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FTC Organizes a Workshop On Native Advertising and Confuses Itself

Scratching headYeah, the headline is correct. The Federal Trade Commission is trying to put together its case for or against native advertising. Unfortunately, the agency isn’t sure about the true nature of native ads and admitted as much following its own conference. Leave it to a government agency to, in effect, confuse itself.

Adweek reports

A day-long examination of native advertising left regulators with no clear direction about how to police what has become digital media’s hottest ad format.

The Federal Trade Commission, which organized the workshop, has been bringing cases against ads masquerading as editorial content since 1917 (the first case was against a newspaper ad for an electric vacuum cleaner). But digital media has put what the FTC once termed “masquer-ads” on steroids.

comScore October Media Metrix: Talking Politics and Fashion

comScore stayed up all night counting the ballots and the results are in. According to the Media Metrix Ranks Top 50 U.S. Desktop Web Properties for October 2013 politics and fashion were the big winners.

Unfortunately for many Americans, the boost in political traffic was due to news of the government shutdown. This resulted in a 21% uptick from the prior month.

Comscore Oct 2013In 2012, the top category was also the result of bad news. 83,197,000 logged on to weather related sites to learn more about Hurricane Sandy.

This year, we left the disasters behind for a taste of glitz and glam. 61,661,000 people visited a beauty, fashion or style site in October of 2013. Last year, that category didn’t even make the top 10. Was there a big fashion story that caused the bump this year? If you’re a fashionista and you know, tell us about it in the comments below.

Study Reveals Reasons for Executives Delaying Digital

It’s 2013 so nobody still has issues with getting involved in the digital space, right?

Well, according to a study conducted by the MIT Sloan Management Review and Capgemini Consulting and reported by eMarketer it appears that there are still barriers.

Corporate Cultural Barriers for Digital

We don’t have time for this right now? Really?

We don’t know how to that? Then learn it.

This is the way we’ve always done it. So what?

The rest of the questions / concerns get progressively worse.

What will it take to make folks like this see the light? Maybe it’s just waiting until they age out? That seems to be the most likely since not everyone is going to get onboard. They just aren’t. Time to move on, right?

You Say e-mail but the New York Times Says email

NYT Style GuideWhile it doesn’t sound like much of a big deal, the New York Times has updated its style guide and it could be the place to go to find out if you are minding your online ‘p’s and q’s”.

Does it sound petty and ridiculous? On the surface a little but what it really is an indication of the continuing maturity of the online space. It may sound overdone but the more formal the web gets it could indicate a more controlled approach to the traditionally wild west approach.

The Verge reports

Facebook ‘Stories to Share’ Helps Media Pages Decide What to Post

Writers have been using Facebook to share their stories almost since the site began. But in the past few years, Facebook has been working to make news stories and web articles a bigger part of the site. They gave us subscribe buttons as an alternative to a follow and I recall an effort to run news stories down the sidebar?

In the end, most media outlets have settled for pushing their content into the newsfeed in the same way everyone else does it – with a Facebook Page and a lot of tenacity.

Now Facebook is trying to up the media profile one more time with a tool they call “Stories to Share.”

stories to share

 

Marketing Automation Has Plenty of Room for Growth

We talk a lot about marketing automation these days and for good reason. In the new world order of Internet marketing it is a volume game.

Marketing is no longer about creating an ad or even a series of ads that will ‘run’ in a variety of places in the hopes of someone seeing it at the time they had a need. Those were the easy days because the standard line was that it was for branding and it couldn’t be measured very well at all but it had to be done.

Those days are long gone and have been replaced by highly measurable techniques in the online world that require marketers to create ridiculous amounts of content that are aimed at specific groups and designed to ‘show up’ when someone is looking for that product or service at the time of their need.

There are now many marketing automation systems that help marketers manage and measure these efforts and you would think that with the level of importance it has in the process of gaining new customers that everyone would be getting involved. Well, on some levels yes and but on others no. Look at these numbers from Research Underwriters and Ascend2.

Marketing Automation

Blurring the Lines: Harper’s Invites Advertisers to Join #The List

Harpers List

The first issue of Harper’s Bazaar was published in 1867. No, that’s not a typo. For more than 100 years, women have been flipping the pages of this magazine to find the latest news and trends from the world of high fashion. The magazine, which is now owned by the Hearst Corporation, is available in 43 countries and there’s a digital version for the iPad.

Starting next month, the web version of Harper’s Bazaar will contain even more content as part of a snazzy new site design. The New York Times says the new design will make it easier for readers to share content socially. It will also include a new collaboration between editorial and advertising called #TheList.