April 1o, 2019: European Union’s Copyright Directive; Key Takeaways from Snapchat’s Partner Summit; Pinterest Updates IPO Filing; Accenture Interactive Acquires Droga5
Here’s what’s worth knowing this week:
Your Guide to the European Union’s Copyright Directive
On Tuesday, the European Parliament voted in favor of a controversial new law that will reform how copyrighted content posted online is governed. The changes have proven to be controversial, with critics opposed to two specific parts of the law: Article 11 and Article 13.
Article 13 (AKA: “The Meme Ban”) Explained.
For full text, see here. TLDR: the article states that any websites that host large amounts of user-generated content (i.e., YouTube, Twitter, Facebook) are responsible for taking down that content if it infringes on copyright law.
Article 11 (AKA: “The Link Tax”) Explained.
The article aims to get news aggregator sites, such as Google News, to pay publishers for linking and displaying article fragments on their platforms. Google has suggested it is pulling Google News from all of Europe until further notice.
The European Parliament said that memes, gifs, hyperlinks, and ‘snippets’ of articles would still be able to be shared freely, however. Wondering why Facebook is all-so publisher friendly, developing a Watch-like tab to “aggregate” news and Apple launched News+, a subscription to all news? Now you know.
Who’s for the Copyright Directive?
Industry bodies representing content producers (lots of European music and media orgs) have declared their support. Mary Honeyball, British Labour EMP says, “Some [online platforms] fear that Article 13 requires the implementation of automated ‘upload filters.’ However, Article 13 makes no such requirement and in fact states that automated blocking should be avoided. The text only requires that [platforms] either license or remove copyrighted material.”
Who’s against the Copyright Directive?
The Directive isn’t YouTube’s cup of tea and it’s the most vocal critic of Article 13. Matt Koval, a content strategist at YouTube argues that, in its current form, Article 13, “Threatens hundreds of thousands of creators, artists and others employed in the creative economy.”
How will these platforms identify and remove copyrighted content when, as seen most recently with YouTube, even the combined efforts of AI and human reviewers can’t ensure rudimentary brand safety? Parliament seems to be wondering the same thing, as no one can quite agree on how these platforms are expected to identify and remove this content, and how these Directives will be applied consistently IRL. While an earlier version of the Article points to platforms needing to use “proportionate content recognition technologies” (AKA: automated filters) to scan all content and remove any that violates copyright law, the statute has since been removed.
It’s All Fun & Games at Snapchat’s Partner Summit
Last Thursday, Snapchat hosted its first ever Partner Summit, outlining a range of new initiatives and tools designed to help third-party developers and businesses make the most of the Snapchat platform. The most notable was the launch of Snap Games, Snapchat’s new ad-supported gaming platform.
Tell me about Snap Games.
In an effort to reverse declining user engagement and monetize a new potential revenue stream, Snapchat joined the likes of Facebook, Google, and Apple, and debuted its new gaming platform, Snap Games. Accessed through the messaging feature, Snap Games allows users to play real-time, multiplayer games made in-house and by mobile game developers.
Initially, Snap plans to generate revenue from its games by introducing six-second unskippable ads into the games. By watching the ads, players will be able to earn virtual currency that can be spent inside games. In the future, executives said that the company may also consider other forms of monetization, like in-app purchases.
What else did Snapchat launch at the Summit?
New tools for Snapchat’s AR Studio, like Creator Profiles for Lenses, expanded capabilities for StoryKit (i.e., partner integrations with platforms like Tinder and Houseparty) and new options for advertisers through AdKit. The platform also announced the next evolution of its Discover tools through the introduction of a new slate of Snap Originals programming.
We know, it’s a lot – check out this cheat sheet for even more.
From Snap’s POV, what was the goal of the Summit?
According to a Snap executive, the goal of the Partner Summit was to provide a more cohesive vision of the company. Based on the general sentiment from ad execs attending the event, it appears that the inaugural summit was a preliminary success, based on the notion that now, advertisers seem to understand the app and what it stands for. However, the real litmus test will be whether buyers actually shift a portion of their digital advertising budgets away from dominant players like Facebook and Google and towards Snapchat.
With social media platforms like Facebook and Snapchat fighting to keep mobile users engaged, gaming presents the next big opportunity to do so, while also representing new monetization opportunities for all social platforms. Not only is the global games market set to reach $148.1 billion this year, but 50 percent of mobile users have opened up a gaming app in the past week, highlighting the enormous engagement opportunities for platforms, brands, and marketers tapping into this space.
If your audience is on Snapchat (and, keep in mind that Snapchat reaches nearly 75 percent of 13-to-34-year-olds and 90 percent of 13-to-24-year-olds) marketers have the opportunity to explore the platform’s ad-supported games. The ads, called Commercials, are six-seconds, non-skippable, and had previously been limited to Snapchat’s episodic shows. Although the ad formats are the same, the context in which they are being viewed is different and, as a result, may require slightly different copy and creative. Marketers can partner with gaming influencers to understand what types of ads will work best in this setting.
Pinterest Updates IPO Filing
After announcing its IPO filing two weeks ago, Pinterest has since filed an updated S-1, where it set the price range at $15 to $17 per share, which would value the company between $10 billion and $13.1 billion.
The last time Pinterest sold shares to pre-IPO investors in 2017, shares were priced at $21.54 each, valuing the company at roughly $12 billion. With the recent S-1 filing, Pinterest would be valued below that level, but it’s easy to see why the platform would take a conservative approach. The announcement comes on the heels of Lyft’s IPO last month, which saw its shares plummet on just the second day of trading. While Lyft’s shares have since recovered, it goes to show the importance of not overpricing the initial offering.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Pinterest is committed to helping creators on the platform succeed. As outlined in the S-1, Pinterest has emphasized its investment in creators in the last year as a strategic driver of both current and future growth.
Every brand should be using Pinterest in its influencer marketing efforts. Of the 250 million people who use Pinterest every month, 84 percent use Pinterest when they’re trying to decide what to buy, making marketers’ abilities to influence consumers at the point-of-purchase unparallelled. For tips on how to kick off your Pinterest-first influencer marketing strategy, check out our webinar.
Accenture Interactive to Acquire Droga5
Accenture has agreed to acquire Droga5, which will become part of its digital marketing services division, Accenture Interactive.
Tell me more.
Although terms haven’t been disclosed, Accenture Interactive claims that the acquisition will be the largest in its 10-year history. Through acquiring Droga5, Accenture will deepen its creative marketing capabilities, which will help in retaining appeal with brand clients while also building credibility as a comprehensive marketing services provider.
What’s Accenture Interactive saying?
“The future of brand building is not just about creating great ideas; it’s about creating great experiences.” – Brian Whipple, Global CEO of Accenture Interactive
What’s the industry saying?
“Accenture Interactive’s acquisition of Droga5 cements a renewed emphasis on creativity in marketing that will benefit marketers and all partners.” – Jay Pattisall, Analyst at Forrester
As brands seek greater business value and more integrated services and strategy, and as marketing is becoming more sophisticated and technology-enabled, consultancies are emerging as the new agencies. With customer experience strategy at the core of everything, touching nearly every aspect of an organization, how do you plug influencer marketing into your existing customer experience strategy? Check out our textbook, Influencer Marketing Center of Excellence, where we expand on the purpose of influencer marketing in a customer experience strategy.