Facebook’s Plans A Product Roadmap

Mark Zuckerberg presented Facebook’s plans and product roadmap for 2019. Here’s everything we need to know.

Facebook shared its revenue and growth stats for Q4 2018. Mark Zuckerberg also shared a post discussing the product roadmap and their plans for 2019.

It has been a turbulent year for Facebook but all the negative publicity didn’t seem to affect its user and revenue growth. According to Zuckerberg, the company saw a revenue of $16.91 billion in Q4 2018, up from $13.7 billion in Q3 2018.

Moreover, Facebook counted 1.52 billion daily active users in December 2018, which is an increase of 9% from 2017.

When it comes to monthly active users, there are now 2.32 billion as of December 2018. The increase proves that people are still using Facebook, despite all the controversy from earlier this year.

Another interesting statistic is that 93% of the advertising revenue comes from mobile devices, up from 89% in Q4 2017. This means that mobile users should be more important than ever in our advertising strategies.

Overview of key stats we need to know as we plan our Facebook marketing strategy for 2019:

  • 1.52 billion use Facebook daily
  • 2.32 billion use Facebook monthly
  • 93% of the advertising revenue comes from mobile
  • 2.7 billion people use Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp or Messenger each month (Facebook’s “Family” of services)
  • 500 million people use Instagram Stories daily
  • 2 million advertisers are now focusing on Stories

Zuckerberg also shared the company’s plans for 2019 and their priorities for the new year.

As he mentioned, “We’ve fundamentally changed how we run our company to focus on the biggest social issues, and we’re investing more to build new and inspiring ways for people to connect.”

Facebook focused on security in 2018 and 2019 will be the year of product innovation. This sounds like an exciting promise.

Here are Facebook’s four key priorities for 2019

1. Making progress on social issues

The first priority is about improving the way the internet and their company handles major social issues. It’s key to proactively identify harmful content and they have already improved their systems for this work.

Mark Zuckerberg said that he’s proud of having one of the most advanced systems in the world and that they have more than 30,000 people working on safety and security.

The bigger question he raised for this case has to do with the set of values. How can you decide what’s acceptable and what is not?

Facebook has reduced engagement in WhatsApp to stop misinformation. They have also reduced viral videos by 50 million hours a day to improve well-being.

Moreover, they are also working on privacy and encryption. They are confident that they’ve built one of the most powerful encrypted messaging services in the world.

As people need additional privacy, Facebook is working on making more of their products end-to-end encrypted by default to improve the safety and security of their users.

2. Building new and meaningful experiences while gearing up for bigger improvements

Facebook wants to deliver new experiences that can meaningfully improve people’s lives. Mark Zuckerberg talked about Stories and how they keep on growing as an emerging content type.

Instagram has actually passed 500 million daily active Stories users just 6 months after reaching 400 million daily active users.

Now the focus is to improve such experiences over the next months:

  • Messaging will become the center of the social experience if it’s not already. That’s why WhatsApp will allow payments through the app in more countries.
  • Private sharing and stories will also become more important to the social experience as people focus on privacy.
  • More businesses are going to be on boarded to be part of this social experience while finding new ways to reach their audience
  • Facebook Groups and communities will continue to deepen. Community is a central part of the experience on Facebook and Groups will soon be as important as friends and family for people.
  • Facebook Watch will become even more mainstream. 400 million people currently use it every month and it seems that people spend more than 20 minutes every day on Watch daily. Thus, Facebook is looking for New Years to grow this feature beyond the news feed to separate the entertainment from the social interactions.
  • Instagram will focus more on commerce and shopping. Mark Zuckerberg has promised that they will deliver more quality experiences around these.
  • AR and VR will bring people together in the longer term. Oculus Quest shipping will begin this spring while Portal also goes surprisingly well.

3. Supporting business to grow

There are currently more than 90 million small businesses using Facebook’s products. Most of them rely on free products and according to a survey from Facebook, they have managed to grow their business and hire more people ever since they’ve started using Facebook.

Mark Zuckerberg said that they are happy to see that they are helping such businesses grow and they are committed to continue doing it.

4. Improving transparency on their work and role they play in the world

The last priority for this year for Facebook is to communicate more clearly what they’re doing and the role their services play in the world.

As Mark Zuckerberg mentioned, there’s a lot of negativity out the impact of technology. The tech industry should be scrutinized heavily due to the big role they play in people’s lives. However, it’s important to listen to the critique first and then to figure out the best way to address these issues while staying true to your own beliefs.

2018 has helped Facebook get a clearer sense of their beliefs and they seem to be ready to move forward. They are also ready to work with people seek for better outcomes, either with content or data regulation, cooperation on shared threats, using AI to serve people or supporting the idea of living in an open and connected world.

What do Facebook’s plans mean for our 2019 strategies?

It’s always useful to know what big social companies like Facebook and its family are planning ahead. If you’re working with brands in marketing, advertising, or sales then you understand that these trends may also affect your own work.

Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and the rest play a big role in our lives and it’s important to keep up with their latest changes to adapt our own strategies.

What we can learn from Facebook’s new priorities is that the ‘Facebook family’ has lots of different plans ahead. What we need to remember is that Facebook is not just one platform anymore.

Even if your audience is steadily leaving this platform, they will probably still be on Instagram or WhatsApp, which means that it’s useful to keep up with their integrations and their upcoming plans.

The post Facebook unveils its plans for 2019: What’s next? appeared first on ClickZ.

Stuff like this are why everyone loves your page

Digital Transformation is a hot topic these days. It might be in the running for buzzword of the year, along with blockchain, disruptive, and cloud-native. And yet, it’s a buzzword that businesses are taking very seriously.

As IDG noted in their 2018 State of Digital Transformation Report:

digital transformation first approach

“More than a third of organizations (44%) have already started implementing a digital-first approach to business processes, operations and customer engagement.

Some 19% are in the integration process of making operational and technology changes throughout the enterprise, and 18% are executing their digital plans and making process, operational and technology changes on a department and business unit level.

Just 7% of companies have already fully implemented their digital first approach and are in the maintenance phase.”

A recent Progress report notes that 85% of enterprise decision makers believe that if they don’t make serious progress on digitally transforming their businesses in the next 24 months, they’ll fall behind the competition and take a hit on their bottom line.

Clearly, people believe that digital transformation is a pretty big deal

But despite the significant enthusiasm and high hopes surrounding digital transformation, many people are still fuzzy on exactly what it means and how to implement it.

The whole idea can feel somewhat like Michael Scott’s proposed slogan for Dunder Mifflin in the show The Office: “Limitless Paper In A Paperless World.”

On the surface, it sounds appealing, futuristic, and forward-thinking.

But once people dive into the nitty-gritty of what’s actually involved, things become a little unclear. Phrases such as Internet of Things, asset digitization, and cloud infrastructure get thrown around, often without clarity on exactly how they relate.

The conversation can quickly devolve into buzzword soup.

In this article, we’ll break down the what, why, and how of digital transformation. We’ll walk step-by-step through the exact nature of digital transformation, why it matters to your business, and practical ways to actually implement it.

Consider this a detailed primer on digital transformation— a roadmap if you will.

What is digital transformation?

Essentially, digital transformation is the process of using digital tools and technology to improve or renovate existing processes.

This process involves strengthening or even replacing archaic, slow, tedious, often manual processes, with easier, efficient, and often automated processes.

But we also can apply a broader, more fundamental way to understand digital transformation.

It means integrating digital technology into all departments of a business, which then dramatically changes how each one operates.

Digital transformation also means a change in the business culture. This change starts in the C-Suite and filters down through every level of the business. It involves a commitment to using digital tools to increase the efficiency and, ultimately, the bottom line.

Digital transformation requires commitment because it’s not typically a simple process. It takes significant changes to long-used legacy systems.

This, in turn, means time and resources, as well as buy-in from the employees who will have to learn new ways to do tasks.

David Terrar at Agile Elephant puts it this way:

“Digital transformation is the process of shifting your organisation from a legacy approach to new ways of working and thinking using digital, social, mobile and emerging technologies. It involves a change in leadership, different thinking, the encouragement of innovation and new business models, incorporating digitisation of assets and an increased use of technology to improve the experience of your organisation’s employees, customers, suppliers, partners and stakeholders.”

And while all this may sound great, it does raise the question: why does digital transformation even matter?

Why digital transformation matters for your business

Frankly, all the high-level talk about the matter can fail to answer the fundamental question of why you should even care. After all, if it’s not broke, why bother fixing it? If long-standing processes and workflows seem to be getting the job done, why rock the boat?

These are certainly valid questions. There are a number of costs associated with digital transformation. It requires a significant commitment in order to make it all work. Is it really worth it for your company to invest time, money, and human capital in this process?

Short answer: yes.

At the risk of overstating things, it’s a matter of survival. Maybe not in the immediate future, but certainly a few years down the road.

Four reasons why digital transformation matters

You can think of these as a series of falling dominoes, with each one leading to the next.

1. Increased efficiency

By its very nature, digital transformation involves making processes and workflows faster, easier, and more efficient.

For example instead of spending hours processing paperwork, you can create digital workflows that will seamlessly and automatically move documents to their proper locations.

This increased efficiency frees up employees to focus on other, more revenue-centered activities.

In a recent survey of 100 IT leaders by Vanson Bourne, 44% of respondents indicated that legacy systems hold back or hamper nearly every project.

Digital transformation enables you to create much more efficient systems and processes, which in turn allows key tasks and projects to move forward much faster.

2. Improved customer experience

Implementing digital transformation allows you to remove points of friction experienced by your customers.

For example, if new clients or customers need to fill out a series of onboarding documents, digitizing and automating that process can lift a significant burden from the them.

This leads to higher customer loyalty and a greater Customer Lifetime Value.

3. Increased profits

digital transformation increased profits

The statistics are clear that implementing digital transformation leads to improvements on the bottom line.

In a recent Gartner survey, 56% of CEOs said that digital improvements have already led to increases in revenue. With this being the fundamental goal of all businesses, this in and of itself is reason to move toward it.

4. Keeping up with the competition

digital transformation influence on revenue

It follows that if digital transformation leads to increased profits, it’s also necessary for keeping up with your competition, who are most certainly implementing a digital transformation strategy.

A recent Forrester survey shows that executives believe that within five years, as much as 50% of their revenue will be driven by digital changes to their businesses.

Bottom line: Your competition know that digital transformation is crucial for future business success, and if you want to keep up with them, you also need to consider a competitive strategy.

Implementing digital transformation in your business

It’s one thing to recognize its importance, but making digital transformation a reality in your business is a different animal altogether.

It’s the difference between talking about running a marathon and actually doing it. Talking about the health benefits and the sense of pride of completing a goal come naturally. Actually running the race requires an intense commitment to training, eating properly, and purchasing the appropriate running gear.

So how do you move from talking about digital transformation to the actual transformation?

We recommend these ten steps for implementing digital transformation

1. Get the full support of top-level management

As noted earlier, this simply can’t happen if the CEO and leadership team aren’t on board. Making the transformation a reality requires time, human capital, and financial resources. It also involves employees learning to do tasks in new ways, which can generate pushback.

Additionally, because it touches every department, it’s essential that the push come from the top down. This commitment signals to everyone in the company that digital transformation is a priority requiring commitment from all parties.

As McKinsey & Company notes:

“…the CEO cannot simply sanction a digital transformation; he or she must communicate a vision of what needs to be achieved, and why, in order to demonstrate that digital is an unquestionable priority, make other leaders accountable, and make it harder to back-track.”

2. Identify strategic change areas

There are certain areas in your business that will benefit most from digital transformation. For example, internal research may show that shortening the time between an application being submitted and company follow up will dramatically increase customer loyalty and reduce the overall churn rate.

Once you’ve identified strategic areas for improvement, look for specific ways digital transformation can contribute to that improvement. Are there ways to automatically move submitted applications to the appropriate individuals? Can the application process itself be made simpler and easier for the customer? By implementing digital transformation in key areas, you maximize the overall effect.

3. Allocate sufficient funding

Almost every change project will require some portion of the budget. Whether it’s replacing legacy systems, making strategic hires, or creating partnerships with other companies, funding will be required.

To state the obvious, it’s critical to determine approximately how much the digital transformation process will cost and then set aside the appropriate resources. It’s true that it won’t be cheap, but the cost of ignoring it will be even greater. Additionally, the benefits created will far outweigh the costs in the long run.

4. Create a launch team

There’s a high probability that neither your executives nor your employees will have experience in engineering digital transformation. If you give them the job of bringing the change to pass, the endeavor will probably fail.

The solution? Creating a team of experts who can lead the process. This usually starts with hiring someone like a Chief Digital Officer, who is then responsible for assembling a team of employees, consultants, and engineers to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

Duncan Tait, Head of Americas and EMEIA at Fujitsu, puts it this way:

“While businesses today recognize the need to adopt and adapt to technology, there remain significant issues that are contributing to substantial rates of failure and high associated costs. To realize their digital vision, it’s crucial that businesses have the right skills, processes, partnerships and technology in place. With digital disruption rapidly changing the business landscape, businesses can’t afford to fail in their transformation.”

5. Start with low-risk projects

This works in conjunction with Step #2. After identifying strategic change areas, start your digital transformation with relatively simple, low-risk projects in the strategic areas. Making small progress on big goals creates a sense of momentum and helps people see the overall potential.

Additionally, tackling smaller projects can give you at least a limited sense of what will be involved in the project as a whole.

6. Carefully introduce new workflows

Digital transformation always involves creating new, more efficient workflows. However, the launch team must be careful as they introduce these workflows within the different departments. If the workflows are simply dumped on a department en masse, it can create chaos and engender resentment.

Additionally, the launch team must be aware of the office politics that often accompany new initiatives. Department executives can be territorial and may push back against anything that seems like it might make things more complicated.

The launch team must carefully (and often slowly) introduce new processes, giving employees and department heads adequate time to process and learn them.

7. Continue to build the culture

Digital transformation isn’t a one-and-done process. Rather, it’s something that must be woven deep into the culture of your business. Technology is evolving at an incredibly rapid pace, and in order to keep up there must be a willingness within the organization to adapt, experiment, and strive for continuous improvement.

If this is seen as simply a one-time project, your company will fall behind competitors as technology continues to evolve. A company culture must be created that recognizes these new realities and is prepared to keep pace with them. “Evolve or die,” may be a cliche by this point, but there remains some truth in it.

8. Build momentum

As you make progress on the strategic areas you chose at the beginning of the process, you’ll begin to pick up momentum. Those areas of your business that have been transformed should generate additional revenue, which can then be used for further digital transformation.

Every new transformation initiative should build on the previous one, ensuring that momentum continues to build and revenue continues to come in.

As your efforts begin to snowball, continue to focus on strategic areas that will continue to enable growth. Don’t begin chasing every possible opportunity. Focus on the 20% that will move the needle.

9. Increase core business capabilities

If things go well during the initial rollout, there will come a time when more substantive changes are needed. Core operating platforms, as well as the people who run them, will need to be boosted in order for further transformation to be possible.

In some ways, this is the tipping point for your company. If you continue to build out your core business capabilities to enable further transformation, you can truly become a leader in your industry.

10. Change your operating model

A full digital transformation will eventually require you to implement a new operating model. Departments and functions that were once siloed will need to be reorganized to enable communication and collaboration. Data that was once the property of a single business entity must be easily shared across the company.

To quote McKinsey & Company again:

“…companies will have to lean away from a traditional matrix structure with rigid functional boundaries if the transformation is to succeed. They will need a network structure, organizing around sources of value, with product managers empowered to make decisions with implications that cut across functions.”

The times are changing

When it comes to the way successful businesses run, the times are certainly changing. The, “If it’s not broke then don’t fix it,” model simply doesn’t work anymore. Technology moves too fast and your competitors are moving with it. It’s not about keeping up, it’s about not falling behind.

Creating a company-wide digital transformation won’t be any by easy means. But it’s a worthwhile necessity. The increased efficiency, customer satisfaction, and revenue set you up for years of success.

Former president Bill Clinton put it this way: “The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.”

We wholeheartedly agree.

Brandyn is the Agency Development Director at MojoTech, a custom software development consultancy.

The post Digital transformation: What it is and why it matters in 2019 appeared first on ClickZ.

who else really loves this

It’s that time of the year again: reflecting on the year that’s past as we prepare for 2019 lurking around the corner. In this article, we have a roundup of some of our fan favorite pieces from 2018 on emerging technology.

From the rise of artificial intelligence to chatbot powered marketing, Magic Leap shaking the AR industry to big name brands snuggling up to blockchain, these were some of our highlights from the past year.

We also have a roundup of our top articles from each of our other three staple categories: marketing technology, digital marketing, and digital transformation.

1. Can artificial intelligence create content as well as a human?

Will robots take over our jobs? Ever the question.

Earlier this year, we received an email from a company that uses artificial intelligence to create content.

They said, “You choose the topic and length, and our algorithm will create your content.”

So in this article, we got some AI to actually write a bit of our article. The result? A piece of content that is surprisingly … normal. A few typos for sure, but with a bit of human editing, it could fare pretty well.

So if you’ve been wondering, “can AI create content as well as a human?” — here’s your answer.

2. How new technologies will affect your marketing strategy

Technology has played an integral role in the growth of marketing over the years.

3. 10 industries utilizing augmented reality

When it comes to augmented reality, we often think of Pokémon Go and other such games.

However, the technology has grown far beyond the gaming and entertainment sectors.

In this article, we look at popular use cases of augmented reality in the business world.

Manufacturing, education, health care, marketing, fashion, travel, navigation, retail, food and beverage, and enterprise — these are all industries using AR.

4. Brands and blockchain: How Walmart, Burger King and De Beers are snuggling up to decentralization

Is Bitcoin the future of money? Has the cryptocurrency bubble already popped?

It depends who you ask. The topic of Bitcoin is just as polarizing as it is hot. But no matter how volatile Bitcoin stocks may be, its underlying technology, blockchain, still has huge potential for digital transformation.

We often talk about blockchain in a speculative way, but brands like Walmart, Amazon and Burger King are already embracing the technology.

Diamond powerhouse De Beers even has plans for its own industry blockchain.

In this article, we look at what six big brands are doing to cozy up to decentralization and apply the power of blockchain to their work.

5. Five brands that prove chatbot-powered marketing is the future

As personal assistants like Siri and Alexa become a normal part of consumers’ digital experiences and our interactions with devices get increasingly more conversational, many companies are working to incorporate chatbots into their marketing strategies.

In this article, we look at five brands who bet on chatbots — with excellent results.

Starbucks, Aeromexico, Sephora, National Geographic, and Taco Bell are among the early adopters of chatbot-powered marketing.

6. Magic Leap shakes the AR industry in 2018. What’s next?

One of the companies that made the biggest splash in the augmented reality industry this year was Magic Leap.

After eight years of hype (a total investment of $2.6 billion), they only recently introduced their first product to their audience in August of this year.

How did their first AR headset goggles affect the AR industry? Did it meet expectations? And why is this company threatening big tech giants that want to succeed in this competitive market?

In this article, we looked at Magic Leap’s big news, what the change meant for marketers, and how would affect our strategies.

Stay tuned for more “Best of 2018” roundups on Monday!

The post Best of 2018: Emerging technology news and trends appeared first on ClickZ.

Interesting info so much this is really great

“$30 million dollars of fake ads is just the tip of the iceberg.”

At the end of November 2018, the Department of Justice indicted a massive digital ad fraud ring, exposing the myriad exploitations of the current ad tech model.

In 2018 alone, advertisers will lose $19 billion to fraud, according to Juniper Research.

Ad fraud, it seems, generally goes unpunished

The labyrinthine system of advertisers, publishers, brokers, and users has become so convoluted that fraud has become considered the price of doing business, a form of institutional corruption.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

While blockchain technology gets the most attention for cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and Ethereum being the most well known, that is but one application of the technology. Blockchain allows for a new level of trust and verifiability in industries where opaqueness is the norm.

While the digital advertising ecosystem was supposed to bring new levels of insight to advertisers, what it created was a system of players ripe for exploitation by bad actors.

Blockchain could have prevented the fraud described in the DOJ’s indictment. While in the nascent stages, projects are applying blockchain to the inefficiencies of digital ad tech and returning lost value to publishers, advertisers, and consumers.

By applying blockchain technology to the digital ad space, fraud in the guise of bots, malware, spoofing, and scrubbing websites cannot occur. Blockchain applied to ad tech does not only detect fraud; it prevents it from happening in the first place.

We spoke to three projects and one consortium: Brave, Lucidity, Rebel AI, and AdLedger to learn how using blockchain could have prevented the exact type of fraud outlined in last week’s indictment.

Brave

Brendan Eich, the creator of Javascript, has dedicated his experience and expertise in creating a new digital advertising paradigm. The Brave Browser natively blocks all trackers, ads, and scripts, protecting a users computer from malware and bots.

For Brave, attention is a currency.

And to commoditize that they created the Basic Attention Token (BAT). This token will allow for users of the Brave Browser to opt-in to view ads. For every ad viewed, readers receive BAT.  Those tokens are then used to reward, peer to peer, their favorite websites and publishers. Fraud is not possible in this environment. Clicks are not what brings revenue. A human being’s attention cannot be automated.

Considering that privacy is by default, the user must take initiative and open themselves to advertisements. The data collected will be more valuable than the current model. Once Brave Ads premiers, they will have accurate metrics (Basic Attention Metrics – BAM) for verified publishers free of fraud.

Luke Mulks, Director of Business Development at Brave, explains how this step of opting into the Brave model makes fraud all but impossible.

“Our users are seeing ten ads max a day, as opposed to ten ads in two or three page loads. It’s a numbers game. You are running a lot fewer ads, but we blocked the third party networks that are doing this stuff, too. If we’re blocking third party programmatic advertising and third-party tracking and we are validating that the publisher is legitimate, the surface is greatly reduced. This type of attack is something you are not going to encounter on our platform by design.”

If successful, Brave and the Basic Attention Token will be a new paradigm; it will be the culmination of the real potential of digital ad tech. Accurate, immutable data will allow publishers to tailor their products more directly toward consumers. Blockchain technology makes this possible.

Luke continues by explaining that “by default, Brave has strong privacy protection and that includes blocking third-party ad networks, third-party tracking, secure connection upgrades, all these things that these networks like to exploit. We basically kick the networks out and remove that threat.”

Some criticize the need for a cryptocurrency for this project. And while Brave has shown impressive growth over the last year, their current 4.6 million users are not large enough to prove their business model as of yet.

With that said, they have already entered into partnerships with big names in media like the Washington Post, the Guardian, and the Dow Jones Media Group. Brave may give users back their privacy, but its true customers may be the publishers who up until now could not gauge valid data because of ad fraud. Publishers can now recoup profits they would not have realized otherwise.

Lucidity

Sam Goldberg, President, and Co-Founder of Lucidity argues that fraud will continue to flourish in the absence of agreed-upon rules in the programmatic supply chain.

Lucidity is a blockchain-based platform that provides transparent, validated data for marketers to accurately measure the value delivered. With valid data, the effectiveness of publishers becomes clear, which in turn eliminates wasteful ad spend. At the heart of his argument is the need for standards across the board. The establishment of enforceable measurement standards across the supply chain would have caught data discrepancies that are telltale signs of fraud.

“What is extremely critical in order for us to get going in the right direction is the technological codification and enforceability of standards,” Sam argues. “These standards not only have to be enforceable, but they have to be transparent so a party doesn’t have the power to change rules to favor themselves or a preferred partner without everybody knowing about it. Shenanigans behind the fog of no transparency are far too prevalent in the industry today.”

Without rules, there can be no trust, no consensus. Consensus is a fundamental hallmark of blockchain technology. The issue becomes one of enforcement. With a large, international system such as digital ad technology, intermediaries spring up to exploit the disconnects in the supply chain.

A buzzword around blockchain is the idea of “trustless.”

What Sam sees in how blockchain can solve the problem of digital ad tech through the establishment of trust is a similar argument made by those who see the need for a “trustless” cryptocurrency such as bitcoin.

Bitcoin is peer to peer and exists without the need of a central authority enforcing trust or consensus. The consensus algorithm creates the standard. Enforcement falls to mathematics, not a human being. Lucidity brings this same enforceability to ad tech through their protocol.

“With the fair and consistent application of standards, we can drive real value for advertisers, just like Lucidity’s work with Toyota. Blockchain technology is the only way to deliver on this promise of enforced standards.  We can think of some pie in the sky methodologies that might be able to do this in a hypothetical world, but in the real world, we cannot actually do this without blockchain. Otherwise, we would have done it already because the value prop to advertisers should have been done ten years ago. Every advertiser deserves to know that they are getting what they pay for.”

But such a move could not have been made ten years ago.

Bitcoin, the first application of blockchain technology, is only ten years old. But in that time companies like Lucidity are applying protocols to bring trust to a system that has flourished without it.

With defined standards, players who provide value will be able to prove their worth through the consensus brought by blockchain technology. Transparency such as what Lucidity provides dissuades bad actors even attempting fraud.

And that is where Sam positions Lucidity.

“We don’t see ourselves as an anti-fraud company; that’s not the technology we are bringing to the table. We’re setting up an ecosystem that prevents a lot of things from happening in the first place because bad actors get exposed in a transparent ecosystem just as good actors get to prove the value they’re delivering.”

Rebel AI

Rebel AI brings the focus on identity, consensus, and currency to the digital ad model. Identity is fundamental in avoiding fraud, and Rebel AI uses public-key cryptography to ensure the identities of publishers, agencies, and advertisers. One of the keys to blockchain adoption is avoiding disruption to current workflows. Lindsey Galloway, Rebel AI’s CMO, described as much.

“We work with publishers to install a public and private key, and so they have an immutable identity that can’t be fabricated. We then work on the agency or advertiser side to encrypt their existing ad tags. The rest of the current workflow doesn’t need to change.”

The resulting creative ad tag “envelope” contains the identity of  the verified publishers. The verification allows for movement through the supply chains with the end result  unlocked only when it “lands on a certified publisher.” If the keys match, the ads are displayed.

This use of public-key cryptography validates that transactions can only be unlocked when received by the assigned public-key. Only one in possession with the associated Private Key can decrypt. This decryption mechanism weeds out any possibility of fraud from occurring. Fraudulent actors without a private key would be powerless.

Spoofing a domain becomes impossible, explains Lindsey:

“It’s in these cases where someone’s trying to spoof the domain, the keys will fail and it won’t match. We’ll send all that negative information back to the platform so we have an idea of who’s doing it, what the volume is, what countries it’s coming from so that we can stamp that out as well. The advertisers are not losing any money because impressions are never rendering on those fake sites.”

Here again with a feature of the blockchain in the form of public-key cryptography, we have fraud being prevented before it occurs, avoiding any loss in revenue for advertisers.

AdLedger

AdLedger is a non-profit research and development consortium charged with implementing global technical standards and solutions for the digital media and blockchain industries. The goal of AdLedger is to further trust and transparency within the digital media space.

We asked Cristiana Cacciapuoti, Executive Director at AdLedger, how blockchain could have prevented the fraud.

“You need a warehouse full of devices in order to perpetrate a scheme like that. If each device is only allowed to show one out ad a time, they just can’t scale a fraudulent operation. You can hash a device ID or an IP address to a blockchain and then say, okay, at that point anybody who is trying to execute a meth bot type scheme would need a different device to show an ad.”

Fraud-free internet

These three projects and consortium demonstrate how blockchain can create a fraud-free Internet. Brave, Lucidity, and Rebel AI prevent fraud, producing significant cost savings at every point along the supply chain. As these solutions become adopted, policing will become redundant.

Lucidity’s Sam Goldberg described the fraud exposed last week as the “tip of the iceberg.”

And while it may have been a banner bust for the DOJ, $30 million is a drop in the bucket compared to the $6.5 billion stolen from advertisers in 2017. As law enforcement and advertisers become savvy to threats, the scammers will evolve.

Blockchain can end this cycle. There is nowhere to hide. The iceberg as a whole will be exposed, melting away. That will be a kind of climate change everyone — except the scammers — will be happy with.

Carlos Acevedo is VP, Content, and Donny Dvorin is GM, Never Stop Marketing, Research.

The post Online ad fraud in 2018 hit $19bn: How blockchain could eliminate it appeared first on ClickZ.

Worlds best super fan !

Consumers are captivated by their smartphones, with the average US adult expected to spend more than three and a half hours a day on mobile devices this year.

So it’s little wonder brands are ramping up smartphone spend, with mobile – which already accounts for almost 70% of digital advertising – expected to account for almost 50% of total US ad dollars by 2022.

With this escalation in mind, 2019 is likely to be a significant year in the mobile marketing sector. Here are just a handful of the developments we can expect over the coming months:

App diversification will continue

With over 2 million apps in both Google Play and the Apple App store, it could be assumed the mobile app landscape is reaching saturation but this is far from the case.

Businesses and developers are continually finding new and innovative uses for mobile apps, such as J.P. Morgan’s online banking app that offers free or discounted trades in its digital investing service. They are also finding ways to improve services already provided by existing apps, with the phenomenal success of viral 15-second video app TikTok illustrating there is still room for video platforms, and the recent release of Facebook’s Lasso showing the social media giant believes the space is not yet full.

With apps accounting for over 90% of internet time on smartphones and 77% of internet time on tablets, there is still plenty of scope for the app market to expand and diversify and this continued development provides endless opportunity for marketers to reach users while they are immersed in-app.

We are likely to see particular development in AI-based apps, as well as a heavier emphasis on virtual and augmented reality over the coming months.

Supply chain transparency will be vital 

Mobile ad fraud is on the rise – doubling year-on-year during the first quarter of 2018. It is also becoming increasingly sophisticated, encompassing everything from SDK spoofing to click injection. When this escalation in mobile ad fraud is combined with growing concerns around brand safety, it stands to reason that supply chain transparency will be top of advertisers’ agenda as we head into 2019.

This demand for transparency will result in greater alignment between brands, tech providers, and app developers, and only vendors with an ad tech stack that can serve from demand to supply will be able to successfully support a wide variety of developers.

Specific anti-fraud metrics for mobile apps will become increasingly common across the industry, and advertisers will also explore engaging users directly via their mobile network operator rather than targeting them in-app as a way to avoid fraud and brand safety issues.

Brands will focus on mobile experiences

The coming year will see a strong focus on interaction-based mobile advertising and brand experiences to both acquire and re-engage consumers. Brands are already experimenting with interactive mobile experiences – for instance Ikea introduced an augmented reality app that allowed users to virtually place furniture in their homes to see how it looks – but 2019 will be the year this really takes off, blurring the line between mobile advertising and content.

Gamification will play a central role in interactive mobile experiences, even among non-gaming brands. Playable ads allow brands to communicate with users in a fun and entertaining way through mini games, creating a meaningful user experience that can drive phenomenal results. Playable will also be used to join the dots between the digital and physical worlds, for instance by rewarding players with prizes or discount vouchers that can be redeemed in store.

Data will drive performance

In 2019, with a continuing shift towards user-centric advertising, brands and app developers will need to understand how to track performance more effectively to make ad budgets work harder. Brands need to be able to analyze results in real time, understand how users are engaging with their ads, and optimize both media and creative in-flight to produce the best possible user experience.

Brands that can create continuous ad iterations by partnering with a vendor that produces mobile creative in-house will have a competitive edge and will be able to respond to real-time events more quickly and at a lower cost than those relying on creative agencies.

They will also have more scope to experiment with data-driven tactics such as geo-location targeting and dynamic creative optimization to achieve peak performance.

Mobile may already account for over two-thirds of digital ad spend but the format is still expanding and has a long way to go to reach maturity. With the mobile app market continuing to diversify, brands demanding greater supply chain transparency, an increased focus on interactive mobile experiences and gamification, and a rise in the use of data insights to optimize both media and creative, 2019 is already shaping up to be a momentous year for mobile marketing.

Luca Mastrorocco is VP of Global Sales at Glispa.

The post Will 2019 be a momentous year for mobile marketing? appeared first on ClickZ.

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