Quick poll of tech players after a big day at F8

By Christopher Heine

Of the many talking points Tuesday at Facebook’s F8 conference, two stood out because of their potential ramifications: the full rollout of Instant Articles andFacebook Live opening up to developers.

We did a quick poll of tech players to gain insight into whether media companies should fear the two features. Here’s what they told us:

Instant Articles

The program lets publishers post whole text stories and other multimedia content directly to the news feed while selling ads against them, though it threatens to siphon traffic from their proprietary websites.

Is Facebook, with the initiative, being a friend to publishers or a foe?

“Facebook Instant Articles is neither an ally nor a threat since the war is already over, and Facebook won,” said Sean Cullen, evp product and technology at Fluent. “Publishers have no choice but to adopt Instant Articles in order to maintain their existing traffic levels and many will have no choice but to buy advertising from Facebook to grow.”

Yaniv Makover, CEO of content marketing vendor Keywee, said, “Facebook is a long-term gain for publishers that provide long-term value. However, publishers looking for a quick fix will be discouraged. Some publishers might think Facebook has overly onerous user-experience guidelines that favor quality content over content whose chief purpose is to go viral.”

There are, of course, other viable platforms for publishers to push their content including Twitter, Snapchat, Google AMP and Apple News, noted Gil Regev, CMO of tech vendor Marfeel.

“One thing publishers do need to keep in mind is that Facebook is just one channel,” he said. “They should not pick and choose between these but rather utilize them all. [It's important to stress] the need to continue grooming their own mobile properties, making sure that they provide attractive, interactive, cohesive, engagement and monetization-driven layouts that act as landing pages, keeping users engaged and coming back for more.”

John Potter, CTO of Purch, views Facebook as more of an ally than a threat for publishers.

“On the other hand,” he said, “Facebook could become a threat in the future if publishers become too reliant on the platform to reach an audience, which is no different than the current situation with Google.”

Potter also said, “Given the growth of other social platforms such as Snapchat and Twitter, you can plausibly make the argument that Facebook will never be as dominant as Google has been on the web.”

Read the full article here: http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/should-media-companies-fear-facebook-live-and-instant-articles-or-embrace-them-170780

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It’s that time of year again—the weather is getting warmer, Pomp and Circumstance is playing in the distance and many of us are scrambling to figure out what to get our favorite dads and students for Father’s Day and graduation. Thinking of buying them a tech gadget gift? Purch recently surveyed more than 1,000 active tech buyers and found some interesting stats about the way dads and students (males and females ages 18-24) shop. Hint: they have similar tendencies.

Let’s take a look into their typical purchase journeys to find out how you can channel your inner dad or grad and pick out the perfect gift.

Tip #1: It doesn’t have to be a bestseller.

Dads and grads want what’s best for them. Just 22 percent of dads describe themselves as wanting to buy the most popular, bestselling products. For students that number is even less (13 percent). In contrast, one-third of both dads and grads say they want a product that’s well-suited to their needs, even if it isn’t popular or bestselling. Thinking about specific interests and personality is a good place to start your gift search—not necessarily the “bestsellers” section on a website.

Tip #2: But looking into purchase trends will help.

We asked dads and students what tech they’ve purchased over the past 6 months. The trends are similar and may shed light into hot gifts (just make sure they don’t already have one)! Mobile phones, tablets, TVs and laptops were among the most purchased gadgets.

  • 59 percent of dads purchased a mobile phone vs. 67 percent of students
  • 37 percent of dads purchased a tablet vs. 40 percent of students
  • 41 percent of dads purchased a TV vs. 40 percent of students
  • 41 percent of dads purchased a laptop vs. 37 percent of students

Tip #3: Research and compare.

The average dad and student both conduct 7 different research activities when deciding what to buy. From reading buying guides and articles to watching video tutorials and more, dads and grads want to know everything they possibly can about a gadget before they make a decision. Nearly half of dads (47 percent) and even more students (54 percent) describe themselves as needing to know a lot of information about features and how to use a product.

When researching tech products for purchase:

  • 64 percent of dads read in-depth reviews comparing several products vs. 58 percent of students
  • 60 percent of dads look for special offers, deals or promotions vs. 47 percent of students
  • 59 percent of dads check out forums for specific questions vs. 51 percent of students
  • 54 percent of dads like to see buying guides vs. 45 percent of students

Dads and grads are both notoriously hard to shop for because neither demographic likes asking for help—in fact, even among all the research activities, just 13 percent of dads and 22 percent of students surveyed describe themselves as asking for advice on what to buy.

The bottom line? Taking your dad’s or grad’s unique interests into consideration, checking out purchase trends and doing your research will definitely make the process of buying a Father’s Day or graduation gift a bit easier.

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 Tom’s Hardware has its name and roots in Dr. Thomas Pabst, who was one of the first people to add technology journalism to the Internet as early as 1996.

Back in these early days the site was still called “Tom’s Hardware and Performance Guide” and its domain was sysdoc.pair.com — pair.com being a Pittsburgh-based hosting company. Today’s domain, tomshardware.com, was added on September 11, 1997, followed by additional language versions over time, including German, Japanese, Polish, French, Chinese, Italian, Turkish and others — some operated by Tom’s Guides Publishing, Inc., and others based on franchise agreements.

The German operation test lab resources were the basis for a majority of the website’s content early on, including our real-time stress testing of power supplies, and some of the first overclocking records, like the 5 GHz project using liquid nitrogen.

In 2007, the French BestofMedia Group took over Tom’s Hardware in an effort to grow its publishing business internationally. While Tom Pabst was no longer part of Tom’s Hardware operations, most of the staff and spirit remained. In 2013, BestofMedia Group, including Tom’s Hardware, became part of the US-based Techmedia Network, now known as Purch.

One of Tom’s Hardware’s journalistic milestones were Tom’s findings regarding the Intel Pentium III 1.13 GHz processor, which forced the company to postpone its launch by months. It wasn’t the first time Pabst ran afoul of Intel – his review of the Pentium II made the headlines of The New York Times. Since then, Tom’s Hardware has kept up the tradition with unrivaled technology scrutiny.

Today, when people ask us “Who is Tom?” we are happy to tell them how everything evolved from the spirit and hard work of the visionary Dr. Thomas Pabst, who referred to himself as Tom. At the same time, the impressive growth of Tom’s Hardware and its communities provides an additional reply: “We’re all Tom.”

By Fritz Nelson, Editor-in-Chief, Tom’s Hardware and Patrick Schmid, former Editor-in-Chief, Tom’s Hardware

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Real-time data is essential for optimizing a campaign, but is it overused? And what defines performance? Yesterday, executives from Time Inc., MSN Global Marketing at Microsoft, Mediahub and more tackled these questions in a panel discussion hosted by publishing company Purch as part of the networking marathon known as Advertising Week in New York City.

“Is there too much speed to figure out what’s working and what’s not?” asked David Kaplan, managing editor at news site GeoMarketing. “Is there too much pressure to fix things?” Optimizing campaigns based on real-time information offers significant benefits, but the pitfall is a temptation to tinker too much with the campaign before it can yield results, the panelists noted.

“Once a campaign starts, everyone ideally should stick to a plan,” said Adam Solomon, vice president of digital ad products at Time, Inc. “As we’re working through challenges and figuring out which are the important signals, we need to stick to a program and see it through.”

Mike Kisseberth, chief revenue officer of Purch, agreed. “You can still monitor for stinkers–and you should have some since otherwise you’re not experimenting–but in general you have to have the courage to drive it through,” he said. Marketers and their agency partners also need some flexibility to fail, commented Jade Watts, vice president and group digital media director at Mediahub, a subsidiary of the digital ad agency Mullen. “It’s ok to fail as long as you fail fast and course-correct even faster,” Watts said.

It is also important to define the campaign’s objectives and KPIs at the beginning of the project. Marketers and vendors often use retroactive performance data as a success indicator, but this approach is ineffective without a clear goal or benchmarks, noted Amanda McAllister, head of MSN global marketing at Microsoft. “If we don’t know what we’re trying to achieve then we can’t be successful,” she commented.

Marketers, McAllister added, are often guilty of “jumping to the tactic” before establishing an objective. Native ads are the latest example of a tactic that companies have embraced before understanding its value. Just as companies rushed to create an app just for the sake of having one, numerous campaigns have been launched around native ads with murky results.

“Native is a tactic, not a strategy,” Solomon said. To measure the ROI of a native ad, or any tactic, he continued, companies need to “look at the signal coming from it and…do A/B or multivariate testing to measure the campaign’s impact.”

In addition, marketers cannot afford to lose sight of the consumer, the panelists agreed. “Measuring CPAs and CPMs is important, but ultimately, the ad needs to drive value and relevancy for the consumer,” Kisseberth said. The challenge, he added is monetizing a site with ads and sponsored content that also provides value to the consumer. “That’s the balance we need to strike,” he said.

- See more at: http://www.1to1media.com/weblog/2014/10/ad_week_panel_recap_launching.html#sthash.3dxLbmeX.dpuf

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