What you need to know in advertising today

Amazon is quietly becoming a major player in the advertising business.

In the first quarter, the e-commerce giant recorded more than $US2 billion in “other” revenue, which largely consists of ad sales, the company announced Thursday. That amount was up a whopping 139% from the same period a year earlier. The result marked the fourth straight quarter that Amazon’s ad-related revenues have grown on a sequential basis from the immediately prior quarter.

Better yet for the company, advertising sales were a “strong contributor” to Amazon much bigger-than-expected profit in the first quarter, said Brian Olsofsky, Amazon’s chief financial officer, on a conference call with investors on Thursday.

“I would say advertising continues to be a bright spot,” Olsofsky said.

To read more about Amazon’s growing advertising business, click here.

In other news:

Group Nine Media is working on another Snapchat Discover channel. Two of Thrillist’s sister publications,NowThis and The Dodo, have long published short-form video content on Snapchat.

Snap released a new version of its camera-enabled Spectacles on Thursday. The second-generation Spectacles will be water-proof, come in different colours, and have the ability to take still images – not just video.

Facebook will label all political ads in the UK as it tries to become more transparent in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. People will be able to see who political ads are targeted at, and how much they cost.

Pinterest is making it easier for people with different skin tones to find suitable products via search. Search often favours lighter skin tones, but now Pinterest will offer the option of filtering results by skin tone.

‘Customers weren’t sure if we were going to be around anymore’: comScore’s new CEO says he needs to reestablish trust in the ad market. The researcher has been rocked by accounting mishaps over the past few years that created a “two year fog.”

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