Brands will be able to work with influencers to develop branded content on a new platform Facebook is preparing to roll out. The Branded Content Matching search engine will allow advertisers to specify the target characteristics of an influencer's fans and then get in touch with the influencer to work together.
Christine Goos explains how advertisers can tap into the popularity of Instagram Stories, writing that short-form video is the best format for driving engagement and that brands shouldn't be striving for professional production values but should mimic the authenticity of user content. "Consumers like ease of use in everything ... and with Stories front and center and having auto-playing capabilities, consumers are being conditioned to check there first," she writes.
A study from Cuebiq has found that driving an "incremental in-store visit" costs advertisers an average of $23. The research also found that in-app campaigns drive the most visits, followed by combined mobile and digital campaigns.
Reflecting on viral illusions like the recent "Yanny versus Laurel" debate, Julie Beck analyzes why these catch on. "Having something lighthearted we can fight about is important. I think that's why these types of things go viral," says Cates Holderness, senior social media strategist at BuzzFeed.
Cortana could soon benefit from leading engineers in conversational artificial intelligence with Microsoft's agreement to acquire startup Semantic Machines. Some of Semantic's team previously helped develop AI-driven systems for Google and Apple.
Using augmented reality, fans of Deadpool can watch their favorite antihero mess with a 7-Eleven convenience store in the latest campaign for just-released movie "Deadpool 2." To access the experience customers must download the 7-Eleven app, which activities and rewards to discover as well.
American Express' Deborah Curtis talks about the company's focus on brand experiences and its collaborations with Justin Timberlake, the NBA and Coachella to engage with card members. Curtis also discusses the Amex Music app and how the brand uses "digital touchpoints to not only inform the experiences we create but also to connect these experiences for our customers to make them more personal, more meaningful, more joyful."
More than two-thirds of American internet users would like an online privacy law similar to the one the EU is preparing to implement, per a poll by identity management company Janrain. A majority of respondents said they were "very concerned" about data security and privacy.
Facebook has announced that all advertising that features political content -- including that of news organizations -- will be required to display a disclaimer and a "Paid for by" label. News Media Alliance CEO and President David Chavern sent a letter to Mark Zuckerberg denouncing the move to put journalism in the same category as political advocacy, writing that it "dangerously blurs the lines between real reporting and propaganda."
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