traction. issue #7

FACEBOOK BUYS GIPHY FOR AUD $600M, EXPECTED TO PRIORITISE DATA OVER ADS

facebook and giphy
According to data from Oracle, GIPHY serves more than 7 billion GIFs per day, seen by more than 500 million daily active users who watch more than 11 million hours of GIFs every day .It is this clout that explains why Facebook has made the move to acquire the platform.  Giphy was just beginning to allow advertisers to sponsor GIFs and add video overlays to user-generated GIFs. However Data, more than ad dollars would appear to the motivation. Already, 50% of Giphy’s traffic comes from Facebook apps but now Facebook will know what GIFs people are sharing in all the other apps that use Giphy’s database, including Apple’s iMessage, Snapchat, Telegram, and TikTok.

Under its new ownership, Giphy will live on as part of the Instagram team, with the goal of making it even easier to send GIFs and stickers in Instagram stories and messages. For now, though, Facebook says that things will remain the same.

ROY MORGAN/ANZ CONSUMER CONFIDENCE IMPROVES FOR SEVENTH WEEK RUNNING

Roy Morgan data shows a further increase WOW, up by 2 points to 92.3.  Additionally, now 34% (up 4ppts) of Australians say now is a ‘good time to buy’ major household items, while 40% (up 1ppt) say now is a ‘bad time to buy’. Western Australia has the highest rating this week ahead of Victoria. However the ACT, with zero active Covid cases, is higher than both with Confidence at 98.1 almost at the neutral level of 100.

ANZ head of Australian economics David Plank said the easing of restrictions and “massive” government spending had offset “all the COVID-19-related gloom”. “As a result, ‘future financial conditions’ is now only around 5 per cent below the long-run average, though overall sentiment is closer to 20 per cent below average,” Mr Plank said. “With more good news about the easing of restrictions likely, it seems reasonable to expect further gains in sentiment.”

Source: ANZ/Roy Morgan

MEANWHILE GLOBAL CONFIDENCE REMAINS LOW WITH US SHOWING THE BIGGEST DROP

Although Australia is improving for the seventh week in a row, global sentiment remains low. At 41.3, the Global Consumer Confidence Index in May is down 3.1 points from last month, 7.4 points compared to its pre-pandemic level of January, and two points lower than at any time since its creation in March 2010.

Compared to January, every single country’s National Index is down—by more than 10 points in six countries (the United States, Israel, Mexico, Canada, Australia, and Poland) and by five to 10 points in 12 other countries.

While 11 of the 24 countries surveyed had a National Index higher than 50 back in January, this is now the case in only three countries: China (63.7), Saudi Arabia (61.8), and India (50.7). The only countries where the National Index is higher than its past 10-year average are Hungary (+4.1) China (+3.0), Saudi Arabia (+1.8), and France (+1.1)

Source: Ipsos

LATEST STUDY SHOWS AUSTRALIANS MORE COMFORTABLE WITH RETURN TO WORKPLACE

In a survey of nearly 16,000 people, a majority of people in 9 out of 16 countries say they are comfortable going to their workplace in the coming weeks with those in South Korea (82%), Australia (71%),

China (65%), Russia (63%) and Germany (58%) at the top of the list.

A survey of 10,495 adults has also shown that there are only two countries where people are more comfortable with allowing their children to return to school in the coming weeks – Australia (59%) and South Korea (49%).

Source: Ipsos

TRENDS SHOW A BIG SHIFT TO WHERE AUSTRALIANS SPENT THEIR MONEY IN APRIL

In the same week that the ABS revealed April was the worst retail sales month on record (costing businesses an estimated $5.3bn) following the stockpiling surge in March, new data from Zip shows where Australians were spending their income last month.

Most notable is how Australians are moving. An enormous shift to home offices saw car parks and train carriages empty, and spending on road tolls, petrol and car insurance all fall.

As a result of staying home, Australians spent more locally, supporting neighbourhood bakeries, fruit and vegetable and speciality stores.

From a mobility perspective, the most sought after products on the whole platform were bikes and scooters, jumping nearly 80% in April. Homewares were a close second, followed by computers and skincare.

Source: Zip

MEANWHILE CLICK FRENZY HOPES FOR RETAIL BOOST IN 53 HOUR SALES WINDOW

From $3000 savings off the VW Amarok Core ute to 50% off BOSE headphones, there is something for everyone  in this week’s Click Frenzy sale (which would have ended by the time you read this) The site crashed on Tuesday night but the site appears back up and running today and a number of the huge discounts are still available.

Despite the glitch, the sales campaign said it smashed its previous record for traffic in the first hour, up 70 per cent from last year.

LIVE DRIVE IN CONCERTS COULD BE PART OF THE “NEW NORMAL” IN AUSTRALIA

As referenced in edition #5 of Traction, the live music scene is showing resilience by introducing Drive In experiences – most notably seen in Europe. This week, singer Casey Donovan follows in the footsteps of Keith Urban and performs a series of auto centric concerts starting with a performance in Tempe, the first of what’s expected to be at least 8 locations across VIC and NSW.

“I am so excited to get back on stage in front of actual people and not just a camera phone in my bedroom,” Donovan said. “The coronavirus has taken out an industry that will never back down or give up the fight. The music entertainment industry is continuously trying so hard to keep everyone entertained and distracted from the reality that has now become a new kind of normal.”

AS POP UP CAR PARKS GROW IN RESPONSE TO PUBLIC TRANSPORT DISTANCING RULES

The NSW government is looking at implementing pop-up car parks around employment hubs in the hopes of stopping people from getting the bus or train, citing locations such as Moore Park and Sydney’s CBD.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the government is urging people to walk, drive, or ride a bike to work during peak hours, acknowledging that congestion will be problematic.

‘It is not a message you would give without COVID… we normally encourage people to catch public transport, but given the constraints in the peak [hours] and the fact we are exercising social distancing, we want people to consider different ways to get to work,’ she said.

Tweet of the week: With over 200m downloads a month, big news for one of the most popular podcasts in the world…

AD SPEND FALLS FURTHER THAN EXPECTED IN LATEST DATA , DOWN 42% YOY

Australian advertising  spend booked through media agencies fell 42% in April, the first full month affected by a lockdown to combat the spread of the coronavirus, according to industry insiders.

The fall, the 20th month in a row to record a drop in agency bookings, was  worse than expected. Early numbers had indicated a slide of 30%. 

The fall for April is four times as steep as March when ad spend dropped 10.6% as social distancing began to take effect in the last two weeks of the month.

Automotive spend fell by almost half, restaurants were down almost 48% and gambling more than 65%. Spend by retailers fell by more than 20%.

The only category trending higher was domestic banks, with ad spend 21% higher compared to the same month last year. Meanwhile May advertiser spend is currently tracking at 43% compared to STLY.

Source: SMI

THIS WEEK AMAZON LAUNCHED ITS FIRST BIG BUDGET GAME TO TAKE ON FORTNITE

In the week that Amazon founder Jeff Bezos was predicted  to become the first Trillionaire in the world (by 2026) and the same week that GTA V was released on PC for free, Amazon took on the likes of Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo by launching a free, PC based game called Crucible. After twice being delayed due to Coronavirus, the game launched with mixed reviews and there was an overall feeling that the game may already be outdated with gaming fans. Crucible is a free-to-play PC game in which teams hunt down opponents and creatures on a distant planet. Amazon plans to start selling another game in August. Called New World, it will put players on a mysterious island where they will battle one another and hunt. The company is  also working on The Lord of The Rings game and some unannounced projects. In 2014, the Seattle-based company purchased Twitch, where people stream themselves playing such games as Fortnite and Valorant.

GOOGLE TREND OF THE WEEK : CLICK FRENZY MORE POPULAR THAN RETURN TO WORK

Additionally, Rebel is proving to be the most popular brand searched for as part of the mammoth sale.

Source: Google

ZOOM IS NOW WORTH MORE THAN BIGGEST 7 AIRLINES IN THE WORLD AT AUD $74.4B

As of mid May, Zoom’s market capitalization has skyrocketed to $48.8 billion, despite posting revenues of only $623 million the past year. The airline industry has been on the opposite end of fortune, suffering a huge drop in demand as international restrictions have shuttered airports: The world’s top airlines by revenue have fallen in total value by 62% since the end of January.

Source: Visual Capitalist

THE LONG READ: HOW CHINA IS PLANNING TO CHANGE THEIR TRAVEL HABITS

“While the recovery from COVID-19 will take some time—particularly for travel—it is promising to see early indicators of improving sentiment in China. While international travel will be subject to regulatory restrictions and quarantine challenges for the foreseeable future, domestic options are increasingly perceived as safe. As the “first wave” of travellers begin to post their experiences on social media, this trend may accelerate in China—offering hope for the global travel industry as a whole..”

https://www.mckinsey.com/featured-insights/asia-pacific/hitting-the-road-again-how-chinese-travelers-are-thinking-about-their-first-trip-after-covid-19

COVID-19 VIRAL TREND OF THE WEEK: LAST NORMAL PHOTO CHALLENGE

UK journalist Robyn Vinter has received thousands of replies after asking people to share images of life before lockdown in a trend that has spread quickly across all social media platforms. Vinter’s tweet  showing a picture of his son took on a life of its own, with almost 8,000 replies, revealing people’s desire for a glimpse of life before lockdown. The hashtag #lastnormalphoto began trending this week.

You can see the original photo along with other “normal” shots here

 

Quote of the week

 

“When we asked ourselves why we should do it, seriously, we just wanted to try to put a smile on people’s faces”   

(Powderfinger’s long awaited reunion concert is on May 23rd here)

- Bernard Fanning