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Facebook Drills Down for Ad Targeting: Includes Life Events and Relationships

Facebook targetingI’m engaged!

With that declaration Susan just opened the door to Facebook  marketers via their improved Core Audience targeting tool. The local wedding planner can hit her up, the travel agent can send her ads for a Hawaiian honeymoon, and Damian the divorce lawyer can send his contact information. . . just in case.

There’s nothing like behavioral targeting to really help sell, sell, sell.

Going forward, there will be four main targeting areas: Location, Demographics, Interests and Behaviors.

Location is exactly what it sounds like, the ability to target Facebook users in a specific area. That could be as large as a state or as small as a zip code.

Content Theives Rake in a Quarter of a Billion in Ad Dollars Per Year

Small Content theftIt’s 2 o’clock. Do you know where your ads are?

According to the Digital Citizens Alliance, a large number of your legitimate ads are working to support online content thieves. They estimate that these rip-off sites will earn around $227 million in annual ad revenue. The 30 largest sites that specialize in downloaded movies, music and TV shows will each make more than $4 million.

Even if you don’t agree that download sites cut into entertainment industry profits, is that where you want your ad dollar to go?

Amazon and Others Turn Images into Advertisements

Amazon Shop Now ToolThis past week, Amazon gave me the option of trying out their somewhat new “Publisher Studio” management tool. The tool went online this past November and the name is totally ridiculous because it doesn’t give you a clue to what it’s all about. (Which might be why I didn’t notice it before.)

What it does is turn your website / blog images into affiliate links for related products with a small “Shop now” button in the corner. This example is from my TV site. To make it work, I had to install a special toolbar (not so thrilled about that). You also have “enable” the toolbar – another pain. Apparently clearing my cache, which I do regularly, turns off the toolbar so I have to go back to Amazon every time to turn it back on.

Yahoo Uses Tumblr Power to Deliver Native Ads and Digital Mags

Think you know Yahoo? Well, you don’t. Ned Brody, Head of the Americas at Yahoo! (yes, that’s really his title) told AdAge that this this isn’t the 1990’s website we all remember – this is the new and improved, spiffy, glossy, high-tech Yahoo for the new millennium. And I know that sounded sarcastic, but I mean it.

Yahoo is working on a new way of delivering sponsored content using the Tumblr platform that they bought almost a year ago.

Yahoo food

This is Yahoo Food. It’s one of two new Yahoo digital magazines (the other is Yahoo Tech) that combines sharp graphics with moving text blocks that create the feel of interactivity. It’s the kind of thing you expect on a tablet, but they’re doing it on the web.

Facebook Advertising Proceeds with Caution

Facebook ad on iPadWhose afraid of the big bad ad unit? Facebook! In the last 24 hours, a number of stories have popped up on the web that show Facebook’s reluctance to ramp up their ad sales. Not that they don’t have good reason to be cautious. An advertising misstep could lead to a user revolt. But who thinks that would actually happen?

People are always saying they’re going to quit Facebook for one reason or another but what would it really take to get even a quarter of them to go?

Could auto-play video ads chase them away?

Sponsored Tiles: Coming Soon to a Firefox Launch Page Near You

Sorry this adThe Interactive Advertising Bureau and Mozilla negotiated a cease fire this week at the IAB’s annual meeting. A year ago, Mozilla announced a plan to set all Firefox browsers to “no cookies” by default, leaving up to the consumer to flip the switch for targeted ads. This is like running TV shows without commercials unless the viewer clicks a button to turn them on. The TV viewer may not mind commercials, but they’re unlikely to take any action to change the situation.

At the time, the IAB called Mozilla’s move “a nuclear first strike against [the] ad industry.” Mozilla’s new VP of content services joked about the comment when he joined IAB’s Randall Rothenberg on stage.

Google Fourth Quarter: CPC Is Down but Clicks Are Up

flipface-h01Type “Google” into the news search and scan today’s headlines. At a glance, it’s hard to tell if Google’s Fourth Quarter and Fiscal Year Results 2013 report was good news or bad news. Google fell short of expectations. Cost Per Click is dropping. Motorola Mobility buy was a failure.

Now for the flip side: analysts expected Google to show a profit of $12.21 a share on revenue of $16.75 billion.

They missed the mark but not by much: $12.01 per share but compared to last year’s $10.65, it’s quite a jump.

Fourth-quarter revenue rose 17% to $16.86 billion. Not bad.

Let’s talk advertising:

Chief Business Officer Nikesh Arora told the press: