Advertisers are ready to spend again, but it will be anything but business as usual

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I’m going to keep this short and sweet today since we’re all distracted and/or sleep deprived. For all the latest election results, my news and politics colleagues have you covered here.

To stave off my election day jitters, I rounded up some of the best stories in advertising we’ve been covering this past week. Because no matter who wins, marketers still gotta sell stuff, right?

A woman walks past a store advertising sales at 70 per cent off, Thursday, May 21, 2020, in Cleveland. More than 2.4 million people applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week in the latest wave of layoffs from the viral outbreak that triggered widespread business shutdowns two months ago and sent the economy into a deep recession. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)Associated Press

Advertising is coming back

Advertisers are ready to spend again after sales took a beating in the recession. But there are some caveats for the ad giants hoping to win their business:

  • The pandemic has changed the whole marketing landscape, and advertisers don’t want the same things they used to. They’re prioritising digital channels, for one, where they can adjust their campaigns on the fly if something’s not working, as Tanya Dua reported this week.
  • Marketers have been shifting to short, project-based work and the use of speciality agencies, trends that don’t favour the one-stop-shop approach of the holding company giants.
  • Along with specialty agencies, PR firms are giving them a run for their money. They have been less scathed by the economic downturn and is aiming to take a bite of the ad business, Sean Czarnecki reported.

Read more in Patrick Coffee’s story here: Advertisers are about to start spending again

And the PR CEOs moves here: The PR industry got hammered by the pandemic. CEOs of the largest firms say they feel optimistic for the first time this year.


Walmart staffs up

We’ve written a lot here about how Walmart is trying to build a big digital advertising business that rivals Amazon. Lauren Johnson and Joe Williams analysed recent job listings to show how the company is revamping its operations around this push and leaning heavily into adtech.

But: Walmart has been knocked by some advertisers as more expensive and having less targeting features than Amazon, among other drawbacks.

Read more: Here’s what recent tech job postings tell us about Walmart’s push to use advanced tech to take on Amazon in digital advertising


Big money in small followings

Marketers are increasingly working with “micro” influencers — those with between 10,000 and 100,000 followers on Instagram because despite their small followings, they can have high engagement.

Many have turned these deals into lucrative side hustles, but can be at a disadvantage when negotiating with brands.

Amanda Perelli and Sydney Bradley talked to microinfluencers about how they make sure they don’t get lowballed by brands, with some setting standard rates as a starting point for brand negotiations.

Read more: 6 Instagram micro influencers explain how much money they charge brands for sponsorships

Just for fun

The “Baby Shark” song, which began as a summer-camp campfire chant, and accompanying dance has now been watched 7.05 billion times on YouTube — that’s nearly one view for every person on Earth.

The video boomed in popularity in 2018 and triggered the #BabySharkChallenge on social media, which went viral worldwide.

Read more: ‘Baby Shark’ passes ‘Despacito’ to become the most-viewed YouTube video ever, with more than 7 billion plays

Other stories we’re reading:

Thanks for reading and see you next week!

— Lucia

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