This week: Google Chrome is making developers unhappy, LinkedIn has a new ad targeting feature, and plenty of people say Facebook doesn’t get their interests right.
Here’s what happened this week in digital marketing.
Google Chrome API Changes Might Disable Ad Blockers
Here’s some good news if you rely on web ads to get the word out about your brand.
Google is making changes to Chromium, the software the powers Google Chrome. The net effect that should interest you: the new version of the API could disable ad-blocking software.
Some developers are already crying foul.
One of them is Raymond Hill, the developer of the uBlock Origin and uMatrix extensions. He believes that the upcoming changes will take control away from users.
“Extensions act on behalf of users,” he says. “They add capabilities to a user agent, and deprecating the blocking ability of the webRequest API will essentially decrease the level of user agency in Chromium, to the benefit of websites which obviously would be happy to have the last word in what resources their pages can fetch/execute/render.”
Of course, some people think Google has an ulterior motive here. They claim the company is putting revenue over user experience.
Yeah. That’s possible.
Soon, All Advertisers Can Buy Google’s 15-Second Non-Skippable Ads
This past week, Google announced that it’s making 15-second non-skippable ads available to all advertisers.
In the past, you had to buy them through the YouTube reservation process and the Preferred Network.
“Recognizing that advertisers should have access to the full range of creative options regardless of how they buy – whether in advance via reservation or in the Google Ads auction – we’re bringing non-skippable 15-second ads to Google Ads and Display and Video 360, across YouTube and Google video partners. Meanwhile, we continue to have protections in our ad system to cap the number of ads a user sees, to ensure users have a great experience while watching YouTube,” Google said in a statement.
Google also said that YouTube will still to cap the number of ads a user sees.
If you want to see if the new feature has rolled out to your account, take a peek in your Google Ads or Video 360 account.
LinkedIn Rolls out Interest-Targeted Ads
LinkedIn continues to ramp up its advertising game.
In the latest change, the B2B social site will allow you to target ads based on user interests.
Currently, there are more than 200 topics to choose from.
How does LinkedIn know the interests of its users? It “learns” about them based on their interactions within the platform.
So far, the new feature has some pretty good reviews.
Digitas UK reported a 25% increase in click-through rates when using interest-based targeting.
Matt Campbell, a multi-channel marketing specialist at SAS Institute, said his company used the new feature to build brand awareness. So far, he’s “extremely satisfied” with the results.
Interest targeting will roll out to all advertisers over the next week.
Amazon Rolls out Customer Acquisition Metrics for Ads
LinkedIn isn’t the only company that’s improving its advertising platform. Amazon is getting in on the act as well.
Specifically, the e-commerce giant just introduced new metrics that offer insight on first-time customers who converted from your ad campaigns.
It’s called the “new-to-brand” metric and it’s available for video, display, and Sponsored Brands campaigns.
The new feature will also show your new-to-brand purchase rate and cost per new customer.
New Salesforce Tool Makes It Easy to Create Mobile Apps Without a Developer
How would you like to create a mobile app without hiring a developer? Salesforce has a tool for that.
The Lightning Platform Mobile allows you to build an app, integrate it with a service, and publish it to App Store or Google Play.
Salesforce also announced that you can create a mobile version your web-based community powered by Community Cloud.
If you’re unfamiliar with Community Cloud, it’s a host for online communities that enables customers to talk to one another about a brand and its products.
There are already some success stories with the new tool.
Dutch supermarket chain Jumbo, for example, created an app for employee collaboration and task management. The company also rolled out a customer-facing app for nutritional info and same-day delivery orders.
Additionally, Cornell University turned its student portal into an app in an effort to appeal to a younger generation.
Clearly, you can save money on app development costs using the Salesforce tool.
In order to use it, though, you need to be a Salesforce customer. That ain’t cheap.
So run the numbers and make the call.
Study: Facebook Is Wrong 27% of the Time When Detecting User Interests
There’s a possibility that your targeted ad campaign on Facebook isn’t so targeted after all.
According to a Pew Research Center study, 27% of U.S. adult Facebook users say that the platform doesn’t determine their interests accurately.
The survey was conducted between September and October of last year.
If the findings are accurate and you’re using interest-based targeting on Facebook, then it’s likely that at least some of your ads are appearing in front of the “wrong” people.
Unfortunately, that could increase your advertising costs.
Also, Pew Research says that there’s some guesswork involved in determining user interests:
Typically, the precise workings of the proprietary algorithms that perform these analyses are unknowable outside the companies who use them. At the same time, it is clear the process of algorithmically assessing users and their interests involves a lot of informed guesswork about the meaning of a user’s activities and how those activities add up to elements of a user’s identity.