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A bi-weekly summary of the most exciting recent news in marketing technology and trends. If you’re trying to keep up, consider this your one-stop shop.

  • Facebook is eliminating the “relevance score” on its advertising platform and replacing it with new metrics designed to give advertisers a sharper view of how their messages are performing. As reported by ClickZ, the new metrics replacing the relevance score are “quality ranking,” “conversion rate ranking,” and an “engagement rate” ranking. Ad effectiveness ranking on Facebook will also now be limited to the audience that has seen an ad in the past 30 days.


  • Brands are giving influencer marketing very high rankings in Linqia’s “The State of Influencer Marketing 2018” report. More than 80-percent  said they used influencer marketing in 2017. Some 44-percent of brands reported they plan to leverage influencer content on other digital channels, and 51-percent said that influencer content “outperforms” brand-created content. Instagram topped all social media platforms in the survey, with 92-percent of brands saying it is “the most important social network for influencer marketing in 2018.” Facebook followed at 77-percent.


  • Users of Instagram can now make purchases without leaving the social media application. More than 20 brands have joined the service called “Checkout with Instagram,” as reported by ClickZ. The new feature is aimed at reducing the number of shoppers that abandon their purchases because of the need to switch from Instagram to a brand’s own website.


  • Brands will no longer be able to target age groups, genders or zip codes when advertising housing and credit services and employment on Facebook. The social media platform has removed those categories following a successful lawsuit by organizations including the National Fair Housing Alliance and the Communications Workers of America. The use of Facebook’s “lookalike audience” tool will also be restricted for the same ad categories, according to ClickZ.


  • A recent study by Facebook, which owns Instagram, provides powerful data showing the importance Instagram now has for building brand awareness. Facebook, according to ClickZ, surveyed 21,000 Instagram users in 13 countries and found that more than 70-percent of users had positive impressions of brands they saw on the platform. Some 44-percent of users said they find out about brands for the first time on Instagram and 42-percent said they use Instagram to research brands.


  • Univision has chosen the Amobee platform to help advertisers plan and strategize their messaging on the Hispanic television network. Amobee’s technology will assist Univision across linear, social and digital platforms, so that the broadcaster can work with brands who want to use proprietary first-party data or custom target audiences to reach their preferred market segments, the broadcaster said in a recent release.


  • Taptica has now completed its acquisition of RhythmOne, making Taptica one of the leading independent video advertising companies in the U.S.


What: Facebook unveiled a new anonymous internet monitoring software tracking tool. It named it “Journeys.” It’s designed so brands can see where consumer interact with brand advertising and their paths to decision-making. As a result, we asked Andrea Lopez, head of the social media agency Socialyse in Miami, to evaluate this new tool for advertisers.
Why it matters: With Journeys, Facebook promises to make “the paths to conversion available in a single report.” Therefore, this new tool will help brands decide which devices consumers use and where they convert into buyers the most. Consequently, it provides insight for strategizing where to best place online advertising assets.

Facebook Unveils New Technology

Concerns about the privacy of users’ data are rocking Facebook’s world. They exploded in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Data, after all, is central to Facebook’s business model. It’s also important to digital marketing at large.

Brands have a lot at stake in the effort to protect customer privacy. A single breach can destroy customer loyalty that takes years to earn.

At the recent F8 developer conference, Facebook unveiled new technology. It will give brands a powerful tool to see how customers interact with their Facebook pages, web assets containing the Facebook pixel, and Facebook SDK for apps.

As with all measurement, Facebook is sure to limit third-party access and clarity on the exact measurements, leaving us to question how much stock to put in this analysis.

The bottom line is new tracking technology that both brands—and customers—can love since it gives brands powerful insights into customers’ behavior without revealing customers’ identities.

Aptly named Journeys, the new technology is part of Facebook’s suite of analytics tools. They are available to advertisers on the Facebook platform.

Journeys lights up the path customers follow when interacting with a brand’s presence online. It reveals the multiple points customer touch online including at Facebook, on the web or a range of digital assets. Also, coverage includes apps and landing pages.

Internet Monitoring Software ‘No Magic Bullet’

“The new Facebook Journeys feature presents an interesting new opportunity in marketers’ ongoing mission to understand how a consumer interacts with a brand or product. It includes the various touchpoints involved in the path to driving towards an ultimate action,” says Andrea Lopez. She is head of the social media agency Socialyse.

But she warned against believing in any “magic bullet” especially one that could make advertisers’ jobs easier. Also, because she underscores the huge amount of information consumers are bombarded with as well as the devices available to them.

“As with all measurement, Facebook is sure to limit third-party access and clarity on the exact measurements. This leaves us to question how much stock to put in this analysis. It will be interesting to see how brands and marketers use this data. How much of it is applicable and useful versus interesting forms another consideration.”

With Journeys, Facebook promises to make “the paths to conversion available in a single report.

Brands will be able to see where customers began. Plus, they can see where customers ended up and the points in between as they moved through the process of making a purchasing decision. It will show how long customers spend on each asset and which channels they use.

“You can see omni-channel data and reporting, giving you a holistic view of the different interactions people have with your business before converting, making a purchase or subscribing,” Facebook explains on its analytics website.

Marketers dream of better placement of digital advertising assets resulting in increased conversions.

Moreover, the way Journeys protects customers’ data is likely to please consumers, too. That’s because Journey aggregates customer data. It does so anonymously to build its reports so individual data on consumers is not revealed.