So Many Acronyms, Such Little Time!


It doesn’t take long in any industry to pick up on the jargon and technical terms that make that particular field different. In the advertising industry, however, it seems we have more of them than every other industry put together! I have been working in digital marketing for almost a year now and my head is full of them. You have UI’s, IO’s, CTR’s, CPM’s, ROI’s, SEO and PPC…how do you even begin to understand a day-to-day conversation when everything is shortened into this new digital language!?

Now if you were expecting me to explain all of these, sorry to disappoint but that would be a very long and boring blog. What I will do is pick out some of the ones that have influenced me and have been the most fun to learn about.

RTB – (for those not in the industry) stands for real time bidding. This has undoubtedly changed the world of online advertising since its conception a few years ago. It has also opened my eyes to the idea of automated bid discrimination (FYI – paying more money for some users than others because of their browsing habits and behaviour). This really makes you wonder how valuable you are as a consumer to brands.

HTML & XML – code in short. HTML is what many web pages are written in and there’s lots of talk about coding being taught in more schools. The Observer wrote a good piece about it here and there’s also been a great promo video made by Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg about why code is so important.

RFM – This stands for Recency, Frequency and Monetisation. This is the basis of many tools that work out online customer value. By looking at the recency of visits, regularity of these visits and how much is spent per visit we can work out how likely someone is to purchase one of your products and how important they are to engage with.

PPC & SEO – the two key things to worry about when ‘talking search’. You have Pay Per Click, which is when (as an advertiser) you pay a bid price for key words so that your website ad shows up (in yellow) to a user on a search engine results page.

Then you have Search Engine Optimisation, which is all about making your website as relevant as possible in terms of content, so that it shows up naturally (in white) to a user when they search for things. These are important because they fundamentally change how you perceive search advertising.

So, do these acronyms actually help us?

In my opinion, once you have a grasp of what they all mean, yes it makes things quicker when talking and writing emails. However, I think the main thing to take away from this is that all these acronyms are moving technology forward. It’s a task to constantly play catch up, but we need that challenge, it keeps us on our toes. As technology evolves, so does our language and I’m sure Darwin wouldn’t mind a few acronyms for the sake of evolution.

If there are any terms I missed that you think should have been on my list, please feel free to comment below. Tnx.

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What Marketers Should Expect from the 2013 Holiday Shopping Season

It’s no surprise that ecommerce has seen incredible growth over the last few holiday shopping seasons, but soon we will see Internet sales exceed those of brick and mortar stores during this very spend-heavy time of year. According to Deloitte, for the first time ever, when it comes to purchasing holiday gifts, American consumers’ most likely destination to shop is the Internet.

The official kick-off for the holiday shopping season in the US is Thanksgiving Day weekend. From 2008 to 2012, the United States saw a 31% increase in total sales, both on and offline, during the five-day period (Thanksgiving Thursday through Cyber Monday). Between 2011 and 2012, online sales increased 15%, whereas brick and mortar sales increased by a mere 3%. Based on this very positive trend, the 2013 shopping season is sure to produce an increase in overall sales, but more appropriately, continued growth in online shopping.

Trends to Expect this Holiday Shopping Season:

  • Showrooming. This is the act of using one’s mobile device in-store to search for an item across the Internet at a lower price. This is an obvious disadvantage for brick and mortar stores, clearly benefitting ecommerce. According to an Accenture study, almost half of those surveyed said that the primary purpose for their cell phone use in-store was to compare prices. Of those, only 10% purchased the product in question at the brick and mortar store.
  • Promotions. This year’s holiday shopping season will be significantly shorter than usual, which is thought to put digital retailers at an advantage, as consumers will seek the convenience of online shopping in a condensed period of time. But this also makes competition among ecommerce brands greater, encouraging more offered promotions in order to gain as much spend as possible in a shorter than normal time period.
  • Mcommerce Growth. US retail mobile commerce throughout the year will reach $41 billion, up 68.2% compared to last year and by 2016, mobile transactions will account for a quarter of all retail ecommerce. The 2013 holiday shopping season is predicted to see 19% of all consumers making purchases on tablets and 18% on smartphones – in 2012, 15% of consumers bought items on their tablets and 14% on their smartphones. This reinforces the need for marketers to really amp up their mobile efforts as more and more of their customers are looking to the convenience of mobile online shopping.
  • Contrasting views regarding growth or decline in holiday spend. The government shut down prompted speculation that consumers would be hesitant to spend more this holiday shopping season than last year. However, the Google 2013 Holiday Shopping Intentions Study revealed that Millenials will spend 19% more this year than they did last year. Looking back, we have only seen an upward climb in spending, even during the recession, making it highly unlikely that sales will dip this holiday season.

In the meantime, brick and mortar stores are on the defensive and are attempting to regain lost business by increasing their operating hours over the weekend, including Black Friday openings as early as the evening hours of Thanksgiving Day! Many have invested heavily in mobile apps and advertising to accommodate in-store shoppers.

Aside from the convenience of online shopping, brick and mortar stores lack the personalization that consumers have grown to love within the digital space. In order to compete, many department stores have begun to adopt and implement the aid of mobile apps, ads and resources to tackle this obstacle. The 2013 holiday shopping season will reveal the successes of those efforts.

At the end of the day, it is inevitable that we will see growth in consumer spending during the upcoming holiday shopping season. It will be interesting to reflect on the how the above trends impacted that spend, as well as the distribution of spend between online and offline outlets. It is more important than ever for ecommerce and traditional retailers alike to leverage digital marketing in order to reach consumers where they spend most of their time.


IgnitionOne’s November Industry Digest

Thought Leadership

Digital Marketing Speaks: New Video Series from IgnitionOne
October 3, 2013

This is the first episode in a series of digital marketing conversations. Will Margiloff, CEO of IgnitionOne, discusses building technology and dealing with big data with Rob Norman, Chief Digital Officer at GroupM.

Keep Your Paid Search Thriving with Search Query Expands
Yahoo! Blog
October 10, 2013

Dave Ragals, SVP of Client Solutions at IgnitionOne, discusses the value of marketers expanding their keyword lists.

Episode 2 of Digital Marketing Speaks
October 17, 2013

The second in a series of digital marketing conversations, Will Margiloff, CEO of IgnitionOne, discusses the challenges of integrating offline and online data with Rob Norman, Chief Digital Officer at GroupM.

Predictive Optimization: Look into the Future for Search and Display Success
October 17, 2013

Recap and video of Roger Barnette’s webinar, which discusses how in the past, marketing strategies were based on one part past data, one part hunch. Over time, marketers have become more proficient in knowing what is working and can use that information to drive budget decisions. However, missing for most marketers is the foresight to know what they should spend and what the results will be.
Continue reading IgnitionOne’s November Industry Digest

IgnitionOne wins Innovative at the UK Search Awards

IgnitionOne won the Innovation category UK Search Awards last night at the Emirates London.

IgnitionOne leveraged its propriety Engagement Score to open up search for use in online branding campaigns. Brands whose purchase cycle usually ends offline, such as FMCG brands, tend to run brand awareness campaigns online and therefore, have steered away from search traditionally thought of as a direct performance product.

Winner badge Search Awards UK 2013

Brand awareness advertising is notoriously hard to measure, as there is no single KPI representing effectiveness. IgnitionOne, by combining a number of different variables including percentage of new visitors, bounce rate, dwell time and the Engagement Score, were able to build a true interest profile of the individuals on a company’s website and provide a more comprehensive indication whether or not they would convert offline. This provides brands with a more robust measurement of their online advertising success than standard click metrics.

In its entry, IgnitionOne referenced its recent case study with diary brand, Danone, and their use of the product to show the use of search to support online branding campaigns showed real return on its online advertising investment.

“It’s fantastic to be acknowledged for our innovation,” said Simon Haynes, UK managing director for IgnitionOne “Tonight’s award demonstrates how the IgnitionOne team is always striving to develop new products, and new ways to use existing products, to help our client’s online advertising campaigns succeed. A huge congratulations to the IgnitionOne team globally who have worked so hard to make IgnitionOne search a success.”

Holiday Shopping Goes Digital

For the third year, IgnitionOne released its holiday shopping infographic, accumulating data from the last several Thanksgiving Weekends. The infographic sheds light on important statistics around the kick-off to the holiday shopping season, giving marketers an idea of what to anticipate for the upcoming holiday weekend. Ecommerce should expect yet another highly successful season, as more and more consumers look primarily to the Internet to make their holiday purchases.

A Progress Report on the Integration of Digital Marketing

Today, IgnitionOne released its “2013 Integrated Marketing Survey.” The report is meant to serve as a status check to better understand where marketers are in their move toward integrating and simplifying their digital marketing efforts, which challenges they face and where they plan to invest in the coming year and beyond.

In addition, the report answers how much progress has been made toward fully integrating digital marketing, how marketers are leveraging cross-channel attribution, and how marketing and IT teams are working together.

“Moving away from complexity and towards simplicity is something that all marketers strive for, but aren’t all actually doing,” Will Margiloff, IgnitionOne CEO, said. “This report further highlights the need for marketers to break down the silos within their organization and the challenges that they face in centralizing and integrating their digital efforts.”

To download the report, click here.


Myths of RTB/Programmatic: Episode 1.3 of Digital Marketing Speaks

Episode 1.3 of Digital Marketing Speaks – IgnitionOne’s video series where our outspoken CEO meets with equally outspoken industry luminaries to delve into the latest trend and issues.

IgnitionOne CEO, Will Margiloff, continues his conversation with Rob Norman, Chief Digital Officer at GroupM. In this latest episode Will and Rob discuss the myths of RTB and Programmatic Buying

How do agencies view RTB/Programmatic? Are we heading to 50% total spend on programmatic? How different is this from historic audience bying?

Watch the video and learn more.

IgnitionOne verified for brand safety under joint IPA-ISBA Brand Safety Initiative

IgnitionOne has today passed brand safety audit and become the first integrated platform to be verified under the IPA-ISBA Brand Safety Initiative.

The Brand Safety Initiative was developed by industry bodies the IPA (Institute of Practitioners in Advertising) and ISBA (Incorporated Society of British Advertisers) after the Digital Trading Standards Group was placed in abeyance earlier this year. The Initiative asks each company to complete a survey of their brand safety practices, to then have their answers independently verified by ABC (Audit Bureau of Circulations).

As part of the Initiative, IgnitionOne are committed to not placing advertising on sites inappropriate to an advertiser’s campaign. We will continue to use a certified content verification technology to protect advertisers and ensure that it is constantly updated and monitored.

The opinion letter from the ABC can be viewed here.

Programmatic Marketing in the Country of the Future

By Edmardo Galli, Managing Director, IgnitionOne LatAm

Brazil has always been promising. As a kid, I repeatedly heard the expression – “Brazil is the country of the future.”

So when I started working in digital marketing close to 20 years ago (how time flies!), the expectation was that the Internet would finally push Brazil into the future.

Well, it took a long time – longer than I expected, for sure – but the digital space has lived up to its promises. Aside from all of the chronic structural problems of this country (don’t even get me started), we actually have been able to make a profound shift. And it’s only the beginning.

Brazil has officially entered into the programmatic era – artificial intelligence and big data are transforming everything, from how we think and do business, to the way we interact with each other.

Marketing is undergoing an incredible change itself. Through real-time systems and algorithms automating the delivery of targeted and relevant experiences to consumers, our marketing efforts are becoming even more efficient.

A Brave New Brazil

Brazil signed on to the digital world and a second wave of tech companies disembarked into the Land of Samba. You could almost compare it to the dot-com boom back in 2000 (if it wasn’t for the fact that we actually had business going on this time – you know, cash changing hands, trade of goods and services, blessed commerce, etc.).

We currently have a gold rush in Brazil, and one of the most enticing fields is programmatic media buying. The promise of yearly double-digit growth rates has led many Demand Side Platforms (DSPs) to open their operations in Brazil, and we have experienced a rapid influx of tech vendors since then.

What’s Next?

One doesn’t need to be a genius to predict what’s next in this industry within Brazil: a big consolidation wave.

as in the US, we will soon see several digital companies merging or being acquired (and some just disappearing altogether). And what is going to lead this consolidation wave – besides the gain of market share and competitiveness – is the dire need for integration within the digital market. There are too many companies that are siloed in their own vertical, creating a highly fragmented landscape.

It’s inevitable that agencies and tech companies will work together. Agencies have always dominated media buying in Brazil and created a vicious pricing structure, where a huge part of their revenue is paid by the big vehicles, in the form of rebates, bonus on volume, etc. In times of algorithms making the buying decisions (in substitution of the old manual media plan), agencies are seeing programmatic as a threat to their wallets. Agencies will need to take advantage of programmatic to continue dominating and ad tech companies won’t survive without partnering with agencies.

Therefore, both parties must partner to create a new pricing structure for media buying. This is an important step for us to see programmatic really flourish in Brazil.

Et voilà: Programmatic Brazil…

Yes, we seem to be getting to our dreamed future, and ad tech is leading the way, slowly changing the archaic digital structures. However, we still need to fix a few things for our plan to work. Brazil is indeed a very singular market – think of a mix of digital, samba, cachaça and the best soccer in the world.

Viva the Programmatic Brazil!