Here’s how it will work: If you’re browsing on Amazon but decide not to buy that DVD of “Star Wars,” Amazon will drop a tracking cookie on your browser. When you go elsewhere in Amazon’s exchange network — which includes Amazon, IMDb, DPReview, and various ad exchanges and publishers that Amazon has a relationship with — you might see an ad pop up offering you another chance to buy “Star Wars.”
It’s pretty much exactly what Facebook has done with its FBX RTB exchange. Some analysts believe that Facebook may be able to generate $1 billion a year from FBX.
The advantage Amazon will have, however, is that it can use its vast trove of shopping data to target users with ads based on their purchase histories. Neither Facebook nor Google (which also does RTB retargeting via DoubleClick) can do that. Adweek says:
The self-serve RTB platform would hypothetically function similarly to Facebook’s Ads Manager in terms of how buyers could target their ads. Sources said Amazon is extremely protective of its data and wary of providing outside access, so like Facebook, Amazon’s platform would enable buyers to create targeting segments such as “men; aged 25-34; in Califo! rnia; in terested in high-definition TVs; who have purchased how-to books and home improvement tools.” But Amazon is not about to hand over its customer’s names or individual buying histories.
The three giants — Amazon, Facebook and Google — now face off in RTB like this:
Amazon: Owns the best database of actual shopping history and purchases. This type of data is like gold for advertisers. Clients have long awaited the day when “the sleeping giant,” as it is known in the ad biz, finally wakes up to advertisers. That day has dawned, it seems.
Facebook: Owns the best database of personal information about consumers. 1 billion users strong, with all their interests and friends, it’s terrifically useful stuff for marketers.
Google: Has traditionally dominated the “purchase intent” sector of the category. When people search for “Star Wars DVD” online, that’s a pretty good indicator they want to buy said movie. Google has been serving ads (and retargeting ads) against such requests for years. But its data on shoppers and their histories has never been as good as Amazon’s or Facebook’s.
Disclosure: The author owns Facebook and Google stock.
Anti-virus company Avast conducted a survey of Windows-based PC users the day before Windows 8 was released.
The results were devastating for Microsoft and non-Apple PC makers.
They were excellent, meanwhile, for Apple.
Byron Acohido wrote up the results for USA Today and filmed a short video with charts. You can watch that here. In the meantime, here are the key points:
- The survey covered 135,000 Windows users split across three versions of the operating system: Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP.
- Only a very small percentage of users–9%–said they were going to accelerate a purchase of a new computer because of Windows 8.
- Overall, 16% of those surveyed said they planned to buy a new computer
- Of these folks, a staggering 42% said they plan to buy an Apple product–either a Mac or an iPad (see chart above)
- Most of the Apple buyers (30% of the total buyers) planned to buy an iPad, suggesting that some of these planned purchases are motivated by the desire to buy a tablet. (Maybe Microsoft can save some of these with strong sales of the Surface.)
- The rest of the switchers, 12%, planned to buy a Mac.
Last week, it was reported that Windows 8 sales are off to a weak start.
That’s not surprising, given the results of this survey.
And the most ominous part of the survey is the implication that nearly a third of those w! ho plan to buy a new computer plan to buy an iPad. Some of these purchases may be supplemental–the PC owners may keep their PCs–but they won’t do anything to help the Wintel PC business.
As tech guru Jean-Louis Gassee points out in his weekly note, the survey also suggests that Windows 8 has created a huge opportunity for Apple to convert a lot more Windows users to Apple products.
According to Bloomberg Apple is considering a move away from Intel chips for its cherished Mac line. The move would be the third major CPU shift for the brand which has previously relied on Motorola 68000 and Power PC chips. The move away from Intel could also mean a move away from x86 as Apple has been heavily invested in its own ARM-based chip designs in recent years. Bloomberg’s sources suggest that Cupertino is actively working on a version of its tweaked ARM architecture that would run inside Mac PC, in particular its laptop products could stand to benefit from its battery sipping design.
The change will not happen immediately. In fact, the sources said such a move was years away, potentially not happening till 2017. But, as the gulf between “mobile” and “desktop” products begins to shrink and the boundaries blend, it would only seem to make sense that Apple would look to leverage its high-profile purchase of P.A. Semi to good use and inch ever closer to being a completely self-reliant corporate entity. We don’t think it’s any secret that Apple would, if it could, design and manufacture every component itself.
Filed under: Apple
Apple may ditch Intel chips in Macs, says Bloomberg originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 05 Nov 2012 16:09:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Amazon makes a pretty good case for its Kindle Fire HD and Paperwhite with prices as low as $199 and $119 respectively, but it turns out there’s more at work than just special offers to keep them affordable. In an interview with the BBC, the company’s head honcho Jeff Bezos revealed that they can keep the price tags reasonable since they don’t turn a profit on the devices. “Basically, we sell the hardware at our cost, so it is break even on the hardware,” Bezos said. “We’re not trying to make money on the hardware.” Instead, Amazon banks on making a buck when owners of the slates and e-readers purchase books, movies, games and other content through their digital storefront. This doesn’t exactly come as a surprise, but we’re glad that Jeff’s confirmed our suspicions.
Bezos: Amazon breaks even on Kindle devices, not trying to make money on hardware originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 12 Oct 2012 03:57:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
14% of American smartphone owners who have scanned or texted for product information while in-store say they made an unplanned purchase as a result, according to [download page] a September 2012 report from Vibes. Yet, an almost equal proportion (15%) report being dissuaded from making a purchase. Still, a plurality say that the product information […]
If a family wants to attend an NFL game this fall, it will cost them $443.93 according to Team Marketing Report’s “Fan Cost Index.” The FCI is based on the average cost for a family of four, including the purchase of “four non-premium tickets, two beers, four soft drinks, four hot dogs, parking, two programs and two adult-size hats.”
This year’s average cost is up $16.51 (3.9%) from last year and up $76.62 (20.9%) since 2007. However, if we look at inflation-adjusted prices, the cost of an NFL game has been relatively unchanged since 2009.
Here are the year-by-year costs…
Zappos Labs, the research arm of the Zappos online apparel site, has been experimenting with Pinterest—and the results are not encouraging.
Will Young, director of Zappos Labs, told Bloomberg that Pinterest users are far more likely to share a purchase than Twitter or Facebook users—but that shared items generate far less revenue than Twitter or Facebook.
This is a big problem for Pinterest, because the whole idea of the site is that it’s supposed to be better at monetizing social activity than Twitter or Facebook.
Young told Bloomberg that Zappos customers were 13 times likelier to share an item they bought with friends on Pinterest than on Twitter, and 8 times likelier than on Facebook.
But a post on Twitter generated far more revenue—$33.66 an order—than Facebook, at $2.08 an order, or Pinterest, at 75 cents an order.
That’s great news for Twitter, which will surely tout these figures as it makes a push for retail advertisers.
But it’s kind of bad news for Pinterest, which recently raised $100 million at a $1.5 billion valuation on the premise that its site—which is all about sharing beautiful images of things to buy—should be good at this kind of social commerce.
It’s not great news for Facebook, either, which has ambitions to make commerce a bigger part of the site than it is today.
A Pi nterest spokesperson whom we alerted to the study promised to look into it. We’ll update if we hear more.
One note: Amazon owns Zappos and Amazon.com is a rival of Rakuten a Japanese e-commerce giant that is also is an investor in Pinterest.
The fact that Amazon’s Instant Video service—which, while no Netflix, is starting to catch up—is just thrown in as an add-on to the already wonderful Amazon Prime is a little astonishing, when you think about it. And now, with iPad compatibility that some of us thought would never get here, it’s gotten dangerously close to being the best streaming deal around.
There are still problems with Instant Video; the selection struggles at times, and even if it were quality it’s a nightmare to navigate. But that’s just the Prime streaming side. Amazon’s selection of movies and TV shows for purchase matches anyone’s, and its prices are always competitive with—and very often lower than—Apple’s.
A quick run-through of both a movie that I own through Instant Video and one that I streamed through my Prime membership showed that the service works quickly, smoothly, and crisply. You can also download movies that you own to your device for offline viewing. It’s a little bit magical.
The only additional downside is that because of Apple takes 30% of any in-app purchase, you can’t buy movies directly through the Instant Video iPad app. Instead, you’ll have to head to Amazon in a browser, complete your purchase, then head back to your app. Which is silly! But worth the inconvenience, especially given Amazon’s daily video sales.
If you’re a Prime member, you need to download this app immediately. If you’re not Prime but are tired of paying iTunes prices, you need to download this app immediately. If you’re a Fringe or West Wing fan—both Amazon Prime Instant Video exclusives—you need to sign up for Prime. And then download this app immediately. [iTunes via 9to5Mac]
Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.
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