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The Art of Authenticity in Advertising

by Tom Platoni, Vice President, Creative Director

TL;DR

In a hurry? Here's our pick of the top news items of the week.

  • Nearly 40% of US SVOD subscribers canceled a service in the past six months, while another 55% moved to a new platform. (Media Play News)

  • Twitter is rolling out new features for Blue subscribers, including showing 50% of ads in their timeline compared to non-paid users. (Tech Crunch)

  • Meta is making its Click-to-Messenger Ads available within Facebook Reels. (Social Media Today)

  • Several companies are working on systems that can produce short AI-generated videos based on a few words typed into a computer. (NYT)

  • Americans' awareness and interest in various AI applications have increased in the last month. (Morning Consult)

_Agency_ updates

  • To support the launch of the Australian Amazon Original, "Deadloch," our Media, Brand Experience, and Client Solutions teams worked to create Australia's first ever "singing billboard" campaign. This activation (mocked up below) will bring to life one of the show's recurring motifs, an all-female choir singing risqué and murder-related pop songs, which will be integrated under a billboard on the evening of its launch. The teams also partnered with podcast Australian True Crime, whose host will be integrating a weekly recap and plot speculation segment into its regular episodes.

  • Our Multicultural and Field teams collaborated with Amazon Studios to promote the new film "AIR" throughout North America with nearly 50 screenings, some featuring appearances by film stars Ben Affleck, Chris Tucker and Marlon Wayans. The teams also partnered with The Fung Brothers for an AAPI screening and managed interactive, in-theatre Pop-A-Shot activations to build hype with moviegoers leading up to the release. At all events, fans participated in fun photo ops and entered to win exclusive swag.

_Interesting_ campaigns / creative

  • Internet users have been busy creating Barbie-style character posters for anyone and everyone. Create your own here. (Creative Bloq)

  • To promote upcoming titles, Netflix cast members have been giving rapid-fire 15s summaries for TikTok. (TikTok)

  • AFL fans in Australia took over digital billboards with their team’s colors in real time via a microsite linked through QR codes. (MediaWeek)

  • Nutter Butter is using weird humor to build a following on Instagram, and it's especially popular with Gen Z. (Ad Week)

  • New Zealand outdoor brand Macpac released a cliffhanger of a campaign that builds on the brand’s existing "Weather Anything" platform. (Campaign Brief)

Audiences

  • Globally, almost 9 in 10 Gen Zers aged 16+ are gamers on any device, with the most popular playing device being smartphones. (GWI)

  • While a majority of adults in the four Latin American countries surveyed think crypto will be at least somewhat common as legal tender in the next 10 years, fewer than half of Americans feel the same (43%). (Morning Consult)

  • Nearly three-quarters of US TikTok users will also use Instagram this year. (Insider)

  • 91% of US consumers think having access to multiple services via a single device improves the viewing experience – with over half (52%) saying aggregation makes the experience “a lot” better. (Fierce Video)

  • If TikTok were to be banned in the US, users would replace TikTok with Instagram Reels, followed by YouTube Shorts. (Insider)

Platforms

  • Post, a Twitter alternative that pays publishers via microtransactions, has launched its public beta. (Tech Crunch)

  • Spotify is getting rid of Spotify Live, the audio-only app it launched in 2021. (The Verge)

  • Hulu's new interface, featuring a revamped sidebar, is rolling out on Fire TV, Apple TV, and Roku. (Tech Crunch)

  • Pinterest has expanded its Creator Fund program to five new countries. (Tech Crunch)

  • Amazon has laid off around 100 employees in its gaming divisions. (Bloomberg)

  • Australia banned TikTok on government devices over security concerns. (Reuters)

  • Amazon’s web traffic has nearly tripled in Brazil in three years, and in Mexico and Australia, it more than doubled. (Marketplace Pulse)

  • Gen Z creators are using a Patreon competitor called Fanfix to monetize content and interact with fans. (Tech Crunch)

  • Google Search has new travel features, including a price guarantee tool for flights. (Tech Crunch)

  • Disney+'s ad-supported plan is now available on Roku devices. (Tech Crunch)

  • Starting April 15th, only verified Twitter accounts will be eligible to be in For You recommendations. (Twitter)

  • Warner Bros. Discovery is set to launch a new streaming service in Australia in late 2024. (Tech Radar)

  • In India, tiny, cheap smart speakers are helping businesses unlock digital payments by quickly confirming payments aurally. (Rest of World)

Content

  • YouTube will livestream all six stages of Coachella across both weekends. (Tech Crunch)

  • Netflix ordered its first-ever pilot for comedy series "Little Sky." (Tech Crunch)

  • “Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves” generated $38.5M across the US and Canada over its opening weekend. (AP)

  • Netflix is set to release its first-ever live reunion special on April 16th, featuring the cast of "Love is Blind." (Tech Crunch)

  • Tubi has partnered with Vice Media to exclusively distribute a new slate of original documentaries. (Fierce Video)

  • Warner Bros. Discovery Inc. is close to a deal for a new online TV series based on Harry Potter. (Bloomberg)

  • "Top Gun: Maverick," "Stranger Things" and "Last of Us" lead the MTV Movie & TV Awards 2023 nominations. (People)

  • A movie adaptation of Minecraft is set to release in theaters in April 2025. (THR)

  • Many canceled HBO shows, including "Westworld" and "Raised by Wolves," are now on Roku. (Tech Crunch)

  • The MLB saw a record-breaking 172M minutes watched on opening day via MLB.TV. (Streamable)

  • A record 9.9M TV viewers tuned in for the NCAA Women’s Basketball Final. (WSJ)

_Tech_ _&_ AI

  • Apple will introduce its mixed-reality headset at WWDC 2023. (Bloomberg)

  • Snapchat has added new safeguards around its AI chatbot. (Tech Crunch)

  • Meta released an AI model that can identify items within images. (Reuters)

  • Microsoft is rolling out Edge’s AI image generator to all desktop Edge users worldwide. (The Verge)

  • Apple, Google and other tech companies are using AI to record audio versions of books, and sometimes the readers are long deceased. (WSJ)

Location-based _entertainment_

  • Macau posted its best gaming month since the pandemic with $1.6B gross gaming revenue in March. (Yogonet)

  • The Jonas Brothers have announced a one-night-only concert at Yankee Stadium. (Billboard)

  • The Chiefs’ Travis Kelce will host his first-ever music festival called “Kelce Jam” during NFL Draft weekend. (AP)

  • Recommendations on popular Chinese social media app, ​​Xiaohongshu, has turned Düsseldorf into a hot destination for the Chinese foodie diaspora in Europe. (Rest of World)

  • Amazon released Ben Affleck’s “Air” on 3.5K movie screens this week and plans to open 10 to 12 films theatrically every year. (NYT)

  • For her upcoming tour, Maggie Rogers will offer fans in-person box office sales to avoid ticket bots. (Engadget)

  • Disney World is bringing back its annual park pass after halting sales more than a year ago. (Yahoo)

  • SeaWorld and Busch Gardens offered a limited time 2-park Florida resident ticket. (News13)

  • Australia's Crown Casino will introduce mandatory gambling time breaks under strict new reforms. (Yogonet)

_Mental_ health

  • Stopping work to eat and taking mental breaks can prevent burnout, so make a point to eat lunch away from your desk. (Yahoo)

  • Learn about the effects of doomscrolling, why we do it in the first place, and how to do it less. (Nasdaq)

  • Turns out there are several podcasts designed to put you to sleep. Check out this list from Mashable.

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