This week: Pinterest does a favor for e-commerce brands, B2C companies may be relying too much on Big Data, and wait until you hear about how much ad spend goes through just three companies.
Here’s what happened this week in digital marketing.
New: Marketers Can Target Spotify Podcast Listeners
Looking to run some ads on podcasts? If so, Spotify has some good news for you.
The company recently enhanced its ad offerings to include podcast listener targeting.
Also, in select markets, you can target podcast genres. In other words, you can run your ads only on podcasts that fall under specific categories, such as “Business & Technology,” “Comedy,” or “Lifestyle & Health.”
As I’ve mentioned in this space previously, podcast ad revenue is soaring. U.S. ad spend grew 53% in 2018 according to the IAB. Almost a third (32%) of Americans ages 12 and up have listened to a podcast in the last month.
Facebook Will Remove the “Biography” and “Company Overview” Fields From Pages
Beginning in August, Facebook will remove a number of fields from Pages. Among them: the Company Overview and Biography fields.
Facebook will also eliminate the Personal Interests and Affiliation fields. Some people think the “Mission” field is also on the chopping block.
The company says it may remove other fields as well.
If you’re relying on any of those fields to promote info about your brand, consider moving the text to the Page’s description.
Pinterest Enhances E-Commerce Support With “Complete the Look” Tool
Pinterest has rolled out a new tool that promotes products based on the kinds of Pins that a user likes to view. It’s called the “Complete the Look” tool.
Here’s how it works: if a user searches for Pins of beach scenes, Pinterest will recommend products of interest to beach goers. Examples include sunglasses, hats, and beach umbrellas.
It’s a nifty feature offered by Pinterest that enables e-commerce brands to gain more exposure.
According to the Pinterest visual search team: “Complete the Look takes context like an outfit, body type, season, indoors vs. outdoors, various pieces of furniture, and the overall aesthetics of a room to power taste-based recommendations across visual search technology.”
A Gfk report from last November showed that 78% of Pinterest users who engaged with home decor Pins purchased a related product promoted by a brand on the platform.
Report: Almost 70% of Digital Ad Spend Is Going to Google, Amazon, and Facebook
According to a new report by eMarketer, web giants Google, Amazon, and Facebook take in 68.1% of all digital ad revenue.
The report also shows that Amazon owns 38% of all e-commerce sales. That’s a drop from last year, when Amazon owned almost 50%.
A related survey by Factual and Lawless Research found that in-house and agency marketers spend, on average, 43% of their ad budgets on “The Big Three.”
That same survey also found that 65% of marketers are concerned that digital advertising opportunities are primarily concentrated in just a few companies. They want more opportunities.
They might get their wish. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) have opened antitrust investigations into Google, Amazon, Facebook, and even Apple.
Forrester: B2C Companies Are Relying Too Much on Big Data
Big Data is what you need, they said. Big Data will help you make better decisions, they said.
But is that really true?
A new report from Forrester makes the case that B2C companies are relying too heavily on Big Data and not enough on Small Data.
The report defines Big Data as a “combination of structured and unstructured data, including log files, transaction information, internet of things, social media metrics, etc.”
Forrester defines Small Data as “a combination of VOC data, customer journey data, user focus groups, surveys, behavioral user experience data, etc.”
The report says that 29% of companies rely “completely” on Big Data when making decisions.
That’s not good, though, because Big Data doesn’t reveal the “why” behind customer decisions.
More than half of the companies surveyed for the study said that Small Data is essential to understanding the thinking behind the decisions that customers make.
That sentiment is also supported by the report. Forty-one percent of businesses using small data strongly agree that they know why some people make purchases and some don’t.
Only 31% of those who rely solely on Big Data say the same thing.
The Forrester research also showed that there’s often a disconnect between marketing and business intelligence teams. They’re communicating, but not very effectively.
As a result, companies are rolling out marketing strategies that aren’t based on relevant insights and target market interests.
The report suggests that BI teams should meet regularly with marketing folks to review findings and give them a better understanding of recently discovered insights. That will help marketing teams develop campaigns that are likely to resonate with potential customers.
Survey: 89% of Marketers Are Seeing Better Sales With Location Data
According to a recent survey by Lawless Research and Factual, marketers who use location data are seeing increased sales (89%), customer growth (86%), and increased engagement (84%).
Oddly enough, though, less than a quarter (24%) of those surveyed said they plan to use location data for store visitation or offline measurement.
Instead, two-thirds said they primarily use location data for targeting. Just over half (52%) use it for audience engagement.
Unsurprisingly, mobile is the channel that delivers the most in terms of location data. But the survey also found that marketers plan to use it in advanced TV and smart speaker campaigns.
Report: Google Is Adding Timestamps to YouTube Video Results in Search
According to Android Police, Google is testing the addition of timestamps to some YouTube videos in search results.
The timestamps are time-savers. They enable searchers to go directly to a specific moment in the video.
As of now, though, it looks like the new feature is really just a Google test. Some people can see the timestamp while others can’t.
How does Google know where to get the timestamp info? From the description of the YouTube video.
You might have seen some descriptions that look like this:
Here’s my great video about singing. If you’re only interested in certain parts, here’s a breakdown of where everything is located:
0:00 Introduction to singing
0:23 How to yodel
1:17 How to sing in harmony
2:45 How to sing like Mariah Carey
It looks like Google is extracting the description and its associated timestamp and returning the info in search results. It’s a pretty slick feature if it pans out.
Google: Dynamic Rendering Won’t Be Needed in a Few Years
Here’s some good news: if you’ve got a single-page app and you’re using dynamic rendering for SEO, you probably won’t need to do that forever.
According to Google’s John Mueller, dynamic rendering is just a passing fad.
He says that eventually, search bots will have no trouble browsing around apps built with frameworks like ExtJS or Angular.
Google: We Don’t Give Your Site an “Authority Score”
If you think Google assigns your website some kind of “authority score,” think again.
During a recent Google Webmaster Central hangout, a webmaster asked John Mueller about his website’s authority metric. He was under the impression the authority score dropped in response to the June update.
“In general, Google doesn’t evaluate a site’s authority.,” Mueller replied. “So it’s not something where we would give you a score on authority and say this is the general score for authority on your website. That’s not something we would be applying here.”
Mueller also advised the webmaster to get feedback about the site’s authority from actual users.
Google: We Don’t Prioritize Portal Websites
This past week, Google laid to rest the myth that the company’s search results prioritize portal websites.
Someone on Twitter pointed out to John Mueller that TripAdvisor seems to be dominating the results for major keywords. He asked if that’s because Google gives a ranking edge to portal sites.
“No, portals are not prioritized,” Mueller replied. “Also, even static websites change :)”