Super Bowl Blackout Mystery Solved

Goldman & Associates Blog

Super Bowl Blackout Mystery Solved

In the first half of the Super Bowl game, the screen went black for about 15 seconds. For those watching, it was a disconcerting experience with everyone wondering whether their cable, TV or internet had gone out. Perhaps some figured a hack by North Korea or Russia. The experience was shared by even those watching the game on NBC’s app and website livestream. It turns out that the fault was due to NBC equipment failure. In the end, no harm or foul, but we’re surprised there has been so little notice in the news media. However, The Verge did cover the story.

Super Bowl Ads by the Numbers

Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal explains why companies spend so much on Super Bowl ads. With a $5 million average price for thirty seconds of airtime, it’s a hefty amount of money for even the largest companies to invest. That doesn’t include the production costs which considerably increase the overall investment. The bottom line is no other medium reaches such a large audience at one time. THE WSJ’s graphics found here make the argument simple and clear.

Number of Shared Households Grows

It used to be that many Millennials were moving back into their parents’ homes during the Great Recession. Today, new research from Pew Research Center shows that many parents are moving into households of their adult children or other relatives. The number of parents moving into their children’s home doubled from 7% in 1995 to 14% today. All together, in 2017 nearly 32 million households “shared ‘an extra adult’ who is not a household head” but is a relative. Pew Research believes the reasons vary and are more complex than just being in response to increasing housing costs and stagnant incomes.

Why Diversity Programs Often Fail

Google spent $265 million to implement a diversity program that many agree was unsuccessful. Throwing money at the problem isn’t the answer according to Chief Executive magazine. Where success is often achieved, the process is led by the chief executive. According to the article, diversity begins when the chief executive uses non-linear thinking to change the company’s dynamics. You can learn more about how this process works here. When successful, the research shows that diversity strongly improves a company’s bottom line.

Facebook Prioritizes Local News Content

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, has been traveling the United States in an effort to learn more about how local communities around the country think about issues affecting daily life. According to his own Facebook page, this process educated him on the importance of local news and led him to make local news content a priority in user feeds. Tech Crunch explains how the news feed will work to present local news content. This could be of great benefit to local news media struggling to stay profitable, but the jury is still out on how this will work.

Social Media and Fitness App Tracking

Two big issues have made the news in the last few days focused on social media and fitness app tracking. Both involve the use of data gathered by companies from people using their devises or social media platforms. Fitness trackers like Fitbit collect data about where people use the product while Facebook users provide information to help the company sell advertising. It seems the popularity of these fitness products has revealed details about secret United States military bases. In Facebook’s case, it is trying to get in front of a new European privacy laws (GDPR) by revamping its privacy settings to make it easier for European users to opt out of the company tracking them. Facebook could receive stiff fines from European regulators without the change. Both are signs that data tracking is a growing issue for companies that rely on its collection for their business model. CNBC has the story about Facebook’s problems and CBS News has the story about revealing secret military bases by tracking user information in a fitness app.

Cord-Cutting Clearly Accelerating

Cord-cutting is really an oxymoron since “cord-cutters” generally need a cable cord to stream shows. The latest earning report from Comcast shows clearly how fast people are cord-cutting. In the last quarter, the company lost 33,000 pay-TV subscribers, a substantial number. But here is the interesting part of the story, they gained 350,000 high-speed Internet subscribers during the same period. That pace is an increase from earlier this past year. Though cable companies bemoan the lost pay-TV subscribers, the increase in high-speed Internet subscribers is more than offsetting the loss. In fact, the financial results from Comcast show the company is doing quite well. Fast Company has the story that illustrates this trend.

Influencers on Instagram Doubled in 2017

Using data from Klear, eMarketer shows how the number of influencers on Instagram doubled from 2016 to 2017. In 2017, there were roughly 1.5 million Influencer posts on the social media site worldwide. Interestingly, 84% of the influencers are female according to the research. If you want to learn more about how this research was developed and see a clear infographic of the results, go to the link here.

When the Reviewer Gets a Negative Review

We now live in a world of online reviews. A negative review can be harsh and cause a business to greatly suffer. But what is the standard for writing a negative review beyond someone’s opinion. Everyone doesn’t necessarily have the same point of view. A reporter for the New York Times examines this issue in a very personal way. After writing what she considered a nice Airbnb review of a home where she stayed with her family, she found that she received a negative review from the owner of the property. It became personal and exasperating. There is advise in the article provided by Paul Levinson, professor of media studies at Fordham University and the author of “New New Media,” about what the article’s author shouldn’t have done after she received the negative review.

Ambush Marketing and Major Sports Events

It seems more than ever that ambush marketing is becoming a big problem for major sports events. Billions of dollars are being paid by top companies for event sponsorships and – surprisingly – they expect to get their money’s worth without some upstart stealing the limelight. Cities, states and countries are enacting new laws to try and slow the erosion caused by ambush marketing. Columbus First Business has an article about Columbus, Ohio’s efforts to create a ‘safe zone’ for The NCAA Women’s Final Four sponsors within the city’s downtown. Columbus is not alone according to story. There are also new social media posting rules for athletes competing in the 2018 Winter Olympics. In the end, new technology and clever ambush marketing efforts by companies will likely not be fully stopped in this arms race for media attention.