In a testament to our deep understanding of images, GumGum’s image science team has co-authored a paper delving into the technology behind our recent hair color detection campaign for L’Oreal Paris. This image recognition technology was used by L’Oreal to dynamically target product ads based on hair color and hair volume identified in photos of faces for its Ombre campaign. Our image scientists, Cambron Carter and Dan Rosen, presented their “Automated Hair Color Determination” paper in Las Vegas at the Image Processing, Computer Vision conference this past week. The paper presents their approach and results when using the newly developed image recognition technology. If you are interested and/or scientifically inclined, you can read the full text of the paper here.
Recently, we had a chance to touch base with Christine Cook, Ad Operations Manager at our publisher partner, Parent Society, an online lifestyle site for parental-based content. Here is what she had to say about working with GumGum.
When was your site started?
We launched with the Cute Kid in 2006.
How would you characterize the audience you reach (size, demographic composition, ect.)?
We’ve got about 3 million unique visitors per month, consisting mostly of moms ages 25-54 with kids under 10. Average HHI (Household Income) $75,000. Our moms are highly engaged, very social and consider themselves shopping, foodie and health/beauty trendsetters.
How long have you been running GumGum ads?
We launched GumGum ads in February 2014.
What appeals most to you about the in-image advertising format?
Our site is extremely visual, with lots of slideshows and photos so it’s a great way to serve a highly visible and impactful ad unit where we have tons of inventory making for great incremental revenue on an area we weren’t really monetizing before.
Do you have a favorite GumGum ad format or a favorite campaign that has run on your site?
The Maytag campaign was great as it was highly engaging and fun and was super relevant to our users, (what Mom wouldn’t love a new washer/dryer?). The visual was really cool and definitely grabbed the user’s attention.
Have you received any feedback from site visitors about ads from GumGum?
Our visitors seem to be happy with the ads. We’ve never received any complaints about them!
What advice would you give to other publishers thinking about working with GumGum?
I’d say go for it and test it out. There’s really nothing to lose. It’s not something that’s going to run on every single image served, so it’s not intrusive. We’ve had really incredible results so far and GumGum is so easy and pleasant to work with. We’re having a great experience and look forward to keeping the partnership going long term.
Is there anything else you’d like to add about working with GumGum?
Just that it’s been a real pleasure. The GumGum team has made is so painless and seamless, we couldn’t ask for more. They’re always quick to reply when we’ve got questions and have been just super helpful overall.
One of the most popular and fastest growing uses of in-image advertising is for brands to surround the images of major sporting events such as the Olympics, the Super Bowl and now, the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Three World Cup targeted campaigns are currently running on the GumGum platform, officially selling out that inventory through mid July. More details of GumGum’s World Cup efforts were profiled on the cover of this week’s Los Angeles Business Journal.
Why are sporting events are so attractive for brands? One major reason is how they are captured so eloquently online with imagery. Images are a powerful storytelling medium that evoke emotion and viscerally capture the moment of victory or defeat like no other. Another reason is how people interact and engage around sporting events. Few other cultural activities inspire community and photo sharing the way sports do. Moreover, brands want to be associated with positive and consistent event platforms, which GumGum helps extend from the realm of live events and television onto the Internet through images.
This event is similar to high profile entertainment occasions such as the Academy Awards. The 86th Academy Awards, held in February, reached 40 million viewers and attracted up to $1.9 billion for 30 second advertising spots during the show. The FIFA World Cup is expected to attract more than 3.2 billion people during its five week duration. Both of these events capture a large online audience as well. Placing relevant World Cup advertisements on images and articles pertaining to the games allows brands to successfully reach their intended audience.
GumGum’s image recognition technology has gotten a lot of attention lately, based on new hair color and volume detection features developed by our image scientists, Daniel Rosen and Cambron Carter. L’Oreal Paris’s Feria and Preference Ombre campaigns are among the first to apply this innovation, which connects image recognition to online ad serving. Ad Age highlighted the L’Oreal campaign, which targeted the right product ad according to the color of hair identified in the photos.
GumGum isn’t only getting attention from Ad Age. These personal and relevant placements allow consumers to better “recognize and respond to this type of advertisement,” according to Mobile Marketer. Marketing Dive said, “there is certainly a world of potential for the type of technology GumGum has developed.” Business Week calls this method, “an important shift for online advertising.”
Yesterday the Media Rating Council published its long-awaited Viewable Ad Impression Measurement Guidelines and lifted its “advisory” against transacting business on the basis of its new viewable impression standard. This is a great first step in the march toward attracting more brand budgets to digital and the ambitious long-term agenda of the industry’s Making Measurement Make Sense (3MS) initiative. But it’s not enough.
There’s a big difference between impressions that are “viewable” and those that are “seen.” After all, how much of an impression can a banner ad on the periphery of a page really make if only half of its pixels are in view for one second? It’s a fine technical standard, but not one that’s likely to move the needle on brand metrics.
As our COO Phil Schraeder explains in an op-ed piece in AdAge today, despite industry consensus on a new viewable impression standard, our banner blindness epidemic is likely to continue.
According to this infographic published by eye tracking firm Sticky, about half of all ads that are technically viewable aren’t actually seen. But a study commissioned by GumGum beat those benchmarks, as Sticky found in-image ads drew significantly more attention than pages containing only standard banner ads. No wonder there is so much excitement around the promise of native advertising. In fact, in its In-image Advertising Primer published last month, the IAB said it will now include in-image advertising to its Native Advertising Playbook.
It’s fantastic that a green light has been given to transact on viewable display impressions, and we’re ready. In December, GumGum announced the MRC-certified viewable impression measurement capabilities of DoubleVerify would be integrated directly into our platform.
At GumGum, we’re ready for the brave new world of viewable impressions – in fact, we think ours are the most viewable display units available on the market today. But we’re going beyond just giving advertisers an assurance that we delivered the impressions they ordered. We’re focused on helping our agency partners connect with consumers in ways that are known to be seen, interacted with and will truly move the needle on the engagement metrics marketers care about most.
We’re proud to announce the release of the “In-image Advertising Primer” by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, which we co-authored alongside other members of its Image-Based Advertising Working Group. The first publication of its kind, the report details the benefits images hold for brand advertisers, publishers and consumers alike.
The announcement drew attention from some of our favorite advertising trade publications, including Mediapost and ClickZ. We’d especially like to thank Carl Kalapesi at the IAB for spearheading this effort, along with other members of the IAB Image-Based Advertising Working Group. Also, special thanks to our marketing colleagues Susan Chaika at Nielsen and Rachel Conforti at DoubleVerify.
The 86th Academy Awards on Sunday will feature big-name advertisers seeking to associate with the glitz and glamour of the red carpet. Pepsi, GM, JC Penny and American Express are just a few of the brands that will pay up to $1.9 million per 30-second spot to reach the approximately 40 million viewers who tune in to the program on ABC.
We’re pleased to report that all of GumGum’s 2014 Oscar-targeted in-image advertising inventory has sold out! As movie fans read about the nominated films and peruse celebrity photos across sites like The Hollywood Reporter, Hollywood.com, OK Magazine and Wetpaint, the in-image campaigns of those enterprising brands will capture the attention of entertainment fans and create a unique brand association with Oscar like no other form of advertising can.
No longer does a brand’s sponsorship need to remain limited to a fixed broadcast window on the single night of an awards telecast. From the moment morning nominations are announced to when the after parties are over, millions of photos are generated as a result of Oscar, and create a valuable advertising opportunity through the use of in-image advertising.
Brands with limited budgets can use in-image advertising as a proxy for sponsorship of all kinds, most notably televised sporting events and award programs. Those that are television sponsors have used in-image ads to extend their broadcast buy, creating deeper engagement as fans pour over and share images in the days preceding and following a televised event.
Just as search volume for the nominated films and actors increase in the days leading up to an awards program, in-image advertising extends the “event horizon” beyond the broadcast itself to the days, and sometimes weeks, surrounding any major television event.
Deploying an in-image advertising campaign in the days surrounding an awards broadcast can be achieved for a fraction of the cost of television, with comparable scale and higher frequency than would be feasible during a single broadcast. And with the highest amount of image engagement occurring on the day after the show, in-image advertising gives brands a new opportunity to have the last impression long after the statues have been handed out in Hollywood.
An analysis of image traffic across the GumGum platform in the days before and after the Oscars in recent years shows both impressions and click-through rates rose steadily in the days prior to the broadcast and spiked on the day immediately following each event. The pattern was also consistent for the Golden Globes and the Grammys.
Today marks a first for GumGum, as our full-page ad appears on pg. 13 of the annual Digital Issue in Advertising Age’s print magazine.
This is the start of a year-long program with AdAge, designed to raise awareness of GumGum among agencies, brands and the digital advertising industry.
Kudos to our in-house design team for bringing the power of images and the benefit of in-image advertising to life in the industry’s most revered publication.
Have you seen AdAge’s latest Digital Issue, yet? Grab a copy at your nearest newsstand and share your thoughts on our recent print ad by commenting below.
We’re proud of our publisher partners and regularly feature the sites we think do an outstanding job of incorporating in-image and in-screen advertising into their sites. One of our newest publishers, Gadget Review is an an online news and reviews site for all things technology, gadget devices and auto-related content with millions of image impressions per month.
Launched in 2005, the site reaches young men who love to get the latest scoop on the greatest tech gadgets out in the market. Its use of social media publishing and distributing platform helps build and engage audiences that are highly attractive to advertisers. We spoke with Gadget Review’s Managing Director, Christen da Costa, to get his thoughts on the in-image advertising category and working with GumGum.
As we conclude a truly remarkable year, we’d like to express our sincerest gratitude to the many clients, partners, advisors and friends who made 2013 so unforgettable.
We’re especially proud of these accomplishments:
- Increasing revenue by 250% and achieving profitability
- Doubling our headcount to 50 employees in six U.S. offices
- Expanding our global reach to more than 300M uniques (Quantcast) and US reach to 70M uniques (comScore)
- Delivering hundreds of campaigns for heavyweight brands like LG, Canon, AT&T, Cadillac, Lifetime, The CW, Maybelline, Coca-Cola, Toyota, AMC, Macy’s, BMW and Toshiba
- Adding major publisher partners, including TheDailyBeast.com, HollywoodReporter.com, Shape, OK!, Spanish Broadcasting System, Billboard, Wetpaint and Internet Brands
- Launching the Canvas image take-over unit
- Launching our patent-pending image classification system
- Launching In-Screen Ads, opening up mobile and non-image inventory
- Winning the Patrick Soon-Shiong Innovation Award and being named a finalist in the Digiday Publishing and iMedia ASPY Awards
As we enter 2014, we’re excited to expand upon these successes. We look forward to even more growth as we welcome new members to our team and continue to demonstrate our superior brand performance to advertisers and revenue-generating capabilities to publishers.
On behalf of the entire GumGum team, we wish you a very Happy New Year. May 2014 usher in prosperity and success to us all!