Na een niets verhullende keynote presentatie over wellicht één van de grootste fraudeaffaires uit de Nederlandse geschiedenis komen in diverse break-out sessies verschillende onderzoekstechnieken, risico’s, obstakels en valkuilen aan de orde, met vragen als:
Wat is waarheidsvinding precies?
Leveren verschillende typen onderzoekers verschillende waarheden op?
Hoe onafhankelijk is de fraudeonderzoeker?
Is publiek-private samenwerking een must of een onbegaanbaar pad?
Werkt rechercheren over de grenzen en zo ja, hoe werkt het dan?
Hoe doe je zorgvuldig onderzoek en voorkom je een heksenjacht?
Aan welke ethiek en regels ben je als fraudeonderzoeker gebonden?
Aan het eind van deze dag bent u op de hoogte van enkele nieuwe trends, heeft u meer inzicht in de verschillende vormen van fraudeonderzoek en waarheidsvinding en heeft u uw netwerk van fraudeonderzoekers uitgebreid.
We hopen u daarom te zien op 18 april bij de Dag van de Fraudeonderzoeker! Organisatie: www.iffc.nl
In reporting its Q4 results, Netflix has revealed it finished 2018 with 139 million paying memberships, up 9 million from quarter start and up 29 million from the beginning of the year.
The SVoD service grew annual revenue 35 per cent to $16 billion in 2018, and nearly doubled operating profits to $1.6 billion, though this was short of Wall St expectations. Netflix said that as expected, Q4 operating margin dipped to 5.2 per cent vs. 7.5 per cent prior year as a result of so many titles launching in the quarter.
Netflix added a record 8.8 million paid memberships (1.5m in the US and 7.3m internationally), higher than its beginning-of-quarter expectation for 7.6 million paid net adds and up 33 per cent year over year. For the full year, paid net adds grew 33 per cent to 29 million vs. the 22 million it added in 2017.
In a Letter to Shareholders, Netflix advises that it changes pricing from time to time as it continues investing in “great” entertainment and improving the overall Netflix experience. “We want to ensure that Netflix is a good value for the money and that our entry price is affordable. We just increased our US prices for new members, as we did in Q4 in Canada and Argentina, and in Japan in Q3. The new pricing in the US will be phased in for existing members over Q1 and Q2, which we anticipate will lift ASP,” it advises, adding that its multi-year plan is to keep significantly growing its content while increasing its revenue faster to expand its operating margins.
In terms of content, Netflix says it is making significant investments in productions all over the world “because we have seen that great stories transcend borders”. For example, Bodyguard (co-produced with BBC One, from ITV Studios) ranks as one of its most enjoyed co-productions. Baby, its second original series from Italy, and The Protector, its first Turkish original series, both saw strong viewing both inside and outside their home countries. All three of these debut seasons from around the world were each enjoyed by over 10 million member households in their first four weeks. Netflix says that a result of its success with original content, it is becoming less focused on second-run programming.
In terms of competition, Netflix notes that in the US, it earns around 10 per cent of television screen time and less than that of mobile screen time. In other countries, it earns a lower percentage of screen time as a result of lower penetration of its service. “We earn consumer screen time, both mobile and television, away from a very broad set of competitors. We compete with (and lose to) Fortnite more than HBO. When YouTube went down globally for a few minutes in October, our viewing and signups spiked for that time. Hulu is small compared to YouTube for viewing time, and they are successful in the US, but non-existent in Canada, which creates a comparison point: our penetration in the two countries is pretty similar. There are thousands of competitors in this highly-fragmented market vying to entertain consumers and low barriers to entry for those with great experiences. Our growth is based on how good our experience is, compared to all the other screen time experiences from which consumers choose. Our focus is not on Disney+, Amazon or others, but on how we can improve our experience for our members.”
TMT analyst Paolo Pescatore described the results as “a modest quarter to end a mixed year for Netflix,” suggesting that the year ahead will be pivotal. “More providers will be launching SVoD services and they will want to pull their programming off Netflix. Also, expect the likes of Apple to make significant moves in video/TV, leaving the market awash with video services. “Users will be spoilt for choice, maybe a bit too much,” he says.
“Worryingly, the company is burning through a lot of cash. It needs to recoup this by adding customers more quickly, increasing prices or taking on more debt. Therefore, expect price rises in all key markets,” he advises
“Cable and telco partnerships will remain important for further subscriber and revenue growth over the next twelve months,” he says, reflecting Netflix’s comments in its Letter to Shareholders that it is also expanding its bundled offerings which now include: Telefónica in Spain, Comcast and T-Mobile in the US, Sky in the UK and Germany, Free in France, and KDDI in Japan.
According to Josh Krichefski, CEO at MediaCom, Netflix’s growing catalogue of exclusive shows and ongoing push to create original content is clearly reaping rewards, noting that recent hits such as Bird Box and Haunting of Hill House are generating the same buzz as Oscar-winning films. “This is all well and good but it does beg the question of how much longer Netflix can sustain itself without an advertising model, with the likes of Prime Video and NOW TV making up ground quickly. While Netflix currently leads the way in streaming platforms, investing millions and millions into its own content may not be enough to enjoy unbridled success in the future.”
As Twitter’s video ad business grows, so does the amount of user-generated content on its platform. The challenge for Twitter, and brands that advertise on it, is to keep brands safe from, well, the Internet.
In April 2018, 50% of Twitter’s business came from video advertising – and that still holds true today. In Q1 2018, the company made at least $287 million from video ads, according to Recode.
AdExchanger caught up with Sarah Personette, Twitter’s VP of global client solutions at this year’s CES in Las Vegas, to learn how the social media giant plans to grow its video ad business even more in 2019.
AdExchanger: What’s the current state of video advertising on Twitter?
SARAH PERSONETTE: The world has become mobile, and mobile has increasingly become video. We made a pretty significant investment in making our video products stronger, better and more performant. And with that, in-stream video sponsorships, in-stream video ads and website video cards are driving the bulk of our business.
Over 50% of our business is coming from video at this point. We believe that this will continue into 2019 as consumer behavior shifts there, but also as the demand from brand advertisers continues for using video to tell great creative stories. But [they] also want brand-safe, premium quality, scaled content that they can integrate their brands into, which is what our products offer.
With so much user-generated content on Twitter, what are you doing to help brands ensure their content stays safe?
There are a few ways that we do this. One is from a machine-learning perspective, making sure that we have the right tools and protocols in place to provide the right type of environment for [brands].
We also [ensure brand safety] from a content perspective. We have over 950 content partnerships right now that we’ve done in 2018 alone, and we’ve just launched five more partnerships at CES. The integration of brands into this brand-safe content, where they can choose which publishers they are associated with or which genres of content they’re associated with, also ensures a brand-safe, high-quality premium video environment.
What do some of those video partnerships entail?
On Monday we announced a partnership with PGA. We’re extending our coverage into the weekends. On Tuesday we launched our partnership with Fox Sports and the Women’s World Cup in Paris. I’m particularly excited about that because it helps to celebrate women in sports.
We have also launched with BuzzFeed. We are continuing a renewal of “AM2DM.” It’s an incredible example of a publisher understanding the fast, fun, real-time conversant nature of the platform, and they do it exceptionally well.
We also announced a partnership with The Ringer. We have done some work with them on “Game of Thrones,” and we’re also taking that to another show, “Big Little Lies.”
With all these new partnerships, are you thinking about any new ad units you’re going to roll out?
Not at the moment. Our ad units, between the in-stream sponsorships and in-stream ads, are doing exceptionally well for advertisers, so we’ll continue to focus on building the best, most performant tech stack to help propel that inventory forward.
Do you plan on doing anything in the programmatic space more in 2019?
Not at this time.
What do you think is the most powerful aspect of Twitter for advertisers?
The power of Twitter is our audience. It is the most leaned-in, receptive and valuable audience, because Twitter is what’s happening. We’ve found that our advertisers are really successful when they’re launching something new on the platform and when they’re connecting with what’s happening in the moment.
Our advertising capabilities are designed to drive business objectives across the entire purchase funnel.
YouTube is increasing its focus on unscripted content as it prepares to make all of its new original content available for free. While previous Premium titles like martial arts drama Cobra Kai will remain subscriber-only, all new content will be available to everyone in an ad-supported format.
Premium subscribers will benefit from perks like ad-free streaming, exclusive extra content and bingeable all-at-once releases rather than weekly installments. Among its original output, YouTube has increased the proportion of unscripted content from 10% in the second half of 2017 to 40% in the second half of 2018. Unscripted content is also far more likely to progress beyond development or pilot.
While only 61% of scripted content in development or produced as a pilot for YouTube in 2018 has made it to a series order, 92% of unscripted shows made it to the same mark. The shift in content strategy began before YouTube revealed the strategic shift for its Premium services in November 2018.
Among the FAANGs, YouTube is now second only to Facebook in terms of its unscripted focus. For the full year 2018, 42% of YouTube’s announced original shows were unscripted, compared to 4% for Apple, 18% for Amazon and 29% for Netflix. Facebook Watch still has far more unscripted content with 81% of its original output unscripted during 2018.
There has also been a corresponding change in terms of genre of YouTube originals, with more commissions for genres like reality, entertainment, documentary and particularly comedy, while expensive scripted genres like sci-fi & fantasy, action and adventure and romance either remaining steady or dropping off entirely. Bucking this trend is the crime & thriller genre, which has increased steadily over 2018.
While the move of original content from an exclusive subscription model back to the group’s established ad-supported business may signal the beginning of the end for YouTube’s Premium service, original content is unlikely to suffer: the company has significantly ramped up the number of titles announced during 2018 as it looks to keep pace with its FAANG peers.
Video programmers that are going direct to consumer by launching streaming apps are grappling with third-party distributors that have access to huge audiences, but offer very little in the way of audience data.
Today, video app programmers have a growing number of third-party distribution options. Marketplaces such as the iTunes App Store and Google Play ensure that their apps are available on almost every smartphone and tablet. Streaming video devices such as Amazon’s Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV offer similar app distribution on TV screens. Amazon and Roku are also channel resellers, which allows them to sell media companies’ apps as “channels” inside their own branded apps. (Apple is reportedly working on a similar product for its TV app.)
All of these distributors, whether it’s an app marketplace or channel reseller, allow users to subscribe through the distributor’s ecosystem (and billing system) instead of having to sign up directly with the programmer. This has created a challenge for video programmers, which need to be on third-party distribution platforms in order to reach a wider user base, but get a limited view into who is actually subscribing and how they are using the apps.
For instance, video programmers that agree to be on Amazon Prime Video Channels and The Roku Channel do not receive the email or credit-card information of those that have elected to subscribe. That information remains with Amazon and Roku, which also take a share of the revenue generated by their wholesale marketplaces. Last year, Amazon expanded its channels program to include ad-supported channels, which meant that the company does deliver back some anonymized user data on viewership trends and age and gender demographics, sources said. But again, there is no identifiable information that programmers could put to use outside of Amazon’s own ecosystem.
“Amazon wants you to do well on ads, because they want people to come back and buy stuff on Amazon, so they’ll give you some anonymized data,” said an executive at a TV programmer that distributes on Prime Video Channels.
“Amazon Channels and the wholesalers, in general, are basically a black box; you don’t really see what’s happening in terms of what people are watching,” added an exec at a niche subscription video programmer.
The data challenge with OTT wholesalers also varies by programmer. For instance, ad-free subscription programmers such as HBO, Showtime and Starz are not as gung-ho about audience data as those that sell ads.
Amazon has launched Freedive, an ad-supported streaming channel featuring movies and TV shows, with the Internet Movie Database (IMDb).
The AVOD will be available in the US, beginning today, on the IMDb website and on all Amazon Fire TV devices.
Freedive TV customers will see the new IMDb Freedive icon in the “Your Apps & Channels” section.
Without a Trace
The channel will enable customers to watch hit TV shows including Fringe, Heroes, The Bachelor and Without a Trace, as well as top Hollywood hits such as Foxcatcher, Memento, Monster and The Illusionist without purchasing a subscription.
Customers can also dive deeper into the titles they are watching by using X-Ray, powered by the information on IMDb about cast, crew, trivia and soundtracks.
IMDb already has a list of original video series, including The IMDb Show, Casting Calls and No Small Parts, which will be available on the service.
IMDb says the Freedive catalogue will continue to evolve, with new titles added regularly.
“Customers already rely on IMDb to discover movies and TV shows and decide what to watch,” said Col Needham, founder and CEO of IMDb.
“With the launch of IMDb Freedive, they can now also watch full-length movies and TV shows on IMDb and all Amazon Fire TV devices for free. We will continue to enhance IMDb Freedive based on customer feedback and will soon make it available more widely, including on IMDb’s leading mobile apps.”
In October it was reported that Amazon will allow marketers access to its proprietary data in order to help target video advertising on the platform.
Amazon’s Fire TV may be moving into the lead among video streaming devices, with its lineup of products attracting “well over” 30 million active users, the company said Wednesday at CES.
That’s up from the 25 million Amazon disclosed in October, suggesting growth of 5 million new accounts in three months. And Amazon expects the number to grow soon, too.
“We’re still in the middle of the ‘buy’ to ‘turn on’ period” from the holiday shopping season, Amazon’s head of Fire TV, Marc Whitten, said in an interview with CNET on Wednesday at CES.
The 30 million figure seems to put Fire TV ahead of Roku, widely considered one of the most popular streaming-video products. Earlier this week, Roku estimated it had 27 million active users. The company said it defines an active account as one that has streamed content in the last 30 days; a single account may include streaming on multiple devices with multiple individuals in the household. Roku declined to comment on Amazon’s announcement.
Amazon didn’t characterize its definition of a monthly active user. The company has Fire devices that work in more than 80 countries, according to its support page. Roku operates in 23 countries.
The market for video streaming devices is exploding. The number of households with a streaming player has quadrupled in the last five years, according to Parks Associates, and Roku and Amazon have been competing for market share since Amazon launched the Fire TV line in 2014.
Whitten plans to grow the Fire TV business this year by expanding Amazon’s international partnerships, though he avoided offering any specifics about those efforts. Whitten added that the company has been “very happy” with sales of Fire TV Edition smart TVs, which are sets that have Fire TV built into them.
As an example of a recent partnership, Amazon signed a deal last April with Best Buy to bring a new lineup of Fire TV Edition sets to customers in the US and Canada.
“Smart TV powered by Fire TV Edition, we think, is a great experience, and we want to build more of them,” Whitten said.
According to the latest data from Hulu, the company continues to grow at a spectacular pace. Hulu grew subscribers to 25 million in 2018, an increase of 8M from the previous year. As well, advertising revenue increased 45%, to reach $1.5 billion.
More content driving Hulu’s growth in every dimension
Hulu boosted its on-demand library to 85,000 episodes, including exclusive rights to every episode of shows such as ER, Lost, King of the Hill, Family Guy, and Bob’s Burgers. It also delivered marque originals including season 2 of The Handmaid’s Tale and the very successful Castle Rock.
The boost in content available through Hulu is also driving increased usage by subscribers. The company says the average time each month spent on Hulu per subscriber increased 20% during 2018. A lot of that time is spent binge watching. Hulu reports that over half of viewing sessions of the top 100 shows were of three or more episodes back-to-back.
Moreover, on-demand viewing appears to be Hulu’s sweet spot. Hulu Live subscribers, who have access to live TV channels and the on-demand catalog, spend half their viewing time watching on-demand. Nielsen says the average adult in Q2 2018 watched 3 hours and 59 minutes of live TV per day and only 32 minutes of time-shifted TV.
Breaking down Hulu’s subscriber base, it’s clear why the company is investing so much in on-demand content.
Subscription revenue remains king at Hulu in 2018
Hulu’s subscriber’s breakdown into three primary groups:
Regular subscribers to Hulu’s basic $7.99 a month on-demand video service
On-demand subscribers that have upgraded to ad-free service for an addition $4 a month
Customers of Hulu’s virtual MVPD service ‘Live’ paying a minimum of $39.99.
As a private company, Hulu does not regularly report on its performance. However, it does provide irregular guidance on progress. In May of 2018, Hulu said it had reached 20 million subscribers, an increase of 3M from the end of 2017. The latest news from the company says it now has 25 million total subscribers, an increase of 8 million from 2017.
The company has never been specific about the number of ad-free subscribers it has. Last year, company insiders said the “vast majority” of people that sign-up watch ads. They have also said it’s about 50-50, between ad-free and ad-watching subscriber. I have estimated the population of ad-free viewers in 2018 at 28%.
Hulu Live launched mid-2017. Just over a year later, in September 2018, the company confirmed that Live had the 1 million subscriber milestone, a gain of 200,000 subscribers over April 2018. Given that the fourth quarter has been strong for Netflix and other providers, Hulu Live likely finished the year with around 1.2 million subscribers.
This data allows nScreenMedia to estimate Hulu earned $2.7 billion in subscriber revenue in 2018. Total revenue was approximately $4.2 billion, up over 50% from 2017. 36% of revenue comes from ads and 54% from on-demand subscribers. Hulu Live is responsible for just 10% of total revenue. The revenue picture helps explain Hulu’s intense focus on on-demand viewing.
Netflix is aggressively ramping up global productions, particularly in Europe and Asia according to a report from Ampere Analysis. Netflix has seen impressive growth in these markets, adding eight and nine million subscribers respectively between 2017 and 2018. Hoping to replicate the success of hits such as Dark from Germany and Sacred Games(pictured) from India, Netflix announced 24 new titles for Europe in Q4 2018 – that’s equivalent to the total for the region in 2017 and represents 22 per cent of the upcoming catalogue. Netflix and the giant Dahl catalogue
Netflix has said it will increase the number of European titles it produces by another third during 2019, having delivered 141 projects including recommissions in 2018. The streaming service also announced a major rights deal with the Roald Dahl Company, with ambitions to produce a vast ‘Dahl Universe’ of children’s titles.
International productions are a double whammy for Netflix
Netflix’s investment in localised foreign language content not only maintains subscriber growth, it helps fight domestic competition by captivating users with high-quality international productions. The success of series such as Elite,Narcos and Sacred Games with both native and English language audiences illustrate how international productions can deliver a double whammy for the service. Thirty-six per cent of Netflix’s upcoming originals will be non-English, and 46 per cent will originate from outside the US and Canada.
Netflix is currently producing new content in 25 countries, with 133 titles originating outside of North America, including its first African title. It is heavily focused on specific markets, with the top two international producers of the UK and India accounting for 32 per cent of international productions, and the top five accounting for 56 per cent. Additionally, it is rapidly increasing production in key markets across Asia and Europe, particularly those that have created hit shows for the streaming service in the past. The UK has added 10 titles so far in Q4 2018, India eight, Germany six, and five each in Japan and Spain.
Central and South America misses out in Q4
Central and South American productions represent 9 per cent of the entire upcoming Netflix slate, but have only accounted for 5 per cent of the slate in the fourth quarter of 2018
So, although the region is home to hits Narcos and 3 per cent, only five titles from South America have been announced for the last quarter of 2018
With Mexico currently considering a similar quota policy to that of the EU, Netflix may need to review its strategy in Latin America in the future
Marketing and ad tech companies are becoming more involved in creative planning and production.
Ad tech vendors compete to out-optimize campaigns by even a fraction of a percent, said McKinsey partner Ed See, who leads the consultancy’s marketing practice.
“But in the past few years, the power of targeting has mostly run its course,” See said, and now the data-driven competition for media budgets is eyeing creative as a way to drive ROI.
The trend directly impacts agency holding companies with legacy creative and digital media. WPP, for instance, recently took two of its storied creative shops, Young & Rubicam and J. Walter Thompson, and merged each with a data-driven agency, VML and Wunderman, respectively, as a way to reinvigorate their production.
“The last few years the industry has been laser-focused on efficiencies,” said Wesley ter Haar, co-founder and COO of the creative agency MediaMonks, which is known for shipping content quickly for dynamic content optimization (DCO) and was acquired late last year by S4 Capital. “What hasn’t happened much until recently is taking feedback from the data and trading and incorporating that back into creative.”
Souped up DCO
For many, the phrase “programmatic creative” conjures up DCO, but adoption has been limited to performance advertisers relying on a handful of vendors to execute advanced retargeting campaigns.
“Now that marketers are writing actual predictive models for creative optimization that feed into programmatic bidders, DCO will gather incredible pace,” said Nikki Mendonça, Accenture Interactive’s global president of operations.
And marketing tech companies are investing more in creative data services.
Adobe in particular has lately made progress connecting creative to media. In addition to integrating its own Creative Cloud and Experience Cloud, the company has struck partnerships with WPP and Accenture that grant content and creative agencies access to media via API integrations.
“In the past year customers have been asking for a much faster pace to share creative content to advertising,” said Elliot Sedegah, Adobe’s group manager for strategy and product marketing.
Connecting the Creative Cloud to programmatic media is a priority for Adobe right now, Sedegah said, because marketers are figuring out how creative design drives data-driven advertising and could bring a new wave of value to Adobe’s creative product suite.
Data-driven creative is mostly hypothetical but is bringing the right people together at earlier stages in the campaign strategy, See said. “It reminds me of the early days of multitouch attribution when brands had a sense that it was something they needed and began implementing and testing it across their partners.”
What does it take to measure creative?
Creative optimization isn’t for the faint of heart.
A brand needs to be committed to significant investments in A/B testing and post-impression surveys and ideally run multitouch attribution and media mix modeling, See said.
“Brands need a concrete creative metric or score in order to optimize in real-time, but if you just do last-touch measurement and some A/B testing it isn’t going to work,” See said.
For DCO to work, the creative strategy agency needs to have “a handshake relationship” with media buyers, ter Haar said. Only brands with strong in-house marketing tech have that feedback loop, he said, but tech vendors or agencies like MediaMonks can start with incremental steps like optimizing creative based on location or time of day to demonstrate ROI and get brands more interested in cloud technology and other investments to back DCO.
The weight loss and health brand WW (recently rebranded from Weight Watchers) began using a creative metric to optimize campaigns last year and found it more effective than optimizing direct engagements like clicks, said Darryl Hall, the company’s digital special projects manager. WW uses Flashtalking’s Creative Performance Index, a product for optimizing based on creative.