The Lowdown: 09.09.2020

M.i. Media's round-up of the latest market, industry and media trends.

In this week's Lowdown - are generational groupings a myth, a shift in the balance of top national concerns and the potential consequences of Apple initiatives. Read on..!


"Passions, habits and temperaments unite us, not generational groupings"

Using TGI data, BBH Labs have looked at the commonalities of generational groupings such as Gen Z, Millennials etc. Their research concludes that grouping together entire generational cohorts into a single target audience is rather ridiculous. Boomers, Gen X and the like turn out to be less cohesive attitudinally than audiences with a common interest or behaviour, whether (dental) flossing or being a fan of crosswords. A myth nicely debunked!

Source: BBH Labs 'Puncturing the Paradox: Group Cohesion and the Generational Myth'

Could Apple be about to take on Google search?

Search Engine Land speculates on indications that Apple could be developing its own search engine. Such a move that would allow Apple greater control of the user experience and showcase content and apps on its mobile devices. Developing their own search engine could help them provide a “federated” or on-device and web search capability, which Google on the iPhone cannot.


Apple owned Safari is the most popular browser in the U.S An Apple developed search engine becoming the default option on Safari would harm Google’s dominant position in a market arguably in need of invigoration from a strong new competitor. However the risk would be significant, not just from Apple's development / engineering costs but also in lost revenue given Google pays it billions for its current position as default search engine on the iPhone.

Health versus economy: the balance of British concern tips

YouGov has been tracking the most important issues facing the country and in it 'Health' has unsurprisingly been top of the agenda since lockdown was imposed nearly six months ago. In the last few weeks there has been a shift however, with the health of our economy beginning to overtake health concerns as the biggest issue the nation is facing. Prior to the pandemic, only 26% felt the economy was the most important issue compared to 56% now.


Keep an eye out for Brexit which having dropped down the priority list during the pandemic, is climbing back up the rankings with 46% now citing this as a major issue.

Source: YouGov: Which of the following do you think are the most important issues facing the country at this time? Please tick up to three.

Could connected TV help save cinemas?

Cinemas are continuing to struggle in the wake of COVID-19 and with big players like Disney fast-tracking films to home cinema, the cinema industry is naturally nervous.

Disney fast-tracks Mulan to TV for a one-off fee of £19.99 in US


In an article for The Drum, the European VP at Samsung Ads, Alex Hole talks up the prospect of an alliance between cinema and connect TV. 'Rather than restrictive policies that limit consumer choice, the new cinematic streaming trend is opening up the landscape for new, innovative ways of building customer relationships and creating commercial partnerships that make the most of the incredible in-home entertainment technologies available on the market.'

In the US, AMC Theaters is working with digital rental services such as Amazon to allow the platforms to stream films by Universal Pictures just 17 days after they are shown on cinema screens with AMC receiving some of the in-home revenue. As with other sectors, will it be a case of cinema needing to adapt and change to flourish in this climate?

Are Expanded Text Ads being relegated?

Search Engine Land's article 'Is Google prepping to phase out ETAs?' highlights the fact that Google’s core ad format, Expanded Text Ads, are no longer showing in select accounts. The interface change encourages users to utilise Responsive Search Ads (RSAs), Google’s automated ad format. This is the latest of many changes by Google to push their automated products and increase the prevalence of machine learning in search engine marketing. In a statement Google confirmed this to be rolling this out as an experiment to improve ‘user experience’, but M.i. Media's biddable experts expect RSA’s to soon become the primary ad format.

Is now the right time to test programmatic OOH?

Global's Mungo Knott talked to Mediatel about the potential of programmatic OOH. With the explosion of digital OOH, media owners and tech providers have been moving the medium towards being accessible programmatically. Global, owner of Dax (the successful digital audio programmatic platform) has signed up several outdoor media owners including Elonex and Admedia to their Dax OOH platform. This seeks to provide a new route to market for performance clients or clients with smaller budgets who have always felt that OOH is not a performance medium.


A single slot on a single location can be purchased using both data and control logic with no upfront commitment and just 60 minutes before the ad is played out. Advertisers can now target, pace and track their campaign performance in real time and then measure the effect of their advertising on audience sentiment, investigation or purchase activity to deliver a clearer picture of investment performance.

Facebook's Audience Network tracking disrupted by Apple's iOS14

Apple's iOS14 will impact on Facebook's ability to track data on its Audience Network. As reported in Campaign, a new security feature will mean that Facebook has to ask users to collect their device ID but Facebook has said it will not collect data on iOS14 users - meaning that their Audience Network will lack the ability to report accurate numbers (such as conversions) for advertisers.

This follows on Apple’s move to protect its users online from 3rd party media owners and advertisers. Apple announced an update to it’s Safari browser which blocks and prevents advertisers from tracking user online activity and behaviour.

Facebook's Audience Network tool will 'lose sight' of Apple's iOS14 users


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