March’s top stories: The publishing scale trap, confessions of an agency strategist and more
Barstool Sports got 12,500 people to pay to watch amateur boxing Barstool Sports is not for everyone. But for those that self-identify as “stoolies," it’s a media brand they care enough about to pay for. This year, Barstool had some skin in the game as one of its employees competed in a local boxing tournament. Charging $5 per viewer on its own site, Barstool’s PPV had more than 12,500 customers.
Despite calls for quality, publishers can’t escape the scale trap Quality may be the rallying cry of 2017, but scale is far from dead in digital media. Scale counts for ad-driven publishers that are trying to monetize their way to being acquired or going public. And it still matters to those on the buy side. Unique monthly visitors is still the starting point of a conversation with a brand or agency.
‘Most people hate ads': Confessions of a disillusioned agency strategist Fraud in advertising is real. For a long time, agencies have been staffed by people that are often just in it to prove they know what they’re talking about. In this edition of Confessions, where we trade anonymity in exchange for honesty, we spoke with a agency strategist fed up with the house of cards his role is based on.
Opportunism knocks: Marketers and media take on Google It’s open season on the duopoly. Recently, a flood of brands from AT&T to Verizon to Johnson & Johnson have pulled ad campaigns from Google-owned YouTube because they don’t want their ads appearing next to objectionable videos.
What it’s like to be an ad agency Republican in the Trump era For Republican voters in agencies, things have gotten worse since Nov. 8. “It was always a backlash. Now, it’s a strong backlash," said one Republican top agency executive who didn’t want to be named. (Indeed, it’s emblematic of how severe the problem is that many Trump voters interviewed for this article didn’t want to be “outed.")
Mashable’s Pete Cashmore on narrowing focus Last spring, Mashable announced something of a reset that saw the departure of chief content officer Jim Roberts, a refocus in mission away from hard news and an emphasis on video across platforms. Nearly a year later, CEO Pete Cashmore is ready to declare victory, or at least good progress.
FROM DIGIDAY PULSE
Mr. Congeniality: How Verizon CMO Diego Scotti is trying to keep everyone happy It’s nearly 8 a.m., and Diego Scotti is on the move. He’s somewhere inside the cavernous 10th floor marketing headquarters of Verizon’s new space in New York’s financial district – empty because of the early hour. The 44-year-old chief marketing officer for Verizon Communications finally breezes in, wearing sneakers and jeans. “Did you tour the space? Good."