ANA Study Finds Two-Thirds Of Marketers Have Updated Their Media Agency Contracts In Response To Kickbacks

More than two-thirds of advertisers (69%) have updated their media agency contracts within the past three years in response to concerns about transparency and alleged rebates in the media-buying, according to findings of the Association of National Advertisers' just-released "Media Agency Compensation Practices" report. The report, which is based on findings of a survey of ANA members fielded in April by JLB + Partners, also found that a third of marketers have made updates to their media agency compensation methods in the past year alone.
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The Holy Trinity: Product + Service + Mission

This has nothing to do with religion, so that might have been clickbait. In the world of omnichannel marketing, I’m talking about the holy trinity as: the product one sells, the service one provides to customers, and the mission by which one runs a company. The purpose of this post is that I want to highlight some examples of some very positive online shopping experiences I had recently (not Amazon!) and commend both small and large companies for their bravery in maintaining their autonomy against Jeff Bezos. A quick background on me: I’m a millennial. I’m also the youngest at my company. My adolescence took place in the 1990’s at a time where the personal computer consisted of the computer device itself connected to a large, clunky monitor; where America Online and dial-up internet became my father’s daily fascination; and where my mother once told me to stop using (started in 1994) and instead, use this new search engine called, in the late 90’s.
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Content Marketing Suffers From Cognitive Dissonance (

During Content Marketing World, Keynoter Mindy Kaling joked about the “Etiquette Bitch” speech from her character on “The Office.” Kaling said etiquette would’ve prevented anyone from uttering the word “bitch.” Her character’s reasoning was that she was struggling with coming up with a brand identity. Content marketing is generally practiced by brands that already have firm identities, but their use of content marketing has its own cognitive dissonance. Is it doing good or doing evil? Do its creators know? Its inherent struggle is based on monetization, in more ways than one. And is judging its value based on how quick audiences convert good or bad? Content marketing lives at the top of brands’ sales funnels — or in the less revered part of sales cycles. Content creators often end up shortchanged in last-click attribution models, says even Nilla Ali, VP of Strategic Partnerships, BuzzFeed.
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AT&T, Comcast, Amazon And Others Ask Congress To Override State Privacy Laws (mediapost)

Chief executive officers of 51 businesses, including AT&T, Amazon, Comcast and the Interpublic Group, are calling for Congress to pass a federal privacy law that would preempt state laws, including new measures in California. “Consumers should not and cannot be expected to understand rules that may change depending upon the state in which they reside, the state in which they are accessing the internet, and the state in which the company’s operation is providing those resources or services,” the CEOs say in a letter sent Tuesday to leaders of the House and Senate. “Now is the time for Congress to act and ensure that consumers are not faced with confusion about their rights and protections based on a patchwork of inconsistent state laws.” The company executives say they are supporting an approach outlined last year by the Business Roundtable, an organization representing more than 200 CEOs.
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Tech Companies Renew Push To Weaken California Privacy Law (

Google and other tech companies reportedly are continuing to seek revisions that would make California's landmark privacy law more friendly to marketers. The law, slated to take effect next year, gives consumers the right to learn what personal information has been collected about them by companies, have that information deleted, and prevent the sale of that data. The current bill's definition of “personal information” includes data that could potentially be linked to individuals -- including data used for ad targeting, such as persistent identifiers, browsing history and IP addresses. Although the measure was passed and signed into law last year, California legislators can still amend the bill. The deadline for doing so is September 13.
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3 E-Commerce Personalization Strategies Customers Actually Want to See

Marketers need to understand the importance of customization with today’s consumers. Consider the following: According to 59 percent of consumers, personalized experiences were reported to be an influential factor in purchasing decisions. Ninety-one percent of consumers agreed that they would be more likely to buy from a brand that offered personalized details in the shopping experience. Sixty-five percent of shoppers expect businesses to remember specific details about them, such as their name and purchase history.
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11 Shades of Direct Mail Color Strategy (

The use of color in direct mail is very important. The right colors can increase your response rates. Why is direct mail color so important? It is a powerful communication tool, because color evokes feeling within us and ignites emotion. In direct mail, we want to use the right set of colors to drive response. It does not matter if you are sending a letter in an envelope, a postcard or a self-mailer, all direct mail pieces are affected by color choices. Color is what people notice first without even realizing it. So how can you use colors to increase your direct mail response rates? Direct Mail Color and Feelings - 1. Red: When you choose to use this color, you are conveying messages that are exciting, passionate, dangerous, energetic, or action-oriented. 2. Blue: This color invokes feelings of harmony, peace, stability, calm, and trust.
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Forget Behavioral Targeting – Ad Format Is the Real Problem (

Publishers get roughly 4% more revenue for an ad impression that is cookie-enabled – or personalized – versus one that isn’t, according to a recent study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University, University of Minnesota, and University of California, Irvine. That’s not much. And while the sample was limited – they only reviewed ads for one “large U.S. media company over the course of one week” – it highlights a question publishers have been grappling with for a long time: Is cookie-based ad targeting worth it? Given the mounting costs of investing in data technology, reputation issues (the “creepy factor”), and regulations like GDPR and CCPA that challenge behavioral ad targeting, the study’s findings suggest that the benefit is minimal. However, as I see it, publishers are focusing on the wrong issue.
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Consumer Brands Becoming More Likely To Take Political Stand (

More than a quarter of top marketers now feel it is appropriate for their brands to take a stance on politically-charged issues, according to the most recent in a series of twice annual surveys conducted by Duke University's Fuqua School of Business. Currently, 26.5% of marketers responding to The CMO Survey say it political issues are appropriate for their brands vs. just 17.4% when it began tracking the subject in February 2018. “This openness likely reflects the fact that marketers realize their customers want the companies they support to be good citizens of the world — making profits is just part of that,” explains Christine Moorman, a Fuqua professor and director of The CMO Survey.
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