Facebook pushes pre-roll ads on Watch as it stops subsidizing Live

Everyone’s least favorite ads are coming to Facebook, but six second pre-rolls will only appear on original Watch tab videos you purposefully view and not in the News Feed. Facebook is embracing pre-rolls after years of shunning them as it tries to make pay outs to video creators sustainable. Facebook’s head of video Fidji Simo […]

There are now 25M active business profiles on Instagram

Instagram announced this morning that it now has 25 million active business profiles, up from 15 million in July. The company throws out a lot of different statistics (back in September it said it had 800 million monthly active users, 500 million daily active users and 2 million advertisers), but this one’s significant as a […]

Facebook prototypes Messenger Broadcast for businesses

Facebook may soon be ready to squeeze more money out of its 1.3 billion user chat app. The company has internally developed “Messenger Broadcast”, a self-serve mass-messaging interface that lets businesses send marketing messages to users. Facebook confirmed to TechCrunch that it’s testing the feature internally, but hadn’t trialed it to the public or with […]

Snapchat seeks salvation in long-form and “hands-on” AR ads

Snap Inc’s stock tanked after missing revenue expectations by $30 million last quarter, so Snapchat is looking to win over businesses with immersive new ads formats. This week it introduced two new forms of ads: Promoted Stories which string together multiple Snaps into a longer-form slideshows openable from a tile on the Stories page that’s […]

AppLovin scraps acquisition and takes debt financing instead

The story of AppLovin‘s acquisition has taken another turn. We first reported that the mobile ad startup was in acquisition talks in August of last year, and the announcement came a month later: AppLovin would sell a majority stake Chinese private equity firm Orient Hontai Capital. Today, however, CEO Adam Foroughi revealed that the deal […]

With Dabbl, you can earn gift cards for interacting with ads

Dabbl is giving users a straightforward reason to interact with ads — the ads earn them money in the form of gift cards. For example, when I signed up for Dabbl this morning, I was presented with a menu of several different campaigns. The first one that I chose was from Oreo, where I answered […]

Nike is using its new digital studio to build a community of sneakerheads

A year after acquiring Virgin Mega, Nike is revealing some of the early results of its experiments with augmented reality and community-building. Virgin Mega was a startup backed by Richard Branson’s Virgin Group that focused on fan communities and shopping. Ron Faris, who led the startup, told me that Nike acquired Virgin Mega in order […]

Facebook Messenger lets games monetize with purchases and ads

Facebook is finally giving developers a reason to build games for Messenger while also opening a new revenue stream for the chat app. After launching HTML5 ‘Instant Games’ inside Messenger like Pac-Man, Space Invaders, and Words With Friends Frenzy in November 2016, today Facebook is allowing developers to add in-app purchases as well as interstitial […]

Snaps raises $6M to expand its marketing platform for messaging apps

Snaps has raised $6 million in Series A funding for what it calls its Conversational Marketing Cloud. By that, it’s referring to a suite of tools that allows businesses to promote themselves through messaging. CEO Christian Brucculeri said Snaps is differentiated by its “write once and deploy everywhere approach,” allowing marketers to build things like […]

Omnyway raises $12.75M to connect advertising and mobile commerce

Omnyway announced today that it has raised $12.75 million in Series A funding. Previously known as OmnyPay, Omnyway has built technology around what it calls “augmented digital commerce” — basically, helping retailers stay connected to consumers through their mobile phone during the in-store shopping process. That includes loyalty programs, coupons and what CEO Ashok Narasimhan […]