Size Matters for Online Ads

first_imgFor any publisher, online and mobile are rapidly gaining on their print magazine counterparts in terms of significance. The Internet already accounts for 41 percent of people’s media consumption, according to the Online Publishers Association (OPA), and that will only continue to grow. And advertising has become a big part of the overall online experience.The important factors in today’s ad realm are context—where an ad sits within the content layout—size and placement. While banner ads are widely used and still considered effective, ads that incorporate interactivity and capture the experience of the Internet seem to perform best.“Ad units with deep levels of engagement work well,” says Matthew Yorke, president of IDG Strategic Marketing Services. “This means that I can take several actions within the ad units before being forced off the publisher site to the advertiser site.”For example, HBO had a successful online ad campaign promoting its “Big Love” drama series which ran on Reed Business Information’s sites. It used flip art where the user would have to click on something to figure out who the three different characters of the show were. “It used online as a more interactive opportunity as opposed to a flat experience,” says Karthik Krishnan, vice president of interactive media and sales management for Reed. “You don’t want to just push information, but involve the user. It gives insight into how the person is thinking.” Krishnan sees that as an area where most advertisers are not effectively using the Internet today. Video is also becoming an important online advertising tool. For example, the U.K. unit of Reed did a campaign for European carmaker Skoda for its new Octavia model. The ad featured a 30-second video online that talked about the Skoda Octavia. When users finished watching the ad, people could sign up for a test drive. Krishnan says about 125 people signed up for the test drive and out of that group, about 25 purchased the car.Bigger is BetterNo matter what type of online ad, today’s mantra has become “bigger is better,” according to research by the OPA. In June, the organization launched three new ad formats that are larger than typical online ads. They include: the Pushdown ad unit: 970 pixels wide by 418 pixels tall, it opens to display the ad and then after seven seconds, it rolls up to 970 pixels wide x 66 tall; the Fixed Panel: 336 pixels wide by 700 tall, it remains constant as user scrolls to top and bottom of page and the XXL Box: 468 pixels wide by 648 pixels tall, it opens for seven seconds to 936 pixels wide by 648 tall.“Based on these dimensions, these ads are twice as big as ads usually found on the Web,” Krishnan says. Reed implemented the Pushdown ad model with Verizon. The publisher may consider trying the other two new models when it revamps some of its Web sites, Krishnan says.One area that isn’t performing very well are display ads, according to Krishnan. “Overall, display advertising is the weakest link in advertising,” he says, noting that it’s where the b-to-b sector spends the maximum amount of ad money. “Display advertising has a significant role to play in a marketer’s arsenal, and we can’t discount that. But the thing for us publishers is to figure out the best way to make it work. What tactics are we using today? We’re switching to larger ads and psycho-graphic profile also enhances the value of these opportunities.” Platform-Specific AdsAds should be tailored to the media platform for optimal performance. In most cases, mobile devices only show one ad at a time. The large-image banner—216 x 36 pixels—works well because it flushes out the whole page and occupies the entire width on a Blackberry screen, for example, which is great for branding, Krishnan says. But don’t expect people to click on ads on a mobile device, he warns.Mobile advertising can also incorporate location-based functionality. Publishers can use SMS or text messaging as marketing tools as well, Yorke says.As for digital magazines, the advertising is typically a scanned print ad and not a specific ad unit, Krishnan says. He notes that full-page ads and spreads perform better in digital mags. Ad formats differ depending on the campaign. Kevin Gentzel, president and group publisher of Forbes Media, breaks advertising into two different sectors: “demand creation” and “demand fulfillment.” Demand creation seeks to increase awareness, preference and purchase intent for brands, Gentzel says. “These campaigns require a balance of reach and frequency against an audience target, enhanced by thematically appropriate and contextually relevant content. Demand fulfillment is all about direct response where context is less important and lower frequency is better.”The majority of all digital advertising is now focused on transactional-based performance metrics, whether it be clicks, leads or direct sales, Gentzel says. “Direct response advertising on the Web has been, as we know, overly focused on the ‘click’ metric, despite the fact that research shows it to be of dubious value. In fact, recent research from comScore and Starcom point to the fact that not only are ‘click’ metrics down by 30 percent over the past year, but that just 8 percent of the Internet population accounts for 85 percent of all clicks.”Krishnan uses different metrics for different objectives. For branding campaigns, reach is the most important factor because you’re going after a broad audience. With a transaction campaign—a traffic-driver—click-throughs are important, he says. Creative will automatically change to have a strong call-to-action component. With lead-gen, click-to-conversion is most important.Lead generation works very well with text links and sponsored posts and can also work well as part of a bigger rich media ad unit, such as an expandable interactive marketing unit (IMU), Yorke says. Banner performance is steady and strong creative and video can positively impact click-through rates, he says.The one area where IDG is seeing high engagement is around social ads, also known as “earned media,” whereby a user can comment within an ad unit and then share it with their social graph. In May, IDG launched IDG Amplify with a set of ad products that offer just this. “It plays to the age-old desire to share but also that we trust information from friends/colleagues more than from advertisers,” Yorke says.  “We’re seeing high engagement around social ads—45 second dwell/interaction time with an ad unit before the click.”The cost of different online ads varies based on the brand, purpose and the amount of bells and whistles. For retail, CPMs average about $35 for Reed, but if the ad targets a high-end audience, say the CEO of Comcast, the rates can run as high as $100 CPM. Rich media requires a 20 percent premium, as does any kind of targeting, from geo-targeting to content targeting.For Forbes, CPMs range from $8 for its owned and operated site network ads to $100 for its “welcome ad,” Gentzel says. The “welcome ad” is a full-screen ad coupled with Forbes’ thought-of-the-day content served once to every visitor. That particular ad happens to have extraordinarily high click-through rates, he adds.last_img read more

2020 MercedesBenz CLA says so long to entry level with 3000plus price

first_imgNot so entry-level anymore. Mercedes-Benz When the Mercedes-Benz CLA first arrived in the US, it marked a big shift for the German luxury brand. The C-Class was no longer the gateway model and the CLA was priced aggressively to start just around $30,000. That figure is long gone, friends.For 2020, Mercedes-Benz said in a Thursday release that the CLA will cost $37,645 after a $995 destination charge. For starters, that’s almost $7,000 more than what the first CLA cost originally. Secondly, that’s a pretty hefty price bump over the 2019 model. Buyers will fork over $3,550 more for the new model. Add all-wheel drive and buyers will flirt with $40,000 for a base model at $39,645.To be fair, the CLA does differentiate itself from the brand’s new entry-level model, the A-Class. For starters, the CLA comes with a 2.0-liter turbo-4 engine that musters 221 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. In contrast, the A-Class’s 2.0-liter turbo-4 makes just 188 hp and 221 pound-feet of torque. The CLA is also larger than before and boasts that swankier coupe-like look that’s all the rage these days.Standard equipment for all CLA models includes 18-inch wheels, LED headlights and taillights, a 7-inch digital instrument cluster and a matching 7-inch touchscreen for infotainment purposes. The brand’s latest infotainment system, MBUX, is also on board with its “Hey Mercedes” command ready to answer your questions and assist. Additional driver assistance packages and premium goodies will increase the CLA’s price well past $40,000 before other fees and taxes.Is all of it too pedestrian, perhaps? There will also be Mercedes-AMG models to heat things up. The CLA35 and CLA45 models will boast 302 hp and nearly 400 hp, respectively.  Prices aren’t available for the sportier of CLAs, but expect healthy premiums over the standard car. Buyers will find the regular CLA arriving at dealers this fall. 0 2019 Cadillac Escalade review: Large, luxurious and long in the tooth More From Roadshow Preview • 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 first drive: Now actually feels like a premium car Post a comment The 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA250 is more design-focused than ever Mercedes-Benz Luxury cars Sedans 2019 Mercedes-Benz S560 Coupe review: Still the luxury benchmark 38 Photos 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLE450 review: More luxurious and techy than ever Share your voice Now playing: Watch this: Tags 2019 Mercedes-Benz A220: The entry-level luxury sedan… More about 2020 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class 6:01 Mercedes-Benzlast_img read more

Venezuelas military backs Maduro

first_imgDemonstrators clash with police during a protest against Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro`s government in Caracas, Venezuela on 23 January 2019. Reuters File PhotoVenezuela’s powerful military threw its weight behind president Nicolas Maduro on Thursday as the US-backed opposition leader Juan Guaido pressed a direct challenge to his authority, and the fate of the crisis-wracked country hung in the balance.As the death toll from days of street protests jumped to 26, a defiant Maduro announced the closure of Venezuela’s embassy and consulates in the United States, a day after president Donald Trump’s administration declared his regime “illegitimate.”The oil-rich but economically devastated country was plunged into uncertainty Wednesday when Guaido, the 35-year-old head of the National Assembly, proclaimed himself “acting president” — earning swift endorsement from Washington and a dozen regional powers including Brazil, Argentina and Colombia.Maduro’s re-election last year was contested by the opposition, and criticised internationally — but the socialist leader has until now retained the loyalty of the powerful military, whose response was being keenly watched.Flanked by military top brass, Defence minister Vladimir Padrino, himself a general, declared the 56-year-old Maduro “the legitimate president” — and vowed to defend his authority against an attempted “coup d’etat.”Following Padrino’s lead, eight generals in turn reiterated their “absolute loyalty and subordination” to the socialist leader in messages carried on state television.And the Supreme Court — made up of regime loyalists — doubled down by reaffirming its allegiance to Maduro’s “legitimate authority.””A coup is brewing in Venezuela with the consent of foreign governments,” charged the court’s president Maikel Moreno.’Debate is done’In a Skype interview with Univision, Guaido said he did not rule out including Maduro in an amnesty he is offering for military and civilian officials who lead a transition in Venezuela. But he said such an option would have to be evaluated because, he said, Maduro is responsible for the death of protesters.Analysts at the Eurasia Group consultancy noted that while international recognition of Guaido as Venezuela’s interim president cemented his position as the main opposition leader, he had failed to win over senior elements of the military.In that light, “Maduro’s fall does not appear imminent,” the analysts wrote.In Washington, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo kept up the pressure on the leftist leader, as the United States called for an emergency UN Security Council meeting on the crisis.”The time for debate is done. The regime of former president Nicolas Maduro is illegitimate,” Pompeo said in a speech to the Organization of American States, warning him against the use of force towards demonstrators.A furious Maduro on Wednesday issued US diplomats a 72-hour deadline to leave the country, and on Thursday said he was recalling all Venezuelan diplomats from the United States.The State Department meanwhile ordered its non-emergency staff to leave Venezuela but refused to comply with a full expulsion, saying it would maintain diplomatic ties with “the government of interim president Guaido.”Trump meanwhile has openly mused about military intervention in Venezuela, saying “all options are on the table,” and analysts suggest he could consider further economic sanctions against the country, a third of whose oil production goes to the US.The Republican president has found rare support from the Democratic Party over Venezuela, but one prominent dissenting voice was independent Senator Bernie Sanders.”We must learn the lessons of the past and not be in the business of regime change or supporting coups — as we have in Chile, Guatemala, Brazil and the Dominican Republic,” the 2016 presidential hopeful said in a statement, while also condemning Venezuela’s crackdown on protesters.Outside South America, the United States has been joined by Canada and Britain in recognising Guaido as Venezuela’s interim leader, while France has also rejected Maduro’s legitimacy.Security forces run after a demonstrator during a protest of opposition supporters against Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro`s government in Caracas, Venezuela on 23 January 2019. Reuters File PhotoBut both Russia and China and have thrown their weight behind the embattled Maduro.Russian president Vladimir Putin called Maduro to express support, charging that the “crisis has been provoked from the outside.”China, Venezuela’s main creditor, opposed “interference in Venezuelan affairs by external forces.”Maduro has retained the support of Mexico, Cuba and Bolivia, all led by leftist governments.Military support keyMaduro has presided over a deepening economic crisis that has left the country facing shortages of basic necessities such as food and medicine.Some 2.3 million people have fled the country since 2015, according to the United Nations. Inflation is forecast to hit 10 million percent this year.Guaido’s bold move capped three days of high tension that began Monday when a group of soldiers took over a command post in the capital Caracas and rose up against Maduro.That uprising was quickly quashed and officials said 27 people were arrested but it set off a wave of smaller protests that were met by security forces using tear gas and rubber bullets.Wednesday then saw the first mass street protests in Venezuela since a crackdown on anti-government protests between April and July 2017 claimed the lives of 125 people.Leading figures around the world have appealed for calm to avoid a repeat of the bloodshed — as a Caracas-based NGO, the Social Conflict Observatory, said 26 people had been killed since this week’s protests began four days ago.Speaking at the World Youth Day in Panama, Pope Francis’s spokesman said he was “praying for the victims and for all the people of Venezuela.”last_img

Decoding early Martian weather Analyzing carbonate minerals in meteorite Allan Hills 84001

first_img Citation: Decoding early Martian weather: Analyzing carbonate minerals in meteorite Allan Hills 84001 (2011, October 24) retrieved 18 August 2019 from More information: Carbonates in the Martian meteorite Allan Hills 84001 formed at 18 ± 4 °C in a near-surface aqueous environment, Published online before print October 3, 2011, PNAS October 11, 2011 vol. 108 no. 41 16895-16899, doi:10.1073/pnas.1109444108 Explore further Led by Itay Halevy (currently at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel), along with Woodward W. Fischer and John M. Eiler, the research team faced a number of challenges. “The main challenge,” Halevy says, “was making an isotope clumping measurement on a precious, low-carbonate-abundance material.” Isotope clumping in carbonates denotes the tendency of heavy carbon and oxygen isotopes in carbonates (and in CO2) to bond with each other rather than with the elements’ lighter isotopes. This temperature-dependent tendency is the basis of multiply substituted (clumped) isotope thermometry. Clumped isotope thermometry is based on the tendency of heavy carbon and oxygen isotopes to bond with each other rather than with the lighter isotopes of these elements in a way that is effectively independent of the material’s isotopic composition: However abundant or rare the heavy isotopes are in a sample, they will still prefer to form bonds with each other, and this preference will always depend on temperature – and the colder it is, the higher the preference. “Other isotopic thermometers are based on the temperature dependence of the difference in chemical or isotopic composition between the aqueous solution and the carbonates that precipitate from it,” notes Halevy, “so to derive temperature one must know the chemical or isotopic composition of both the carbonates and the parent fluid. Unfortunately, it is impossible to know the composition of ancient fluids and so one must make some assumptions about their composition. Any temperature determined in this way is always dependent on these assumptions.” Clumped isotope thermometry avoids this because no matter how abundant the heavy isotopes are, they will always tend to bond in a temperature-dependent way.“The clumping measurement, developed by John Eiler and his students and postdocs at Caltech over the last seven to eight years, is itself challenging to make,” Halevy continues. The natural abundance of C-O clumps is only a few tens parts-per-million, which means you have to measure a lot of material to get a precise and accurate result – and we didn’t have a lot of material. ALH84001 is a 4-billion-year-old, originally 2 kg Martian rock; we had 5.5 grams, using 3 grams in the analysis – and of these 3 grams, only about 1% was carbonate minerals.” This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. While that was an appreciable amount of carbonate for a single clumping measurement, the researchers wanted to cut the gas into three measurements to get an internal stratigraphy (the study of strata, or layers) of the carbonate concretions. “To this,” Halevy comments, “add the increased risk of sample contamination associated with long acid digestion times – up to 12 hours for the more recalcitrant magnesium-rich carbonates – and you have the makings of an analytical challenge.”To overcome the low abundance of carbonate, the team performed a microvolume measurement. “Basically,” Halevy explains, “we froze the sample of CO2 gas released from the carbonates by acid digestion into a very small volume, shut it off from a lot of dead volume in the plumbing of the mass spectrometer, and thawed it in the small volume alone. The high pressure achieved by compressing the gas into a small volume allowed us to make the measurement under conditions that are close to the way the clumping measurement is typically made. Still, there are some important differences from a typical clumping measurement, so it took a lot of experimentation to map how the microvolume affected the results and to figure out ways to minimize these effects – or at least account for them.” As for the increased risk of contamination, the team performed extra purification steps to remove miscellaneous contaminants and again experimented extensively to convince themselves that the measurement was in no way compromised by the long reaction times.There are other innovations that could be applied to the protocol, mainly having to do with instrument improvements. “As mass spectrometers become more sensitive and are able to better differentiate between molecules of slightly differing mass,” Halevy explains, “low sample abundance and contamination will cease to be issues. A clumping measurement would be easier to make on small amounts of sample and any contaminations would be easily distinguishable from the CO2 molecules of interest. This would increase confidence in the measured temperature. “Halevy also points out that they developed the aquifer hypothesis on the basis of isotopic variability within the carbonate concretions and in light of the new insight that the temperature hovered around 20 °C. “Basically, given the temperature, the isotopic variability can only be explained by the drying-out of an aqueous reservoir that did not exchange CO2 freely with the atmosphere. The only environment we could come up with that meets these requirements is a subsurface aquifer. Increased confidence in the measured temperature would translate into increased confidence in this model for the formation environment of the carbonates.”Regarding computer modeling, Halevy says that while computer models are important for developing a quantitative understanding of analytical results, such as those presented in the paper, they can’t replace the measurements. “The measurements provide the physical constraints,” Halevy states, “and we can then use computer simulation to try and tease out information about process and environment.” In the team’s study, for example, measurements yielded the temperature and isotopic composition of the aqueous solution, while computer simulations allowed a quantitative estimate of how much of the water had to have evaporated, depending on the conditions of evaporation.In terms of applying their findings to exoplanetary exploration, Halevy stresses that “The mass spectrometers on or rovers, as well as the means for sample preparation and purification, would have to improve dramatically for a carbonate clumping measurement to be made in situ. Nevertheless, this may not be beyond the realm of possibility and may teach us much about aqueous processes on other planets. In addition, the ability to make a carbonate clumping measurement automatically implies the ability to measure clumping in CO2 and, therefore, the ability to explore certain atmospheric processes. Finally, clumping in molecules other than CO2 – such as organic molecules – may hold information not only about temperature, but the processes that formed them as well.”Halevy’s research will continue to include an analytical/experimental component and a modeling/simulation component. “Providing quantitative constraints on chemical processes on modern and ancient Mars will continue to feature prominently in my research,” Halevy concludes. “These same approaches will also be applied to understanding the geochemistry of Earth’s early oceans and atmospheric evolution.”center_img ( — While geological evidence points to the presence of liquid water on Mars during the Noachian epoch (the period from 4.5 to 3.5 billion years ago), determining the temperature of that water – a factor critical to the probability of its ability to support early life – has hitherto been impossible. Recently, however, researchers at California Institute of Technology Geological and Planetary Sciences have derived a precipitation temperature of 18 °C from carbonate minerals found in the 4.1 billion-year-old Allan Hills 84001 (ALH84001) meteorite. Although this ancient aquifer’s temperature was relatively mild, the researchers note that their findings do not necessarily demonstrate habitability. Copyright 2011 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of Model for carbonate formation in ALH84001. (A) Physical model of a shallow subsurface aquifer. The depth of carbonate formation is constrained by a combination of the cosmic ray exposure pattern of ALH84001 and Martian meteorite ejection models (48, 49). (B) Reduction of the physical model to a geochemical model of carbonate precipitation and CO2 degassing driven by gradual evaporation of water in a confined volume, coupled to loss of the vapor phase. Copyright (c) PNAS, doi:10.1073/pnas.1109444108 Wet and mild: Researchers take the temperature of Mars’s pastlast_img read more