Brian Lam and his team have been early leaders in the use of eCommerce mechanics to fund independent digital media in new, reliable, and inventive ways. Today, they've been rewarded for their consistent, in depth work in the product review market. You've also seen movement from Buzzfeed within this media/eCommerce space and there's a great story, down under 👇🏾👇🏼👇🏻, about an Australian paper going all in on eCommerce. Congratulations to the team at The WireCutter.
ECOMMERCE: The Wirecutter also owns The Sweethome, which takes the same approach for home appliances and other gear. Both sites make their money via affiliate links, which generate revenue when consumers click on them and make purchases via e-commerce sites like Amazon. Digital publishers have become increasingly interested in that approach, as digital advertising revenue becomes more difficult to find. The Times itself saw digital ad dollars drop 7 percent last quarter, citing “declines in traditional web display” ads.
ECOMMERCE: Founder Jody Sherman was able to get $1 million in startup funding. Unfortunately, he was not an accountant and, in fact, did not even hire a controller until 2011. While revenues were solid and growing, the cost of getting those revenues meant the company was actually losing money. When an additional $12 million was needed to turn around and scale, investors walked away – they were getting no return on their investments. In 2013, the company folded.
ECOMMERCE: “It’s not just an e-commerce site – it will be rich editorially. More and more retailers are becoming publishers so we are just doing it the other way,” Jenkins says. “Telstra and other businesses are going into content marketing to make their businesses more interesting, but we already have the content available so we just needed the ecommerce element.” The site will be promoted through a Meet the Makers radio series on 2UE, as well as a print and digital campaign across Fairfax’s assets.
BRAND: Here, we salute 10 marketers whose vision and creativity has transformed their brands into the products we respect, desire and ultimately purchase. In addition, Adweek salutes its Brand Visionary for innovations that span an entire career. Finally, our Brand Save recipient warrants special recognition for excellence in the world of nonprofits. So go ahead, America, fight about politics all you want—when it's over, we'll all go shopping together.
BRAND: The marketing change also mirrors the change in the relationship between Under Armour and Curry. The past 18 months have been gravy for the two. A slow-moving shoe business, which took almost a decade to jump-start, got a huge boost when Nike passed on renewing Curry's deal for less than $4 million annually.
BRAND: The Forbes Fab 40 quantifies the value of the 10 most valuable sports brands in four cagetories: businesses, athletes, events, teams. A different methodolgy and ranking was used to rank the top 10 sports brands in each of the four categories.
BRAND: Rather, the quiet, minute-long film presented shots of celebrities and average people with a connection to Jeep. The monochrome montage was presented in a vertical format designed to capture and hold viewers' attention. This unorthodox ad told "the most wild, crazy tale—a truly unique, cultural story of the places Jeep's been and the things it's seen."
MEDIA: What will be key to AT&T's success is having the right people. This matters more in creative industries such as TV and movie entertainment than anywhere else. Consider the success of CBS, run by the much-esteemed Les Moonves, versus its sister company Viacom, which should be a millennial mainstay and yet is struggling worst of all amid turmoil in its top ranks.
ECOMMERCE: Facebook first unveiled plans to expand Messenger beyond a messaging app and into a platform last year, letting retailers connect with customers on one of the world’s most popular messaging services. Retailers including Everlane and Zulily were among the first partners announced, while big-name brands such as KLM have since signed up to embrace Messenger as a platform.
MEDIA: Speaking in an on-stage interview at The Information’s San Francisco Subscriber Summit on Friday, Mr. Williams also said he got “bored with the content” on Snapchat, although he thought the design of the app was “super cool.” But “it doesn’t maintain my interest—either stories or Discover.” Twitter’s co-founder Evan Williams talks about his views of Snapchat, the need to have a dual advertising-subscription revenue stream and misperceptions about Twitter.
CB Insights on 60+ Startups That Are Enhancing A.I.
Deep learning in e-commerce was spotlighted recently by Etsy’s acquisition of Blackbird Technologies. Three startups in the private sector using AI in e-commerce raised funding rounds this year: Reflektion raised $18M in Q1’16 from investors including Intel Capital, Battery Ventures, and Marc Benioff; ViSenze raised $10.5M in Series B from investors including Rakuten Ventures, Enspire Capital, and Phillip Private Equity; India-based Staqu raised angel funds in Q2’16.