Ben Young
Ben Young
December 15, 2017

It’s Friday and things are starting to unwind, check out the best Christmas ads of 2017 (there is a NZ piece in there you should watch). In Nu-zee-land we even liked it.
Notable Stories this Week

  • Google warns of widespread video ad fraud, estimating $1.27b due to inventory impersonation by bad actors.
  • ^ I like where these market trends are going, if the industry can get ahead of fraud, marketers results will go up, CPMs will go up, publishers will monetize more effectively. All very good things.
  • Vox Media’s Lindsay Nelson on the state of digital media. Podcast link included. < do check out.
  • Am really enjoying these walk through case studies on Native Advertising Institute, this talks through how Berghs Communications School in Sweden partnered to drive broader awareness.
  • Check out Jonah Peretti’s essay on expanding to a multi-revenue model. And related, Refinery29 undergoes layoffs.
  • GiveMeSport is growing revenue by cutting ads. In doing so, they saw return users go from four times a month to seven, and a 13% increase in pageviews/visit. Overall the project helped grow digital revenue from 50% to 72% of their total revenue between March & September.
  • WashingtonPost is focused on selling content internationally, embracing the lessons learned in the US market.
  • Consumers place trust in publishers sites, indicating feed fatigue.
  • [Long read but good] Mic claims head start in multi-billion dollar market to serve millennials with news.


  • UK ‘native’ product placement Mirriad plans to go public.

Campaign of the Week

  • Spotify & T Brand Studio, how accurate are the 2017’s hit songs? Fact checking the lyrics. A fun (but maybe weird?) ok lets say fresh take on fact checking ha. A little poking fun at fake news in a way.

Smartest commentary

  • ‘Digital media was drunk on scale’Lindsay Nelson, CMO, Vox Media
  • 'Too many marketers get bogged down in producing “catchy” headline and imagery, rather than focusing on the more important element: user experience after the click. If you provide relevant and engaging content, your ad, which is essentially a summary of that content, will shine.'Vitaly Pecherskiy, COO, StackAdapt

Datapoints of note

  • A Google study looked at the total available inventory across all exchanges for the 26 web domains, the study found video callouts were overstated by 57 times the available inventory; representing about 700m counterfeit callouts per day.
  • BuzzFeed generated $52m from Facebook, Amazon, Netflix & Google this year. Roughly a quarter of their revenue.

P.S. Haven’t commented on net neutrality, just letting that simmer and will share more in the final edition next week.