffic grew 19 percent in the last eight months, to more than nine million unique visitors a month, according to comScore. But to keep up that rate of growth in a competitive set that includes publicly held companies like The New York Times and upstarts like the venture-capital backed online news site BuzzFeed, the magazine had to reduce costs to find the money to fund the part of the business that is growing.
For Pandora, the failure of the Internet Radio Fairness Act could place it in a tough spot when its locked-in licensing rates from the major record labels expire in 2015. It must either obtain rates from the Copyright Board, which has set high rates in the past, or negotiate directly with the labels, who aren’t necessarily fond of Pandora.
Nearly a century of research has shown how print-magazine ads can best grab readers’ attention: the optimal mix of colors, compelling copy, uncluttered formats and other graphical techniques. But how well can print compel consumers to actions that help drive purchases — like visiting websites?The latest data from GfK MRI Starch Advertising Research show that ads for a wide range of product categories, from cosmetics to cruises, were effective in prompting consumers to visit websites. Endemic ads — highly targeted messages in publications whose editorial content is closely related to the ads — comprise just over half of these top performers.
In June, eMarketer said advertisers would spend $1.88 billion on sponsored content this year, a 22.1% boost from 2012, and would get to $3.08 billion in spending on sponsored content by 2017. The new forecast predicts that marketers will spend $1.9 billion on sponsored content this year, a 24% hike from last year, and devote $3.2 billion to the tactic by 2017.
For those who do understand how to sell programmatic inventory, their publication’s offering must also be distinct enough to win buyer dollars and keep them flowing. Even the best programmatic pitch can lose when pitted against the wealth of open-exchange inventory and data-enhanced premium inventory. “A lot of people are kind of freaked out about it. They should be,” said Vikram Somaya, general manager of WeatherFX, the Weather Company’s data-centric ad group. “The rate of change is not going to slow down.”
Online advertising has a fraud problem. Millions of ad impressions are being served to bots and non-human traffic, and ad tech companies are doing little to stop it. Digiday spoke with a former publishing executive who said he knowingly purchased fraudulent traffic and sold it on to advertisers in the past year. In fact, it was his former company’s business model. Here’s what he said:
“Native is a table stakes for every marketer and every publisher,” Meridith Kopit Levien told an audience at Sharethrough’s Native Advertising Summit in Chicago. Banner ads, she added, are a “huge and important business” at the Times, but they will become more automated and standardized over time. Many publishers hope native ads will help counter the downward pressure on ad rates that’s created by those trends.
“The problem for traditional media outlets isn’t just that these new players are hiring away their existing and future journalists — it’s that they didn’t even notice they were becoming serious comeptitors until it was too late.”
“I think I can begin to discern the vague outlines of how digital publishing might eventually be able to deliver the kind of scale and impact that brand advertisers demand from TV and glossy magazines. I don’t know who the winner is going to be. But I do think that (Henry) Blodget is right about one thing: whoever the winner is, they will have to have some very deep pockets. Winning this game won’t come cheap.” Felix Salmon at Reuters