Twitter's latest disappointing figures will be reversed by a focus on second-screening, its CEO Dick Costolo claimed last night. The three million new users that the service added in Q1 was at the low end of analyst expectations. Twitter claims to be in conversations with many broadcasters and brands about using its Amplify service, which helps identify second-screeners and then reach them with in-tweet video clips. The site posted a net Q1 loss of $132m on revenue, up 119% on the year before, of $250m.
Will Sky predict its first ever drop in television subscribers tomorrow? That is the expectation of analysts at Berenberg and Credit Suisse who predict a drop of around 5,000 to 15,000. The pay television platform has only reported positive quarterly growth since the late 1990s. Analysts explain their caution is due to the success of BT and Netflix, which have increased their share of new customers. BT offering free BT Sports content with its broadband deals is expected to see a halving in the number of new broadband subscribers at Sky.
The state-owned savings bank, National Savings and Investments, has appointed FCB Inferno to handle an integrated brief of above-the-line, CRM and digital advertising over the next three years. The agency won a contested pitch, believed to have included DLKW Lowe and Enter, which was handled by the Crown Commercial Service. The Gate had previously handled NS&I's advertising and Kitcatt Nohr held its below-the-line brief. However, neither is on the government roster of agencies, and so could not compete in this process.
Procurement rather than marketing is now responsible for more than half (51%) of agency negotiations and implementation of contracts, according to a survey of 43 members of the Worldwide Federation of Advertisers, whose members include Coca-Cola, Unilever and McDonald's. More than one in ten (11%) reported that procurement teams are carrying out the process on their own. Only one in five contract negotiations are reported to be led by marketing and supported by procurement, down from one in four three years ago.
McDonald's is partnering with eReading provider Kobo over the next five weeks to offer children a free e-book with a Happy Meal. Instead of receiving the usual toy, kids will instead pick up a voucher that can be used to pay for one of five books in the Secret Seven series by Enid Blyton. The five books are available in a number of eReader formats. The e-book voucher partnership marks the latest step in McDonald's "Happy Readers" campaign. The deal was negotiated with Kobo by The Marketing Store.
London Live Chief Executive Andrew Mullins has hit back at criticism of low viewer figures and negative reporting of its Editorial Director, Stefano Hatfield, leaving within a month of the local station opening. He claims viewer figures are in line with the 0.7% share of Londoners the channel aims to achieve by the end of year one, and that it is likely to be viewed on-demand and on mobile devices rather than in the linear fashion measured by Barb. He further claimed the very low Barb results do not tally with the station's own figures.
Three in four brand marketers and ad agency executives believe digital video will become as important to their business as television advertising within the next three to five years. Nearly half have adjusted their budgets accordingly. Research at the IAB further found that increased internet spend is contributing to budget moving from television to digital video. Two in three respondents revealed they would spend more on online video advertising this year compared to 2013, and budgets will be increased overall as well as partially reallocated from television.
The NSPCC has alerted London agencies that it is reviewing its creative account, although a brief has yet to be handed out. The incumbent, FCB Inferno, will not be repitching for the business that it won in 2012, following a competitive pitch against McCann London and DLKW Lowe. Last month the charity also began contacting London agencies about technical projects in a bid for it to build a roster of digital agencies.
Energy supplier npower has appointed GroupM to handle pan-European media planning and buying, with GroupM's Maxus agency taking on the GBP5m UK offline business. Maxus has won the offline account from Vizeum, after it won the digital media planning and buying account earlier this year. The appointments follow npower's announcement of an internal review of its agency arrangements last September.
Domino's has revealed that recent Twitter messaging tests allowed it to increase engagement on promoted tweets with images from 1% to 15%. Working with approved Twitter marketing partner Adaptly, the pizza brand found that, perhaps unsurprisingly, humour and pictures solicited the greatest response. The brand also experimented around television programming and discovered that its biggest opportunities are in association with popular shows such as "The X Factor" and televised football games.