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Weekly Digital Marketing Updates (April 29 – May 5)

The week of April 29 to May 5 was busy with digital marketing updates. Here’s a summary of the top stories your Clicademist collected for your must-know updates.

Airbnb’s Evolution: Airbnb is expanding its offerings beyond traditional accommodations, emphasising memorable experiences, and strategically positioning itself for growth in various markets. Beyond overnight stays, Airbnb now offers unique experiences through its ‘Icons’ initiative, including stays in famous movie houses and with celebrities. Since 2021, Airbnb has focused on brand building rather than performance marketing. The company is targeting new markets, with India showing a 30% year-on-year growth.

Direct Bookings Focus of Booking Holdings: Booking Holdings, the parent company of,, and Open Table, is shifting its strategy to prioritise direct bookings over those generated through paid marketing channels. The company reported that direct bookings grew faster than those from paid channels in the quarter ending 31 March. CEO Glenn Fogel highlighted the Genius loyalty program and the “connected trip” feature as key drivers for this growth, aiming to enhance customer experience and encourage frequent direct bookings.

Web3 Marketing Innovation: Amidst the debate on ‘engagement farming’ sparked by Elon Musk’s policy changes on X, the Web3 marketing platform Midle introduces an AI-driven anti-bot system to ensure authentic user interactions1. Midle’s solution counters the bot issue in digital marketing by verifying wallet addresses and user behaviour, offering a proof-of-humanity feature to enhance campaign security2. The platform caters to brands of all sizes, enabling them to manage tasks across social media and blockchain networks efficiently. With upcoming features like segmentation and prediction, Midle aims to revolutionize Web3 marketing by focusing on data-driven strategies and real engagements.

Google’s Cookie Deprecation Delay Google has postponed the deprecation of third-party cookies, causing a stir in the advertising technology industry. The delay of the Privacy Sandbox initiative has led to concerns about whether marketers and publishers will effectively use the additional time to adapt to the new advertising framework or simply procrastinate. The article highlights the uncertainty and potential for wasted time despite the opportunity to embrace a significant shift in digital advertising practices.

Tiger Woods Launches Sun Day Red Apparel: Golf legend Tiger Woods has debuted his new clothing line, Sun Day Red, which is available for purchase starting the 1st of May 2024. The brand’s launch strategy relies heavily on earned media and digital marketing, leveraging Woods’ substantial personal brand without extensive promotional activities. Jon Springer, reporting on sports and beverage marketing, notes the ‘athluxury’ DTC brand’s approach to marketing and its focus on the sports marketing and retail e-commerce sectors. The article also mentions an upcoming live event on May 8 for a Gen Z roundtable on media habits.

Google Cloud has recently launched a new Web3 blockchain developer portal, sparking a mixed response from the cryptocurrency community. While some, like Mitroplus labs founder Ivaibi Festo, have praised the portal as a comprehensive resource, others have criticized the lack of native support for Bitcoin and Lightning, notably Unchained’s VP Phil Geiger. The portal offers datasets, guides for creating NFTs, and resources for decentralized app deployment on Ethereum test nets. This move is part of Google’s ongoing efforts to integrate Web3 features, including wallet balance searches for various blockchains and updated advertising policies for crypto products. Despite the controversy, Google continues to strengthen its position in the Web3 ecosystem through partnerships and data analytics enhancements.

Open-Source AI in Marketing: An Adage article discusses a growing trend where developers publish open-source AI models, providing marketers with opportunities for more customization and cost savings. It highlights the shift from proprietary AI technology, which is often a “black box” to users, to a more transparent approach where the underlying code is freely available1. This movement is gaining traction among tech-savvy marketers who are exploring the potential benefits of open-source AI in their strategies.

Gannett’s Digital Ad Business Gets A Boost: Gannett, the media giant operating the USA Today Network and numerous local newspapers, has reported a 4th consecutive quarter of growth in Q1 2024, with digital revenue hitting $277 million, a 2.9% increase yearly. The company’s digital business now accounts for 42.1% of its total revenue, marking an all-time high1. This growth is attributed to strategic partnerships with non-news publishers like Home Solutions and Group, which boosted Q1 page views by 10%2. Gannett is also expanding its digital marketing solutions and programmatic business while navigating challenges in the news industry posed by platforms like Google, which has been using AI to surface news directly in search results, impacting traffic to news sites. The company is actively involved in legal and legislative efforts to protect news publishers’ interests.

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