What you need to know in advertising today

Viacom is out of the Scripps sweepstakes, leaving Discovery Communications alone in the bidding.

That’s a good thing for Viacom, because there are so many other things it could buy with that kind of money that have the potential to transform its business.

To see the companies it’d be better off buying, click here.

In other news:

Facebook Messenger just made itself a whole lot more attractive for brands. Version 2.1 of its Messenger app includes support for built-in natural language processing (NLP), new call-to-action buttons as well as a payment SDK.

Speaking of Facebook, it also totally dominates the list of most popular social media apps. Facebook runs four of the five most used social network and messaging services in the world.

Amazon fell short of Wall Street’s expectations in the second quarter, despite higher-than-expected revenue of $US38 billion, as opposed to the expected $US37.2 billion. The firm’s rapidly rising expenses brought its operating income down 51% from the same period last year to $US628 million.

Still, online advertising is one of Amazon’s fastest-growing businesses. According to the company’s second quarter earnings, Amazon’s “other” sales category, which includes Amazon’s advertising business, grew more than anything else.

Starbucks is shuttering all of its Teavana stores as the retail apocalypse kills off American malls. The company announced on Thursday that all 379 Teavana stores are set to close in the coming year.

P&G has pulled $US100 million in digital marketing spend in its most recent quarter and its business was largely unaffected, the Wall Street Journal reports. P&G’s finance chief, Jon Moeller, said that the cut ads were “ineffective.”

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