Vol 1, #23, August 18, 2009
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August 18, 2009


Facebook hits deadline to comply with privacy law
IAB Canada launches new video access site
Travel environment delivers better clicks
New advertising record for .tel domains
Advanced recommendation tool for online publishers
WIND Mobile changing the Canadian wireless scene
New website, branding for Balgord Software Solutions
ThinData adds new GM to roster of talent
Internet test helps find those with lost disorder
CMA offering Promotions Certificate program

Facebook hits deadline to comply with privacy law

As reported earlier in Click! Weekly, social networking site Facebook was given one month to implement a number of recommendations aimed at better protecting the privacy of nearly 12 million Canadian users - and the month's up.

Privacy Commissioner Jennifer Stoddart warned last month that Facebook breaches federal privacy law by keeping users' personal information indefinitely -- even after members close their accounts.

She also raised concerns about the sharing of users' files with the almost one million third-party developers scattered across the globe who create Facebook applications such as games and quizzes.

On July 16, Stoddart gave Facebook 30 days to make the recommended changes or face the threat of court action.

Facebook has said it will soon be introducing a number of new additional privacy features that will address the concerns.

Stoddart, who launched the probe in response to a complaint last year from the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic, is expected to review Facebook's actions this week.

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IAB Canada launches new video access site

IAB Canada announced a new Video access service that will allow the marketing community from across Canada, to purchase Online access to Video recordings of speaker presentations from IAB Canada’s popular Conferences and Events.

The service will launch with content from the MIXX Canada Event, which occurred on March 5, 2009, and featured:

  • Insider insights on Social Media Marketing from Jascha Franklin-Hodge of Blue State Digital -- one of the key architects of Barack Obama’s Social Media Marketing juggernaut;
  • Recent research on the under-estimated power of Display advertising from Gian Fulgoni, Executive Chairman and Co-founder of comScore Media Metrix;
  • A brand-hijacking study of Doritos’ campaign to “Bring Back Slow Dancing” from Fernando Barbella, Creative Director of BBDO Argentina;
  • A glimpse into the future of digital media buying from Nathan Woodman, Global Managing Director, Adnetik (Havas Digital); and,
  • A session on Canada’s Digital Future, featuring a selection of IAB Canada’s Publisher, Agency and Advertiser Board Members.

“We launched this service for two reasons,” says Paula Gignac, President, IAB Canada. “First and foremost, to better serve our East and West Coast Members; and secondly, to help both Members and non-Members alike, who are for any reason not able to attend or send staff to our Events when they are offered, but who remain hungry for the latest information on digital marketing trends and techniques.”

Access to the on-demand Video is provided by StreamTheWorld, as part of an ongoing relationship with IAB Canada.

“Canadian consumers lead the world in monthly consumption of Online Video,” says Vincent Grenier, Vice-President, Marketing, StreamTheWorld. “Online Video grabs the consumer’s attention from the get-go, and given that Online Video viewing minutes will only increase in the future -- by offering this new service and working with a trusted Video provider with proven experience in helping its Advertiser partners achieve their goals, IAB Canada is again showing the innovation and thought leadership that the organization is known for.”

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Travel environment delivers better clicks

TakeOffeh.com has tracked banner ad performance for travel offers and finds that offers which appear in a targeted travel environment perform better than travel offers displayed in broad reach media.

Offering travel product in a specialized travel environment increases click rates to 2 per cent, as compared with click through on horizontal publications averaging as low as 0.26 per cent.

“In my lengthy experience of promoting travel product through a variety of media, I have not found general consumer sites very effective for travel,” says Wolf Paunic, newly appointed Director of Sales for TakeOffeh.com. “It's a shot in the dark. If you're not in the market for new shoes, it's unlikely you'll step into a shoe store. Why click on a travel ad when you're reading about baseball?

“In an economic environment where every marketing dollar needs to translate into sales, it is critical to consider TakeOffeh.com as an integral part of travel distributors' B2C marketing plans.”

The same trend can be found across many industries. Niche websites with a high affinity for the product can easily outperform mass market ones. Even when compared to broad search environments, TakeOffeh.com advertisers report lower travel distribution costs than ad words.

TakeOffeh.com delivers daily travel news updates, in-depth insider expertise and video commentary in an entertaining and relevant style. The high quality content generates strong loyalty, with 30 per cent repeat traffic of 9+ visits per month. Top of Page

New advertising record for .tel domains

Telnic Limited has announced that it will soon be delivering a new solution for text-based advertising listings for the .tel domain, enabling .tel domain owners to use more traditional and measurable domain monetization techniques.

“Whilst .tel domains provide new ways of generating revenue through the support and optimization of premium rate telephone numbers, software downloads, ringtones and competition-based formats, we recognized that those used to traditional monetization methods still felt somewhat restricted,” says Henri Asseily, CTO and Chief Strategist at Telnic Limited. “We have therefore enabled .tel owners to include clearly identifiable, text-based sponsored advertising links. In this way, we maintain the clear purpose of a .tel domain as a single point of contact whilst also meeting the requirements for monetization across all internet-enabled devices.”

The solution has been to introduce a special sub-type of a text (TXT) record with a '.tad' suffix. This is stored in a special folder within the .tel domain. This record contains the title, label, description and URI to use in the advertisement, as well as display settings which enable the domain owner to position the advert in their chosen place on the page (top, bottom or right) when the content is delivered to the proxy page. When the proxy loads a .tel domain, it checks the format and settings of the adverts and displays them accordingly.

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Advanced recommendation tool for online publishers

Digital media and technology company DailyMe Inc. today unveiled its new destination site at DailyMe.com with unique features including dynamic personalization powered by its “Newstogram” technology, an advanced behavioural recommendation platform for digital news content.

In addition to featuring this new technology on DailyMe.com, DailyMe is offering the service to online publishing partners as a means to provide a more relevant experience to more deeply engage visitors, increase site metrics, and generate higher ad revenues while reducing costs.

Newstogram operates in the background, tracking and analyzing what news users read at a granular level to understand the people, organizations, teams and other specific subjects a reader is interested in. The data generated by this process enables the publisher to make personalized news recommendations based on each user's news interests.

Benefits include:

  • Better, more detailed understanding of readers' interests.
  • Personalized news recommendations to users to drive relevance and promote site engagement and loyalty.
  • Enhanced precision ad-targeting from this deeper understanding of readers' news preferences.

“The success of the news industry online will depend heavily on publishers' ability to communicate with their readers on a personal level, both through their content and advertising,” says DailyMe founder Eduardo Hauser. “As information becomes more fragmented and dispersed, users are finding it harder to connect with relevant content. DailyMe's experience in the field of content personalization is a significant asset now available to the news industry in general.”

Newstogram joins the suite of DailyMe Publisher Solutions that offers news discovery, distribution and engagement through personalization as well as contextual and behavioural targeting. The basic Newstogram service will be offered for free to major news publishers. Enhanced functions including use of the Newstogram data and/or DailyMe tools and content will require use of DailyMe's APIs or applications.

“We believe that success in the personalization field is dependent upon content relevancy on an individual and contextual basis,” Hauser. “We built Newstogram to improve upon news relevancy and personalization in a way that allows publishers to capitalize on new ways to extend and engage their audiences.”

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WIND Mobile changing the Canadian wireless landscape

At a private employee event last week, staff at Globalive Wireless were introduced to WIND, the company's much-anticipated new brand name.

“Today, we get one step closer to offering Canadians more choice, innovation and affordability when it comes to their wireless provider by bringing an already-recognized global wireless brand to Canada” said Anthony Lacavera, Chairman of Globalive Holdings. “WIND is an established and growing brand with a successful history of over 10 years in two large European markets, and Canadians will benefit from the economies of scale of this relationship. By choosing the same brand name, we are able to not only leverage WIND's challenger status, but also its operational intelligence and experience.”

WIND is currently being developed based on feedback from Wireless Soapbox, which has shown that Canadians are frustrated with their current carriers. WIND is harnessing this power of conversation by meaningfully engaging customers in the co-creation of a better mobile experience. This direct challenge to conventional mobile service models aligns the company to the challenger status of the WIND brand and recognizes and celebrates the power that customers have, representing the positive change in mobile.

“This is an exciting day for wireless in Canada and a historic moment for our company,” said Ken Campbell, CEO of Globalive Wireless. “WIND is founded on the power of conversation and we believe that through a healthy dialogue with our customers, we can create a wireless service that will surpass our competitors' current offerings. It's time to raise the bar for wireless service in this country and make Canada's wireless services comparable to the likes of Europe and the United States.” Top of Page

New website, branding for Balgord Software Solutions

Balgord Software Solutions, a software consulting firm that helps small to midsized companies and nonprofit organizations improve their business operations with accounting, customer relationship management, and fundraising software solutions, is excited to announce their new website and branding.

“In refining our business focus and making the related changes to our website, we realized our branding did not reflect who we had become as a company,” says Annette Balgord, founder of Balgord Software Solutions. “After a more detailed examination of our company’s mission, we are now pleased to announce the rebranding of the company and the launch of an entirely new website which clearly communicates who we are and what we do. The site is now a terrific source of information for our current and prospective clients.”

Balgord Software Solutions’ new website provides industry specific information and resources to help prospective clients make the best decision possible when choosing a new accounting, CRM, fundraising, or nonprofit accounting system. Additionally, current clients will appreciate the industry articles, news, event listings, and tutorials designed to help them get the most from their existing systems. Top of Page

ThinData adds new GM to roster of talent

ThinData, a Transcontinental Company, has hired Scott Jamieson as their new General Manager. Prior to joining ThinData, Mr. Jamieson held executive roles with a number of leading North American email services providers including Responsys – one of the largest providers in the United States. Most recently, he served as the Managing Director of SJR Digital where he developed business and email strategies for leading brands across several complex industries, including: Media, Consumer Packaged Goods, Software, Automotive and Financial Services.

“Our success and exponential growth has been built on the ability to anticipate and fulfill our clients’ needs with innovation and efficiency,” says Chris Carder, President of ThinData. “By ensuring that our strategies and processes are effectively aligned, Scott will play a vital role in building on that track record and helping us to achieve our full growth potential.”

In March 2008, Transcontinental acquired ThinData, Canada’s leading permission-based email marketing company to leapfrog into the digital marketing industry. Since that time, ThinData has continued to experience rapid growth as well as to support the multiple businesses within Transcontinental’s new Marketing Communications Sector.

In order to leverage growth opportunities across Transcontinental and beyond, Mr. Jamieson will focus on ThinData's process and strategy alignment. At the same time, his appointment as General Manager will allow ThinData to bring additional focus and energy to growing the company and developing new technologies. Top of Page

Internet test helps find those with lost disorder

An online test is helping Canadian researchers find people who have an uncommon disorder that leaves them hopelessly lost.

University of Calgary neuroscientist Guiseppe Iaria wants to figure out what causes developmental topographical disorientation or DTD, a brain disorder that leaves people with almost no ability to figure out where they are, even in their own neighbourhood.

The online test uses virtual environments to assess the test taker's ability to remember directions from landmark, memorize the number of left and right turns, and create mental maps of their environment.

Iaria said anyone can take the 90-minute test to find out if they have the disorder, or simply to have their orientation skills assessed. Participants will receive feedback on their performance.

Since Iaira and his colleague Jason Barton, from the University of British Columbia, first pinpointed the disorder a year ago, they have documented more than 400 cases.

The brain creates a map of familiar areas that allows most people to reorient themselves as they move around, said Iaria. For instance, most people can figure out how to get back on track if the road to the office is blocked by construction. People with DTD have no ability to create that mental map, he said.

Iaria eventually wants to find out exactly what part of the brain isn't developing in childhood and how people can be rehabilitated. Top of Page

CMA offering Promotions Certificate program

In a saturated market and challenging economic times, promotions are more than ever a way to both increase sales and act as a key differentiator for your brand. This course will teach you how to be successful in the short-term goal of the promotion and how to translate that success into long-term marketing potential. Top of Page