April was a usually busy month for the world of online advertising. The biggest platforms, Google and Facebook had their usual updates, but this month Apple introduced a brand new version of iOS, which shook the online marketing industry. We’re covering these any many other interesting topics in this month’s newsletter.
Every news starts with a short summary with the key points, however, if you are willing to dive deeper into a certain topic, you can always find an additional link for further reference.
1. Shopify integration expanding on Pinterest
Shopify merchants are now able to use Pinterest as a shopping channel in 27 countries – including Austria, France, Germany, Switzerland and the United Kingdom! The platform’s Shopify integration was introduced last year, and creates a connection between the online store and Pinterest, making it easier to update product information or run ads across the platform. It is now made available to 1.7 million merchants globally.
2. The impact of iOS14 on digital advertising
Business of Apps
Probably the biggest digital update of the month was the rolling out of Apple’s iOS14 which had a huge impact on the world of digital advertising. App advertising on Apple devices has relied on IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers), which enabled marketers to track a user across platforms – and this feature was opt-in by default up until now, however, users were able to opt-out if they wanted to stop certain apps to track them. From now on, on Apple devices it’s opt-out by default, meaning that advertisers will have to get explicit consent from users to track them – and according to expectations, the number of these users will be very low. The effect of this change is not known so far, however, in this article you can read more about possible impacts of the update.
3. What is Social Listening?
Social listening has become a very trendy term in the digital world, pretty similar like content marketing was a few years ago. Social listening is especially important for Social Media Marketers, but the whole company can gain from it. Marketers have been eager to hear customer feedback through surveys for decades – now they are able to know what their customers need without any surveys! Social listening means that you are actively listening on social media channels to what your customers need and feel! You can use this to develop your products, have feedback on a new campaign, or just create content that is extremely relevant to your audience.
4. Incrementality and innovation: How ASOS is driving growth on a global scale
Think with Google
2020 has been a challenging year for retail (too), and online-only fashion store ASOS was still able to increase sales throughout the year. Their secret was to always test and seek for new levers of growth: they have tried their traditional ‘upper-funnel’ channels (like YouTube) to drive sales – and have succeeded in it! Of course, having an on-point measurement system was essential to measure their success. They have used Google’s user lift studies to measure the impact of their campaigns. Its company values make ASOS to be open with testing across every department – including digital marketing.
5. How Ad World Went from Zero to 50k Instagram Followers in 9 Months
Search Engine Journal
Ad World is a well-known conference in the digital marketing industry, and in this article, they provide some best practices for boosting Instagram engagement – their profile hit the 50K milestone in just 9 months! Their advice is to have a clear strategy of what type of audience you want to reach – and what content they are interested in. They also suggest using well-known logos to catch the attention of the users, use emojis and make your creatives easily understandable. They claim having a CTA in every post is a must – and we couldn’t agree more! Timing is also a key factor when it comes to Instagram – try out different timeslots! Another suggestion of theirs is to collaborate with other similar accounts to reach more people – and of course to run Instagram ads.
6. Facebook Advertising Myths to Leave Behind in 2021
In this article, HubSpot’s team tackles some of the most popular myths about advertising on Facebook. “Facebook isn’t a place for B2B advertising.” Truth is, a lot of B2B companies had success in it. Another really popular one is that you need to invest a lot of money into it – with Facebook, you can run campaigns with even one or two euros per day! Some people may want to create as narrow target audiences as possible – but sometimes a broader audience can have a bigger impact. There’s also one about retargeting – that you should retarget every website visitor – however, it’s more worth it to retarget only specific audiences, e.g. cart abandoners, people with previous purchases, etc. And last but not least: what about a post boost versus an ad campaign? Many times, a post boost can have a very different result than an ad campaign – but of course, if you have a clear CTA, you should definitely give it a try!
7. 5 Lessons We Learned from These Famous Rebrands
Contrary to popular belief, a rebrand isn’t just a logo change – it’s a change in the whole value system of a company and maybe even services. In HubSpot’s article, they introduce some very recent and famous examples of rebranding, probably the most notable ones are Dunkin’ (which even changed its name from Dunkin Donuts) and Starbucks. Consumer needs and expectations can change throughout decades – especially now, therefore it’s crucial to analyze from time to time the real need of consumers: how can we help them solve their problems? Do they still identify with our values?
8. Is Out-of-Home advertising dead?
In the last years, the digital evolution has transformed the field of digital marketing, and the previously effective and popular channels have become less important – since they are less measurable than online advertising. Still, for some businesses, OOH (Out-of-Home, e.g. billboards, ads in shopping malls or on public transportation) advertising is still at the core of their marketing strategy. The pandemic has shaken this industry as well – since people were staying inside, working and studying at home, and just generally avoiding crowded places, some businesses were careful about spending money on this type of advertising. However, people weren’t stuck inside, 24/7 – they were still doing their grocery shopping, for example, so other businesses just shifted their target region to these places. According to American Express’s article, we can say that although the last year hasn’t been the best year for OOH, it’s still, and will continue to be an important marketing channel for certain businesses – especially as businesses and countries are reopening.
9. Last Month’s Google Updates
Google Ads Help
A change to how Smart Bidding strategies are organised: Smart Bidding is a collection of 4 automated bid strategies helping you to reach your conversion and conversion value goals. Based on user feedback, Google has updated the organization of these strategies. From now on, advertisers will have the following options: maximise conversions will have an optional target CPA, and maximise conversion value will have an optional target ROAs. Until now, they weren’t able to combine these bid strategies. Read more.
Giving advertisers more control over where their ads run: Until recently, advertisers on Google were able to choose where they want their ads to appear, in which format their ads run and to exclude content they wish to avoid appearing nearby. They could exclude specific websites, content or topics. However, this required constant and regular updates, which can be a challenge to many advertisers. Therefore, Google has introduced a new feature that helps to simplify this process, by uploading dynamic exclusion lists. Read more.
The Insights page is now available to all advertisers globally: Google has introduced its Insights page last year in order to help marketers inform themselves about upcoming trends regarding their business. Now it’s available globally. Read more.
10. A Day in the Life of Your Data
Big brands want to view branding in a “go hard or go home”-way, but every now and then, smaller brands with a tighter budget appear with very clever ways to do advertising and get their name out there – this happened to Chipotle as well! With no money for advertising, they used their everyday resources in order to reach people, educate them and create a positive image around the word Chipotle. They created coupons, but instead of regular paper coupons, they had their own coins – and now, 20 years later, their customers are still selling these coins on eBay. They also created their own deck of playing cards, which were also used as coupons. Treating their employees right and creating a fun place to work at was also a core part of the strategy – since if employees feel good about their workplace, they will spread the word for free amongst their friends and family. They also made their own “walking billboards” – their own branded T-shirts with fun messaging. They also had their own way of “don’t park here” and “don’t smoke here” signs, what’s more, when it was raining, they provided umbrellas for people waiting outside the store – of course, with their own messaging. Thanks to their efforts, Chipotle is a well-known brand today. Their advice? “Start by asking yourself, ‘How do I do something with a budget of zero?’ Pretend you don’t have money and then think about how you’ll do something.”