Sep 1 2021
Ryan Manchee

DIAL: Digital Innovations Awesome List (September 2021)


At Centro, we know that keeping up with trade pubs and latest trends can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. To make that easier, we’ve compiled all the articles, reports, and other bits of awesomeness you may have missed, but should definitely read. Enjoy our latest list below!

Ads, Privacy, and Confusion [:06]

Privacy is coming to the internet, and cookies are going away. Many argue this is long overdue; those of us in advertising are challenged by what happens next. This post dives into how we don’t have much consensus on what online privacy actually means, and addresses how most of what’s on the table conflicts fundamentally with competition.

With Delta Variant and Rising COVID-19 Cases, Brands Recommit to Vaccination Campaigns [:03]

With only half of the U.S. population fully vaccinated and new variants spiking infection cases, brands like Axe body spray, Krispy Kreme and Expedia have reexamined their public health efforts and launched new campaigns. What happens when brands focus on the greater good and societal impact by providing positive encouragement to get vaccinated? Despite the polarization around vaccines, sales should follow.

Brands are Bringing Media In-House, But Not Without Roadblocks [:02]

Big names like Chase, Molson Coors, and Ally Financial have brought media functions in-house over the past couple of years. Transparency, cost-savings, and a super-powered marketing department are attractive to monster brands, as well as mid-sized and challenger brands. Training, talent, and technology are the differentiators that make this either a transformative decision or a bust.

Related: We’ve got all three Ts covered—check out the Total Economic Impact of In-Housing with Basis.

CPG Earnings Show Data-Infused Brands Who Are Upping Their Media Spending [:06]

The pandemic upended consumer buying habits, as well as the way brands market to consumers. Many of the world’s largest food and beverage brands' recent quarterly earnings showed two important themes:

  1. A sharp increase in advertising spend this year (specifically in more “working media”)
  2. How data is reconfiguring supply chains—from what products they make straight through to sales, and even home delivery

Related: Mastercard plans to ditch the magnetic stripe.

eMarketer US B2B Ad Spend Growth [:02]

In 2020, US B2Bs overhauled their marketing and advertising as the coronavirus pandemic eliminated in-person channels. Digital ad spending—never a central part of B2B go-to market strategies—surged from $6.55 billion in 2019 to $8.68 billion in 2020, increasing 32.5% YoY.

Digital Fuels Ad Spend Rebound as it Secures a Bigger Market Share [:02]

Standard Media Index (SMI) showed an impressive 25% ad spend increase in 1H 2021 for national advertisers in the US, compared to 2020.

What’s up? Digital was the biggest gainer of all media, growing its share of total ad spend from 40% in 2019 to 51% in 2021.

What’s down? TV shrank from 51% to 43% over that two-year span. But TV is just becoming digital, right? The biggest gainers in the digital field over the two-year span, were video, audio, and social media.

CTV Has Expanded the Commercial Opportunities in the TV Landscape [:03]

The dramatic rise in connected TV (CTV) adoption—142 million US adults each week, a number accelerated by the pandemic—has ushered in new commercial models that are fragmenting the landscape in much the same way that the myriad viewing options are. Nielsen breaks it down across “TV” channels.

Related: Our recent blog post where we explore the key digital video advertising trends.

How Companies are Working to Move Beyond the Traditional TV Ad Format [:05]

The :30 spot may be on its way out. New innovative formats that provide both a better consumer experience and a better vehicle for brand messages are becoming the new normal. Everything from a lighter ad load to less disruptive experiences are coming to your screens.

Related: Nielsen losing their MRC accreditation.

Publishers Rethink their Value to Stave Off Subscription Fatigue Among New Paying Readers [:04]

In 2020, subscription revenue for publishers grew 16%, and around 1/5 of American adults now pay for at least one online news outlet. Publishers are investing in personnel, from designers to growth marketers, to grow and retain their subscription base. Another key area is around investing in editorial coverage for better content.

WTF is the Metaverse? [:07]

Over the past year, executives and creatives in the gaming and tech industries have breathed life into the Metaverse concept, framing massive multiplayer games such as Fortnite: Battle Royale, Roblox and Minecraft as precursors to an expansive digital world that combines the fictional Metaverse with a real world that has become increasingly digitized during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Related: Have an Oculus check our Facebook Workrooms here. Also related: Not fully sold? You are not alone.

Bad News: Selling the Story of Disinformation [:25]

Sometimes it seems like no matter where you are on the internet, you encounter the toxic byproducts of modernity—hate speech, foreign interference, trolling, fake news, lies about the origins of pandemics, etc. Disinformation is not new, but the rise and spread has been accelerated by technology and big tech companies, along with political players. This is a long read, but it's  worth a look from outside the advertising industry.