WordPress Proposes Blocking FLoC By Default

Google announced they will be phasing out third-party cookies by 2022, which undeniably seemed like a strange move for Google because they surely wouldn’t want to damage the industry that it dominates and is responsible for the majority of its revenue. Shortly after this announcement, they followed up with their replacement plan, Federated Learning of Cohorts (FLoC).

What is FloC?

FLoC is a different way of targeting advertisers that is interest-based. Instead of identifying consumers individually, you’re associated with a group of people with shared interests. Google is making this change all in the name of privacy, one of many privacy-based changes that have been made over the last year. With FLoC, an individual’s information is kept private while the browser will look at the history and assign users to specific groups.

WordPress Proposal

WordPress has proposed blocking FLoC on their websites by default. Essentially all website builders have the ability to block this technology with the entry of a few lines of code. The difference is, many people aren’t always aware of these changes when they are happening and simply don’t get around to implementing the code. This would leave the users of their site open to having their data tracked and placed in one of Google’s groups. As of now, this is simply a proposed idea, and WordPress is not expected to be close to a decision.

Why we care?

This would be a huge blow to Google and online advertisers because an estimated 40% of all sites use WordPress. That is a massive share of user behavior that would be lost to advertisers, dramatically impacting the ability to reach potential customers. 

Final Thoughts

The end of third-party cookies is overdue and having a more private internet is definitely important. Google publicly says that FLoC is a step forward in regards to privacy and that may be, but it’s a very small step forward. The biggest issue that comes to mind is the type of cohorts that will be utilized. It’s not difficult to see how this could lead to the exploitation of vulnerable groups of people which is one of the biggest reasons for these changes in the first place. On top of that, if we begin to see other website developers take the same stand as WordPress, advertisers won’t have access to much user data anyways. This comes across as Google pushing back against privacy while saying the opposite. If Google did push forward with FLoC, my belief is that it wouldn’t be long until we see more privacy protection lawsuits and Google is scrambling for a better solution.

It’s Time for a Local TV Currency Change

Local TV broadcasters and buyers are finally moving to an impression-based vs. ratings-based currency in order to place Local TV on a playing field comparable to other video and digital channels. Viewing audiences have actually always been measured on impressions, and this evolution does not represent a fundamental change. What is changing is the transaction currency for those impressions — now transacted on a cost-per-thousand (CPM) rather than a cost-per-point (CPP) used when the impressions were converted to rating points. The pace of this evolution was accelerated to accommodate Nielsen’s upcoming integration of broadband-only (BBO) homes into its local samples and universes – originally slated to become the standard for most local markets on April 1st, but recently delayed by Nielsen to October 2021.

While rating points typically rounded Local TV viewing audiences to the nearest tenth of a percentage point, leaving some viewers on the sidelines, and were held to Nielsen’s minimum reporting standards,  impressions account for all viewers and allow for more precise reporting of Local TV audience delivery and performance as well as post-buy evaluation. 

In the past, ratings could easily be converted to impressions, but the nature of rounding and reporting minimums often under-represented the total number of impressions, and the recent addition of Nielsen’s BBO homes is affecting the local market universes. Early estimates indicate that the shift from ratings to impressions and the addition of BBO homes adds anywhere from 5%-20% of viewers depending on the daypart. Interestingly, while local market universes will increase, ratings will likely see an overall decline because of proportionately less Local TV viewing in BBO homes.

The shift to impressions not only enables sellers and buyers to count all viewers on screens, it helps to simplify cross-platform comparisons and include Local TV in those solutions. Using impressions as the currency for Local TV, buyers and brands can now plan holistically across platforms and screens.

Moving to impressions will also help buyers to consider automated TV platforms and processes common in digital platforms, and further efforts to use audience data across platforms. 

This change doesn’t reflect a change in the way viewers are watching Local TV. Instead, it reflects the desire for sellers, brands and agencies like True Media to transact in a currency more similar to the majority of other channels, as well as positioning Local TV as an integral part of the evolving video landscape.

What does the Apple iOS 14 update mean for advertisers?

Apple has announced upcoming data-permission changes with iOS 14 that will impact how advertisers, publishers and app developers can target and track users on Facebook and other platforms. Businesses that advertise mobile apps, as well as those that optimize, target, and report on web conversion events will be affected.

Until now, advertisers could use a device ID number called the IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers) to better target ads and estimate how effective they were. In iOS 14, each app that wants to use these identifiers will prompt users to opt-in to tracking when the app is first launched. Users can choose “Allow Tracking” or “Ask App Not to Track.” If users want to provide more data for advertisers to serve them more relevant ads, they will need to explicitly opt-in (rather than currently being able to opt-out) in order to provide permissions to track them or access their device’s advertising identifier. This prompt will appear when using all iOS apps, including apps within the Facebook family and apps that monetize with the Facebook Audience Network.

Data permissions that will require user approval include:

  • Displaying targeted advertisements in apps based on data collected from apps and websites owned by other companies
  • Sharing device location data or email lists
  • Sharing a list of emails advertising IDs or other IDs with a third-party ad network that uses that information to retarget
  • Placing a third-party SDK in apps that combines user data from one app with data from another app to target or measure advertising

As users opt-out of tracking on iOS 14 devices, advertisers will see a decrease in the number of conversions attributed to their paid advertising campaigns and iOS 14 limitations may cause some ads to be paused or stop delivering to certain devices. 

In its long history of conflict with Apple’s stance on data and privacy, Facebook has responded by testing a new feature that shows users its own prompt before Apple’s pop-up appears. In this test, Facebook’s prompt will explain to users why it wants to track activity and ask users to opt-in, hoping to convince users to allow ongoing tracking to provide a more relevant advertising experience. 

At this point, it is difficult to anticipate the full impact of this permission change, but we are working with our social partners to ensure that other tracking mechanisms are in place. Making sure pixels, SDKs and web domains are updated and verified is important for future conversions. We will continue to work with each client and determine best actions to ensure the best targeting and tracking tactics for each unique measurement strategy.

Preston Waller Appointed President of True Media U.S.

Waller

  • Advertising Industry Veteran to Lead Agency’s U.S. Operations 
  • Waller to Report to True Independent Holdings CEO Jack Miller

ST. LOUIS, MO (September 18, 2020) – True Media one of the fastest-growing media strategy and communications agencies in North America, a subsidiary of True Independent Holdings, announced today the appointment of Preston Waller to the role of president of the agency’s U.S. operations. Waller will assume responsibility for the leadership and growth of the True Media U.S. network across its St. Louis, Kansas City, Columbia, Missouri, and Minneapolis offices. Waller joins Bruce Neve who serves as President, True Media Canada as a member of the network’s executive leadership team. Both Neve and Waller will report to True Independent Holdings Founder and CEO Jack Miller. As previously announced on September 14, Miller assumed the role of CEO of True Independent Holdings the holding company which includes agencies True Media, True Media Canada, Coegi, RADaR, and True Properties.

I couldn’t be more excited to join the True Media team at such an exciting time for the company,” said Waller. “Throughout this process, I’ve been very impressed by the team, the capabilities, and the work; and I am honored to be joining such a great organization. I look forward to working alongside Jack and Bruce to ensure True Media remains the most effective independent marketing network for our clients.” — Preston Waller

We are absolutely thrilled to welcome a person of Preston’s character to the True Media leadership team,” said Jack Miller CEO of True Independent Holdings. “His experience working at respected global agency networks and his track record of building transparent and rock-solid client relationships made him the absolute right choice to lead True Media into the future.”— Jack Miller

Waller joins True Media after a distinguished career working in positions of increasing authority at some of the advertising and media industry’s most respected holding companies. He most recently served as Vice President and Head of Business Development for MDC Media Partners/Assembly the media offering within global agency holding company MDC Partners (NASDAQ: MDCA). During his tenure at MDC Media/Assembly, Waller was integral in new client wins that delivered more than $1.5 billion in new billings for the agency from iconic brands such as Nickelodeon, E*TRADE, Pabst, GameStop and Boehringer-Ingelheim. Prior to MDC Media, Waller worked for Interpublic Group’s (NYSE: IPG) media unit IPG Mediabrands helping to launch BPN a new global agency network. He began his career with IPG Mediabrands flagship agency UM in Dallas eventually being promoted into positions in New York.

A native of Nashville, Tennessee, Waller received his degree from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, Texas, and is a proud Horned Frog alum. He and his wife Caitlin will relocate from New York, with Waller assuming leadership of True Media U.S. effective October 1st. He will be based in the agency’s St. Louis office.

About True Independent Holdings

True Independent Holdings is one of North America’s leading independent marketing and advertising networks with capabilities that span strategy, media, data, analytics, digital, social, and content development across its award-winning agencies True Media, True Media Canada, Coegi, and RADaR. Collectively, our companies provide marketers with the ability to collaborate and access best-in-class services by leveraging technology, data analytics, and a deep understanding of consumer behavior in order to help grow business for clients. Our structure enables the agencies in our portfolio to exist independently, grow entrepreneurially, yet collaborate when needed to meet our client’s needs. This integrated approach ensures our clients receive more holistic and effective solutions in less time, from true experts. In addition, through our subsidiary True Properties the company operates locations in St. Louis, Kansas City, and Columbia (Missouri), Minneapolis (Minnesota), Toronto (Ontario), and Calgary (Alberta).

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Press Contact:
Erin Bone, Director of Marketing
ebone@truemediaservices.com
314-478-4811

True Media Announces Formation of New Independent Holding Company Structure

  • True Independent Holdings to Deliver Expanded Marketing Capabilities
  • Umbrella Company Focused on Investment and Acquisition Strategy
  • Founder Jack Miller to Serve as CEO of True Independent Holdings

COLUMBIA, MO (September 15, 2020) – True Media, one of the fastest growing media strategy and communications agencies in North America announced today a significant expansion of its business with the formation of True Independent Holdings. This new holding company structure will include flagship media and strategy firms True Media and True Media Canada, digital marketing agency Coegi and data and analytics agency RADaR. Additionally, the holding unit will also operate True Properties, an independent subsidiary leveraging opportunities across real estate, technology and other shared services.

With the creation of True Independent Holdings, True Media founder Jack Miller will assume the role of CEO for the holding company with a focus on investment, acquisition and integration efforts that grow and strengthen the portfolio of capabilities. Bruce Neve will remain in his position as President, True Media Canada and continue to report to Miller. True Media U.S. will announce a new leader who will hold the title of president. The company expects to name its new president within days.

“Today we celebrate and take a major step in executing our vision of becoming the most effective independent holding company in the marketing industry,” said Miller. “Our portfolio of capabilities across strategy, media, data, analytics and digital content reflect the type of expertise our clients need and demand as they strive to reach their business objectives.”

True Independent Holdings will now focus on expansion opportunities that accelerate growth and further develop its portfolio of specialty expertise which has been built over the past 15 years within the True Media network. Under Miller’s continued leadership, the holding company will look for investment and acquisition opportunities across the marketing continuum.

“My objective is to identify like-minded, entrepreneurial firms across North America that further strengthen our capabilities across the technology, data, media and content spaces,” he added. “Our intent is to find investment opportunities with partners that share our values and passion for client service.”

About True Independent Holdings

True Independent Holdings is one of North America’s leading independent marketing and advertising networks with capabilities that span strategy, media, data, analytics, digital, social and content development across its award winning agencies True Media, True Media Canada, Coegi and RADaR. Collectively, our companies provide marketers with the ability to collaborate and access best-in-class services by leveraging technology, data analytics, and a deep understanding of consumer behavior in order to help grow business for clients. Our structure enables the agencies in our portfolio to exist independently, grow entrepreneurially, yet collaborate when needed to meet our client’s needs. This integrated approach ensures our clients receive more holistic and effective solutions in less time, from true experts. In addition, through our subsidiary True Properties the company operates locations in St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia, Missouri, Minneapolis, Toronto and Calgary, Alberta Canada.

About Jack Miller

Jack Miller founded True Media LLC in 2005. He has since expanded the network’s capabilities with the launch of True Independent Holdings to include not only True Media US and True Media Canada, but digital agency Coegi and data and analytics firm RADaR. Under his leadership and direction, the company has been recognized by Inc. Magazine as one of America’s fastest growing companies, received the Missouri Chamber of Commerce “Missouri Fast Track” award, acknowledged by the Agency Post as one of America’s fastest growing advertising agencies, and named the Bionic Agency of the Year for two consecutive years. In addition, Miller was named the U.S. Small Business Administration Business Person of the Year in 2015 and was a Midwestern Finalist for the Ernest and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2016.

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Press Contact:
Erin Bone, Director of Marketing
ebone@truemediaservices.com
314-478-4811

Explore Minnesota and True Media Win Best of Show at AdFed’s Media Innovation Awards

January 25, 2020 (Minneapolis, MN) — Explore Minnesota and True Media Win Best of Show at AdFed’s Media Innovation Awards January 25, 2020 (Minneapolis, MN) — True Media, a media strategy and communications company with offices across North America, including Minneapolis, MN, is excited to announce their recent Best of Show win at AdFed’s Media Innovation Awards – or Minnies – for work done on behalf of client, Explore Minnesota, and its Spring/Summer 2019 campaign.

The overall marketing strategy was co-developed by Adventure Creative and True Media. The Explore Minnesota Spring/Summer 2019 campaign was an audience-first, consumer-focused approach that broke down traditional regional marketing boundaries and opened a national enthusiast audience by connecting with people who are so passionate about their hobbies they incorporate them into vacation time. True Media identified the hobbies, or niches, that drive people’s decisions to travel, and uniquely targeted them within a variety of traditional and digital passion mediums.

Looking ahead to 2020, the campaign will continue to innovate by integrating Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other new tools to better reach these highly engaged consumers.

“The award is focused on recognizing and celebrating outstanding strategy and innovation in media,” said Jack Miller, True Media CEO. “Innovation is one of our key drivers at True Media, and it’s great when your own peers recognize the efforts involved when championing new thinking and doing things differently while achieving strong results.”

“Our audience-focused approach opened up a larger marketplace for Minnesota,” said John Edman, Director, Explore Minnesota. “Historically, our marketing dollars have been invested primarily in the five-state Upper Midwest region, and parts of Canada, and now we are reaching consumers across the country and exposing them to unique Minnesota experiences that are based on their passion.”

About True Media: True Media is a media strategy and communications company that specializes in helping corporations determine efficient and effective marketing and advertising plans that bridge traditional, digital, social and mobile media. With offices throughout the United States and Canada, True Media is one of the largest independent media agencies in North America.

About Adventure Creative: Founded in 2005, Adventure generates traction for active-lifestyle brands using a unique combination of end-to-end strategy, collaborative product design and award-winning creative execution. Our client roster features prominent national and regional clients including Explore Minnesota, Minnesota Zoo, Hatteras Yachts, Vasque Footwear, Old Town Canoe, Park Tool, Sun Communities, Cambria, National Loon Center Foundation and Schell’s Brewing.

About Explore Minnesota: As the state’s tourism promotion office, Explore Minnesota pursues an entrepreneurial approach, leveraging the state’s tourism investment with increased involvement by the private sector. Tourism is a $16.0 billion industry in Minnesota, and a key sector of the state’s economy. The leisure and hospitality industry – a major provider of tourism services – employs nearly 273,000 workers, representing 11 percent of Minnesota’s private sector employment. Leisure and hospitality also generates 18 percent of the state’s sales tax revenues. Minnesota welcomes more than 73 million domestic and international travelers annually.

True Media Names Vaughn Ericson SVP of Activation Strategy and Opens Kansas City Office

October 17, 2019 (Kansas City, MO) — True Media is excited to announce Vaughn Ericson will be joining its executive team as SVP of Activation Strategy. Ericson will head True Media’s activation division from the agency’s new office in Kansas City, set to open later this month. 

Ericson brings profound experience in driving media strategy and activation across all channels to True Media and will be focused on implementing campaigns that reinforce and expand the agency’s audience-first approach.

“We are thrilled for Vaughn to join our team,” said Jack Miller, True Media CEO. “ To effectively reach and motivate customers in today’s highly fragmented media environment, we need to continue to innovate and use data to creatively engage consumers. Vaughn is the perfect person to lead this endeavor and build on the reputation that True Media has established across the country in helping clients better connect to their current and potential customers.” 

Most recently, Ericson held the position of Senior Vice President, Director of Media Acquisition at Bernstein-Rein in Kansas City where he led the agency’s collaborative acquisition teams, as well as the management of external media partners for the past thirteen years. Prior to his tenure at Bernstein-Rein, he served as Media Director at Momentum NA in St. Louis.

“True Media has developed a reputation in the industry as being a progressive, entrepreneurial media agency,” said Ericson.  “Their use of consumer behavior research and data to provide objective media strategies and recommendations is second-to-none. It’s a privilege to have the opportunity to be a part of that culture and help create a roadmap for developing talent and activation strategies that will further the agency’s commitment to connecting customers to our clients.”   

 

TRUE MEDIA EXPANDS EXECUTIVE TEAM AND ADDS TO CLIENT STRATEGY TEAM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Erin Bone, ebone@truemediaservices.com

April 2, 2018 (St. Louis, MO) — True Media CEO, Jack Miller, announced today that Rhonda Meier has been promoted to SVP of Client Strategy as part of the agency’s executive team. Meier joined True Media in 2014 and has served as an Associate Media Director for the past five years. In her new role, Meier will directly oversee True Media’s agriculture, hospital, and pharma portfolios. Stephanie Padgett, who also serves as an SVP of Client Strategy will oversee the agency’s e-commerce, banking/finance, and tourism portfolios.

“As our company continues to grow, it’s important that we evolve our organizational structure to create an environment that services our client’s needs and allows our leaders to continue to develop our internal talent to provide best-in-class services,” said Miller. “We have always promoted an entrepreneurial cultural inside our company and I believe these moves allow us to stay true to those entrepreneurial roots and have keep members of our executive team closely aligned with our individual business units and clients directly.”

Additionally, Miller announced that Katie Doublestein has been promoted to Associate Media Director and will manage True Media’s pharma clients. Doublestein joined True Media in 2014 and has helped manage several pieces of business during her time at True including Caterpillar, BODYARMOR, Mint Mobile, and University of Missouri Healthcare. In her new position, Doublestein will continue oversee the teams working on brands such as Spoonful One, BTG, Coherus Biosciences, Abbott, and Upsher-Smith.

About True Media:
True Media is a media strategy and communications company that specializes in helping corporations determine efficient and effective marketing and advertising plans that bridge traditional, digital, social and mobile media. With offices throughout the United States and Canada, True Media is one of the largest independent media agencies in North America.

 

 

EXPLORE MINNESOTA NAMES ADVENTURE CREATIVE AND TRUE MEDIA AS NEW AGENCY OF RECORD

ST. PAUL, Minn. (June 14, 2018) — Explore Minnesota, the state’s tourism promotion office, announced today that Adventure Creative has been selected as the new advertising agency of record after a competitive review of proposals from several creative firms. True Media will handle all media responsibilities.

 

The new contract begins July 1, 2018. Several Minnesota-based and out-of-state agencies were involved in the final pitch. Prior to this contract, Colle McVoy served as the agency of record since 2010.

 

“Adventure demonstrated a vision for how to market Minnesota that was both inspiring and engaging,” said John Edman, director of Explore Minnesota. “They brought an innovative strategic approach, and we look forward to working with their team across the state to promote unique experiences that can be found only in Minnesota.”

 

Adventure, with offices in Minneapolis, St. Cloud and Brainerd, has established a unique niche within the creative industry through its approach to building active brands. The agency has won numerous awards for recent work on behalf of its clients, including the Minnesota Zoo, UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation, Hatteras Yachts and Cambria Style magazine.

 

“We’re excited to build on the great momentum of the current #OnlyinMN travel campaign, which has connected so strongly with people across the state and beyond,” said Gina Nacey, Adventure president and executive creative director. “There are many amazing stories playing out every day across Minnesota. By sharing them in a new way, we can inspire and invite others to share more stories of their own.”

 

For media strategy, planning and placement, Adventure will work with its agency partner, True Media, who has a rich history with regional brands including the Minnesota Timberwolves, Minnesota Lynx and Winnebago, among others. True Media has offices in Minnesota, Missouri, Ontario and Alberta.

 

“We are so thrilled to work with Explore Minnesota to drive tourism throughout the state,” said Scott Mitchell, Adventure founder and CEO. “Our collective strength has been our ability to bring a depth of creative strategy to our work, along with a truly collaborative process.”

 

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ABOUT EXPLORE MINNESOTA 

As the state’s tourism promotion office, Explore Minnesota pursues an entrepreneurial approach, leveraging the state’s tourism investment with increased involvement by the private sector. A council of representatives from the state’s tourism industry strongly connects Explore Minnesota with tourism businesses and organizations.

 

Tourism is a $15.0 billion industry in Minnesota, and a key sector of the state’s economy. The leisure and hospitality industry–a major provider of tourism services–employs more than 265,000 workers, representing 11 percent of Minnesota’s private sector employment. Leisure and hospitality also generates 18 percent of the state’s sales tax revenues. Minnesota welcomes over 70 million domestic and international travelers annually. More information can be found at exploreminnesota.com.

 
 

ABOUT ADVENTURE CREATIVE 

Founded in 2005, Adventure combines senior-level experience and entrepreneurial energy to deliver award-winning campaigns for national and regional brands. Built on the mission of infusing energy into active brands, the agency’s hallmark is marrying creative talent, strategy and execution. Its growing client roster features prominent national and regional accounts, including the Minnesota Zoo, Johnson Outdoors, UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation and Sun RV Resorts. For more information, visit adventurecreative.com.

 

ABOUT TRUE MEDIA 

True Media is a media strategy and communications company that specializes in helping corporations determine efficient and effective marketing and advertising plans – including traditional, digital, social and mobile media. With offices in the United States and Canada, True Media manages media relationships and handles negotiations for some of North America’s most reputable companies. For more information, visit TrueMediaServices.com