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Why we care about video advertising

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Video has become an effective revenue generator for brands, especially on social platforms. In fact, digital video ad spending in the U.S. is up 50.8% compared to last year, with total revenues of $39.5 billion. Twitter receives over 2 billion video views every day, and 91% of active users watch videos on Instagram weekly. Clearly, having a video ad strategy is highly beneficial.

Customers are more responsive to video content than text, regardless of which channel it lives on. This can be credited to the fact that video content uses images, sound, and text to create an immersive experience.This can pose a new content creation challenge for marketers, though, and has led to the need for new tactics and technologies that focus on creating and executing video ad campaigns. 

However, comparing and analyzing video ad performance across platforms isn’t as easy as it may seem. The growing popularity of video ads has prompted many social media platforms to modify and expand their video ad options and metrics, so bidding, view counting, and reporting can vary significantly from platform to platform.

For instance, viewing a video for three seconds or more is considered a view on Facebook and Instagram. In contrast, watching a video ad for 11-30 seconds is considered a view on YouTube Trueview ads. Many platforms also follow the Media Rating Council (MRC) standard or variations of it (more on this below).

To accurately analyze and leverage video ad results, advertisers need to understand the way each platform counts and charges for video ad views since they aren’t all the same. That’s why we’ve created this guide to provide an overview of how video ads work across various platforms and how marketers can use video ads to their advantage. We will cover:

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  • What are video ads?
  • What counts as a video view on each platform?
  • Additional video metrics to consider.
  • How video ad measurement helps marketers succeed.
  • Learn more about video advertising.

What are video ads?

A video ad is generally a short, informative video that aims to help promote a product or service. These ads can be anywhere from a few seconds to over a couple of minutes long. They are expected to be a concise representation of what the product and brand stand for and what they offer to the customers. 

Video ads generally appear before, during, or after the non-commercial video content is played on video-sharing platforms like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. However, they can also be a short standalone video that aims to push a product/service in an innovative way. 

How do video ad views work?

Platforms have different policies about how they display and treat their video ads. While some might consider a few seconds of viewing time as a view, others require users to watch the ad for a longer duration for it to count as a view. Engagement metrics also depend on what kind of ad is being shown to the user. An ad that plays before a video is usually treated differently from ads produced and published as standalone videos. This then affects the videos’ engagement metrics and how they will be promoted on the platform. 

What counts as a video view on each platform?

The Media Rating Council (MRC) and Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) define a video ad as viewable when at least 50% of an ad is in view for a minimum of one second (for display ads) or two seconds (for video ads). While some social media companies and platforms have adopted this standard, many have defined their own view measurement systems.

Here’s a look at how some of the biggest companies define video views:

Google and YouTube

The skippable TrueView ads running on YouTube and the Google Display Network consider a video as viewed in either of the following scenarios:

  • Someone engages with the ad by clicking on it or a CTA link.
  • Someone watches at least 30 seconds of the video ad if it is longer than 30 seconds.
  • Someone watches for the entire ad duration if it is shorter than 30 seconds.

Unique metrics to keep in mind 

YouTube focuses on simple engagement metrics like watch time, audience retention, and demographics. This means that for YouTube video ads, you need to tailor content that:

  • Keeps the audience engaged throughout the video.
  • Keeps the audience coming back to your account for more content.
  • Is being watched by people of the age, race, gender, and geographical demographic that it was made to target.

Facebook and Instagram

Facebook and its subsidiaries, including Instagram, count a video as viewed for both in-stream and Stories video ads after three seconds of watching. However, you can choose to pay for video ads on either a cost per thousand (CPM) basis or a ThruPlay basis. 

When buying on a CPM basis, an impression is counted when one pixel of the video ad comes into view. On the other hand, with ThruPlay, it’s counted as a view when the video is played to 97% completion or for 15 seconds, whichever comes first.

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Unique metrics to keep in mind 

Facebook and its subsidiaries give special attention to two engagement metrics: Reach and Engagement. Reach is the number of users/accounts that see your ad. These can be organic views from friends and followers, views from the video being shared by people to their followers, or by the platform’s algorithm suggesting it to viewers. Engagement is how many people like, share, and comment on your ad post. Facebook and Instagram ad strategies are largely tailored around optimizing both these metrics.

LinkedIn

For LinkedIn’s sponsored content, videos are counted as viewed when 50% of the ad is in view and plays for two or more consecutive seconds- on both desktop and mobile.

Unique metrics to keep in mind

Apart from the standard view count (50%), LinkedIn also counts views at 25%, views at 75%, and views at 97-100%. As the names suggest, these metrics count the number of viewers watching the ad till a specific point. LinkedIn also focuses on its full-screen views, which is the total number of clicks to view a video in full-screen mode.

TikTok 

On TikTok, it’s counted as a view as soon your video starts to play. If the video is on autoplay or loops, or a user rewatches the video multiple times, all of that is counted as new views too. However, watching your own video is not considered a view.

Unique metrics to keep in mind

TikTok counts your net views over the course of seven or 28 days. The counter is refreshed after every interval, but the initial watches count towards views and help the ad get more engagement so that they can be shown to a larger audience. TikTok also keeps track of how many followers your account gained within the last seven or 28 days and how many profile views it attracted.  

Some other video-sharing platforms with their own unique engagement metrics include the following.

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Pinterest 

Pinterest uses the MRC standard definition of views, so it measures the total number of times someone watches your video with at least 50% of the video in view for two or more consecutive seconds.

The video ads on Pinterest are used to generate brand awareness and conversions campaign objectives.

Reddit 

Reddit also follows the MRC standard and considers a video viewed after the video is played for at least two seconds at 50% viewability. However, a full video view is counted after the video plays for three consecutive seconds at 100% viewability. You can pay on a cost-per-view (CPV) or cost per thousand (CPM) basis.

Snapchat 

Snapchat’s video ads play full-screen, typically with the sound on. It counts views after at least two consecutive seconds of viewing or a swipe-up action on the ad. Some ads also qualify as viewed after two seconds of consecutive watch time without the swipe-up action.

Twitter

Twitter has also adopted the MRC standard and considers a video ad viewed when 50% of the video is viewed for two seconds or more. It is also considered a view when the viewer engages with the video by expanding or unmuting it. In contrast, a 3s/100% view is when your video is played for at least three seconds in 100% view and a six-second view is when your video is played for at least six seconds in 50% view.


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Additional video metrics to consider

Many platforms offer more engagement metrics and view-counting mechanisms. For example, Google also tracks quartile watch time metrics and other key performance metrics such as click performance, engagement performance, and reach and frequency.

Facebook, too, offers quartile watch time metrics, showing how often users watched 25%, 50%, 75%, or 100% of a video ad. It also used to report two-second, three-second, 10-second, and ThruPlay views for all bidding options; however, in 2019, the social media giant revealed that ThruPlay would be the default buying option for video ad campaigns and view optimization. As a result, advertisers had to manually switch their 10-second video ad campaigns to ThruPlay to keep their campaigns up and running.

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Reddit reports views at 25%, 50%, 75%, 95%, and 100% of video length, as well as the number of times your video is started and played for at least three seconds, five seconds, and 10 seconds. It also shows the percentage of users who watched your video and clicked.

YouTube counts engaged-view conversions for in-stream ads whenever a user clicks on the video ad or watches 10 seconds or more of the skippable ad. The number of clicks your video receives can help you understand how your ad appeals to its viewers. YouTube also offers quartile reporting, showing how often a video is played to 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%.

How video ad measurement helps marketers succeed

Video ads are an excellent way to create immersive ad campaigns that work better with modern audiences. These ads help your company get its message across concisely while also establishing a familiar brand image that resonates with users. Marketers can leverage video sharing platform metrics to create content that is designed to reach a large number of viewers within days of the initial launch. This allows them to use social media algorithms for generating high revenue and excellent leads for their company. 

Additionally, studies have found that video messages make people happier than pure text, which can help break the overall negative mood of business inboxes. Marketers can use video ads to help their campaigns find a diverse, genuinely organic audience that is much more likely to engage with the ad and create loyal customers for the brand.

Learn more about video advertising 

Video is an engaging tool for marketing and creating brand awareness. It leads across the board as the most popular and effective format with the highest ROI.

Here are some helpful video marketing resources to help you learn more about the best solutions for your brand:

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About The Author

Why we care about video advertisingWhy we care about video advertising
Akshat Biyani is a Contributing Editor to MarTech, a former analyst who has a strong interest in writing about technology and its effect on marketing.

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Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

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Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

As we march closer to the 2024 U.S. presidential election, CMOs and marketing leaders need to prepare for a significant shift in the digital advertising landscape. Election years have always posed unique challenges for advertisers, but the growing dominance of digital media has made the impact more profound than ever before.

In this article, we’ll explore the key factors that will shape the advertising environment in the coming months and provide actionable insights to help you navigate these turbulent waters.

The Digital Battleground

The rise of cord-cutting and the shift towards digital media consumption have fundamentally altered the advertising landscape in recent years. As traditional TV viewership declines, political campaigns have had to adapt their strategies to reach voters where they are spending their time: on digital platforms.

1713626763 903 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy1713626763 903 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

According to a recent report by eMarketer, the number of cord-cutters in the U.S. is expected to reach 65.1 million by the end of 2023, representing a 6.9% increase from 2022. This trend is projected to continue, with the number of cord-cutters reaching 72.2 million by 2025.

Moreover, a survey conducted by Pew Research Center in 2023 found that 62% of U.S. adults do not have a cable or satellite TV subscription, up from 61% in 2022 and 50% in 2019. This data further underscores the accelerating shift away from traditional TV and towards streaming and digital media platforms.

As these trends continue, political advertisers will have no choice but to follow their audiences to digital channels. In the 2022 midterm elections, digital ad spending by political campaigns reached $1.2 billion, a 50% increase from the 2018 midterms. With the 2024 presidential election on the horizon, this figure is expected to grow exponentially, as campaigns compete for the attention of an increasingly digital-first electorate.

For brands and advertisers, this means that the competition for digital ad space will be fiercer than ever before. As political ad spending continues to migrate to platforms like Meta, YouTube, and connected TV, the cost of advertising will likely surge, making it more challenging for non-political advertisers to reach their target audiences.

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To navigate this complex and constantly evolving landscape, CMOs and their teams will need to be proactive, data-driven, and willing to experiment with new strategies and channels. By staying ahead of the curve and adapting to the changing media consumption habits of their audiences, brands can position themselves for success in the face of the electoral advertising onslaught.

Rising Costs and Limited Inventory

As political advertisers flood the digital market, the cost of advertising is expected to skyrocket. CPMs (cost per thousand impressions) will likely experience a steady climb throughout the year, with significant spikes anticipated in May, as college students come home from school and become more engaged in political conversations, and around major campaign events like presidential debates.

1713626764 529 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy1713626764 529 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

For media buyers and their teams, this means that the tried-and-true strategies of years past may no longer be sufficient. Brands will need to be nimble, adaptable, and willing to explore new tactics to stay ahead of the game.

Black Friday and Cyber Monday: A Perfect Storm

The challenges of election year advertising will be particularly acute during the critical holiday shopping season. Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which have historically been goldmines for advertisers, will be more expensive and competitive than ever in 2024, as they coincide with the final weeks of the presidential campaign.

To avoid being drowned out by the political noise, brands will need to start planning their holiday campaigns earlier than usual. Building up audiences and crafting compelling creative assets well in advance will be essential to success, as will a willingness to explore alternative channels and tactics. Relying on cold audiences come Q4 will lead to exceptionally high costs that may be detrimental to many businesses.

Navigating the Chaos

While the challenges of election year advertising can seem daunting, there are steps that media buyers and their teams can take to mitigate the impact and even thrive in this environment. Here are a few key strategies to keep in mind:

Start early and plan for contingencies: Begin planning your Q3 and Q4 campaigns as early as possible, with a focus on building up your target audiences and developing a robust library of creative assets.

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Be sure to build in contingency budgets to account for potential cost increases, and be prepared to pivot your strategy as the landscape evolves.

1713626764 197 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy1713626764 197 Battling for Attention in the 2024 Election Year Media Frenzy

Embrace alternative channels: Consider diversifying your media mix to include channels that may be less impacted by political ad spending, such as influencer marketing, podcast advertising, or sponsored content. Investing in owned media channels, like email marketing and mobile apps, can also provide a direct line to your customers without the need to compete for ad space.

Owned channels will be more important than ever. Use cheaper months leading up to the election to build your email lists and existing customer base so that your BF/CM can leverage your owned channels and warm audiences.

Craft compelling, shareable content: In a crowded and noisy advertising environment, creating content that resonates with your target audience will be more important than ever. Focus on developing authentic, engaging content that aligns with your brand values and speaks directly to your customers’ needs and desires.

By tapping into the power of emotional triggers and social proof, you can create content that not only cuts through the clutter but also inspires organic sharing and amplification.

Reflections

The 2024 election year will undoubtedly bring new challenges and complexities to the world of digital advertising. But by staying informed, adaptable, and strategic in your approach, you can navigate this landscape successfully and even find new opportunities for growth and engagement.

As a media buyer or agnecy, your role in steering your brand through these uncharted waters will be critical. By starting your planning early, embracing alternative channels and tactics, and focusing on creating authentic, resonant content, you can not only survive but thrive in the face of election year disruptions.

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So while the road ahead may be uncertain, one thing is clear: the brands that approach this challenge with creativity, agility, and a steadfast commitment to their customers will be the ones that emerge stronger on the other side.


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Tinuiti Marketing Analytics Recognized by Forrester

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Tinuiti Marketing Analytics Recognized by Forrester

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By Tinuiti Team

Rapid Media Mix Modeling and Proprietary Tech Transform Brand Performance

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Tinuiti, the largest independent full-funnel performance marketing agency, has been included in a recent Forrester Research report titled, “The Marketing Analytics Landscape, Q2 2024.” This report comprehensively overviews marketing analytics markets, use cases, and capabilities. B2C marketing leaders can use this research by Principal Analyst Tina Moffett to understand the intersection of marketing analytics capabilities and use cases to determine the vendor or service provider best positioned for their analytics and insights needs. Moffett describes the top marketing analytics markets as advertising agencies, marketing dashboards and business intelligence tools, marketing measurement and optimization platforms and service providers, and media analytics tools.

As an advertising agency, we believe Tinuiti is uniquely positioned to manage advertising campaigns for brands including buying, targeting, and measurement. Our proprietary measurement technology, Bliss Point by Tinuiti, allows us to measure the optimal level of investment to maximize impact and efficiency. According to the Forrester report, “only 30% of B2C marketing decision-makers say their organization uses marketing or media mix modeling (MMM),” so having a partner that knows, embraces, and utilizes MMM is important. As Tina astutely explains, data-driven agencies have amplified their marketing analytics competencies with data science expertise; and proprietary tools; and tailored their marketing analytics techniques based on industry, business, and data challenges. 

Our Rapid Media Mix Modeling sets a new standard in the market with its exceptional speed, precision, and transparency. Our patented tech includes Rapid Media Mix Modeling, Always-on Incrementality, Brand Equity, Creative Insights, and Forecasting – it will get you to your Marketing Bliss Point in each channel, across your entire media mix, and your overall brand performance. 

As a marketing leader you may ask yourself: 

  • How much of our marketing budget should we allocate to driving store traffic versus e-commerce traffic?
  • How should we allocate our budget by channel to generate the most traffic and revenue possible?
  • How many customers did we acquire in a specific region with our media spend?
  • What is the impact of seasonality on our media mix?
  • How should we adjust our budget accordingly?
  • What is the optimal marketing channel mix to maximize brand awareness? 

These are just a few of the questions that Bliss Point by Tinuiti can help you answer.

Learn more about our customer-obsessed, product-enabled, and fully integrated approach and how we’ve helped fuel full-funnel outcomes for the world’s most digital-forward brands like Poppi & Toms.

The Landscape report is available online to Forrester customers or for purchase here

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Ecommerce evolution: Blurring the lines between B2B and B2C

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Ecommerce evolution: Blurring the lines between B2B and B2C

Understanding convergence 

B2B and B2C ecommerce are two distinct models of online selling. B2B ecommerce is between businesses, such as wholesalers, distributors, and manufacturers. B2C ecommerce refers to transactions between businesses like retailers and consumer brands, directly to individual shoppers. 

However, in recent years, the boundaries between these two models have started to fade. This is known as the convergence between B2B and B2C ecommerce and how they are becoming more similar and integrated. 

Source: White Paper: The evolution of the B2B Consumer Buyer (ClientPoint, Jan 2024)

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What’s driving this change? 

Ever increasing customer expectations  

Customers today expect the same level of convenience, speed, and personalization in their B2B transactions as they do in their B2C interactions. B2B buyers are increasingly influenced by their B2C experiences. They want research, compare, and purchase products online, seamlessly transitioning between devices and channels.  They also prefer to research and purchase online, using multiple devices and channels.

Forrester, 68% of buyers prefer to research on their own, online . Customers today expect the same level of convenience, speed, and personalization in their B2B transactions as they do in their B2C interactions. B2B buyers are increasingly influenced by their B2C experiences. They want research, compare, and purchase products online, seamlessly transitioning between devices and channels.  They also prefer to research and purchase online, using multiple devices and channels

Technology and omnichannel strategies

Technology enables B2B and B2C ecommerce platforms to offer more features and functionalities, such as mobile optimization, chatbots, AI, and augmented reality. Omnichannel strategies allow B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to provide a seamless and consistent customer experience across different touchpoints, such as websites, social media, email, and physical stores. 

However, with every great leap forward comes its own set of challenges. The convergence of B2B and B2C markets means increased competition.  Businesses now not only have to compete with their traditional rivals, but also with new entrants and disruptors from different sectors. For example, Amazon Business, a B2B ecommerce platform, has become a major threat to many B2B ecommerce businesses, as it offers a wide range of products, low prices, and fast delivery

“Amazon Business has proven that B2B ecommerce can leverage popular B2C-like functionality” argues Joe Albrecht, CEO / Managing Partner, Xngage. . With features like Subscribe-and-Save (auto-replenishment), one-click buying, and curated assortments by job role or work location, they make it easy for B2B buyers to go to their website and never leave. Plus, with exceptional customer service and promotional incentives like Amazon Business Prime Days, they have created a reinforcing loyalty loop.

And yet, according to Barron’s, Amazon Business is only expected to capture 1.5% of the $5.7 Trillion addressable business market by 2025. If other B2B companies can truly become digital-first organizations, they can compete and win in this fragmented space, too.” 

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If other B2B companies can truly become digital-first organizations, they can also compete and win in this fragmented space

Joe Albrecht
CEO/Managing Partner, XNGAGE

Increasing complexity 

Another challenge is the increased complexity and cost of managing a converging ecommerce business. Businesses have to deal with different customer segments, requirements, and expectations, which may require different strategies, processes, and systems. For instance, B2B ecommerce businesses may have to handle more complex transactions, such as bulk orders, contract negotiations, and invoicing, while B2C ecommerce businesses may have to handle more customer service, returns, and loyalty programs. Moreover, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses must invest in technology and infrastructure to support their convergence efforts, which may increase their operational and maintenance costs. 

How to win

Here are a few ways companies can get ahead of the game:

Adopt B2C-like features in B2B platforms

User-friendly design, easy navigation, product reviews, personalization, recommendations, and ratings can help B2B ecommerce businesses to attract and retain more customers, as well as to increase their conversion and retention rates.  

According to McKinsey, ecommerce businesses that offer B2C-like features like personalization can increase their revenues by 15% and reduce their costs by 20%. You can do this through personalization of your website with tools like Product Recommendations that help suggest related products to increase sales. 

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Focus on personalization and customer experience

B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses need to understand their customers’ needs, preferences, and behaviors, and tailor their offerings and interactions accordingly. Personalization and customer experience can help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy, as well as to improve their brand reputation and competitive advantage. According to a Salesforce report, 88% of customers say that the experience a company provides is as important as its products or services.

Related: Redefining personalization for B2B commerce

Market based on customer insights

Data and analytics can help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to gain insights into their customers, markets, competitors, and performance, and to optimize their strategies and operations accordingly. Data and analytics can also help B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to identify new opportunities, trends, and innovations, and to anticipate and respond to customer needs and expectations. According to McKinsey, data-driven organizations are 23 times more likely to acquire customers, six times more likely to retain customers, and 19 times more likely to be profitable. 

What’s next? 

The convergence of B2B and B2C ecommerce is not a temporary phenomenon, but a long-term trend that will continue to shape the future of ecommerce. According to Statista, the global B2B ecommerce market is expected to reach $20.9 trillion by 2027, surpassing the B2C ecommerce market, which is expected to reach $10.5 trillion by 2027. Moreover, the report predicts that the convergence of B2B and B2C ecommerce will create new business models, such as B2B2C, B2A (business to anyone), and C2B (consumer to business). 

Therefore, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses need to prepare for the converging ecommerce landscape and take advantage of the opportunities and challenges it presents. Here are some recommendations for B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses to navigate the converging landscape: 

  • Conduct a thorough analysis of your customers, competitors, and market, and identify the gaps and opportunities for convergence. 
  • Develop a clear vision and strategy for convergence, and align your goals, objectives, and metrics with it. 
  • Invest in technology and infrastructure that can support your convergence efforts, such as cloud, mobile, AI, and omnichannel platforms. 
  • Implement B2C-like features in your B2B platforms, and vice versa, to enhance your customer experience and satisfaction.
  • Personalize your offerings and interactions with your customers, and provide them with relevant and valuable content and solutions.
  • Leverage data and analytics to optimize your performance and decision making, and to innovate and differentiate your business.
  • Collaborate and partner with other B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses, as well as with other stakeholders, such as suppliers, distributors, and customers, to create value and synergy.
  • Monitor and evaluate your convergence efforts, and adapt and improve them as needed. 

By following these recommendations, B2B and B2C ecommerce businesses can bridge the gap between their models and create a more integrated and seamless ecommerce experience for their customers and themselves. 

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