Welcome to Marketing Calls, your one-stop shop for the week’s top news & entertainment for digital marketers. From new product releases to marketing facts to lolcats, it’s everything marketers need to wrap up the week and feel smart before/as the first drink of the weekend hits their lips.
This week marks the end of summer, unless you are in San Francisco, where September means that you finally get a brief respite from months of being socked in and brought down by Karl the Fog. A recent tweet from Karl sums it up: “Welcome to the fogless, depressing, oppressively sunny, uncomfortably warm days of summer.” Peace out, Karl. See you next June.
The sun is shining in the city and the week is nigh, so let’s see what’s happening this week!
It’s Time to Let Slideshare Go
Once a boon to B2B marketers, LinkedIn has been trying to ignore SlideShare to death for the last few years. Sadly, the Flickr-ing of SlideShare has been a success, as users are leaving in droves and the community is calling for a fast and merciful death.
The UI has long been hopelessly outdated and the professional networking giant essentially tied SlideShare’s hands behind its back and kicked it into a pit when it removed the ability to update presentations earlier this year. LinkedIn hasn’t provided any reason for this change and the only “solution” provided is to delete your presentation and upload a new one — which means you lose your links, stat tracking, and SEO for the post. The only good reason for this and the ongoing neglect is that LinkedIn wants SlideShare to go away, but they don’t have the guts to break up in person. Maybe they can do in a text and get it over with already.
LinkedIn Goes Dynamic
Out with the old, in with the new. While LinkedIn is kicking our once-beloved SlideShare to the curb, it has now added Dynamic Ads to its newly-overhauled Campaign Manager platform. And of course, this makes sense. Selling ads makes money, and hosting millions of B2B slideshows is a cash drain that’s also responsible for boring thousands of people to death every day. C’est la vie.
LinkedIn Dynamic Ads run on the site’s desktop feed and are customized with information from the viewer’s profile info like their photo, first name, company and job title. LinkedIn is claiming two times the click-through rates from these ads, and you can also A/B test them to see what’s working. I don’t know if this means we can forgive them for killing SlideShare, but it’s probably worth trying out once the pain goes away.
Has Google Found the Missing Link?
No, not the link between how late you are for work and how behind schedule the bus will be — I’m pretty sure that’s an actual conspiracy between Big Public Transportation and someone/thing with a vested interest in frustrating us all to death. I’m talking about the link between online research and offline shopping.
Thus far, there has been no good way for marketers to directly link paid search and other online advertising to a purchase made in-store. Correlations abound, but we all know that correlation is crap. Google figured out an end-around by brokering a deal with Mastercard to get access to data from millions of cardholder transactions. Last year, when Google announced the service, called “Store Sales Measurement,” the company said it had access to “approximately 70 percent” of U.S. credit and debit cards through partners.
The problem is, the credit card holders had no idea that this was happening and no way to opt-out of the program. While Google says that it built a “double-blind encryption technology that prevents both Google and our partners from viewing our respective users’ personally identifiable information,” it still raises a host of privacy concerns.
You Think Data Ownership is Complex Now?
POP QUIZ: Who owns your photos on Facebook — you or Facebook? I had no idea and had to look it up, but the short answer is that you have the copyright but Facebook can use them if they want to. How much more complicated will things get in a world where we can upload our entire brains to the cloud and live for all eternity in the body of an android? Who would own your thoughts, who would own, well, you? It’s a not-so-far-off future that we should probably start considering or at least having sweaty weird nightmares about.