April 2016: Media and Marketing Update


Here's a look back on the media and marketing news over the last month.



Snapchat has overtaken Instagram as ‘most important social network’ among US teens

Snapchat has surpassed Instagram as the app of choice for teens, according to a new survey by investment bank Piper Jaffray. In the fall of 2015 Piper Jaffray's semi-annual survey of 6,500 US teens showed that 33% of them considered Instagram their most important social network. By this spring, that number had fallen to 27%.

Snapchats results on the other hand were the complete opposite. In fall 2015, just 19% of teens said Snapchat it was their most important social network, however when asked again in spring of this year this had risen significantly to 28%, edging out Instagram. Twitter continued its slow decline dropping by 2%, while Facebook saw a slight increase rising from 18% to 20%. 

There have been signs that Facebook, which owns Instagram, might not be happy with the recent performance of the photo-sharing app and who can blame them when you see stats such as Instagram has 400 million monthly users overall, while Snapchat has said that it has 100 million daily users. 

These kind of figures are encouraging Facebook to shake things up – already they are changing the way  Instagram shows you photos, switching to an algorithmic ranking (like Facebook's own news feed), instead of Instagram's current method of presenting photos chronologically.  

The chart below from Piper Jaffray shows Snapchat's striking ascent among teens (the average age of respondents was 16.5 years).


Social Networks such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are surely wrestling with the reality that there is a generation of teenagers who have yet to use there platform for the first time, preferring Snapchat as their social network of choice.

- Emer Merriman

New developments in Online Adblocking

Adblock Plus, one of the biggest adblocking services has paired up with Flattr, a popular micro-donation company to try and monetize the removal of ads, by encouraging people to pay for the content they read online, while at the same time, also looking to remunerate those who create content.

Traditionally, Flattr, the micro-donation company works by having a mini tip jar on a website. However, Flattr Plus (Flattr + Adblock Plus) will function by tracking a person’s behaviour online, removing all ads and then it will allocate monthly payments to sites proportionately based on the viewer’s usage.

Although Flattr Plus poses as a challenging development for digital advertising; it’s imperative that we, as brands, advertisers, publishers and media agencies develop more innovative solutions that bypass these hurdles. It’s clear to see that advertising and media agencies are already taking steps to develop more creative content lead branded solutions, such as native editorials, video content and sponsorships. No doubt as adblocking becomes more prevalent, online advertising and media will become ever more interesting and clever.

- Evonne Reynolds

Instagram introduces Video to its Ad Carousel offering

Advertisers can now mix and match their ad selection across Instagram’s Ad Carousels thanks to the introduction of video to the ad format. Since the introduction of the carousel format to Instagram, a little over a year, advertisers have taken advantage of the chance to place multiple product offerings into a limited space, on a vertical scroll platform.

Now the carousels will have to 3-5 pieces media and the option to include video with a length up to one minute, allowing advertisers a degree of flexibility in how audiences will interact with their ad offerings. Advertisers can potentially expose users to a short burst video with multiple products followed by select products that may be of interest to them. The addition of video to the Ad carousel is being rolled out from mid-May. 

- Gerard Keenan


Apr TV Viewership

TV impacts in April saw some real recovery after a poor Q1. Hw+Ch in particular performed well at +5% year on year with Adults 15+ coming in +2%. Younger audience still in decline though at -14% with Ads 25-44 only seeing a modest decline of -2% (driven by the younger end of the scale). 

RTÉ have performed quite well coming in +11% for Hw+Ch, this is off the back of a -7% in March. RTÉ also performed strong for Ads and Ads 25-44 at +6% and +3% respectively.  Some key programming hit the spot with Michaela’s first interview doing 542k for Adults (91k for Hw+Ch where it was the top show for the month).  First dates also had a strong performance coming in number 3 for Hw+Ch (69k). 

TV3’s best performance lay with Hw+Ch also with impacts up +7%.  Britain’s Got Talent and Champions League really brought in the viewers for them where they took the number 1 and 2 in top performing programming where they pulled in an audience of 295k and 241k respectively. 

UTV Ireland saw the largest increases with Hw+Ch up +24%.  Corrie and Emmerdale still bringing in the viewers as is Ant and Dec.  Daytime also performing quite strong up +42% for this audience. Young viewer decline following a trend across the market down -17%. 

Sky Media performed well considering, with Hw+Ch, Ads and Ads 25-44 coming in flat. Decline in youngs of -11% is again following industry trend.  C4 Digital, however, continued to see a decline across the board. 

UTV saw impacts up across the board - the only station to see a rise in the young audience year- on- year at +5%. C4 Ulster decline continued - not a great performance all round with Hw+Ch down -30% and Ads 15-34 down -31%. 

YouTube claims it delivers 'better returns than TV' in fresh attack on broadcasters

YouTube has claimed new research shows 77 per cent of campaigns on its video site have "a higher return on investment than TV", but broadcasters insisted it was "no surprise" because brands spend "relatively low" sums with YouTube.

Google-owned YouTube carried out a "meta-analysis" of 56 case studies across eight countries that "shows how online video contributes to offline sales and proves that it should play a bigger part in the media mix".

YouTube cited campaigns for several brands, including chocolate-maker Mars, which got " double the ROI of TV for each pound spent reaching the main shopper", and yoghurt company Danone, which had "an ROI two to three times higher for YouTube than TV for every euro spent".

"A huge opportunity exists for marketers to drive offline sales more efficiently by optimising their media mix," said Google, adding its research "shows that the ROI for YouTube campaigns is higher than that of TV when measured at current spend levels".

The research also examined 17 campaigns and forecast that spend on YouTube should be "more than double that of historic levels to optimise the media mix" and deliver better ROI.

Matt Hill, Research and Planning Director of Thinkbox, the trade body for commercial TV, said: "It’s good that Google is beginning to look at advertising effectiveness on YouTube.  But there are no surprises in this study – good ROI on relatively low spend shouldn’t surprise anyone.  The trick is to have good ROI when spend levels increase and keep increasing."

He added: "The true value of TV advertising is not just its ROI, but that it continues to deliver superior ROI at high levels of spend – and to continue delivering for a long time afterwards. At least 50% of the effect of a TV campaign is felt in the year after the original broadcast."

"The challenges for YouTube are skippability and scalability.  If brands increased their spend on YouTube, then they would likely see their ROI fall given YouTube’s challenges as a medium."

YouTube is aggressively targeting TV budgets and Google’s President for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, Matt Brittin, was billed to lead a panel called "The future of entertainment will not be televised" at Advertising Week Europe on Wednesday when he was expected to discuss the research.

YouTube insisted it used "robust methodologies" for its research, using Google’s own data and third-party sources BrandScience, Data2Decisions, GfK, Kantar Worldpanel, MarketingScan and MarketShare.

Last year, YouTube angered UK broadcasters by claiming brands should move 24 per cent of their TV budgets to the streaming site to reach millennials aged 16 to 24. Thinkbox said last week its own research, based on independent data, showed YouTube’s ad reach across TV and video was just 1.4 per cent.

- Noel McCarthy


Wireless Media launch Urban Media

Following the acquisition of UTV Ireland (television) by ITV from the UK, Wireless Media was required to rebrand its radio sales group, UTV Urban Access. In April, this rebrand happened with UTV Urban Access changing to Urban Media. The station mix will remain the exact same with Fm104, Cork 96/103, Dublin’s Q102, Galway Bay FM, LMFM, WLR and Limerick 95 staying within the Urban Media family.

The new name Urban Media is a nod to the unrivalled access the sales group feels it can give clients into the urban areas of Ireland.

While the rebrand is a cosmetic exercise, Urban Media has promised to deliver cross platform solutions for their clients with on-air, online and on-street being part of the offering.

- Harry Eustace


Out of Home advertising in the Republic of Ireland experienced double digit growth in the first quarter of 2016 according to the latest Posterwatch market report published by OOH specialist company PML Group.

Specifically, PML Group reports a 15% increase in the value of the market, compared to the same period in 2015. However, it also notes that Q1 2015 was the poorest performing period of last year but the trend has been upwards ever since.

The Posterwatch report lists McDonald’s, Diageo and Sky as the three most active advertisers in Q1. With regard to product categories, the top three consists of finance, including banks and insurance companies; retail , including supermarkets and telecoms.

Among the most prominent individual OOH campaigns of the first three months of the year were launches for Samsung Galaxy S7 and Sky Q as well as multi-format campaigns for Tesco at Easter time and the National Lottery for its ‘Multiplier’ promotion in March.

OOH formats that have performed particularly well in the first part of 2016 include transport panels such as bus T-Sides, Digital OOH screens including iVision and dPod, and large format billboards and in particular the relatively recently launched Première 48 Sheets and 96 Sheets. According to PML, a demand exists in the market for quality, backlit, large format options and this is being addressed more and more by the main OOH media owners – Clear Channel, Exterion Media and JCDecaux.

“It’s been a great start to the year. Most cycles have shown good growth in Q1. Demand is high and we’re finding advertisers using more of a variety of formats within campaigns. Investment is paying off with demand high for Digital OOH formats and the improved large format sector. Q1 was the fourth successive quarter of growth for the medium. We are expecting to continue the trend into Q2 as summer kicks in and with events such as Euro 2016 and the Olympics on the horizon it should make for a busy period ahead, “says Colum Harmon, marketing director of PML. 

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