YouTube’s new shopping ads, and The Wall Street Journal wants you to ‘Read Yourself Better’

Google introduces Shopping ads on YouTube

Just in time for the holidays, YouTube has introduced an ad unit intended to capitalize on the increased amount of product research that is taking place on the video platform.

Screen Shot 2019-11-06 at 10.58.20 AM.pngThe new Shopping ads will appear based on visitors’ on-site activity. If they search for running, for example, they might see ads from brands that specialize in running apparel, such as Puma (a launch partner for the new unit). The ads will appear in the home feed and search results.

According to Google nearly two-thirds of holiday shoppers say YouTube has given them ideas and inspiration for purchases, and more than 90% have discovered new products and brands via YouTube.

The launch of Shopping ads come as other social networks like Instagram and TikTok are experimenting with tactics that make it easier for consumers to shop within their apps. Instagram, for example, launched shopping checkout earlier this year.

YouTube also announced Tuesday that is has made its video ads more interactive, providing viewers with actionable information including store location and interest forms.

The Wall Street Journal wants you to ‘Read Yourself Better’

The Wall Street Journal has joined a growing list of traditional media outlets promoting the value—and necessity—of quality journalism in the social media era.

The business publication has introduced a new ad campaign from The&Partnership called “Read Yourself Better,” in which it urges people to read themselves past the “click-bait,” the “endless memes” and online trolls that are among the hallmarks of contemporary media.

“No one every did anything big… by reading small,” concludes the voiceover in the campaign’s 90-second spot, before cutting to a woman tucking a print copy of the Journal under her arm.

The video ads are accompanied by out-of-home ads in several U.S. markets including Denver, L.A., Philadelphia and New York, along with social and digital ads and a print ad in Fortune magazine. The publication is also temporarily lifting its paywall, providing unlimited access to its website between Nov. 9-11.

Traditional media outlets are under siege in the digital (and Trump) era, leading them to launch campaigns reminding consumers of their continued relevance. Earlier this year, the New York Times’ “The Truth is Worth It” campaign from Droga5 was a winner at Cannes.

Facebook has a shout-y new logo

On Monday, Facebook introduced a new all-caps logo. Here’s how Facebook described it: “The new brand system uses custom typography, rounded corners, open tracking and capitalization to create visual distinction between the company and the app.”

Part of the reason for the change is Facebook’s stated desire to strengthen the connection between Facebook the company and its collection of brands outside the original social platform (Instagram will now be Instagram from Facebook etc.).

In that context a new wordmark makes sense. But because it’s Facebook, and its popular to troll Zuckerberg et al. there has been no shortage of critical takes.

“The new logo, however, could be off-putting to the millennials and Gen Zers who are addicted to the social media giant’s products. Put plainly, all-caps is harder to read, and to anyone who uses the Internet regularly, it looks like shouting,” said Business Insider.

“Facebook Has a New Logo and It’s a Perfect Example of Why Mark Zuckerberg Just Doesn’t Get It,” was the headline at

But the most popular troll move came from Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who simply tweeted out this:

FTC releases brochure for social media influencers

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has released a new brochure for social media influencers designed to help them stay “on the right side of the law” when it comes to disclosing relationships with brands.

The free eight-page brochure, Disclosures 101 for Social Media Influencers, provides answers to questions about when and how to disclose brand relationships. “As an influencer, it’s your responsibility to make these disclosures, to be familiar with the Endorsement Guides, and to comply with laws against deceptive ads. Don’t rely on others to do it for you,” says the FTC.

The FTC also created a video (below) featuring one of its lawyers that explains the steps influencers must take when endorsing a product or brand. The video says that during a live stream, for example, the brand relationship should be disclosed often enough that it can’t be missed by viewers.

“The guide outlines the various ways that an influencer’s relationship with a brand would make disclosures necessary, and it reminds influencers that they cannot assume that followers are aware of their connections to brands,” said the FTC in a release announcing the brochure.






Chris Powell