Ben Young
Ben Young
March 15, 2024

Edition #440

Even sandwich shops need adtech? Tailoring with Monocle and music videos are back. 

The week before last was the grand opening of a new sandwich shop around the corner. I learnt about it, by cycling past, and saw them taking a grand opening sign being taken in. Then that Friday, on Threads, I follow @nyc_forfree, which announced that yes indeed it was opening, and they were offering free sandwiches that day! It was torrential with rain. Later in the day, another member of a Facebook group shared they had been in line, and got a sandwich. I had looked up the shop on Google Maps, but it wasn’t existent. After a day, there it was, with 1 review, from 1000 sandwiches given out on launch!

But it got me thinking, the discovery was very inorganic, and repetition was important. But surely, you’d want the Google Maps listing on launch day?! Or even before. Then you could buy ads in Google Maps to help promote it too. For the proprietors, you’re so rushed, just trying to get everything done to be ready, making sure payments are working, the right supplies, enough supplies.

This is where AI is exciting for advertising, all of this set up could (and will be) greatly accelerated in getting set up. Customers share the reviews, images, which can be amplified. I guess it’s easy now to say that can happen, but actually making it happen is another thing.

Notable stories this week

  • Why newsletter signups should always be your north star.
  • Here’s why agencies have no idea who X creators are.
  • AP launches e-commerce site with Taboola.
  • There’s a lot wrong with Google and Meta’s non-transparent ‘refund’ practices.
  • Apple has begun testing an AI-powered ad product similar to Google’s Performance Max.
  • Spotify is rolling out music videos.
  • There’s a documentary coming about ad fraud.
  • Telegram: social media giant or the new ‘dark web?’
  • Adelaide launches Flight Control.
  • UTA and Kassan break up.
  • Wayne Blodwell launches, Attention Weekly.
  • How attention-guaranteed media buys will impact the industry.
  • X launches articles.
  • When did we become a rev-share-first, not client-first industry?
  • Advertisers slowly acknowledge that measurement, not targeting, might be the bigger cookie deprecation challenge.
  • Where web users spend time vs where traffic referrals originate.
  • What brands can learn from Stanley and the buying power of women.
  • Sharethrough and Adform announce direct integration.
  • Why more publishers aren’t transacting on attention… yet.
  • [From us] Bringing attention to email.
  • [Long long form] Are Amazon and other ad tech vendors serving ANA members ads on ‘made for arbitrage’ sites in 2024?


  • Deadspin sold by G/O Media.
  • Prescient AI raises $10m to help omnichannel brands optimize ad spend and maximize revenue.
  • TollBit raises $7m to solve the AI vs publisher conflict.
  • Threecolts acquires Marketplace Pulse.
  • Ad Ops Tech Startup Aditude acquires CPMStar to snag more direct gaming deals.
  • Kevel secures Series C funding.
  • Reddit aims to go public, although ad business has fallen short.
  • Fit Analytics reacquires IP from Snap, after it was shut down six months after being acquired.

Campaign of the week

  • Sometimes the best work is just the most simple. This four part series on Monocle with UBS, goes behind the scenes with a few high quality goods producers. This on on tailoring, is something their more discerning clients would care about. We predicted the attention on this piece at 33s.

View all 2024 best campaigns.

Smartest commentary

  • “Email is one of the only web distribution mechanisms that are both ubiquitous and decentralized. Sure, decentralized social networks exist, but most of your followers don’t have a Mastodon account, whereas every single one of them has an email address. A newsletter won’t eliminate all the damage done by a mistaken deplatforming, but it will blunt the damage and instill a greater peace of mind.”Simon Owens.

Datapoints of note

  • Taboola partnered with Time to launch a new site called “Time Stamped,” which now has 3 million monthly users.
  • More than 19.5m people tuned in to the Oscars.
  • The person with the most McDonalds points has 1.4m loyalty points.
  • Googe’s Gen AI search threatens publishers with $2b annual ad revenue loss.
  • Mondalez International plans $180m AI investment, 13% for hiring new roles. .

View all 2024 datapoints of note.

That’s it for this week.