Facebook's Instant Articles are 'buttery smooth'

Article load times in the iOS Facebook app now suck a lot less for nine brave publishers.

Facebook's Instant Articles are 'buttery smooth'
George #fashionunexpected site, by Hearst

Most read: Asda hands content account to Hearst

And it's a big account, consisting of Asda’s customer magazine, which is distributed to more than 1.9 million readers, plus Asda’s online, mobile and social media channels, as well as its events.

Campaign's Kate Magee reports that Hearst won the business after a pitch process against Immediate Media, Bauer and the incumbent Publicis Blueprint.


What the others are saying: Facebook launches Instant Articles with nine publishers

If you work in publishing we hope you have a towel to hand, because we're crossing the Rubicon! Nine major American and European publishers have partnered to publish their content on Facebook's mobile platform. Re/code's Peter Kafka has the best rundown of the major points, and TechCrunch has helpfully included a "too long, didn't read" summary of their excellent long read.

tl;dr – Facebook is trying to plug the holes where users leak out. Slow mobile web article load times lead people to leave its app. Speeding up the reading experience by subsuming it could make sure people stay on Facebook connecting with friends, discovering content, and seeing ads. But the program further indebts publishers to Facebook, and they have to play by its rules.

Facebook Starts Hosting Publishers’ "Instant Articles", by Josh Constine on TechCrunch

Of course, while the majority of launch partners are getting their feet wet and wading across aforementioned Rubicon, Buzzfeed is already on the other bank, reclining on a sunlounger and reaching for a beer from its cooler.

In a post on the Buzzfeed press blog, publisher Dao Nguyen and chief of staff Ashley McCollum write that their experience of video has changed them into a network-integrated media company. Basically, they don't care where someone consumes their content, as long as "(1) it’s a good experience for the user, (2) we get data and insights back, and (3) we’re able to build a great business."

And Instant Articles appears to be a good experience for the user. The New York Times Bits blog piece on today's announcement, quotes Declan Moore, chief media officer of the National Geographic Society, who claims the experience is "buttery smooth". (Mmmmm, buttery smooth.)

CNN Money's Brian Stelter also points out that "news outlets will be able to publish so-called 'branded content' directly to Facebook" with Buzzfeed including a sponsored post for "Pitch Perfect 2" in its rollout.

It looks like it's inevitable that more publishers will jump on board. Mashable highlights the success of Facebook's native video platform.

[Facebook] has already shown that putting content into its native applications can lead to an audience that makes its previous referrals look tame in comparison. Facebook's video player has already enticed many publishers (including Mashable) to put content directly into people's News Feeds. The results have been impressive.

The media reckoning is here: Facebook rolls out its 'Instant Articles' publisher platform by Jason Abbruzzese and Jenni Ryall on Mashable


BMW Tate Live: If Tate Modern were Musée de la danse

Creative programmatic: Tate Modern plans live ads

Programmatic ad tech: It doesn't have to be boring! Tate Modern alerted us to a forthcoming campaign to support BMW Tate Live: If Tate Modern were Musée de la danse? A two-day takeover of the gallery by choreographer Boris Charmatz.

Targeting relevant audiences in the UK, US, Germany, and France, ads featuring live footage of the performances will be placed in premium publications on May 15 and 16, the dates of the event. Here's an example of one of the ads, using recorded rather than live footage.

We're told that indie media agency Total Media will execute the programmatic campaign using Primo, a new engagement marketplace from tech company MediaMath and online ad network Silence Media. Fancy stuff.


Content marketing: New WhiskConnect platform may help content actually sell stuff

As content people, let us tell you that you need more content. Lots more. And you need to pay more for it. Lots, lots more. Don't worry about the hazy ROI. It's effective, okay?

Whisk, which turns recipe content into handy shopping lists and is used on sites like the Food Network, has just launched WhiskConnect for brands with launch partner McCormick (Schwartz, you know, the spice people).

What does WhiskConnect do? It's easiest to watch this WhiskConnect demo video, we've dropped you in at the most salient part. Will FMCG brands jump on board to turn content into sales? If they do, then content will have more value, and we should be getting paid more.

Simon Michaelides, Exec Board Marketing Director, UKTV, at MAA and SapientNitro's

Highlights: MAA and SapientNitro roundtable

No, we weren't invited either, but Brand Republic's video team was! The event dealt with what effectiveness means to clients and how agencies can remain future-proof.

Watch our video to see how the great and the good define and measure effectiveness, and what impact data is having on effectiveness.


Compiled by Jonathan Shannon

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