Tickling Your Tentacles: The ‘book, Google’s zipped lips and Sick Specs

by Ovative Group
September 27, 2016

Welcome to Ovative’s marketing/tech news digest – where we hope to keep you up to date on all things new and exciting within Marketing, Measurement and Technology.

Always informative, sometimes entertaining. Enjoy.



Fodder for the water cooler: SpaceX, our buddy Elon’s company, just successfully tested the Raptor rocket engine that will launch the company’s interplanetary spaceship. To Mars and beyond!



Facebook Says It Gave Advertisers Inflated Video Metrics | Bloomberg.com | September 22, 2016

Quick pitch: Like that one time when your friend caught a fish and the story keeps getting more and more inflated – “same,” says Facebook about their video metrics. #whoops


Now I want the details: No secret that the Book’s main source of revenue is ads – cue advertisers wanting metrics (obviously) but now our BFF Mark Z is saying “our bad.” What Facebook categorizes as “non-views,” ads viewed for less than 3 seconds, weren’t counted in the metrics, meaning the average time spent viewing online clips was inflated. Unfortunately for advertisers, Facebook is such a huge traffic driver that they might just have to swallow the mistake and move on.

What we’re thinking: Sarah Zielie, one of Ovative’s newest team members, notes that, “lack of cohesive terminology or standardization on what determines a video view is a source of frustration for advertisers and their media and analytics counterparts.” She notes that companies like Facebook, whose platforms lack transparency, should be less of a strategic partner to advertisers and moved to a more realistic media partner role. We also see it as another data point towards the importance of a 3rd party measurement provider to make sure all of your media is playing nicely together in the sandbox.


Penguin is now part of our core algorithm| Google Webmaster Central Blog | September 23, 2016

Quick pitch: “Mum’s the word,” is Google’s typical thought on any updates to their algorithm. So why did they announce last Friday’s algorithm update with a post to their own webmaster blog?


Now I want the details: Google Penguin first rolled out in April 2012 as an add-on to the core search algorithm. Penguin’s job is to improve organic search results by penalizing websites that (knowingly or unknowingly) participate in spammy link-building schemes to artificially boost their keyword rankings. Good, right? Yes, but it had a huge limitation.  Websites impacted by Penguin had to wait for an official “refresh” to escape a penalty. Meaning that many well-intentioned webmasters, after going through a significant site cleanup, had to wait months (sometimes up to a year) until their organic rankings were restored.

Friday’s Penguin update was a big deal because Penguin is now updated in real-time. No more ambiguous “refreshes.” Google can combat spam and remove penalties as quickly as they can crawl a website. No longer is Penguin an add-on, but an integral part of the core search algorithm.

What we’re thinking: Algorithm updates of this magnitude always warrant keeping a close eye on your organic traffic for several weeks after in case you’re one of the affected sites. But several times in recent memory, these grand announcements haven’t delivered on the level of SERP volatility that gives our SEO manager, Scott Dodge, a mad case of jazz hands (e.g., “Mobilegeddon” update of 2015). However, depending on how long it takes to fully roll out, we should get an idea of the macro impact of this update within the next few weeks.


Snapchat Debuts Recording ‘Spectacles,’ Changes Company Name | New York Times & WSJ| September 24, 2016

Quick pitch: The company formally known as Snapchat just released ‘Spectacles.’ Oh, Snap Inc., you fancy.


Now I want the details: An app plus a new product means it’s time for a new name. Cue the remake of Snapchat to Snap Inc. and the introduction of ‘Spectacles,’ a $130 “toy” that will allow users to record 10 seconds of video at a time and upload it directly to the Snapchat app. Snapchat, with a 150m daily users, is a significantly more casual experience versus other social media sites. Of 13-to-34-year-old smartphone users, over 60% use the app. In order to continue to lure advertisers (and more revenue), the company is seeking to offer better metrics and increasingly advanced targeting options.

What we’re thinking: When you hear ‘Spectacles’ it’s hard not to hear whispers in the background of, “but remember Google Glass?” But to be perfectly honest – I (Claire) think these look pretty sweet. If Spectacles get off the ground, it’s another way users can become increasingly engaged with the social media platform, and engaged users equal an advertisers dream. While the first product by Snap Inc seems pretty sick, we’d hope that the ability to measure media and advance targeting options aren’t left in the dust. We don’t think they will be, but it’s something that we’ll keep a close eye on. No pun intended.

Oh man you guys – Will, Kate, George and Charlotte are in Canada and I just can’t even. Check out the pictures of them arriving on Saturday.


Questions? Comments? Hit us up: [email protected], [email protected]


Ovative/group is a measurement and activation agency focused on activating enterprise value through marketing, measurement, and technology services.  Through our 20+ related engagements over the past three years in this space, we’ve observed some common themes that, when considered, greatly increase the probability of building solutions that lead to lasting capabilities rather than shiny pennies few are willing to adopt.


Our clients span multiple industries, including retail, healthcare, education, CPG, and hospitality; for companies with sales that range from $250M to $100B.  We engage with our clients both as advisors and as outsourced service providers; as a neutral measurement partner or as an end-to-end measurement and activation solution provider.

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