Ben Young
Ben Young
April 3, 2019

Each week, we look through the stories, and it is a balance of programmatic vs native vs content vs media. But since we started the newsletter, these have all become intertwined (which is a good thing). I just wanted to call that out, for those that might have been wondering if we were covering less of one or another. The market is maturing and evolving. As evidenced by some of the stats below.

Berlin readers, our own Gustaf Stenlund is in town next week, if you want to trade notes.

One big thing
The reason for no newsletter last week has led to a cascading series of events all around the world. I’d be remiss to not talk about it and the perfect storm it has created:

As a kiwi from New Zealand, I have an acute awareness of both the NY view and the NZ view. Here’s the topic threads with local links.

1) Facebook avoiding taxes

Facebook in New Zealand, for example, has filed no financial returns to the Companies Office since August 2015, despite foreign-owned companies normally being required to do so.

The accounts for the year to December 2014 – the last on record – show the company declared total revenue here of just $1.2 million and managed to record a loss of $31,198.

Before last Friday, that was no more than the generally outrageous shenanigans we’ve come to expect from borderless tech firms.

Today, such an absence of respect and engagement from a company whose tools were fundamental parts of a plan to inflict such pain and savagery in this country are an intolerable insult.”

All this whilst Zuckerberg remains silent.

I can’t offer any solutions, the solutions are self evident – it’s that lack of action that needs attention.

2) Platforms that allow content to spread like wildfire, should also be responsible for controlling that.

“We cannot simply sit back and accept that these platforms just exist and that what is said on them is not the responsibility of the place where they are published. They are the publisher. Not just the postman,”Jacinda Ardern, NZ Prime Minister.

“There cannot be a case of all profit, no responsibility… I don’t have all of the answers now, but we must collectively find them.”

3) People charged for re-uploading the video.

Up to 14 years jail time in NZ. And another for also uploading the video.

This poses a question, should Facebook (or will they be) sharing the names of those that did upload? Should they? I suspect in NZ they will be compelled too.

The events are horrific – and Facebook is right in the cross-fire, for not contributing back to the economy, for not taking responsibility of the content tools it has built, to the legality around the content hosted.

Notable stories this week

  • Instagram launches in-app purchasing, fast forward, people will be worried about being too integrated in to Instagram. One thing this will elevate, is a better mechanism for understanding trust and quality of a DTC brand. This is elevated by all the ‘content hacks’ people do to grow, what look like authentic accounts.
  • ^ And it looks like Dan Frommer is on it with his new publication.
  • Turner dangles commerce tools, to offer full funnel solutions to advertisers.
  • [Long read] Strategy needs good words. <<< please read.
  • TripleLift (formally) launches in NZ and AU. Seems like Kevin Delie has been busy!
  • Advertisers spend more on native, but favor the same formats.
  • Influencer marketing under pressure to show results.
  • Sharethrough launches Enhanced Ads (which sounds like native display?) to help work around supply limitations.
  • Brian O’Kelley interviewed on AdExchanger.
  • Diageo’s Andrew Geoghegan on the fact that marketers are still failing to put their audience first.


  • Futurism acquired by Singularity University. Post-acquisition to provide branded content creation and distribution to Singularity’s members and clients.

Smartest commentary

  • “Moving on to measuring success, ignore the latest fads and focus on real business impact – sales. How many people you reach still seems to be the ultimate driver. To get the right comparative view of channels, it is important to measure reach in a channel-specific way, recognising that the conditions necessary to create a proper branded impression are different.”Andrew Geoghegan, Global Consumer Planning Director at Diageo
  • “In the world of the internet, we have handed over privacy for utility time and again, and that rubber ad has been stretched as far as it will go before snapping. We have had a massive shift in the last 12 months.”James Poulter, CEO, Vixen Labs
  • “No one questions a brand’s need for a website. Content should be non-negotiable too.”Shawna Dennis, Financial MD
  • “I don’t want to think outside of the box, I want to kill it inside the box. Give me the tools needed to build the parameters, and I’ll give you my best.”Brad Young, VP Digital Content at Prudential

Datapoints of note

  • Turners Launchpad has nearly done 1,000 campaigns for advertisers.
  • 55% of marketers say trust between clients and advertisers is “moderate,” 29% say it’s “high,” and 17% say it’s low.
  • 88.8% of native ads in the US will become more mobile, up from 85.2% in 2018. Likewise, 87.7% of native will be purchased programmatically in 2020, up from 86.7% in 2018. The share of native that comes from social will slightly decline from 76.7% in 2018 to 73.5% in 2020.


  • NY Rugby! New York has a Rugby Team now, and it’s doing really well. If you’d like to come along to a game, let us know.

The Nudge team & Friends at RugbyNY!



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