What you need to know in advertising today

Kim White/MSNBC

Sundar PichaiKim White/MSNBC

Google-parent company Alphabet topped Wall Street targets with 23% revenue growth in Q1, but the better-than-expected performance was not enough to allay worries about rising expenses and the most significant risks of a regulatory clampdown the company has faced in years.

Shares of Alphabet initially jumped by more than 4% in after-hours trading on Monday but quickly reversed course and fell back to around the price that the stock closed at during regular trading.

Google executives said that mobile search and strength in the YouTube video streaming business continued to drive the company’s growth. Advertising revenue, which made up 86% of the core Google business, also grew 24% year-over-year to $US26.6 billion.

To read more about Google’s first quarter 2018 earnings, click here.

In other news:

‘Brands need to reflect their values’: Ad agency Digitas is urging brands to dive head first into cultural hot-button issues. The agency is dedicating its entire NewFront presentation this year to further its point-of-view, including roping in a range of high-profile speakers including Pulitzer prize-winning Times journalist Jodi Kantor.

A blockchain startup wants to let people buy tokens so they can pick which sites are worthy of ads. The startup MetaX wants to use blockchain technology to create a list of safe websites for advertisers.

Facebook finally reveals the long-secret rules for what exactly will get you banned from the social network.The company has published the internal guidelines its moderators use to police the social network.

How a new media startup grew from 12 employees to 200 in a 18 months, and just landed $US80 million to grow even more. Culture Trip is a fast-growing media site that just raised $US80 million in its Series B funding round from a Dutch venture firm.

Apple’s purchase of Shazam has regulators worried about streaming music competition.The European Union is looking into whether Apple’s purchase of the song-identification app Shazam limits consumer choice, the Associated Press reports.

Gap’s CEO has a plan to make the company’s secret weapon more powerful. Gap CEO Art Peck told CNBC on Monday that the retailer would be opening 60 new Old Navy stores in the US.

Spotify just unveiled a new free version of its mobile app – here’s your first look at all the changes. The app now gives non-paying users more control over their music by letting them listen to playlists in any order.

Vanity Fair has launched a metered paywall.It is offering four free articles a month before visitors are asked to subscribe.

Nestlé has reportedly launched a review to consolidate portions of its North American advertising business with four to six agencies, Adweek reports. The move comes as the confectionery giant looks to cut costs.

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