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February 2015

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This Month's Features:

Verified Would Like to Welcome...
Postal Price Increase Not As High
Viewability in Focus at Leadership Meeting
Events Calendar
Digital Local Ad Spend at 40% of Total Local Spend

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Verified Would Like to Welcome...

Country GardensCountry Gardens
Meredith Corp.
New York, NY
Country Gardens celebrates the spirit of and romance of gardening as a lifestyle. Whether you have 40 acres or live 40 stories high, they know that country style is more than a passing fancy. Country Gardens embodies what today's gardening enthusiasts are looking for – straightforward garden advice, casual decorating, old-fashioned garden favorites, tough-as-nails natives, the latest tools of gardening, garden-fresh recipes and personal stories that inspire readers to take action.

Las Americas Multimedia Group LLC
Miami, FL
SuperFinde is a publication that is distributed locally. It covers local news, including community events, entertainment, sports, business, real estate and classifieds.

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Postal Price Increase Not As High

Postal Price Increase Not As HighThe United States Postal Service (USPS) announced a rate hike for periodicals of close to 2% last month, but it turns out the increase won't be quite as bad.

A calculation error discovered by the Postal Regulatory Commission last week, and acknowledged by the USPS on Wednesday, means the average increase for periodical delivery will be 1.34 percent, instead of the 1.965 percent originally announced.

"The Postal Service's intention was to increase Periodicals prices by 1.965 percent," the statement reads. "The prices noticed in the January 2015 filing unintentionally reflect a percent price increase for Periodicals that is below the goal of 1.965 percent."

"Good news in general for publishers," said David LeDuc, Senior Director of Public Policy for the Software & Information Industry Association. "But a publisher should not assume [1.34 percent] will be their increase. No one is yet able to determine the true effect by running the mail list using the old rates and new rates with the new rules. A back-of-the-envelope calculation results in a 9% increase for a light publication with low advertising and a national distribution with 25,000 copies. Of course, other periodicals will fare better in some circumstances."

The increase is set to take effect in April 2015. A 4.3% exigency surcharge will expire a few weeks after that.

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Viewability in Focus at Leadership Meeting

iab.The massive currency change that has come with the transition from a served impression standard to a viewable impression standard has sparked debates. There is no question that debates are constructive. What is less constructive is confusion. Even worse is confusion created for the sake of controversy – making for unnecessary marketplace turmoil.

The recent Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Annual Leadership Meeting, attended by more than 1,100 executives, featured a number of conversations about viewability, including a Town Hall devoted to the subject. Over the course of high-level dialogue with stakeholders from the buy, sell and tech sides, it was clear that confusion persists.

Clarifications were necessary:

  • It is unreasonable to expect 100% threshold of deliverability against viewable impressions at this stage in the evolution of measurement and technology. The entire marketplace wants every ad to be seen. Are we there yet? No.

  • Viewability is not the ultimate goal of Making Measurement Make Sense (3MS). Viewability, as defined by the Media Rating Council (MRC), is the core currency unit that will be built into the digital and cross-platform gross ratting point standard. Viewable digital ad impressions defined by a pixel and duration metric will permit equivalizing of exposure metrics across screens.

  • The standard for a viewable impression is the standard. MRC, the IAB, the American Association of Advertising Agencies and the Association of National Advertisers spent much time and effort (and money) to establish this agreed-upon standard. Lost in the cacophony is the fact that empirical work is the underpinning of the standard. The MRC studied billions of brand ad impressions across many sites, finding that if ads rendered at 50% of pixels for one second and two seconds, respectively, for display desktop and video, then in 80% of cases the ads fully rendered. In short, responsible practitioners wrote the standard using science, not conjecture.

  • Most of the agencies support the MRC standard. And most are working with publishers to ensure mutually efficient data transparency for the purpose of tracking campaign viewability.

  • A nonviewable impression does not equal a fraudulent impression.

  • Fraud and viewability are separate problems that the industry is working on solving. They each require separate solutions. Fraud and viewability intersect when measurement vendors are required to filter out nonhuman traffic from measurement processes. Filtering processes can alter viewability counts. Filtering out nonhuman traffic is nothing new in the measurement science or business. Consumer usage and behavior measurement is about humans.

  • A nonmeasurable impression does not equal a nonviewable impression.

  • Measurability and viewability are not the same. Understanding this is especially important when trying to assess mobile ads. As of yet, there is no standard for the measurement of mobile ad viewability. There are methodological pitfalls in extrapolating desktop viewability and applying it to mobile. PERIOD.

The subject of Rising Stars formats also took the spotlight when research was released showing that these rich canvasses outperform legacy display units across a myriad of brand effectiveness measures. This also served as a reminder that conversations about Rising Stars ads and viewability have not been in the forefront – but this topic is critical.

First off, it is vital to note that Display Rising Stars units were given a different viewability standard by the MRC and the industry, due to their larger size. Their standard is 30% of pixels for one continuous second.

Second, it is important to understand that any real challenge in balancing the Display Rising Stars with viewability concerns has to do with vendors' inability to consistently measure them against the viewable standard. Ultimately, it isn't the Rising Stars but the measurement technology that vendors must improve.

Captivating creative – now proven to be exceptionally effective for brand building – cannot be excluded from media plans that require viewability.

Moreover, we need to cut through the confusion wherever it is, no matter how it started, and get to a marketplace that works toward the common goal of ensuring quality advertising that is viewable and measurable.

© 2015 MediaPost Communications

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Events Calendar

Events CalendarYale Publishing Course
March 1, 2015 – Early Application Discount Deadline (15% off)

INMA Mobile Summit for Engagement and Profit
March 9 – 10, 2015
Austin, TX

NNA mediaXchange 2015
March 15 – 18, 2015
Nashville, TN

EWIP 2015 Woman's Leadership Conference
March 26, 2015
Berkeley, CA

INMA and WNMN: Big Data for Media Conference
March 26 – 27, 2015
London, UK

If you have an event that you would like to announce,
please send your information to


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Digital Local Ad Spend at 40% of Total Local Spend

BorrellAccording to new research from Borrell Associates, at the rate digital advertising has grown in 2014, and the rate they're forecasting for 2015, digital advertising at the local level will grow 42% this year. At that rate, it would account for $2 out of every $5 spent by local advertisers. It's grown to the level of dominance that newspapers enjoyed for years, until the late 1990s.

Growth in Online Ad Spend

Four types of companies are forming:

  • Traditional media companies stuck in the analog world, selling a little digital stuff because it's easy, but not really believing there's good money in it
  • Traditional media companies that are more excited about the prospects but still reticent (or unable) to invest more in order to grow quickly
  • Traditional media companies that have seen the light and are determined to grow again, investing heavily in digital by hiring people or acquiring companies

But that actually makes three types of companies, says the report. The fourth is Internet "pureplays," and there are thousands of them. True to predictions, they have gobbled up share at the local level. In 2015, these independent companies will account for nearly three-fourths of all digital advertising, elbowing out local media competitors who have tried for two decades to use their existing sales forces to also sell digital advertising.

It's an interesting landscape, and this is how it looks to us at the onset of 2015, says the report.

Total Local Ad Spend By Medium

This report, a digital advertising outlook for 2015, examines the companies that are apparently doing the best at morphing and looks at where all the growth is. Several companies are making hundreds of millions of digital revenue but have essentially stopped growing. Others are morphing from traditional media companies into digital media companies, now getting the majority of their ad revenues from online advertising.

Three years ago, traditional media sold half of all digital advertising. This year, traditional media will only account for 25%, or $12 billion.

Digital Share of Total Ad Revenue

"In 2015, independent companies will account for nearly three-fourths of all digital advertising, elbowing out local media competitors who have tried for two decades to use their existing sales forces to also sell digital advertising," said Gordon Borrell, CEO of Borrell Associates. This said, Borrell points out that traditional print and broadcast media are still a significant market force. At the end of 2014, they accounted for more than two-thirds of all advertising buys.


© 2015 MediaPost Communications

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