Spotlight

Silver Beacon’s Weekly Briefing for Leaders

 
Good morning. It’s Monday, October 30th. Stock increases after earnings calls added $181 billion to the market cap of the Big Five online companies. Execs from two of the five and Twitter are headed to DC to testify before the Senate Judiciary committee beginning Tuesday. What happens there will have a big effect on future regulatory oversight.
Highlights
  • Facebook and Twitter are introducing new advertising disclosures for every ad.
  • Google’s “mobile first” index is live and rolling out across the Internet.
  • Want to book a hotel room on Google? How about have Amazon open your front door? Both initiatives launched widely last week.
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Facebook says that advertisers will have to verify their identity in the future.The social media company will also include all ads in a searchable archive that lets regular users see every ad an advertiser has created. The age, location, gender, and costs will also be public information.

I shared the news Friday with a group of more than 100 Facebook advertising professionals when it came out. Their reaction was silence mixed with incredulity. Their reaction was similar to mine. None of us seemed to expect Facebook to go that far that fast. 

Facebook Ads VP Rob Goldman: “Starting next month, people will be able to click “View Ads” on a Page and view ads a Page is running on Facebook, Instagram and Messenger — whether or not the person viewing is in the intended target audience for the ad. All Pages will be part of this effort, and we will require that all ads be associated with a Page as part of the ad creation process.” Goldman’s post

Your organization’s ads will also be visible. We’ll all have to adapt and live with this new transparency.

Facebook followed Twitter’s earlier news that Russian government news affiliates RT and Sputnik are now banned from advertising on Twitter. All three companies are desperately hoping that they can sell Congress on self-regulation of online advertising.

This is important regardless of your politics after the MIT Technology Review published “How Tweets Translate into Votes” on Thursday. The study found that two UK elections showed “…politicians with Twitter accounts do get a higher share, though not by much.”
 
Despite announcing a 2018 launch date, Google has launched its “mobile first index” initiative to some websites and will continue adding more, according to Google exec Gary Ilyes at a search conference. Search Engine Land reported the news and quoted Ilyes as saying that this was an expansion of the testing with live sites. (SEL’s coverage)

You need to care about this because Google will be using mobile website information as its primary index for all searches. We’ve long since passed the 50% of search in mobile milestone. You probably work on a computer all day. Your org’s website performs differently on a mobile. Test your website’s speed, appearance, and everything else on mobile. The window to make changes before this shift occurs is narrowing fast.

Google also broadened its “Book Online” feature to include businesses like barbershops (pictured above), salons, yoga studios, and more. Google is treating this like we told you last week that Facebook was addressing food delivery. First, they’ll be a big repository of other companies. Then they’ll presumably take over the industry. Provider list here.

Spotlight Headlines

 

Monday’s Break Time


Pumpkin pie season is upon us once we get past Tuesday’s mini candy bar holiday. And now we learn courtesy of Marketplace that almost all commercial pumpkin pies are actually flavored squash. Cookbook author Stella Parks says that there are no labeling rules for pumpkins vs squash, and we’re not eating a pie made from those big orange things. Read the rest.
 


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Donna Goldbranson founded SPARC to care for adults with disabilities. She has nearly 20 years of advocacy experience and has won multiple awards and recognition for her work.

Donna Goldbranson
Executive Director, SPARC