North Thinking
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North Thinking


A monthly look at the marketing and advertising industry from NORTH’s point of view.

Source: Interesting Engineering

Cookie Jar
A monthly series focusing on a world without third-party cookies and the “privacy sandbox”
Nicole Bell, Media Director

Source: East Side Co

I use my iPhone for everything. To grocery shop, order household supplies, read the news, and search for my dream vacation (Italy, in case you were curious). Every single site, and app, these days requires an account. Most of them will allow you to link to your Facebook or Google account. The majority of times, I use Facebook. When I use Facebook to log in to an account, the site or app will then share my data with Facebook and the social media giant will then track my activity. So a few minutes later when I scroll through Instagram and see an ad for what I was JUST looking at…I no longer blame “Big Brother.” The fault is entirely my own because I used Facebook to connect to the app. As a consumer, this is incredibly creepy and invasive. For a brand, this is incredibly valuable.

However, with the new iOS 14.5 released earlier this month, Facebook will no longer be able to track your activity. We all knew this was coming, but it’s finally here and Mark Zuckerberg is not happy. With this new update, iPhone/iPad users will be able to see who is tracking you and will give you the option to stop it. This is a huge win for personal privacy, but not for Facebook. Their advertising platform is built on tracking users’ activity across other sites and apps. This new update can potentially cut ad revenue in half for Facebook, and Mark Zuckerberg is worried.

My advice to brands: hang tight, Facebook is working on “new advertiser experiences” and in the meantime lean into your organic presence on FB/IG. Work to build a meaningful mutually beneficial relationship with your followers where they can begin to trust you as a brand, no matter what platform they chose to engage with you on.

Source: Netflix

Netflix Expands To Podcasts
Stephen Lawrence, Media Planner

As we continue to see the rate of podcast listens continues to increase, Netflix has officially joined the podcast industry. The LA Times reported that Netflix is going to increase their audio push, after they’ve seen success in their current 30 podcasts, which focus heavily on Netflix originals, such as “The Crown” and “The Irishman”. This transition into podcasts creates a perfect blend for Netflix, allowing the media giant to continue the binge-worthy content stream that they’ve become famous for — with users now can binge a Netflix original and continue the journey with deep dives into it Netflix original podcasts.

Instagram Offers Options To Hide Like
Stephen Lawrence, Media Planner

It isn’t uncommon to hear that social media plays a major role in feelings of insecurity and poor mental health (although an Oxford Study states there was no link between social media and mental health in teenagers). However, Instagram has decided to give users the ability to hide their likes to “depressurize people’s experience.” While many individuals look at Instagram likes as a gauge for successful posts, Instagram feels that this switch will offer users a chance to take away the pressure of social media likes, giving them the freedom to switch back and forth whenever they need. Ultimately, the switch won’t affect individuals who make revenue from social media.

Source: Instagram

Europe Pushed Social Media Platforms To Ban Disinformation
Stephen Lawrence, Media Planner

The Europe Commission announced a request for social media platforms to do more to stop misinformation on May 26th, one of the first big pushes that directly targets social media giants, including Facebook, TikTok, Google, and Twitter. “The guidance issued Wednesday urges platforms and players in online advertising to block accounts sharing disinformation and ban those that regularly post debunked content,” says NPR. “The commission also wants social media sites to improve transparency of political ads, including by properly labeling paid-for content and allowing users to see who is providing those ads.” While it is too soon to see how the social media giants will respond, the push for more transparency on disinformation will be increasingly interesting to watch across the world.

Source: Social Media Today

“Super Followers” On Twitter
Jose Torres, Media Intern

We all know “the importance of the people you follow, and the people who follow you back”, well Twitter has been testing a new display for “super followers” which will include all paying subscribers. This can sound like a unique feature, but the opportunity created by this display can be huge. Social Media Today mentions that the goal is to inspire others to become paying subscribers. Many people may wonder why this would even exist, but it can be a very helpful tool for the growth of many companies. Overall it creates many opportunities for companies to explore with growth.

Instagram Adds New Engagement Insights
Jose Torres, Media Intern

Being able to track who engages with your content can be very beneficial. Instagram has now added new engagement insights for reels and Instagram live broadcasts. Social Media Today mentions that this could change the way people/companies approach their posts. The new engagement insights for reels include total plays, accounts reached, likes, comments, saves, and shares. For IG Live, the new engagement insights will include accounts reached, peak concurrent viewers, comments, and shares. Overall the addition of engagement insights creates huge opportunities for companies. This will challenge them to find new ways to approach their posts. What are you most excited about regarding these new opportunities?



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