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Musk Looks to Reassure Advertisers Ahead of Twitter Takeover, Outlines Elements of His Plan

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Musk Looks to Reassure Advertisers Ahead of Twitter Takeover, Outlines Elements of His Plan

As he prepares for the next stage of his Twitter takeover, which looks set to be finalized this week, Elon Musk has released a new statement on his intentions for the platform, and the impact that it will have on advertisers, who’ve been justifiably concerned about Musk’s vision for the app.

Because as Musk has said directly:

Musk has said, straight up, that he will look to remove ads from the platform entirely, which would re-shape a lot of marketing approaches at many brands.

But now, after visiting Twitter HQ, and with $44 billion about to be debited from his account, Musk has changed his mind on this.

As per Musk:

“There’s been much speculation about why I bought Twitter, and what I think about advertising. Most of it has been wrong.”

Which, from, the first line, feels a bit revisionist. Musk has also said that he hates advertising, in addition to the above tweet about removing ads from Twitter.

But again, with the clarity of debt, Musk has now switched up, and says that he actually wants to make Twitter ‘the most respected advertising platform in the world’.

“I also very much believe that advertising, when done right, can delight, entertain and inform you; it can show you a service or product or medical treatment that you never knew existed, but is right for you. For this to be true, it’s essential to show Twitter users advertising that is as relevant as possible to their needs. Low relevancy are spam, but high relevancy ads are content.”

Ah, so advertising is okay so long as it’s good. Keep that in mind marketers.

How Musk plans to enforce this, and ensure that Twitter only publishes good, relevant ads is not clear. But rest assured ad partners, Musk’s not going to cut you off from the app – despite his previous and repeated statements that that’s exactly what he would do. That was just speculation, according to Musk. Didn’t come from him.

So goes the usual Elon Musk approach – saying one thing, then completely denying it, and blaming outside forces for misinterpreting his statements.

The same also relates to his recent statement that he’ll look to cut 75% of Twitter staff as soon as he takes over as ‘Chief Twit’ (as per his new Twitter bio).

Yet, after he visited Twitter HQ yesterday, he posted that he’d met ‘a lot of cool people’ at the app.

Yes, he bought a sink with him, for a random and unfunny sight gag. Wacky.

Of course, saying that he met a lot of cool folk doesn’t mean that he won’t sack them. But it does suggest that Musk’s not going to be as militant in his approach as he’s suggested in his previous statements.

So what are his plans then?

To unite the world, apparently:

“The reason I acquired Twitter is because it’s important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence. There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society.”

Musk also notes that he ‘didn’t do it to make money’. Which is pretty obvious, since he spent months trying to renege on the deal, and also recently noted that he’s ‘obviously overpaying’ for the app.

That’s another element that Musk is now trying to play down – Musk has spent months criticizing Twitter, its board, its staff, poking holes in its business model, and generally, highlighting why it’s a disastrous investment.

But now? All smiles.

‘In addition to adhering to the laws of the land, our platform must be warm and welcoming to all, where you can choose your desired experience according to your preferences, just as you can choose, for example, to see movies or play video games ranging from all ages to mature.”

Warm and welcoming. That’s definitely not the Twitter vision that Musk has been painting.

But again, the clarity of debt.

The latter reference here relates to Elon’s vision of creating variable algorithms, which users could then choose to apply to their Twitter feed. The concept is interesting, but whether users will actually want to go to the effort of curating their own experience, as opposed to just checking out what the app has on offer, remains to be seen.

And that’s the real rub here. Musk says that he has a plan, and he’s now making statements like these about the future of the app, and how it can be a transformative, uniting experience.

But making that a reality seems like a truly impossible task. And while Musk prides himself on taking on the impossible, this one feels like it could be beyond even his reach.

It feels like, in many ways, Musk will be relying on his public persona to win over users. But do people really like his wacky rich guy shtick?

I don’t know, it’s a massive, and very public task, which could hurt Musk’s reputation, along with his net worth. The general concepts that Musk’s been touting do make sense – user-defined experience, freedom of speech versus freedom of reach, improved algorithmic targeting (ala TikTok), and payments, shopping and more, like WeChat in China.

Musk has pointed to all of these apps and options as reference points for his Twitter vision. But so has every social media app. Meta’s been trying for years to replicate the utility of Chinese messaging apps, every platform’s trying to work out TikTok’s secret sauce, and users already do have a lot of choice regarding what they see in-stream.

The problem is in the application. Western users haven’t warmed to app functionalities in the same way as Chinese consumers have, TikTok’s winning because its algorithms are better and no one can match it, and while users are able to change their feed experience, in various ways, most can’t be bothered, and even if they do, engagement declines as a result

So while Musk is keen to explore these things, each is, indeed, easier said than done.

But it’s Elon Musk, if anyone can do it, he can. Right?

The Musk era is about to begin, and it’ll be fascinating to see how, exactly, he looks to enact any of this.



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Growth Stock Surges On Ad Fraud Discovery, Analyst Upgrade

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Growth Stock Surges On Ad Fraud Discovery, Analyst Upgrade

Ad data and analytics provider DoubleVerify (DV) is building the right side of a cup base with a buy point of 32.53. The growth stock is today’s selection for IBD 50 Stocks to Watch.




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DoubleVerify has a strong Composite Rating of 94 and a Relative Strength Rating of 89. Its stellar EPS Rating of 96 is even better.

Company sales grew 35% to $112.3 million in the third quarter while earnings per share of 6 cents grew 20% from the previous year.

On Jan. 10, analysts at Barclays upgraded the stock to overweight from equal weight with a price target of 29. Shares gapped up over 6% on the news, and the move helped the stock start its recovery from the January low.

Growth Stock Surges After Finding Fraud Scheme

DoubleVerify helps advertising companies that target users on video, mobile, and social media platforms. The company also has an analytics side that provides data on consumer engagement.

The digital media analytics platform ensures that ads reach their target customers in a safe way. This means that ads reach actual people with the right context. The software also has tools to adapt ads to different devices.

Its technology also seeks to address ad fraud. On Thursday, the company discovered “BeatSting,” the first large-scale ad-impression fraud scheme that targeted audio ads.

DV Fraud Lab first identified the fraud scheme in 2019, which is largely responsible for advertisers losing $20 million in several scams, according to reports. DoubleVerify was credited for unveiling the fraud. Shares last Thursday surged nearly 4% in strong volume.

Deals With Twitter, LinkedIn, Meta, Facebook

The company has partnered with leading social media and mobile platforms like LinkedIn and TikTok to improve ad impact and experience. DoubleVerify has a long-standing relationship with Facebook parent Meta Platforms (META). The social media platform faced a massive boycott in 2020 when several companies removed their ads due to concerns over their brand safety.

In June of last year, DoubleVerify brought features that will allow marketers to see where their ads appear in a user’s timeline. The feature uses artificial-intelligence tools to understand the context in which ads appear. The feature also enhanced brand safety  and attracted Twitter and other social media platforms to try it out. Nonetheless, marketers did not buy in entirely, according to reports, as Twitter’s ad revenue continued to struggle.

The growth stock ranks second in the specialty enterprise software group. The stock went public in April 2021. The New York-based company has locations in the U.S., U.K., Europe, Asia, Australia and South America.

Mutual funds own 39% of shares outstanding. That may not seem like much, but more funds have been picking up the growth stock over the past eight quarters, according to MarketSmith. The stock has an Accumulation/Distribution Rating of B-.

Exchange traded funds hold shares of DoubleVerify as well. The Invesco S&P Small Cap Information Technology ETF (PSCT) and the SPDR FactSet Innovative Technology ETF (XITK) own DV.

Please follow VRamakrishnan on Twitter @IBD_VRamakrishnan for more news on growth stocks.

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YouTube Will Now Enable Brands to Buy Specific Time Slots Around Major Events for Masthead Ads

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YouTube Will Now Enable Brands to Buy Specific Time Slots Around Major Events for Masthead Ads

YouTube has added a new time targeting element to its Masthead Ads, which will enable brands to display their promotions in key times leading up to key events.

As explained by YouTube:

In a time of multiple screens and countless ways to stay entertained, it can be challenging to get your audience’s attention. But even with so much content available at any time, people are drawn to moments they can experience together: a new movie release, a big game, a product launch, a holiday. And these are key opportunities to connect with a brand. Marketers, you know this well: you center advertising campaigns around the tentpole moments most likely to inspire your audience, shift perceptions or influence a purchase decision.”

YouTube’s Cost-Per-Hour Masthead enables brands to own the most prominent placement in the app during the hour(s) leading up to, during or after priority moments.

For example:

“[During the recent World Cup], McDonald’s Brazil turned to the YouTube Cost-Per-Hour Masthead. Their strategy was savvy: reach anyone in Brazil who was watching YouTube an hour before the Brazil vs. Cameroon match and remind them to pick up McDonald’s before the game started. This perfectly timed execution delivered tens of millions of impressions at the very moment fans were preparing for the match.

It could be a good way to hook into key moments, and build momentum for your campaigns, while also establishing association with key events and subjects.

“Just a few weeks ago, Xiaomi, the leading smartphone manufacturer in India, prepared to launch their highly anticipated Redmi Note 12 series via YouTube livestream. To drive viewership, Xiaomi ran the Cost-Per-Hour Masthead during the event. Not only did this activation drive scaled awareness, it led to over 90,000 concurrent livestream views. The Redmi Note 12 went on to generate a record number of first-week sales, making it one of their most successful launches to date.

It’s an expansive, but potentially significant targeting option, which could hold appeal for big brands looking to make a big splash around major events and releases.

You can learn more about YouTube’s Cost-Per-Hour Masthead process here.

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'Astonishing' New Cognitive Research Shows Gaining Knowledge, Learning New Skills, and Achieving Mastery Comes Down to the Rule of 7

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'Astonishing' New Cognitive Research Shows Gaining Knowledge, Learning New Skills, and Achieving Mastery Comes Down to the Rule of 7

While talent matters, the good news is we all learn at basically the same rate–and can “learn anything we want.” Think you don’t have the talent for entrepreneurship? For leadership? For programming, for design… for whatever pursuit you may want to, um, pursue? According to HubSpot co-founder …

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