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Weekly martech review: Cyber Monday & Black Friday, Apple antitrust, Facebook Definers

In our review of last week’s martech news, we highlight Cyber Monday’s expected sales, Facebook Ads Manager down, Gooogle Ads Black Friday insights, Apple’s antitrust case, and Facebook’s acknowledgement of their work with Definers.

Cyber Monday sales expected to reach $7.8 billion this year, up 18% from 2017

What it is

Adobe Analytics predicts that today will be the biggest online shopping day in US history.

In-store shopping on Black Friday, however, fell between 5% and 9% as compared with last year, according to the Wall Street Journal. That said, total sales (including online) on Black Friday were reportedly up 23% from last year.

Why it matters

As ever, consumers are moving from in-store to online browsing and purchasing. Why fight through hordes of stampeding shoppers when you can casually thumb through options from the comfort of a house full of Thanksgiving leftovers?

Facebook Ads Manager down 3 days before Black Friday

What it is

Advertisers faced issues logging into their accounts on Facebook and Instagram three days before Black Friday. Obviously stressful and ill-timed, this led to advertisers being unable to access their campaigns, upload creatives, download reporting, or contact customer service.

Why it matters

As the peak shopping time of the year, the week/weekend of Black Friday is perhaps the worst possible time for a glitch in the advertising system. This comes at a time when many advertisers and users are already frustrated with Facebook.

Google Ads showing Black Friday click, impression, share trends in Overviews

What it is

Google Ads is providing retail advertisers comparison analytics of the Black Friday campaign week of last year to this year in the Overviews page at the account and campaign level.

Why it matters

Data, growth, YoY insight, non-glitches — all good things.

Apple going to US Supreme Court for possible antitrust issues around their dominance of “the app store”

What it is

Apple’s App Store has largely become equated to the only app store — often times the one-stop solution for both consumers and app creators. But, any app sold includes a 30% cut for Apple.

That commission is one key issue in an antitrust case that will be heard by the Supreme Court. Is Apple breaking federal antitrust laws by monopolizing the market for iPhone apps? Are consumers paying more than they should?

Why it matters

This is an interesting case and one to watch closely.

Apple claims they are acting only as the agent for app developers who sell the apps to consumers through the App Store, much like Uber, eBay, and Amazon.

Developers are unlikely to file suits against Apple at the risk of losing the ability to sell on the platform.

Facebook acknowledged working with Definers

What it is

On the evening before Thanksgiving, Facebook took responsibility for hiring Definers Public Affairs, a lobby group that pushed negative stories about Facebook’s critics, including against George Soros.

Soros had called Facebook a “menace to society” at the World Economic Forum in Davos back in January of this year. Facebook was upset and called on Definers to undermine Soros.

Why it matters

Initially following the investigation, Facebook had claimed inaccuracies, and Sandberg claimed she had no idea the company was involved with Definers. They later updated their statements acknowledging the work.

As with such instances in other dominant tech companies (Google, Amazon), employees were upset by the news and the fact of being kept in the dark.

It also seems Facebook intentionally released the news on Wednesday night to avoid much fanfare.

Before you go

  • Bitcoin dropped below $4000, compared to its record-high last December of almost $20,000.
  • US mobile users pay the highest prices for data plans in the world, according to a new study by a Finnish research firm.
  • The NY Times released a very in-depth, interactive report on China: how it became a superpower, made its own internet, rewrote the rules for its economy, and what its future may hold.
  • Amazon is now taking a 30% cut of ad sales from Fire TV.
  • IBM’s Watson AI tool created a 60-second commercial script for Lexus, based on Canne Lions-winning commercials from the last 15 years.
  • ConversionPoint Technologies to acquire Inuvo, allowing customers to gain analytics insight from the Inuvo’s AI-powered technology.
  • iHeartMedia announced plans to acquire Jelli, a California-based radio adtech company.

See something we missed? Leave us a comment below!

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