No More Twinkie Defense: Weds Signal

So long, Hostess.

In today’s (and this week’s only) Signal: Ding dong, the Twinkies are dead; the technological path to Obama’s win; Mark Cuban on Facebook — again; why Apple should buy Twitter; the buying and selling of online consumers; filling the awkward silence in brand conversation in 2013; Silicon Valley is failing the TV ad world; and more.

To the links …

Who Killed Hostess Brands and Twinkies? (Forbes) As an estimated 18,500 workers prepare to join the nation’s unemployment rolls, it’s time for a reality check.

When the Nerds Go Marching In (The Atlantic) When the election was just 17 days away, the Obama campaign’s chief technology officer, Harper Reed, inflicted some major technological pain on his team through a live-action role playing (LARPing!) exercise that revealed the team’s muster. “I know we had the best technology team I’ve ever worked with,” Reed said. “But we didn’t know if it would work. I was incredibly confident it would work. I was betting a lot on it. We had time. We had resources. We had done what we thought would work, and it still could have broken. Something could have happened.”

What I Really Think About Facebook (Blog Maverick) On Monday, nearly three weeks after tweeting his dissatisfaction with Facebook’s ad offerings, Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, posted about the core issues he has with the social platform and how FB thinks about itself. “I’m not recommending to any of my companies that we leave Facebook,” he wrote. “I am recommending that we de-emphasize pushing consumers or partners to like us on FB and focus on building up our followings across all existing social media platforms and to evaluate those that we feel can grow a material following. In the past we put FB first, twitter second. FB has been moved to the bottom of a longer list.”

Apple and Twitter (Patrick B. Gibson) Patrick Gibson posits that Apple should buy Twitter, and do it now. He’s not the first, but the chorus will most likely be joined. “Where Apple falls short, Twitter flies. Not only does Twitter use some of the most advanced web technology, they invented it. They own scale. They know how to send hundreds of thousands of tweets a minute. Further, Twitter is social network with values that (used to) reflect Apple: focus and simplicity.”

Your Online Attention, Bought in an Instant by Advertisers (NYT) In the world of digital advertising, your eyeballs are worth a lot. As a result, you’re being bought and sold in milliseconds. Powerful algorithms size you up based on what you Google, the sites you visit and, of course, the ads you click. Then, in real time, the chance to show you an ad is auctioned to the highest bidder. Like FMP, Rubicon is among a handful of technology companies that have quietly developed automated ad sales systems for website operators.

How Brands Will Carry On the Social Conversation In 2013 (Ad Age) In the U.K., next year is being dubbed Empty13 because there’s no Olympics-type events scheduled in 2013. So what does that mean for brands? What happens when there isn’t a common agenda for brands and consumers to talk about? The answers depend on a number of factors, but expect the content vs. context debate for brands to be in full swing.

Why Is the TV Ad World So Hard for Silicon Valley to Understand? (Ad Age) While newspapers, magazines and radio stations are suffering as a result of internet media consumption, TV has proven resilient, withstanding extraordinary online competition. If television remains successful, then television advertising should be ripe for digital democratization. Yet despite the attempts by Silicon Valley and Silicon Valley-inspired technology companies to bring digital disruption to the industry, nothing has stuck. What gives?

What a Pinterest Ad Model Would Look Like (Digiday) Pinterest, poised to be the next big social platform, is taking small steps toward being more business friendly with the introduction of tools for businesses and advice on making the most of the digital scrapbooking platform. But what’s not yet clear is how this will translate into ad products.

The Online Advertising Impression Needs to Be Put to Rest (The Guardian) Despite impressive growth of Real-Time Bidding (RTB) in the U.K., there is one element of online brand spend where RTB adoption is being hampered by a lack of foresight, according to Guardian writer Daniel de Sybel: “Brand managers are more used to looking at the big-picture, but we need them to focus down to a single online ad. However, in doing this, the fundamental measurement of the industry — the ‘impression‘ —  is standing in the way.”

Best Practices for Content Marketing (Digiday) Digital agency 360i recently released a report that details what marketers can do to develop a strategic content marketing plan – covering everything from content development (creation and curation), to syndication and distribution, to optimization. Digiday’s Giselle Abramovich looks at the report’s three takeaways.

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