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All the attention has been on Facebook and fake news, yet everyone in the room is missing another issue being Twitter’s massive bot problem. Estimates are circulating that bots are over 15 percent of active users, something Twitter disputes and pegs at about 5 percent. Whether it is more than 15 percent or less than 5, the point is Twitter’s bot problem is out of control and they need to do something about it.

Recently we analyzed a Twitter campaign that utilized the website traffic objective to see how active bots are on Twitter. Within 24 hours, the ads delivered 1,882 clicks and 13.76 percent Click Through Rate (CTR) which seemed very odd to our team. Deep down we all want a 13 percent CTR but immediately knew something was wrong. After further investigating, we immediately saw that majority of impressions served and clicks came from Android devices which raised a huge red flag.

Figure 1 – Campaign Delivery

After flagging Android devices as an issue, we considered the languages our ads were delivered. Again, we saw another red flag with a large share of our ads delivering to people who spoke Japanese, Portuguese and Turkish–to name a few.  

Figure 2 – Impression Breakdown By Language

Our analysis concluded the rush of clicks over 24 hours could be explained in no other term except for bot fraud. Now this was a very small, target campaign in the U.S. Bots are a worldwide problem for advertisers and governments when used in an inauthentic manner.

You may be asking yourself what can my brand do? Is my agency aware of Twitter’s bot problem? Right away you can look at engagements on your tweets. Look at the profiles engaging with your content. Click on profiles to see if they have real photos and information. Bot profiles will have the standard egg profile photo or they won’t match the target audience you were seeking. If you work with an agency probe them, asking if they are aware of Twitter bots and what they’re doing to combat them.
Staying ahead of ad fraud will continue to be an ongoing battle. Something we hope the major social media channels take very seriously and will develop sophisticated tools to help detect. If you have additional questions regarding Twitter’s bot problem or online ad fraud, please email us at content@pennapowers.com

 

 

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Varick Media

Campaign minimums got you down?

Although all clients and campaigns are significant, they don’t always have budgets for massive campaigns. While there may be a perfect media channel for your campaign, it may not be executable due to minimum budget constraints. Varick Media is one of many great partners who have created solutions to this very problem.

Who is Varick Media?

Varick Media Management LLC offers digital advertising consulting services. It provides campaign planning, research, consumer insight, campaign monitoring and measurement services. The company was founded in 2008 and is based in New York, New York. Varick Media operates as a subsidiary of MDC Partners Inc., a marketing and communications network. MDC Partners has 50+ advertising, public relations, branding, digital, social and event marketing agencies under its umbrella.

What is the technology?

In 2012 Varick Media Management built its own in-house digital monitoring product.

That product, called The Lens, is paired with an internal pixel server so that Varick can track its online display and video ad campaigns across the various demand-side platforms and plug the resulting data into one central data repository that their clients control.

In October of 2015, Varick Media released Alveo—a planning, buying and reporting platform. Operating originally as more of an internal trading desk, Alveo can now be used by Varick’s clients to manage and visualize data as well as access reports across multiple campaigns. Alveo is available as a managed service “with all of the access and data of a self-service offering,” described Jim Caruso, SVP of product and client strategy at Varick. While agency trading desks aren’t renowned for open access and transparency, Caruso said, “Alveo was designed to be agnostic across media channels, DSPs and inventory sources.”

What is the solution?

Combining both The Lens (DMP) and Alveo (trade desk) technology, Varick’s clients can access inventory through a robust channel inventory and layer with premium custom audiences to manage through one platform. This married opportunity allows for accurate performance and audience insights across multiple channels. Because Varick is a subsidiary of umbrella network MDC Partners, campaign minimums can be achievable for a wider set of clients.

 

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Native advertising is currently one of the most overused buzzwords in the advertising world. Many people are quick to roll their eyes at native advertising, thinking of the original click-bait nature of headlines and the cheesy descriptions publishers used to lure the audience in, only to have them immediately bounce out. The channel has now evolved from click bait headlines, to include video with engaging content the audience seeks out. The ability to retarget off each unit is another fantastic feature found in the native space. As a result, content can more closely resemble a publication’s editorial content across a website, lowering advertisers cost and increasing engagement.

Two main units we look at and the cost associated with them include:

Native Articles:

This placement has expanded from simple CPM (cost per thousand) buying to now include CPC (cost per click) and CPE (cost per engagement) depending on the buying objective. Now more than ever, the buyer and the content strategist can work as one tying together the goal of the content and how its written with how the ad is bought. For example, one piece of content in a campaign could be bought to generate awareness while the second piece to go live could utilize the generated awareness to increase website traffic and website conversions. As mentioned, native articles previously served as a vehicle for click bait, but now with vendors like StackAdapt and OutBrain, native strategies can be taken to the next level.

Penna Powers Native Article Averages:

CPM: $4.45

CPC: $0.83

CPE: $2.94

Time spent on site (LP): 1m 38s

Native Video:

Video has been on a hot topic for a few years now with YouTube popularizing video as an advertising placement. Depending on video length a video will fall into one of two native camps pre-roll, playing before other video content and out-stream with the later only playing when in-view. By now you’re most familiar with pre-roll running pre, mid, or post and out-stream videos running within a piece of content, breaking up a Forbes article for example. One of the greatest features of the native video placement is the ability to retarget an audience based on completed video views. This allows the advertiser to further engage with the audience and lower the cost of a conversion since the audience has previously interacted with the brand

Penna Powers Native Video Averages:

CPM: $13.04

CPCV: $0.03

Viewability %: 57.87

Completion Rate: 67.34%

CTR: 0.33%

Display working with Native

These days everyone either hates online ads or blocks them all together. Insert display ads working in conjunction with Native articles and/or videos. The key difference when using display in a Native campaign is the ability to bid on a CPE model if you’re looking for engagements on a piece of content. Display ads offered by vendors such as StackAdapt provide a great opportunity to retarget your native campaign audience, further increasing engagement and post-click activity.

Penna Powers Native Display Averages: (Currently we are only using native display in retargeting campaigns)

eCPM: $4.74

eCPC: $3.56

CTR: 0.13%

StackAdapt Benchmarks:

Native

eCPM: $3.00 – $5.00

eCPC: $0.80 – $1.50

eCPE $2.00 – $3.00

CTR: 0.40% – 0.80%

Avg time on site: 55s – 1m5s

​PreRoll Video

eCPM: $12.00 – $15.00

eCPC: $9.00 – $12.00

eCPCV: $0.02 – $0.05

CTR: 0.10% – 0.20%

Completion Rate: 70% – 80%

Native Video​

​eCPM: $12.00 – $15.00

​eCPC: $3.00 – $5.00

eCPCV: $0.05 – $0.07

CTR: 0.50% +

Completion Rate: 40% – 60%

Display

eCPM: $1.50 – $3.00

eCPC: $1.75 – $3.00

CTR: 0.10% – 0.15%

Despite the perception, native advertising is not going anywhere anytime soon. Based on a IPG Media Lab and Sharethrough study, consumers looked at native ads 52 percent more frequently than banner ads. Native advertising presents a huge opportunity for agencies and their clients to create a lasting engagement that leads to further brand interactions and sales.    

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Content marketing is exploding. It makes sense, as a written article or produced video can convey more information and users actually choose to read/watch it. Companies are willing to pay content marketers, including YouTubers, big dollars to have them promote their product.

So how much do they really make? Well, let’s look first at how much companies pay them to promote a product and secondly let’s look at how much YouTube pays them to run ads.

How Much do You Pay a YouTuber to Promote Your Product. Obviously this varies widely depending on the YouTuber’s audience and the marketing objective. In general, YouTubers typically charge around $10,000 per 100,000 views. It’s difficult to predict how many views a native video will get, so that is the risk an advertiser takes.

How Much YouTube Pays YouTubers Per View. Once the YouTuber links Google AdSense to their channel, they make 68% of the ad revenue (see Google AdSense Revenue Share). YouTube charges advertisers when a viewer watches 30 seconds or more of the ad, and typically charges around $.18 per view (see How Much Do Ads on YouTube Cost). Only about 15% of viewers will be counted as a “paid view” since many of them skip.

So if you have 1,000 views to your video and 15% actually watch the ad, then you would have 150 paid views. At $.18 per view, this would equate to $27 total charged to the advertiser. As the content creator you get 68% of that, so you would average around $18 per 1,000 views.

Here is it another way:

1,000 views –> 150 views of people completing the ad

$.18 per view x 150 views = $27 charged to advertiser

$27 advertiser charge x 68% revenue share = $18 paid to content creator per 1,000 views

Who are the Top YouTubers? In 2014, the top YouTuber made $4.9 million unboxing toys. Yes that’s right, the whole channel is just her unboxing Disney toys. Her top video, Play Doh Sparkle Princess, has garnered 217 million views. Other examples include PewDiePie, which made $4 million in 2014 and LittleBabyBum, which made $3.5 million. If this makes you question everything you’ve done in your life, you’re not alone.

Should Marketers Pay YouTubers to Make Videos? To say it depends is kind of a cop-out, so I’m going to compare the cost per thousand views to if you just ran an online video ad instead.

Making Videos. From above, you could calculate that to have a YouTuber make a video and post it to their channel you would be paying roughly $10,000 for 100,000 views, which breaks down to $100 per 1,000 views.

Running Video Ads. If you opted to just run an ad on their channel, you would pay $27 per 1,000 views (but only really get 150 completed views). To get 1,000 completed views it would cost $405.

Both are good options. Video is much more visual than any other media so if you’re debating between the two you have a good problem. Having a YouTuber produce a video is comparatively less expensive, but you give up creative control and cannot know how successful the video will be. Also you are limited to just their channel, so you may need to do multiple of these deals. Some of the pros are that you get a customized piece of content that doesn’t feel like an ad, and oftentimes these channels reach audiences that don’t consume general mass media. Paid ads are just that – paid ads, and oftentimes users feel inconvenienced when forced to watch them. However, the targeting is great and can oftentimes tie into your larger marketing strategy.

Need help deciding on your video content strategy? Let us help!

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