What you need to know in advertising today

It’s Advertising Week — a.k.a. the time of the year that all of AdLand descends on Times Square in New York, making it several notches crazier and more chaotic than it already is.

On a more serious note, some of the topics you can be sure are going to come up throughout the week: marketers wrestling with digital ad fraud, the fees they pay their ad agencies, measurement and brand safety, the increasingly powerful role of platforms like Facebook and of course, the industry’s ongoing lack of diversity.

Moving on, Advertising Week’s flagship event may be in its fourteenth year, but digital advertising sure seems to be stuck in the past, thinking inside the box.

The digital ad world has hardly lacked for committees, councils and initiatives aimed at making better looking ads — ideally ads that people remember and maybe don’t hate.

Yet, the experience for a consumer seeing digital ads in 2017 still sucks. To read why the digital ad industry is officially out of ideas, click here.

In other news:

HP isn’t dropping its demands for diversity at its ad agencies — and the new focus is minorities. A year since since the company cracked the whip on its agencies, it has revealed that women now make up 61% of its account teams and 51% of senior leadership at its global agencies. The same cannot be said of minorities, however, where its admits more work needs to be done.

YouTube wants to make it easier for marketers to make thousands of different ads. It is rolling out a new tool, called Director Mix, to make it easier for marketers to churn out hundreds, if not thousands of variations of video ads.

The real lesson of Facebook’s Russian ads is scarier than we realise — and we’re still blind to it. What’s really scary about the Facebook election saga is that it reveals how vulnerable we are to the onslaught of new technology that’s reshaping so many different realms of our lives right now.

Summer of Snapcodes: Why brands including Evian and Wendy’s hopped onto Snapchat’s barcodes this summer. By plastering these QR-like codes onto product packaging, print and even out-of-home ads, brands have been able to encourage people to use their smartphones to unlock exclusive branded filters, lenses, custom websites and even Snapchat-specific mobile games.

ESPN will now report the total number of people who watch games on TV and digital — but advertisers will have to wait 3 weeks. The Disney-owned sports network is the first company to sign on to start selling ads using Nielsen Total Audience data

Artificial intelligence could make brands obsolete, says Aaron Shapiro, CEO of the marketing firm Huge. “As machines start to take more decisions for people it makes it harder for marketers to figure out how to enter into that equation and how to influence consumer behaviour,” he said.

Adobe has hired a media buying veteran to help ramp up its advertising bona fides. Matt Anderson, most recently the head of programmatic for the media buying giant
GroupM North America, will be the new head of Adobe’s global agency business.

The NFL aired a unity ad first aired during the Super Bowl in prime time on Sunday, CNNMoney reported. The ad was in response to President Trump’s criticism of the league and players who have been protesting by kneeling during the national anthem.

Dwayne Johnson is starting an ad agency with his manager Dany Garcia, Ad Age reports. It will be called Seven Bucks Creative.

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