Twitter experienced healthy growth during the last 12 months, largely driven by the maturation of its video ad suite, with the company posting Q1 revenues of $665m, up 21% year-over-year.Ad revenue for the period was up 21% year-over-year hitting $575m with total ad engagements also up 69% although its cost per engagement fell 28%.Meanwhile, data licensing and other revenue also increased 20% compared to 12 months earlier to $90m, with the company also reporting that it has been profitable for 6 months.An important development for the company was that more than half of its ad revenue came through video products, its fastest-growing format – reflecting a wider industry trend, according to the IAB – with mid-roll ads such as FirstView, Video Website Cards, and Video App Cards formats powering this growth.Additionally, during the first quarter the company boasted 30 new brand partnerships, many of these in the video streaming space, some of the more prominent deals were with Fox Sports, Major League Baseball, and the MLS.Going forward it said it is keen to improve its core ad product with planned improvements in measurement, this includes bringing in third-party accreditation.
After 10 hours of verbal flogging by an incensed Congress, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg seemed like a leader whose pedestal had cracked.He emerged from the hearings with months’ worth of homework for him and his team.His exhaustive, highly publicized grilling appears to have had minimal impact on the one thing that ultimately gives Facebook its power: its popularity among advertisers.“There’s still a very positive outlook from the industry overall and the belief that Facebook will continue to be a trustworthy partner,” says Angela Seits, director of social media and influencer marketing at the advertising agency PMG.Not only do they see the platform as principled, “a couple of my clients have actually shifted more money towards Facebook,” says Shuman Sahu, director of performance media at ad agency Nina Hale.With advertisers still eager to use Facebook’s services, the company’s business model stays intact and its dominance as a social network and an advertising behemoth remains assured.
As the board of WPP investigates claims of “personal misconduct” and possible misuse of company assets against CEO Martin Sorrell, investors are likely starting to consider who should really be at the helm of the world’s largest advertising holding company.“It’s a little difficult because we don’t know what the specific allegations are,” Pivotal Research Group senior analyst Brian Wieser told Adweek.“What I think investors will focus on is some broader implications around succession.”Wieser said the investigation would “reinforce a narrative around who should be running WPP,” but he did not venture a guess as to who might take over as CEO.Meanwhile, some in the industry are concerned about WPP’s succession plans.“While there’s no shortage of strong candidates, none have the financial acumen and insights of the current CEO,” said Greg Paull, principal at global consultancy R3.
Facebook shares have dropped sharply since the Cambridge Analytica scandal in mid March.Wieser lists three core reasons for lowering his Facebook price target to $138 a share.News of a massive data breach in mid March sent shares into bear market territory, where they currently remain.Wall Street's consensus on Facebook is $219.Wieser cites three main reasons for his lower price target:Firstly, Facebook's costs will increase.
Johnson & Johnson, one of advertising’s biggest spenders, has consolidated and streamlined its creative business with two dedicated teams of WPP and Omnicom agencies.This follows a closed review that was initiated to cut costs and adopt a new operating model, the Wall Street Journal reported this morning.News of the review was first published late last year.As part of the change, WPP and Omnicom will each staff a New York office with dedicated employees.These spaces will also be home to employees from Johnson & Johnson’s digital media partners such as Google and Facebook and from its dedicated Interpublic Group media group, J3, according to the Journal.Spokespeople for Omnicom, WPP and IPG all deferred to Johnson & Johnson for comment on the news.
Amid the turmoil, Bank of America Merrill Lynch has noticed traders reacting in surprising fashion.There's no denying Facebook's recent privacy woes have hurt the broader technology sector.Just look at the Nasdaq's rough last couple days for evidence of that.But Bank of America Merrill Lynch has crunched data that reveals something surprising: amid all of the chaos, traders actually poured another $500 million into tech stocks this past week.That statistic is made even more surprising when you consider yields on investment-grade bonds are the highest in eight years (as indicated by the chart below).Theoretically, higher yields would make tech bonds more attractive relative to stocks, which might prompt traders to reallocate.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the Newseum September 18, 2013 in Washington, DC.Win McNamee / Getty StaffFacebook's spate of recent issues show that it is exhibiting signs of "systemic mismanagement," according to Brian Wieser, a senior analyst at Pivotal Research.Analysts' concerns thus far were mostly limited to the slowing down of digital advertising growth for Facebook, as well as rising costs.Facebook is exhibiting signs of "systemic mismanagement," according to a new report published by Brian Wieser, a senior analyst at Pivotal Research."What has come to light with the past week’s revelations potentially represents a different class of problem when put in context with other issues that have arisen in recent months," Wieser wrote in a note to investors Wednesday.Wall Street analysts have mostly been concerned with the potential slowing down of digital advertising growth for Facebook, as well as rising costs due to the company looking to combat recent issues by hiring content moderators and investing in increased vetting of partners and advertisers.
If you've been following Disney for the last few years, you might be under the impression that CEO Bob Iger will rule the company until the end of time.But eventually Iger will have to retire, and the succession plan at Disney is far from clear.In 2016, Disney COO Thomas Staggs, who was widely considered to be Iger's heir apparent, left the company unexpectedly when it became clear that he wasn't going to get the top job."I don't think they were satisfied that they had a successor inside of Disney, so there's time either to find outside talent or to assess if James Murdoch or someone from the Fox organization is an appropriate successor."The chatter has focused around three men: Kevin Mayer, Bob Chapek, and James Pitaro (though he's considered much more of an outside shot).Here's a breakdown of what these three have done so far in their Disney careers, and why they might have a chance to take over for Iger as chief executive:
Revelations over the weekend about its reckless sharing of user data sent its stock price plunging on Monday, and fresh calls for regulations on the social media network are looking more real than ever.In the last few days, multiple outlets broke various facets of the story: Facebook has known since 2015 that Cambridge Analytica, a data-mining company hired by President Trump’s election campaign, improperly obtained the personal data of 50 million of the network’s users—and the social giant failed to do much of anything about it.In a blog post on Friday, Facebook said it has suspended the accounts of Cambridge Analytica and its parent company, SCL, while it investigates their alleged failure to comply with an agreement to delete the ill-gotten data.And whatever you do, Facebook execs say, don’t call this a “breach.”So after years of Facebook big shots telling us to just trust them when it comes to the ways it handles our data and targets us with advertising, a third-party allegedly violated Facebook’s trust.One Wall Street analyst said the reports raised ‘systemic problems’ with Facebook’s business model and a number said it could spur far deeper regulatory scrutiny of the platform...
Facebook's use by US consumers ages 18 or older fell 4% year-on-year in November, according to Nielsen stats cited by the Pivotal analyst Brian Wieser.That applies to Facebook's core app — its other businesses, including Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp, are faring better but not enough to compete with Google.Wieser's analysis ties in with Facebook's recent revelation that users had spent 5% less time on the site.The graph below illustrates what proportion of time US consumers spend on different sites when they're online.Look at the orange and blue lines, which represent Google and Facebook.In August 2016, it looked as if people spent almost as much time on Facebook and its properties (like WhatsApp and Instagram) as they did on sites owned by Google, such as YouTube and Google Plus.
Unilever’s Keith Weed dominated headlines this week with what many were quick to read as a threat to review ad spend with Google and Facebook.However, what on the surface seemed to be a bold statement of intent may not spur Google and Facebook into taking the action some industry observers have speculated they will.Headlines proclaimed that Weed was using his estimated $2bn digital ad spend as a stick to beat Facebook and Google with, encouraging them to take further action to clean up what he described as “the swamp that is the digital supply chain”.But many have argued that Weed's speech needs to be followed through with the same firm action if it's to invoke any sort of change.While P almost immediately reviewed every single one of its agency contracts to weed out bad actors, Weed’s opus instead focused on media ethics and gave no clear outline on how Unilever intended to live up to his verbal commitments, or what is now expected from its agency partners.Comparing his stance to that of his rival, she added: “One of the most powerful things about Pritchard’s speech for me was his acknowledgement that part of the reason it has gotten to this was because of the brands not paying full attentions [to contractual terms, etc],” she added.
McDonald's, HP, State Farm and most recently Mercedes-Benz are some big name brands that have gone down this path recently."Brands today need to engage along every step of the consumer journey, and the way the current model has been structured doesn't work," Rishad Tobaccowala, chief growth officer at Publicis, told Business Insider.However, that's increasingly problematic in an era when marketers need to coordinate various digital channels and leverage loads of data to make decisions."The hope was that the benefits of specialization outweigh the costs, but there is a realization that a lack of integration can produce significant inefficiencies."Thus, rather than coordinating between a bunch of scattered agencies, big brands are asking for dedicated agencies just for them.In fact, the trend has started gaining steam to such an extent that Omnicom CEO John Wren addressed it in his prepared remarks during the company's fourth quarter earnings call on Thursday.
Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks on stage during the annual Facebook F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, U.S., April 18, 2017.Stephen Lam/ReutersPivotal Research's Brian Wieser is one of Facebook's biggest bears on Wall Street.He says Facebook is a mature company, and may be plateauing.Facebook shares could get slashed considerably, says Pivotal Research Group analyst, Brian Wieser.Wieser, one of Facebook's biggest bears on Wall Street, has a $152 price target for the stock, about 16.5% below its current level of $177.The Wall Street consensus is at $224, according to Bloomberg data.
Stock shot up as much as 30% in after-hours trading.But this is the first quarter in the entire year Snap hasn't missed expectations, and analysts are still sceptical about its long-term prospects.Snap blew past Wall Street expectations in a major way on Monday, reporting stellar user growth and revenue for the final three months of 2017.Daily active users: 187 million, up 5% from Q3.EPS/Net loss (adjusted): ($0.13) vs. ($0.16) expected.The company missed Wall Street expectations for the previous three quarters straight, with the stock cratering every time there's been an earnings report.
(Reuters) — Shares of Facebook fell 4 percent on Friday after Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg announced changes to the platform’s centerpiece News Feed that he said would hit user engagement in the near term.Zuckerberg said on Thursday the company would change the filter for the News Feed to prioritize what friends and family share, while reducing the amount of non-advertising content from publishers and brands.If the premarket declines in shares hold, Facebook stands to lose nearly $23 billion from its market capitalization on Friday as a result of the move.Pivotal Research Group said its analysis of Nielsen’s digital consumption rates showed that usage was already falling prior to Zuckerberg’s announcement, although from very high levels.“We can speculate that the concerns reflected in Zuckerberg’s post may very well have been driving these declines,” Pivotal’s Brian Wieser wrote in a note.The company has been criticized for algorithms that may have prioritized misleading news and misinformation in people’s feeds, influencing the 2016 American presidential election as well as political discourse in many countries.
Facebook usage by those 18 or over was down 0.1% year-over-year in September, following a decline of 0.9% in August 2017.Facebook's decline in usage may seem small, but is in stark contrast to its biggest competition, Google.In contrast, Google and YouTube grew by 50% and 30% respectively.The tech giant's audience reach went down in recent months, according to a new report published by Brian Wieser, a senior analyst at Pivotal Research.Core Facebook consumption failed to grow year-over-year for a second consecutive month in September 2017, according to the most recent digital content ratings (DCR) data by research and measurement company Nielsen, which provides daily measurement metrics of audiences across digital media including video and text that is comparable to television.Facebook usage by those 18 or older was down 0.1% year-over-year in September, following a decline of 0.9% in August 2017.
NBCUniversal hosted a collection of top executives in the media and advertising business on Tuesday in New York, promising to tackle some of the thornier issues facing the industry – such as people increasingly trying to avoid ads.The group included leaders from Google, Twitter, Facebook, AT and Fox.NBCU's sales lead Linda Yaccarino urged the industry to embrace data, push for better transparency, and better respect consumers.She even hinted at running fewer ads on NBCU's TV networks.Still, even as the event was billed as a way to find common ground, the discussions revealed tensions and philosophical divides between traditional media sellers and digital giants like Facebook and Google.NBCUniversal's sales chief Linda Yaccarino made a bold claim on Tuesday: the media giant may start running fewer TV commercials.
Facebook’s issues with reporting ad reaches larger than the actual population base appear to be even more prevalent, according to a new report from the Video Advertising Bureau.Early last month, Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser pointed out discrepancies between Facebook’s ad reach and U.S. Census Bureau data, including:Facebook claims that it can reach 41 million U.S. adults between the ages of 18 and 24, while U.S. Census data pegs the total population of that age group at 31 million.The social network also claimed that it can reach 60 million U.S. adults 25 through 34, while the U.S. Census total for that demographic is 35 million.A Facebook spokesperson said in an email to Adweek at the time, “Reach estimations are based on a number of factors, including Facebook user behaviors, user demographics, location data from devices and other factors.They are designed to estimate how many people in a given area are eligible to see an ad that a business might run.
The social-media giant is willing to spend as much as $1 billion to cultivate original shows for its platform, according to people familiar with matter.The figure, which could fluctuate based on the success of Facebook’s programming, covers potential spending through 2018, one of the people said.The investment would far outpace Facebook’s previous outlays on video content, including its live-video deals last year.It also signals Facebook’s readiness to spend more than before to become what Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg calls a “video-first” platform.Facebook’s thirst for video content pits it against traditional broadcasters such as Time Warner Inc.’s HBO and deep-pocketed tech companies such as Amazon.com Inc. and Netflix Inc., which all are banking on video to capture the fleeting attention of users and seize billions of dollars in advertising that is expected to migrate from television to digital video.“Our read-through is that Facebook is likely willing to spend billions of dollars to buy rights for content that might otherwise appear on TV,” Pivotal Research analyst Brian Wieser wrote in a recent note.
Citing census data, an equity research analyst claims Facebook is once again inflating one of its key metrics, this time grossly over-reporting its ability to sell ads and effectively inventing millions more young Americans than actually exist.Facebook told advertisers that the platform can potentially “reach” 41 million young adults between 18 and 24 in the US.Brian Wieser of Pivotal Research Group countered by pointing out that 2016 census data shows there were only 31 million people in that age range in the US.Similarly, Facebook claims it can reach 60 million people in the US between 25 and 34 years old.The census reports 45 million in that age group.Alongside his findings, Wieser called for greater transparency in “reach” calculations and called for Facebook to double check its numbers against audits from third-party partners.
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