Mobile Fix - April 5
As people try and read the runes of the Apple event last week, the WSJ looks at where their streaming service may sit against the competition - suggesting there are 5 models. Smaller firms within the ecosystem are looking for niches to own - Discovery wants to be the Netflix of non-fiction. These smaller players will almost certainly need Apple and Amazon to help with distribution.
This is more smart thinking from Matthew Ball and Redef on why Disney will succeed in streaming. This FT analysis supports that - when you look at the top 100 movies Disney along with new acquisition Fox have a huge share
The excellent Recode graphic showing the newTV landscape - who owns who and relative size - has been updated. We have used the old one lots and am sure we will use this one too. But the overlay of GAFA firms we did for Vidcon completely changes the picture, as 3 of are almost 4 times larger than the biggest firm on here.
At their first press event Snap have announced lots of new product and partnerships. The most interesting is the way other apps (including Tinder & Houseparty) can now run Stories, with an ad partnership to follow. They also announced Games and an AR developer platform called Scan.
CEO Evan Spiegel addressed the issue which holds Snap back - a perceived lack of scale;
“In the United States, Snapchat now reaches nearly 75 percent of all 13 to 34-year-olds, and we reach 90 percent of 13 to 24-year-olds. In fact, we reach more 13 to 24-year-olds than Facebook or Instagram in the United States, the U.K., France, Canada and Australia.”
The Consultants are coming
The ad industry is obsessed that the big consultancy firms plan to steal marketing away from agencies. The respective skill sets still feel sufficiently different (digital transformation versus brand building creativity) to allow both groups to prosper but Accenture etc are picking up firms that complete their offer. The head of Accenture Interactive explains their strategy here. The key point for me is their ambition is to be paid for the results - the opportunity that Agencies have constantly missed.
As Accenture expand their capabilities, one long standing division of their business looks fragile - media auditing. Having your media spend audited by what was an accountancy firm made sense. But Agencies now think having their work audited by a competitor isn’t acceptable and WPP are apparently refusing to share media data with auditor Accenture
A big step forward for Voice is the roll out of Google Duplex - the AI service demonstrated by Google last year where Google Assistant can call a restaurant and book a table for you. This super smart chat bot is now available across the US.
This week in New York I am again struck by how many people wear AirPods all the time.
GAFA & News
Following last weeks event, media companies are having to decide how to deal with Apple etc. This NYT piece looks at how most are feeling cautious but the lure of a billion pockets has convinced many to take the chance with Apple. The optimists think of Apple News as a form of sampling that will drive new, direct, revenues as people discover a new publication and want more. Pessimists think it’s dangerous to let people access their brand on the cheap. The New York Times are not taking part in Apple News.
Facebook are also wooing the news industry, with the possibility of a dedicated News tab, which only features proper News sources. Zuch gets into this in this video interview with the CEO of Axel Springer about how Facebook are helping news.
Growth & VC
Talking of A16Z the FT looks at how their assault on the VC world has been successful with the Lyft IPO the latest of their liquidity events, and IPOs of AirBnB, Pinterest and Slack are due to follow in the next year or so. But they are not resting on their laurels and have had 150 staff register as financial advisors meaning they can employ a wider set of investment strategies beyond traditional VC funding. This in depth look at their new approach is a good read.
The FT have a collection of stories about brands making Instagram work for them. The Guardian has a long piece on how Instagram is changing the way we shop and lots of smart brands are trying to unlock the potential of Pinterest
An in depth FT piece on Amazon looks at their commingling of products and the consequent opportunity for fake products. The second part looks at the steps being taken to reduce this risk - asking if this will degrade the Amazon model. Both are well worth reading.
One of the more surprising moves in retail was when Macys bought concept store Story last year. The founder of Story is now the Brand Experiences Officer at Macys and this ShopTalk keynote with her and the CDO of Macys is interesting.
How Western brands try to influence Chinese tourists before they start their travels. And a fascinating piece on how luxury brands are using art to connect with Chinese shoppers. More on Art-lennials here. We see real potential for using art to drive retail traffic - as mentioned in our Retail Safari.
With Cannes on the horizon, Brazilian ad industry has some great ads around; this AR concept from Burger King is really good. But did it get any scale or is it a cool video designed to win a Lion? After all isn’t it odd the App is in English in the video rather than Portuguese?
Finally … one of the first projects where we learned how to blend digital marketing with traditional was the launch of FT.com back in the early days of what became DLKW and DLKW DIalogue. It’s great to see that great content and smart strategy has enabled the FT to achieve 1 million paying readers.
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