Start, Stop, Change: UID 2.0 gets a big vote of confidence

Plus, Snap hit in latest big tech sector layoff and EssenceMediacom picks its post-merger CEO.


P&G pledges its support for UID 2.0

The Trade Desk’s post-cookie identifier UID 2.0 got a major vote of confidence from the world’s biggest advertising spender when P&G expressed its support for the targeting alternative.

UID 2.0 is being developed as a privacy-conscious ad targeting framework that aims to be more compliant with changing data regulations, platform-side settings and general consumer sentiment towards privacy and tracking. A CPG giant like P&G brings major advertiser-side support to UID 2.0, which thus far has gotten most of its support from publishers, media companies, adtech platforms and agencies. In recent months, The Trade Desk has established partnerships with the likes of Amazon Web Services, Disney and Vox Media, as well as U.S. retailers Albertsons and Target. Those built on previous relationships with agency groups Publicis, Omnicom and IPG, as well as adtech companies like Index Exchange and Magnite.


Peroni signs on as TIFF’s official beer sponsor

Italian beer brand Peroni Nastro Azzurro is now the official beer sponsor of the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Grolsch was previously the long-time beer sponsor of TIFF, though it did not return when the festival went virtual in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The partnership will be include OOH billboards across the city, Snapchat filters, most prominently, the House of Peroni Nastro Azzuro experiential activation. The House of Peroni Nastro Azzurro is the beer’s global experience platform, the activation will be an Italian-style open-house where guests can snack on an exclusive menu curated by international celebrity chef David Rocco. In addition, the beer brand will sponsor the private Red Carpet Suite at Roy Thomson Hall, offering exclusive access to star gaze and curated beer cocktails made using Peroni and its 0.0% alcohol-free line.


Google makes DOOH available on Display & Video 360

Digital out-of-home (DOOH) ads will now be available on Display & Video 360, Google’s programmatic platform.

Google was also clear to point out that DOOH ads placed through Display & Video 360 are not personalized and do not use individual identifiers or location data. Rather, ads are targeted based on information like time of day and screen location. The company characterized it as a being a place similar to a traditional out-of-home ad, but with the flexibility and ease of programmatic.

The company will also provide tools to properly measure the impact of DOOH campaigns. Publishers provide Display & Video 360 with an impression multiplier, which estimates the number of people who may have seen an ad. This number gives a relatively accurate idea of an ad’s impact without being based on an individual’s data.



Snap lays off 20% of its workforce and scraps Originals

Snap was the latest big tech company to announce major layoffs this summer, with job losses in the area of 1,200 as it clawed back its investment in several key areas.

The company is restructuring in order to focus on three strategic priorities: community growth, revenue growth and augmented reality. Any projects that don’t directly contribute to these goals will either be discontinued or have their investment “substantially reduced.” That includes ending investment in Snap Originals, the company’s lineup of scripted and documentary series made exclusively for the platform.

Snap will also discontinue investments in Minis and Games, which allowed for interactive and branded extensions in chats, as well as the recently announced Pixy drone camera. The company is also winding down standalone apps Zenly, which allows users to create their own maps based around places they’ve visited; and Voisey, an app meant to facilitate collaborations between musicians, as well as create sounds to be used on Snapchat and compete with the hit-making power of TikTok.


Michael Melling placed on leave from Bell Media after Lisa LaFlamme departure

Michael Melling, head of news at Bell Media, was placed on leave after his role in the firing of Lisa LaFlamme also gave rise to accusations of sexism and ageism.

Melling’s leave was effective pending the results of a workplace review being conducted in response to “various allegations.”

A report by The Globe and Mail that said Melling made negative comments about LaFlamme’s grey hair has gotten the most attention in the weeks following the anchor’s departure, including brands like Dove and Wendy’s launching campaigns in support of women choosing to go grey. But accusations of sexism also came up due to reports that LaFlamme questioned Melling over how resources were being devoted to important stories, such as the war in Ukraine. While some staff have blamed Melling for “a culture of fear” and low newsroom morale due to budget cuts and layoffs, another source told the Toronto Star these issues pre-dated him but were “amplified” when he took over Bell Media’s news operation from Wendy Freeman, who left the company at the end of last year.

While Bell Media has maintained it is committed to respectful work environment, the reports nonetheless led the company to launch a third-party review of its newsroom culture.


Ipsos CEO Gary Bennewies to retire

After 37 years in market research, Gary Bennewies is retiring a as CEO of Ipsos Canada.

Bennewies has had a long and varied career at Ipsos, starting in 1985 with Angus Reid, a research company he helped grow and then sell to Ipsos. He served twice as country manager for Canada and in between as Ipsos’ chief talent officer. In Canada, he was part of the integration of Ipsos Reid, NPD, Tandemar, Camelford Graham, and other companies to ultimately create what Ipsos is in Canada today. In addition to continuing Ipsos’ market research in areas like consumer preference and media consumption, Bennewies’ tenure as CEO also included the launch of Iris, a mobile-first, cross-media measurement tool created in partnership with Vividata that layered digital behaviour data over qualitative and quantitative survey data.

While a formal search for his replacement takes place, Cynthia Pachovski will serve as interim CEO of Ipsos Canada on Sept. 1 while continuing in her current role as president, market strategy and understanding (MSU) in Canada.


Newly merged EssenceMediacom appoints CEO

Urania Agas, who was named CEO of Mediacom Canada in May, is holding on to her role as GroupM completes the merger of EssenceMediacom in Canada.

Agas is tasked with using her experience in operational strategy and resource planning to help the new agency deliver on client excellence. She will also continue to own the agency’s strategic planning, and has been tasked with merging the two existing agencies into a new, unique offering.

Announced in April, the newly merged agency is meant to blend the digital strategy, data, analytics and creative technology DNA of Essence with Mediacom’s scaled multichannel, audience planning and strategic media expertise.

Samsung relaunches its FAST channel with eye towards premium content

Samsung has relaunched its free ad-supported video streaming platform Samsung TV Plus.

The rebranding comes with a new look and user experience, but it is also based around a bulked-up offering, including exclusive content and an expanded VOD library. In addition to strengthening its partnerships with A+E Networks, The E.W. Scripps Company and BBC Studios, the platform enables fans to now watch crime dramas like Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, NCIS and Chicago Fire, as well as a larger news lineup from international and local sources in each market. Samsung also plans to double its VOD library in 2023 with expanded partnerships with studios such as Lionsgate and Vice Media.


Canadian Real Estate Association picks NFA to handle media and creative

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) picked No Fixed Address (NFA) as its joint media and creative AOR.

NFA is mandated to develop and implement a new strategy across all channels for both creative and media, launching with the development of a new brand platform and integrated campaign that is expected in early 2023.

The new platform will emphasize the role realtors play in supporting Canadian home buyers and sellers, as well as build trust between Canadians and the realtors working in their community. CREA represents more than 150,000 realtors and advocates for property owners, buyers and sellers in the country, as well as owning and operating the online property listings platform, which is the sixth-most visited website in Canada.

NFA’s win resulted from a competitive RFP and brings to an end the CREA’s decade-long relationship with Union, which merged with 6Degrees to become DonerNorth late last year. The agency had also typically handled both creative and media duties.