6 Music presenter Lauren Laverne and former "Cosmopolitan" and "Red" magazine editor Sam Baker are launching a new online platform featuring writing, audio and video aimed at women. The pair have signed up a string of well-known journalists and writers to contribute to the new site called The Pool, which will go live before Easter. Journalist and broadcaster Sasha Wilkins and MasterChef winner and Guardian weekend columnist Thomasina Miers, who founded the Wahaca restaurant chain, will be writing food blogs for the site.
While more than three-quarters of marketers consider programmatic buying in mobile advertising to be an important development, relatively low numbers are actually purchasing ads programmatically, according to research from IAB. Based on feedback from 200 brand marketing executives, the data shows that two in five marketers agreed that mobile programmatic would help them reach their target audience; however, only 27 percent are purchasing this way.
The Sky-owned streaming service Now TV has launched a search campaign, in conjunction with wywy and iProspect, to sync its television ad keywords with Google search in a bid to capture and retain consumers who actively look for 'Now TV' online after its ads air. Wywy's SearchSync technology will look to upweight Now TV's pay per clicks (PPC) to raise the firm's Google rankings for up to three minutes after the brand's ads air on TV.
GfK's UK Consumer Confidence Index has increased three points this month to 4, making the Index the highest it has been for over a decade. All five measures used to calculate the Index saw an increase this month. The 'Major Purchase Index', for example, has increased two points to -6, which is eight points higher than March 2014. Nick Moon, managing director of social research at GfK, says: "At +4, the Index is the highest it has been for almost 13 years, and it has gone up a striking eight points in just three months."
Sales of cola in grocery and convenience stores dropped by 0.2% to GBP1.6bn in 2014 while volume dropped by 1.6%, the first time the market leader has seen a decline. Meanwhile, sales of water were up 12.6% to GBP671m, making the segment the second-fastest-growing of all soft drinks in 2014, while glucose and energy drinks also saw sales growth of 4.6% driven by sales of Lucozade and Red Bull. Growth of water and energy drinks also overtook cola in on premise, although cola did grow by 2.8%.
Samsung Home Appliances is to sponsor Channel 4, More 4 and UKTV's Good Food shows for one year in a seven-figure deal. It is said to be Samsung's biggest ever investment in TV sponsorship. The partnership launches tonight with idents around Travel Man, a new Channel 4 series fronted by Richard Ayoade, the comedian. The idents have been created by Cheil and promote the range of appliances that Samsung offers.
Vue, the cinema chain, has appointed Joint to revamp its brand strategy and customer experience. Joint is understood to have beaten the branding agencies Wolff Olins and Landor Associates to pick up the business in a competitive pitch. Vue is looking to "transform" the experience of going to the cinema. Vue has also charged the digital agency TH_NK with developing its user experience across all platforms. TH_NK will also develop a customer value management (CVR) offer to improve the way Vue interacts with customers.
Group M has retained the GBP80 million Lloyds Banking Group media business, beating off competition from Dentsu Aegis Network in the final stage. Group M will run the account, with the support of MEC. The Dentsu Aegis Network pitch was led by Vizeum, working with group companies. Starcom MediaVest Group and its sister agency DigitasLBi was also part of the pitch process, but dropped out at an earlier stage.
The April edition of "Loaded," on sale now with Noel Gallagher on the front cover, will be the last issue of the monthly magazine. Britain's original mass-market men's lifestyle magazine was relaunched last year with an attempt to steer away from the focus on soft-pornographic images that had come to define the title in the noughties, in favour of its lifestyle roots. The new-look "Loaded" had an average circulation of just 30,000, down from highs of 350,000 in 2000.
EU rules to implement a single market in digital media would allow anyone in the continent to buy online services from another country. Britain's creative industries are under threat from EU plans to impose a digital single market that will put an end to the way they sell films, television or music in individual European countries. Rights holders and distributors typically charge different rates and vary the timing of releases to maximise their returns. But EU plans will mean that citizens will be able to buy online services from any country.