By Mike Walter, VP Strategic ServicesFriday, Dec 21, 2012 4:15 PM EST

In Case You Missed It December

Netflix One Step Closer to Video Sharing on Social Media

Adweek by Katy Bachman 11-29-12

Netflix is moving closer to offering its subscribers in the U.S. the ability to share through the service what movies or TV shows they watched on social media sites like Facebook. The Judiciary Committee voted today on a House bill that would update the Video Privacy Protection Act, a decades-old bill that prohibits the disclosure of video rentals without written permission for each one.

Though U.S. Internet users can share their book or music lists on Facebook, they can't share their video choices because of the 1988 law, passed in the age of video tape rentals.


Digital Keeps Driving Ad Spending Upward in New ZenithOptimedia Forecast

AdAge by Alexandra Bruell 12-2-12

U.S. ad spending will grow at a modest but fairly steady rate over the next few years, aided in large part by the continued surge in digital media, including social and mobile platforms, according to ZenithOptimedia's latest ad spending forecast.

The Publicis Groupe media agency network predicts an increase in overall ad spending in the U.S. of 4.3% in 2012, 3.5% in 2013, 4.4% in 2014 and 4.7% in 2015.

Digital continues to outpace predictions for spending in other categories, particularly as use of online video rises and viewers spend more time with it. Internet ad spending is expected to grow at a rate of 18.2% in 2012, 18.1% in 2013, 18.3% in 2014 and 17.6% in 2015.

Radio will continue to see slight increases -- 2.9% in 2013, 1.9% in 2014 and 1% in 2015 -- due to new formats, according to ZenithOptimedia.


Pandora Shares Fall On Lowered Outlook, Ad Revs Rise

MediaPost by Mark Walsh 12-4-12

Since reports that Apple was planning to launch its own streaming music service began circulating in September, Pandora has faced increased investor uncertainty. Concerns about the company’s ability to compete directly with the tech behemoth have pushed down Pandora’s stock more than 25%.

The company’s results for its fiscal third quarter ending Oct. 31 were better. Pandora reported a profit of one cent per share on sales of $120 million, up 60% from the year-earlier period.

The company said total listener hours -- a key audience metric -- grew 67% to 3.5 billion during the third quarter, compared to 2.1 billion for the third quarter of fiscal 2012. It recently reported that listener hours in October alone grew 65% to 1.2 billion. Active listeners In October increased 47% to 59 million, down slightly from 49% growth in September.

Advertising, which generates the bulk of Pandora’s revenue, rose 60% to $106 million in the quarter, while subscription sales contributed $13.7 million, up 52% from a year ago. Building up advertising on the mobile side has been a key focus this year for Pandora, which gets the vast majority of its usage through mobile devices.


In Spotify Refresh, a New Canvas for Advertisers: Spotify Now Has 5 Million Paying Customers Globally

AdAge by Jason Del Rey 12-6-12

But in an interview after the event, Spotify Chief Advertising Officer Jeff Levick talked about the potential that one of the new features holds for marketers. The new section, which Spotify is labeling "Discover," surfaces content such as songs, playlists, and live-performance videos that Spotify users haven't discovered yet but which they may like based on their past listening habits. The section is laid out in a visual-driven experience incorporating images and videos in a big-tile grid that has some traces of Pinterest.

"Ads can be and should be about content and we plan to use this content-rich experience to let brands test out new things," he said, successfully avoiding saying the already cliched term "native advertising."

Up to now, Spotify has made money from marketers in two ways: through audio and display ads on the free version of the service. (Spotify also offers two paid tiers which are ad-free.) It also helps brands like McDonald's and Reebok build their own Spotify apps, which they often promote through ads on the service.

Mr. Ek announced at the event that Spotify now has 5 million paying subscribers globally -- paying either $4.99 or $9.99 a month -- and 1 million who pay in the U.S. Another 15 million or so use the service, but don't pay for access, meaning they are being hit with advertising.


Radio TSL

Inside Radio 12-17-12

Weekly time spent listening to radio declines by 28 minutes. The average American aged 12+ spent 13 hours and 51 minutes listening to radio a week, according to Arbitron’s RADAR 113 report, which covers March 31, 2011–March 28, 2012. While that’s a healthy number – nearly two hours a day – it’s down 28 minutes a week from one year earlier: 14 hours and 19 minutes in Arbitron’s RADAR 109, which covers April 1, 2010–March 30, 2011. More alarming are year-over-year declines among young adults.

•    Men 25-34 spent 51 minutes less with radio per week in RADAR 113 (15 hours) than in RADAR 109 (14 hours, 9 minutes).
•    TSL among women 25-34 also fell by a significant amount, from 12 hours, 55 minutes to 12 hours, 13 minutes, a year-over-year drop of 42 minutes.
•    Men 18-24 are spending 36 minutes less per week with radio, women 18-24 are listening 38 minutes less.

Demos with smaller declines than the 12+ average include women 35-54 (down 21 minutes), men 45-54 (down 17 minutes), women 45-54 (down 26 minutes), men 55-64 (down 15 minutes) men 65+ (down 26 minutes) and women 65+ (down 18 minutes). Teen listening declined only eight minutes but the demo already had the lowest listening level of any: about eight hours a week for teenage boys and nine and a-half hours for girls. The biggest TSL surprise: a 43-minute weekly decline among women 55-64. Both RADAR 113 and RADAR 109 include data from all 48 Arbitron PPM markets.


Kantar: U.S. Advertising Spending Up 7.1% In Q3

MediaPost  by Wayne Friedman 12-17-12

Following earlier similar U.S. advertising reports, Kantar Media said total advertising spending grew strongly in the third quarter of 2012 -- due to heavy political and Summer Olympics expenditures.  Kantar says some $1.8 billion from these two spending areas helped the period pull in $34.5 billion, with the total spending for the first nine months of the year now up 3.8% to $101.3 billion.

The biggest gains were to TV. Network TV spending climbed 29.9%, and the London Olympics Games added $1 billion of incremental money. Spot TV spending also spiked up 19.8%.

Spanish-language TV budgets gained 17.8%, also as a result of political advertising with spending on local TV stations. Kantar says syndication TV expenditures were up 9.3% from big gains on consumer package goods, insurance and restaurant advertising.

Cable TV had weaker results -- climbing 2.9%, mostly from TV dollars going to TV stations with Olympic coverage. Internet display advertising was even lower, dropping 4.3%. Kantar says these results suffered from poorly performing mid-size Web sites.

Radio, like TV, had strong results. Network radio was up 26.3% and national spot radio climbed 9.4% higher. Political advertising also did well here.

Print media continued its downward trend -- national newspapers down 17.2% and consumer magazines off 3.2% (from weaker pharmaceutical and direct-response marketer spending). Only local newspapers made it into positive territory -- up 0.8% -- albeit from an extra Sunday in the reporting period.

Freestanding inserts climbed 17.3%, also helped by a longer reporting period. Outdoor media was up 4.9%.

Jon Swallen, chief research officer at Kantar Media North America, said in a release: “Looking beyond these special events and focusing on indicators of core health, our data show that more than 60 percent of the Top 1000 advertisers increased their budgets year-over-year. This proportion has been stable for several quarters and indicates marketers are holding the course.”


Holiday Surprise: U.S. Mobile Ad Spend Reaches $4 Billion

MediaPost by Steve Smith 12-18-12

Driven by strong performance for native ad formats from Facebook and Twitter, mobile ad spend in the U.S. ended the year considerably better than expected, according to revised estimates from eMarketer.

Display, search and message-based advertising across devices will increase 180% over 2011 to reach $4.06 billion this year, the research firm expects. The 180% spike in growth is revised from a previous projection of 80% growth for the year to a total spend of $2.61 billion. eMarketer explains that the popularity of newsfeed ads into Facebook and Twitter's Promoted Tweets were among the reasons for the striking change in estimates. The increase in Facebook mobile ad revenues stood out and beat most analyst expectations handily.


Mobile Phones Now Account for 17% of Total Time Spent With the Internet

Marketing Charts 12-19-12

People are spending more time accessing the internet from a variety of non-PC connected devices, finds GfK in a new report. While desktop and laptop computers accounted for 83% of total time spent online last year, that dropped by 10% points to 73% this year. Picking up the slack were mobile devices: mobile phones now account for 17% of time spent with the internet (up 42% from 12%), and tablets 6% (double last year’s 3%).

The GfK study analyzes the breakdown of how internet time is spent on smartphones versus computers, identifying some interesting differences. For example, social media captures 31% of smartphone internet time, compared to 18% of PC internet time. (That result aligns neatly with recent data from Nielsen, which found consumers devoting 30% of their mobile time to social networks in July of this year, versus 20% of their PC time.)

Other Findings:
GfK’s data reveals that consumers spend almost twice as much time accessing social networks from their smartphones as they do emailing from their devices. On computers, the amount of time spent with email and social was the same.
Time spent on PCs accessing online video has almost doubled, from 7% share in 2011 to 13% this year. The share of time spent with email and social media also grew. According to the Nielsen report (see link above), while social media’s PC audience size actually decreased by 5% year-over-year in July, time spent with social media via PCs jumped by 24%.


Online Sets New Ad Record, Posts First $9 Billion Quarter

MediaPost by Gavin O'Malley 12-19-12

Continuing to break records, domestic online ad revenues reached $9.2 billion in the third quarter of the year, according to new data from the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PwC US.  Year-over-year, third-quarter ad revenues were up an impressive 18%; that's 6% better than the second quarter of 2012.

During the first half of 2012, online ad revenues climbed to an all-time high of $17 billion -- representing a 14% increase year-over-year.