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Baltic unveils the Aquascaphe GMT

Baltic has just unveiled a new version of its Aquascaphe with a new GMT complication. The watch features a 39mm stainless steel case with a bi-directional, 24-click sapphire bezel with a two-tone 24h scale in blue/green, blue/grey, and blue/orange. The watch is powered by a Soprod C125 GMT …

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Reblogged 2 days ago from www.acquiremag.com

SeaVees Mammoth Boot

SeaVees has been making great sneakers and boots for the better part of the last half century. That trend continues with every single one of their releases, but their attention to detail, focus on quality…

Reblogged 2 days ago from coolmaterial.com

2020 Holiday Gift Guides

There’s no denying the fact that the holidays are going to be different this year, but that doesn’t mean you have to put your gift giving on hold. We combed through all our favorite new…

Reblogged 2 days ago from coolmaterial.com

Samsung Smart Monitor is a Smart TV Plus PC

The Samsung Smart Monitor combines a Tizen-powered smart TV with built-in wi-fi and PC functionality to offer all-in-one versatility. In addition to WiFi, the Smart monitor offers Bluetooth and wireless DeX connectivity with compatible Samsung smartphones. The new Smart monitors are also AirPlay 2 compatible, allowing users to share content from all AirPlay devices. With Samsung’s Hub app, users can stream direct from Netflix, HBO, and YouTube.

Reblogged 2 days ago from www.werd.com

Hemi-Powered V8: Jeep’s 2021 Wrangler Rubicon 392

Powered by a 6.4-liter Hemi engine that pumps out 470 horsepower & 470 pound-feet of torque, Jeep’s 2021 Wrangler Rubicon 392 marks the return of the V8 Wrangler. One that tears from 0 to 60 in 4.5 and sounds like a beast with its throaty dual-mode exhaust. Available only in four-door & finished in Unlimited trim, it offers full-time Selec-Trac 4WD & an 8-speed automatic transmission. Pricing for this desert-ready rig has not been released but being the most powerful Wrangler yet, it’s sure to be the priciest.

Reblogged 2 days ago from www.werd.com

TV or not TV? That is the question: Insights on World Television Day

30-second summary:

  • Television has gone through significant transformations since its invention in 1924.
  • TV revolutionized the ideas of unity and entertainment, gaming, advertising, and opportunities for content creators.
  • Linear TV lags behind Connected TV (CTV) in terms of flexibility and targeting options.
  • Earlier this year that there were 400 million CTV devices in the US.
  • As this is almost as much as the number of people living in the country, CTV advertising is understandably a tool most marketers willingly go for.
  • CTV ad spends in the US are expected to reach $11.36 billion in 2021.
  • Performance-based metrics and new engaging formats will boost CTV advertising.

It’s hard to imagine what John Logie Baird, who invented the first TV back in 1924, would say regarding the modern TV landscape. Would he support cord-cutters or help the Connected TV (CTV) industry consolidate efforts and solve measurement issues, or maybe he would simply binge-watch popular TV shows sitting on his couch? This World Television Day we reflect on some of the most curious TV-related metamorphoses over the decades.

Milestones in the journey

TV, as a phenomenon, has gone through a number of transformations, from the screen size of a postage stamp and a price tag equal to half of one’s average annual income to every American living room’s feature.

  • The 1950s brought color TV and remote control to life
  • The 1980s introduced VHS, video games, and cable TV
  • A few decades later, revolutionary developments of the 2000s made TV smart, highly dimensional, and in-stream.

In other words, almost as futuristic as the parlor walls described by Ray Bradbury in ‘Fahrenheit 451′ and while television is very different now from what it used to be in the last century, so are the viewers. Another chicken and egg situation which questions whether people are the reason TV has changed that much, or is it TV that has changed people?

What has TV brought to viewers’ tables?

Here’s what value add TV has brought on various fronts.

1. Unity and entertainment

The sense of integrity is very important for people, as social creatures. When TV first appeared, it made most of its viewers feel like they were suddenly cut from the same cloth. So, TV hit two birds with one stone. On the one hand, it created a base for sharing interests and, on the other hand, it physically gathered people together in one room glued to the same screen. Certainly, things started to look distinctive when TV sets flooded households, being installed in as many rooms as one could pay for. Not to mention what digitalization did to people’s screen time. Nevertheless, Marketing Charts’ figures from 2020 suggest watching TV remains the favorite evening past time for 23% of Americans. 

Traditional TV introduced new frontiers of entertainment, some of which have become a part of the zeitgeist. Digital Connected TV, in turn, offered instant access to round-the-clock fun. This fueled the growing popularity of binge-watching, the mode of watching TV shows and movies in one go. Recent figures by Statista showed that most age groups, apart from those aged 65+, binge-watch TV shows on a regular basis.

This year, major cinema premieres and sports competitions have been postponed. Thus, people were left with lots of free time on their hands and the unmet need for entertainment. No wonder streaming services climbed the charts, as well as the number of subscribers.

From established channels that didn’t rest on their laurels in linear reality and rushed to fit in the new digital space, like National Geographic, Discovery Channel, or CBS, to young creative apps that originated from the TV listings-free era, there are enough channels available today to sink a ship. What’s more, it’s totally up to viewers now how entertained they want to be, when and by who. Hence, television went from one-size-fits-all entertainment to its tailored version in less than a century, which is genuinely impressive.

2. Gaming

Gaming consoles emerged only a few decades after the first TV had been created. And though the true gaming boom is rooted in the developments of the PC and Internet rather than television, there’s an obvious boost a TV screen can bring to any gaming experience. In 2020, 92% of young people in the US and UK (Generations Z and Y) are considered gamers, as per GlobalWebIndex. The same age group is known to be a heavy live gaming stream and Esport watchers. 

Despite the fact that mobile phones surpass PCs and TVs among preferred gaming devices, a recent uptick in streaming took the relationships between the TV and gaming worlds to the next level. 

Today, gamers can stream from Xbox One to Windows 10 PCs, or from PlayStation 4 to Windows/macOS and Android devices. As for PC (Windows/Linux/macOS) games, they can be streamed to Android/iOS smartphones and tablets as well as any TVs that support streaming apps. With the rising number of CTV gaming apps, it looks like the full gaming potential of TV is yet to be revealed. 

3. Advertising

TV has always been a core advertising platform with the ability to reach wider audiences. It’s not surprising that this kind of promotion has also cost an arm and a leg. Today, depending on KPIs, brands are inclined to consider digital alternatives. Connected TV (CTV) is rightly among the most appealing ones. It allows advertisers to release budgeting pressure by offering them to pay for results within the performance-based advertising concept. Furthermore, CTV platforms are where most consumers’ age groups can be reached nowadays anyway.

Leichtman Research Group, Inc. reported earlier this year that there were 400 million Connected TV devices in the US. As this is almost as much as the number of people living in the country, CTV advertising is understandably a tool most marketers willingly go for.

4. Opportunities for creators/publishers

In the olden days, creating a TV channel was a really big deal. It required solid investments, relevant connections, a team of professionals, and a clear business vision. Modern-day channels march to a completely different drummer. Each pillar of the Connected TV channel ownership, such as creating content, launching an app, monitoring its performance, and fiddling with monetization, can be outsourced. If not all of them. Take, for instance, a Roku channel. To make it gain plenty of installs, it’s worth referring to Roku Direct Publisher or Allroll. Their granular targeting options, cost-effective promotional techniques, and broad analytical instruments will help the channel hit the jackpot in the blink of an eye. Ultimately, eMarketer predicts the reduction of Connected TV CPMs due to the significant surge of supply. Bearing in mind, advertisers in the US are expected to spend around $11.36 billion on CTV ads in 2021, owning a CTV channel sounds like a brilliant timely idea.

What’s next in the world of TV/CTV?

Let’s look into the current affinity for CTV and OTT advertising, ad spend budgets and publishing opportunities in 2021.

1. For CTV/OTT advertisers

Since digital Сonnected TV gained popularity among viewers, especially younger generations, according to Nielsen, ad spend followed the trend. In 2020, IAB reported a 19% increase in CTV ads budgets and a 24% decrease in those of Traditional TV. Although Linear TV remains a powerful advertising platform, it lags behind CTV in terms of flexibility, targeting options, and advanced cost-effectiveness. So, despite a certain degree of measurement confusion, advertisers tend to lean towards CTV in their current and future strategies. 

Regarding ad formats, there is a strengthening focus in CTV on TV-to-Mobile elements, non-disruptive pausable, and responsive shoppable video ads. These are likely to be followed by further adoption of new formats, which have already created a stir among other digital channels, like rewarded ads and 3D swirl, or Virtual reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR).

In 2021, performance-based advertising will continue to lead the game in CTV, supported by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning for enhanced measurement options, optimization, and prediction. And though performance metrics might remain to be built around awareness, engagement, and sales, experiments with new formats, time frames, landing pages, and cross-channel attribution will give a fresh perspective on the advertising experience.

2. For CTV/OTT publishers

Whilst adhering to shifts in viewing habits, more and more publishers favor Connected TV. With the market’s entry barriers being lower than ever, the CTV landscape looks like a bonanza for creators and channel owners. Thus, new channels are expected to keep on springing up, like mushrooms after the rain. This will inevitably make the competition between CTV publishers even stronger, and the demand for original creative content even higher. 

The future undoubtedly holds hyper-personalized content, powered by the advancements of AI data mining, consumer-centric algorithms, seasoned with a pinch of interactivity and immersion. Hence, user-generated content, Ultra-High Definition (4K) TVs, as well as further integrations with the emerging Internet of Things’ sensors, are likely to disrupt the TV routine and grab consumers’ attention at least in the medium-term. As for the actual categories, Nielsen states that SVOD (subscription video on demand) and AVOD (ad-supported video on demand) will continue to stay on the rise, outplaying TVOD (transactional video on demand) or BVOD (broadcaster video on demand). 

Takeaways

It’s incredible what a breakthrough TV has made, turning from an avant-garde technological innovation of the 20th century to a supplier of every imaginable (and unimaginable too) entertainment of the 21st century. A source of information, place of gathering, means of having fun, and on many occasions all the above-mentioned simultaneously, TV has proved to be one of the most resilient industries, ready to adjust, evolve, pioneer, and even rise from the ashes if needed. By being a powerful medium, TV has also revolutionized the way brands communicate with customers, offering them a robust shortcut to their target audiences.

Since TV is determined to save its position as the main source of entertainment, it has no choice but to become less fragmented as an industry, keep up with ever-changing viewers’ expectations and take a sneak peek at those outside the TV landscape, scouting for consumers’ time. This will guarantee that once the experiential economy makes another move to challenge the common order of things, the TV will have all the necessary resources to reinvent itself again, like a phoenix. 

Alex Zakrevsky is the CEO of Allroll marketing platform for CTV/OTT channel owners. Alex is an innovator, product lover, CTV, and programmatic enthusiast.

The post TV or not TV? That is the question: Insights on World Television Day appeared first on ClickZ.

Reblogged 2 days ago from www.clickz.com

Why ecommerce marketers should look beyond Facebook & Google this holiday season

30-second summary:

  • COVID has triggered a massive spike in digital shopping, especially on mobile.
  • Pursuing customers exclusively via Facebook & Google ignores the larger opportunity.
  • Consolidated competition in walled gardens correlates to reduced returns for all.
  • OpenRTB technologies provide a powerful programmatic alternative.
  • The window of programmatic first-mover advantage is closing.

For ecommerce marketers, the 2020 holiday shopping season represents an unprecedented opportunity.

COVID-19 has hurled us five years into the future in terms of addressable market size, and giants like Amazon have doubled their profits. The industry at large is expected to grow by at least 20% before the end of the year, with much of that growth attributed to mobile shoppers.

On the other hand, high unemployment, presidential election dynamics and a growing national debt could lead to a shorter, flatter, myopic holiday shopping season in the United States, traditionally a tentpole market.

This confluence of cultural, technical, and macroeconomic factors has given ecommerce marketers an important choice to make when it comes to their paid mobile advertising: Should they seek out new opportunities to take advantage of the expanding market? Or double down on what’s worked in the past?

Consolidation vs diversity

Setting aside labor controversies and political boycotts, responding to growing demand by increasing spend with known entities like Facebook and Google is objectively attractive.

Engagement is up, albeit largely in areas not monetized by ads, and major advertisers are slashing their spend with the duopoly as they try to weather the storm at reduced costs, resulting in less competition when it comes to bidding on impressions.

Unfortunately, benefits like these are unlikely to reach mobile ecommerce marketers, as theirs remains one of the few industries to actually benefit from the pandemic.

It’s more likely that the momentum of last year’s 20% year-over-year increase in online holiday shopping will be further accelerated, producing higher media costs for ecommerce marketers as more businesses compete for the same audiences.

In fact, overall Facebook CPMs have already increased 40 to 50% since January of 2020.

Consolidation is a liability. It creates a negative correlation between market competition and return on ad spend (ROAS) with no chance of offsetting costs.

The real opportunity for ecommerce marketers this holiday season lies in spending less within walled gardens and instead investing in a plurality of solutions that treat the mobile ecosystem as a constellation of communities, each with their own unique advantages to offer.

Only through diversity can marketers outmaneuver their competitors and insulate themselves from the dangers of an overly conservative advertising budget.

Beyond Facebook and Instagram

As marketers, we do ourselves an immense disservice in limiting what we consider “mobile” to just the Facebook and Instagram apps. While it may have been accurate as a shorthand for where the majority of mobile engagement was directed years ago, today it’s lazy, and ignores the truth of the new digital world taking shape.

As more people than ever rely on their mobile devices to play, connect, explore and stay informed in a time of uncertainty, the entire mobile ecosystem is bustling with activity.

Lockdowns have introduced vast amounts of unplanned mobile surf time, resulting in a 20% jump in mobile app activity across the board. Mobile game downloads are up 39% year-over-year, a category in which 63% of all revenue is generated by ad impressions.

At the same time, streaming platforms like Twitch have seen an influx of new audiences and creators seeking meaningful connection. Emerging social media platforms like TikTok are surging with user generated content and even regional news sites are seeing traffic levels rise by as much as 150% over their seasonal average.

Embracing first mover advantage

Combined, this mass exodus to digital environments has resulted in an immense increase in requests for advertisements from publishers as mobile users tap, swipe, and scroll in record numbers. As mobile publishers of all kinds eagerly seek to monetize their growing user bases, countless opportunities for cost-effective user acquisition are emerging.

ecommerce

Realizing these opportunities requires that mobile marketers take control of their budgets, venture outside their comfort zones, and embrace ownership of their success instead of entrusting it to the algorithms of digital advertising giants.

By familiarizing themselves with the underlying technologies that power the greater mobile advertising ecosystem, marketers can equip themselves with the tools necessary to succeed.

Good marketing is about calculated risk-taking and believe it or not, there was a time when allocating budget for Facebook video ads would have been considered a risky move. The brave few who took the risk enjoyed immense rewards as a result.

The situation today is much the same: Only by embracing new channels and open market solutions can marketers afford themselves the agility necessary to compensate for rising media prices, outmaneuver their competition, and take the risks needed to succeed this holiday season and beyond.

Thomas Shin is Head of Americas for MOLOCO, a mobile DSP based in Silicon Valley that was just ranked #5 by the Appsflyer Performance Index for Non-Gaming Retention. An avid ad tech fan, Thomas brings 25 years of experience in digital marketing as an advertiser, product manager, and sales leader. He spent the last 10 years at companies such as Facebook, Efficient Frontier/Adobe, and MediaMath where he pioneered ad product development, led ecommerce and disruptor teams and now focuses on the intersection of programmatic, social media, and the mobile app ecosystem.

The post Why ecommerce marketers should look beyond Facebook & Google this holiday season appeared first on ClickZ.

Reblogged 2 days ago from www.clickz.com

Hodinkee heads to Paris for its new limited edition with Merci

Hodinkee teams up with Parisian concept store Merci for a new timepiece based on the retailer’s military-inspired LMM-01. The 37.5mm watch features a dial in Hodinkee’s signature grey that is finished with white and blue accents and three-dimensional applied numerals that use Jonathan Hoefler’s …

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Reblogged 3 days ago from www.acquiremag.com

Mercedes unveils the 2022 Mercedes-Maybach S-Class

The epitome of German luxury has arrived with the unveiling of the 2022 Mercedes-Maybach S-Class. The new models grows in size with a seven inch longer wheelbase than the standard S-Class sedan and an all-new interior that goes big on luxury and the latest in in-car technology. A number of exterior …

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Reblogged 3 days ago from www.acquiremag.com

Equip Your Pup To Hike Like A Pro

With the Approach pack from Ruffwear, your four-legged hiking buddy can carry his own food, water toys, treats—maybe even a couple cans for his master! An integrated adjustable harness, compression padding, and a slim design for the saddlebags make it not only comfortable & pup-friendly but easy to fit, pack & access. Available in 4 sizes.

Reblogged 3 days ago from www.werd.com