This Week in Digital Advertising: July 17th, 2020

This Week in Digital Advertising: July 17th, 2020

Hello Bidtellectuals! We’re halfway through July – can you believe it? Congratulations to Star Bidtellectual DUO Jason Taylor and Helgi Ragnarsson! We don’t know what we’d do without you.

B2B & Coronavirus: The Digital Opportunity

B2B sales during coronavirus are holding steady thanks to ecommerce. In fact, the pandemic has accelerated a clear shift to ecommerce, online sales, and digital events due to the new work-from-home normal. This acceleration might also be due to the ease of payment provided by various online platforms. A payment provider study tends to reveal that there is a significant rise in the number of people choosing online modes of payment after the pandemic has set in. It would not only save people’s time but also diminishes the chances of contracting the virus, which may result due to visiting a store for shopping something. The problem, however, is B2Bs are spending more on content creation than on distribution: 43% of US B2B Marketers are reallocating event marketing budgets not used because of coronavirus to content creation. Speaking of, it might also be a wise idea to save up on some of that event marketing money; once things start going back to normal, there could be an explosion in the number of B2B events held worldwide. Who knows what potential a personalized tradeshow booth can hold at the time? Going by the best guess, there are chances that hybrid events, where advantages of both digital and in-person events can be put together, will start gaining popularity. Although we are seeing a rise in digitized marketing and advertising, the appeal of an in-person conversation with a vendor can never be replaced. That said, now is the perfect time to capitalize on the digital wave that plenty of B2B companies are riding. The golden opportunity is digital advertising, and experts are urging B2Bs to shift to digital advertising now more than ever. Read more and download our one sheet here.

Privacy Wars

The EU struck down the US-EU Privacy Shield, the transatlantic data-sharing framework. Europe is basically saying that their data standards can be trusted but those in the US cannot, according to Jonathan Kewley. More than 5,300 companies, most of them small or medium enterprises, rely on the Privacy Shield, and will now need additional contractual agreements directly with users to continue using data on both sides of the Atlantic.

The Latest Twitter-Gate

Ah, another social media scandal. Will these ever end? This one is kind of scary: Wednesday dozens of big names in politics, tech, and entertainment posted similar messages on Twitter: send Bitcoin and the user would send back double your money. Some of the names: Bill Gates, Barack Obama, Kanye West, Joseph R. BidenJr, and Elon Musk. Unable to stop the tweets at first, Twitter disabled the ability of verified users to tweet for a couple of hours. One theory points to a Twitter employee hacking the accounts in exchange for a payout. What if a more sinister tweet were administered from a world leader, let’s say? I mean, I feel like it might be time to switch your social ads over to a more brand-safe platform if you haven’t yet?? Download our one sheet.

5 Ways B2Bs Can Adjust Digital Strategy & Brand Messaging Based on Coronavirus Impact

The Move: Car Sales, Rideshares, and Public Transit

Uber is eyeing public transit. The OG ride-sharing app announced Thursday that it has acquired Routematch, an Atlanta-based company that provides software to more than 500 transit agencies. Routematch’s software provides trip planning, vehicle tracking, payment, and tools for fixed-route transit like buses as well as paratransit services.

And on the topic of cars, the ecommerce wand has touched car sales this pandemic, too. Including, but not limited to, looking here at how they can best generate auto leads online to help their sales. Online sales normally only account for 1% of all used car transactions, but now the number of people willing to buy a car online recently doubled, from 32% to 61%, according to a CarGurus survey in April. The logistics of buying and delivering cars online is still working out the kinks, but may this be the future?! Who knows, with this unprecedented jump in the domain of buying cars, leasing, too, might become an option for those who cannot afford to pay a lump sum as a down payment for the vehicle of their dreams. It might be that you or your company could use leasing to get a vehicle of choice for personal or business purposes.

Good News: Honeybees, Staycations, and Royal Weddings

The honeybee population bounced back after a brutal previous winter. Check out this Summer Safety Guide from safecations to beach safety to camping – the hottest new vacation trend. I ordered this super cute variety pack of face masks and now my outfits & mask can coordinate! And Princess Beatrice married ancé Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi in a private ceremony in Windsor Castle. Apparently, only twenty people attended! Imagine. (Any other Crown fans out there?)

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Charlotte Otremba is Sr. Manager of Communications and Marketing at Bidtellect.

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This Week in Digital Advertising: July 10th, 2020

This Week in Digital Advertising: July 10th, 2020

Hello Bidtellectuals! It sure does feel like summer… hope you are keeping cool! Congratulations to Star Bidtellectual Nicholas Herbst!

Is Social Media Advertising Sustainable?

Advertisers are feeling disillusioned with social media platforms. As of this week, more than 750 advertisers have boycotted Facebook. Concerns about safety have been brewing before this (remember Cambridge Analytica?); CCPA went into force on July 1, so the big platforms might soon be held accountable. Users feel distrustful anyway: social media is the least trusted media source at 39%, according to Edelman Trust Barometer, and 42% of users distrust ads on social networks according to a study by Nielson. Just last year, eMarketer reported that advertising outside social networks and programmatic native advertising are the fastest-growing categories of native. If you haven’t yet read Edelman’s sweeping 20 Years of Trust about the shifts in the media, political, and social landscape – do. Download our one sheet on social media and adapting assets for the open web.

The Potential Downfall of TikTok and Quibi

Meanwhile, TikTok users are panicking because reports emerged that the U.S. was considering banning TikTok and other Chinese-owned social media apps, according to statements made by U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this week. On top of this, the app experienced a glitch where likes and comments were disabled, leading users to think this might be the beginning of the end. It may be the beginning of the end for Quibi, the overhyped under-performing short-form content streaming service. A report says that Quibi lost 92% of its earlier users after free trials expired, but Quibi pushed back and said its count of downloads was incorrect. Still, Quibi spent hundreds of millions of dollars on content, high-prole celebrity partnerships, and marketing on a streaming service that might have thrived pre-Covid, but is now greatly underperforming. Download our one sheet.

Unfriending Facebook: Can Native Ads Outside Social Media Deliver?

 

ECommerce Will Save Us All

eMarketer’s latest report shows promise for ecommerce and a permanent shift to digital, and it’s saving the retail sector’s growth trajectory. Ecommerce is poised to grow 18.0% following a 14.9% gain in 2019, reflecting a notable increase in both the number of digital buyers and the average spending per buyer. Ecommerce sales have been driven by a surge in click-and-collect, allowing US consumers to make immediate purchases while minimizing human contact; click-and-collect growth is expected to hit 60.4% – up from the initial forecast of 38.6%. These gains reflect the pandemic’s impact on new buyers joining the online retail space, including 12.2% growth for those ages 65 and older. Consumers will rely on trustworthy retailers, so the key is to communicate regularly. Messaging should provide value and offer solutions, as well as cater to frugal spending. Read more messaging suggestions here.

Cancel Culture is Coming for…Cancel Culture

And speaking of social media, cancel culture is coming for everyone. Or is it? An open letter published in Harper’s and signed by authors, editors, journalists, and others including JK Rowling, Gloria Steinem, Noam Chomsky, and Malcom Gladwell, took aim at the pitfalls of the “cancel culture” including stifling dissent, free speech, and, ultimately, prohibiting advancement of society and ideas. For those unaware, cancel culture is this effect of “canceling” an individual for true problematic actions like blackface or minimal offenses like insensitive social media posts or simple discourse like publishing a conservative-leaning op-ed in the New York Times. Cancelling refers to demanding a boycott of the person’s work and channels henceforth and can include firing. Celebrities, authors, editors, journalists, influencers, and more have been subject to it. Some actions are unforgivable and“canceling” is warranted, but it leaves no room for apology or learning and moving forward. It assumes a kind of moral authority and a rigid, unchangeable human spirit. Still, the letter itself has its own criticisms, saying that the well-respected writers of the letter are just seeking to protect themselves from criticism and itself comes off as whiney and privileged – ironic, no?

Good News: Free Wedding Gowns, Mary W. Jackson, and DadYouTube Star

Massachusetts-based nonprofit Brides Across America is giving away wedding gowns to health care heroes in communities around the country. NASA named its D.C.headquarters for Mary W. Jackson, its first Black woman engineer that was part of the computing unit featured in the movie Hidden Figures. And this Dad is a new youtube star for his adorable how-to video series called Dad, How Do I?” The videos answer everyday questions like how to tie a tie, iron a men’s shirt, swap a car battery, and unclog a drain. My heart is warmed!

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Charlotte Otremba is Sr. Manager of Communications and Marketing at Bidtellect.

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B2B and Coronavirus: The Digital Advertising Opportunity

B2B and Coronavirus: The Digital Advertising Opportunity

B2B sales during coronavirus are holding steady thanks to ecommerce. Adapting to work-from-home and digital events is key. The golden opportunity is digital advertising, according to data.

Download: “B2B and Coronavirus: The Digital Advertising Opportunity”

The Good News: B2B Product Sales are Happening Now Thanks to Ecommerce

The pandemic has accelerated a clear shift to ecommerce and online B2B sales. Online purchases have not only risen from last year to this year but from pre- to post-onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Tech, financial services, and energy are benefiting the greatest out of the B2B sectors. Digital strategies will need to adjust to keep up –including shifting to greater digital advertising efforts and online sales use.

  • The number of online B2B purchases has risen from 41% before lockdown to 46% during lockdown (Wunderman Thompson Commerce via MarTech Series, June 2020)
  • B2B online purchases have increased by 24% since last year. (WundermanThompson Commerce via MarTech Series, June 2020)
  • There is a 23% increase in the worldwide average company revenue share driven by ecommerce before vs. during the coronavirus pandemic. Research (McKinsey & Company)
  • Even in the thick of the COVID-19 pandemic, more than half of US B2B buyers are currently considering purchases for their business (LeadMD via eMarketer, April 2020).

These are the B2B sectors experiencing minimal impact (as compared with others), according to eMarketer, May 2020:

  • Tech and telecom (21%)
  • Financial services (28%)
  • Energy and utilities (29%)

B2B Sales Strategy & Budget is Shifting From Live to Digital

With live/in-person events canceled en masse in mid-March and continuing concerns around face-to-face meetings (most offices won’t be opening until 2021), B2Bs are adjusting their strategy and leaning on digital channels. Virtual events, email reach out, and Zoom meetings are the new normal.

This is not just a temporary x; this will likely be a permanent strategy in the future.B2B marketers are even preferring digital reach out, and are recognizing the value in digital marketing and interactions.

  • Almost 90% of sales have moved to a videoconferencing (VC)/phone/web sales model, and while some skepticism remains, more than half believe this is equally or more effective than sales models used before COVID-19. (McKinsey, April 2020)
  • The same goes for live events: 49% of US B2B marketers replaced some of their live events with digital ones, while 19% used digital to replace most of their events (B2B Marketing Zone via eMarketer, March 2020)
  • B2B companies see digital interactions as two to three times more important to their customers than traditional sales interactions in the future. (McKinsey & Company, April 2020)

The B2B Opportunity: Digital Advertising

Buyers are online, and they are looking for answers to their company’s problems. Digital marketing, in the form of content marketing and distribution through high-quality digital advertising to scale, will be able to carry the load to reach target consumers, increase awareness and brand favorability, and establish B2Bs as a trusted source of expert information.

“Without in-person events fueling the top of the funnel with leads, digital channels will need to do that heavy lift, at least short term. It is critical to optimize all channels and weigh how much to spend and where.” (eMarketer, June 2020)

The problem is B2Bs are spending more on content creation than on distribution. 43% of US B2B Marketers are reallocating event marketing budgets not used because of coronavirus to Content Creation (eMarketer, March 2020).

The most important action steps B2B marketers can take is sharing the content they are creating with targeted buyers. As our CEO likes to say “If content is king, content distribution is king kong.” If no eyeballs see the content, it’s not worth its creation. Forbes recommended the same in their recent Five Ways To Pivot B2B MarketingPlans During The Pandemic, urging markets to leverage digital advertising as you reallocate marketing dollars. “With people currently spending more time at home and online, now is the time to jump into digital ads if you haven’t yet. Not only can ads help you build brand awareness, but they also can capture new leads”. 

A year ago in 2019, B2B companies in the US spent $6.08 billion on digital advertising, up 18.7% year over year, according to eMarketer. Even with this growth, eMarketer stated, B2B companies were slow to shift dollars to digital ads. Many still lacked the foundational data and technology to successfully leverage digital. There’s a gap that needs to be filled. B2B’s would do well to shift dollars and strategy to a full-service programmatic platform that has the technology to target buyers and decision-makers.

Further, utilizing contextual targeting in a digital platform can strategically deliver ads next to relevant content, complementing other intent strategies and delivering deep engagement with B2B’s content. (Read more about Just Media’s successful approach to B2B digital advertising here). Contextual optimization capabilities enable content to go beyond where standard banner and display ads can reach and in front of the eyes of decision-makers like CTOs and CIOs for meaningful engagement.

Another big opportunity: mobile. While more than 70% of total US digital ad dollars will go to mobile formats in 2019, B2Bs will spend just 37.3% of their digital ad dollars on mobile placements in 2019 (eMarketer)

In our opinion, “short term” is short-term thinking. This pandemic will instigate a long-term if not a permanent strategy and budget shift to digital.

Stay active in messaging: provide valuable information, truthful

Digital advertising will also keep B2Bs in touch with consumers. While some B2Bspaused their communication plans at the start of the pandemic, it should continue now if it hasn’t yet. B2Bs providing content that is relevant and useful will gain traction. Adjust messaging so it is informative and solution-oriented. According to eMarketer, B2Bs should show compassion and offer solutions and deals while being consultative during the pandemic.

B2B buyers agree. Roughly a third of B2B buyers said they would need more quality and accurate information about what they are buying, while 23% of respondents noted they would need to have more confidence in the purchases they are making (eMarketer, April 2020). The key is not just shoving information down buyers’ throats, but offering thoughtful, useful solutions and advice (products, services, and technology included) that will make their lives easier.

This includes catering to working-from-home. If B2Bs offer technology services to make working from home easier, this is their golden opportunity.

  • 30% of respondents of those spending more purchased video conferencing software (TrustRadius via eMarketer, April 2020)
  • 15% bought security software, such as VPNs and firewalls, to keep company information protected while working remotely. (TrustRadius via eMarketer, April 2020)

WATCH: 5 Ways B2Bs Can Adjust Digital Strategy & Brand MessagingBased on Coronavirus Impact

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Charlotte Otremba is Sr. Manager of Communications and Marketing at Bidtellect.

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This Week in Digital Advertising: May 15th

This Week in Digital Advertising: May 15th

An update on the state of the digital advertising industry.

Have you grown a beard this quarantine? You’re not alone! Beards are the hottest new Quarantine Trend and WWD has dubbed “The Corona-Beard” “Men’s NewQuarantine Hobby.” Even Joe Jonas was able to grow one! Bearded Bidtellectualsshared their expert tips here to keep your beard super suave – and prevent you from looking like Tom Hanks in Castaway.

Congrats to Bidtellectual of the Week Rob Komjathy! Not only is he a star at Bidtellect, but he’s had to postpone his wedding due to the coronavirus and has handled it with grace. Send him some love!

How to lead through a crisis

Simple: communicate, communicate, communicate. Bidtellect CEO Lon Otremba contributed to Forbes on the topic of crisis and leadership, and it is well worth the read. Keep your team in-the-know about updates to your crisis plan and encourage everyone to set work/life boundaries and communicate those accordingly.

The coronavirus’s impact on the financial vertical

Wondering how the coronavirus crisis has impacted the financial vertical? And how advertising efforts should continue and what we can learn from the ’08 crisis? We were, too. Basically, shift to mobile and build trust, but read more here and watch our latest Bidtellect Beat: Digital Edition video for more in-depth analysis.

WATCH Coronavirus & Finance: Predictions & How to Adjust

 

Where’s the ad money going?

Away from TV, according to Mediapost. Major TV station groups are witnessing sharp advertising declines of around 35% to 40% so far due to COVID-19, and the advertising drop is more severe and more rapid than the financial recession in 2008. Yikes. Meanwhile, political ad spending predictions have just shot up, mostly due to cancellations in live event programming, causing a reallocation of budget. And eMarketer’s latest report still expects to spend on mobile display advertising to rise to$61 billion in 2020, a 22.0% increase over 2019.

Ghosts and Drones! Ghosts and Drones!

In case you wanted something ELSE to keep you from sleeping tonight other than the general global doom and gloom, some people have (and want!) ghosts living with them! Read these reports of hauntings during the coronavirus – you’re welcome! Oh, and if you’re missing organized sports, professional drone-racing is gaining momentum. I was skeptical, but it actually sounds pretty cool. Each drone has 1,000colorful LED lights, there’s music playing, and they can go from zero to 90 miles per hour in one second. Boom!

Stay safe everyone,

Charlotte

Want more need-to-know info? Subscribe to our monthly Bidtellectual newsletter!


Charlotte Otremba is Sr. Manager of Communications and Marketing at Bidtellect.

Cookieless? We Got This.

How Bidtellect’s contextual tools set you up for success in the cookieless future.

Video Ads: Why Programmatic Video With Bidtellect

Onesheet alert! How Bidtellect can help you reach your programmatic video goals.

Canada Advertising Trends

Canadians are experiencing the full effect of digital advertising with trends like amount of spend on digital ads, mobile transactions, brand safety, and video ads.