The Latest in #DigitalMarketing & #SocialMediaMarketing - March 17, 2016

Here is our take on the most notable stories in Digital and Social Media Marketing from last week.

Last week we saw Pinterest open its platform to marketers, Facebook's Atlas closed its doors on marketers, and Google unveiled a unique service that could be a hit with marketers.

Pinterest rolls out new ad targeting tools

Marketing Dive | March 9, 2016

Pinterest is opening up their ad platform to small and medium sized businesses in the United States. Following in the footsteps of Facebook, Twitter and Google, the social bookmarking tool is giving marketers the ability to onboard first-party emails and target using over a hundred interest categories.

Our Take

Pinterest, whose users are 80% female, is perfect for any product marketer. More importantly, Pinterest users tend to be using the app as inspiration for their lifestyle and/or projects, so they are ready to buy. Marketers looking to test out the waters here need to make sure that they are using great imagery that accentuates both the product and the product's potential uses.

For an example of the latter, Glidden Paint's Pinterest account doesn't just show pictures of paint cans, but amazing imagery of rooms and DIY projects that utilize their paint to help inspire.

Facebook shuts down ad buying platform after discovering ad fraud

Marketing Dive | March 8, 2016

Facebook is shutting off their demand-side ad buying platform, Atlas. Atlas, which differentiated itself from other desktop display networks by using more individual-based targeting over cookie-targeting, said "that in good conscience" they could not continue with their core business due to two factors: the amount of ad fraud that they have seen; and due to the fact that standard banner ads do not deliver significant value.

Our Take

Atlas shutting down highlights how crippling ad fraud and ad blocking has been to desktop display networks. While Facebook's advertising revenue as a whole will remain pretty unchanged by the end of the quarter, it is looking more as if Walled Gardens and in-app ads are winning the battle for effective digital advertising.

Google is testing a tool that lets brands and public figures publish directly to search results

Business Insider | March 4, 2016

Google is testing out a new feature that will allow celebrities and businesses to publish content right into search results. Currently dubbed 'Google Posts,' this comes weeks after the company announced that they were killing off their right-hand side search ad units.

Image credit: ZDNet

Our Take

Right now there is only speculation as to what Google's ultimate goal is with Posts. Do they revitalize or completely replace Google+? Do they charge companies for this new service as a way to reinforce their search offering? While the guesses run wild, you can sign up to be on the Google Posts waitlist here.