[Ep93] – Microsoft Earnings: Search, LinkedIn Advertising Revenue Rise

by Jan 31, 2022TWIMshow0 comments

Full Transcription

Introduction] – 00:00

Hey everyone, welcome to This Week In Marketing also known as the TWIMshow. This is your host, Sajid Islam. And today, I’ll be going over the notable news and updates from the digital marketing space from the week of January 24, 2022. This is episode 93, and let’s jump in.

[Update 1 – TikTok Launches ‘TikTok Tactics’ Online Course] – 00:17

Today we’re going to first start off with TikTok. Tiktok has launched a new course called TikTok Tactics Online. This is a course for you if you want to learn how to run ads on TikTok. And actually it goes a little bit deeper as well. It starts off pretty basic alright. And then it covers four different areas. One is attribution, targeting, bidding optimization, catalog and creative. But it starts very basic. For example, for Attribution, if you’re just a basic beginner, they’re going to show you how to do like put the TikTok Pixel and go forward. But again, if you want to dive deeper, it’s going to go into it, right? Check it out. I have the link on our show notes page. So definitely you should get it up. Of course you have to sign up, there’s no fee for it. It’s a free course. But I like what TikTok is doing. It’s like now getting on a proactive basis, teaching everyone how to run TikTok ads with that.

[Update 2 – TikTok Instant Page Meets Users’ and Brands’ Needs for Speed] – 01:20

Tiktok also had another update this week. And this week TikTok is talking about what they’ve done is they’ve created like allowing people who are running ads. You can create this TikTok Instant page which is a lot like Facebook Instant Articles. It says that TikTok Instant page is something here’s how it works. Say if you’re running ads and usually when you run ads, people click on your ad and they go to your webpage right on mobile. Sometimes if you have been following our show, we talk about mobile speed being very important because if it’s slow, people are going to bounce off, right? Literally your page should render within 3 seconds or less. Now some people have websites that are slow. So TikTok is saying, you know what, with this instant page, what’s going to happen is when someone clicks on your ad, it’s going to load up a page that’s already hosted in TikTok. So it’s going to be super fast. And from there they can get all the necessary information. And if they want of the user, the visitor who clicked on the ad, if they want, they can actually go ahead and click on more links and go to your website. So in a way, in essence, I like that because it’s just creating a very fast response. People like when I see an ad, I click on it, it’s boom, it comes up because I hate those websites when I’m on mobile and it takes forever to load. And you’d be surprised how many websites are slow, still in this day and age. The only drawback is the attribution and tracking. But again, on the other hand, if you are someone who has been following a show, you know how third-party cookies are going away. And this is kind of giving you more data in terms of conversion data, like how many people saw your ad and clicked on it and you got the data versus how many people saw your ad, clicked on it, and landed on your website. So it kind of helps with that aspect as well. But again, the drawback here is that you would not be able to be if people aren’t clicking through to your side, you’re not getting the referral traffic data, which could be a concern. Right. If people come to that instant page and they don’t click on and go to your site, you will obviously not get the referral data, but you will at least see that people came to your instant page on TikTok

[Update 3 – YouTube Creators to Receive a Separate Account for YouTube Earnings] – 03:39

with that, let’s go jump into YouTube. Youtube basically announced that they are going to go ahead and create a separate account for YouTube earnings. Up until now, whether you’re a YouTube creator or you’re a Google AdSense partner, you just have one account and they would just send you money. Again, if you’re not sure what AdSense is. Adsense is for people who have blogs and they want to put Google Ads on their blogs and things like that. That’s the monetization path and that’s the oldest one. Then, of course, YouTube came along and YouTube started paying people, and obviously, they’ve been saying, you need to have an AdSense account and you just get paid throughout. Now YouTube is saying, hey, YouTube creators will get a separate account and AdSense, even though you could be one person, have both these accounts, but you’re going to get spread it out. The drawback to this is like YouTube only sends out checks if your revenue hits $100. So obviously YouTube or Google sends out a check if your revenue hits $100. So previously you could combine those two and you’d get $200 quickly. But on the flip side, now that it’s separate, maybe you’re going to get your check faster. On the YouTube side, it’s just money. I just wanted you to know what the opportunities are. On the other hand, I saw this video last week or this week actually on how much money you can make potentially from a video with 1 million views. And this creator was showing, and apparently, she made $23,000 from one video. That goes to show why people are all jumping in into YouTube and other platforms and making money from there. Okay with that.

[Update 4 – YouTube Adds New Guided Support Process for Community Guidelines Violations] – 05:18

The other update from YouTube is that they have basically added new guided support process for community guideline violations in the past. If you got dinged by a community violations, it was very generic boilerplate template and people get frustrated. Youtube is taking a more Proactive approach and they’re just saying, we’re going to guide you step by step. We’re going to give you an opportunity to either appeal the decision or you can go remove the offending content, things like that. So that it’s not, oh, you made a mistake. You’re in jail forever. You’ll never get out of there, right? Youtube doesn’t want to do that. I mean, they heard people loud and clear. I wish Facebook would do the same thing. But Facebook is Facebook. It reminds me of that Star Wars where Facebook is the Darth Vader, the dark side, and the rest of the world is on the other side. That’s how I feel. Yes. I’ve been watching a lot of Star Wars lately. Okay, that’s the update. If you want more detailed stuff in terms of how this works, where you go, things like that, check out our show notes.

[Update 5 – The Rise of YouTube Shorts And Creator Economy Update] – 06:19

Talking about YouTube, One thing I definitely want to share with you all is that YouTube CEO Susan I cannot. For the love of God, I cannot pronounce. Her last name is Wojcicki. I think she’s Polish. But anyway, who cares? Why does it matter? I’m sorry. Not who cares, but why does it matter? She shared what’s YouTube’s plan for 2022, what they’re going to focus on, things like that. Two things I want you to kind of know and really pay attention to. Since releasing YouTube Shorts, which is a copy of TikTok, YouTube reports that they’ve had 5 trillion all time views. Right. So that kind of shows that there is a market for shorts, right? There’s a 5 trillion with a T. Not even billion, the trillion all time views. So that’s great. Also, what she’s saying is that around the world, people making more than 10,000 a year is up by over 40%. Right? So that’s why the number of channels around the world making more than 10,000 a year is up 40% year over year, while YouTube’s creative ecosystem supported more than 800,000 jobs in 2020 now. But she’s also saying is that there are ten ways for creators to make money on YouTube. Last year, YouTube channel memberships and paid goods were purchased and renewed more than 110,000,000 times. Now to you, you may think, why does it matter? Blah, blah, blah, right? I don’t think so. But why I’m covering this is like, look at the potential from the other end for a business owner for such as myself, for you, if you’re a small business owner, look at the power of YouTube. Right. And I’m not saying you have to make money as a creator, but I’m just saying their eyeballs are there, people are there. I go to YouTube every day. I don’t think there goes a day where I’m not on YouTube looking up something or the other. And I sometimes watch ads. I sometimes I don’t watch ads depending on which profile I’m in, because I do have a paid premium membership as well. But that’s the reason I’m sharing with you all that there is a potential to actually get your content entirely in front of the right people. And this week, if everything goes right. I do want to do an ad on how to use YouTube analysis. I take it back. I just realized I do want to do a small short training on how to use YouTube analytics to find out the content that ideal your future customers are looking for on YouTube.

[Update 6 – Facebook Is Removing Profile Video Feature] – 08:52

Okay, with that, let’s move on to the next update, which is Facebook is removing profile video feature again, If you do not know what it is, then you haven’t missed anything. But if you know what it is, it’s missing out. But in short, what this is like some profiles, you go in, you will see a seven-second clip instead of my profile picture. You will see me jumping off something for 7 seconds and it will loop through that. Facebook is getting rid of it, right? This is as simple as that. However, this feature is still active on LinkedIn. So if you really miss it, go ahead and use it on LinkedIn until they remove it. Facebook is saying, look, hey guys, this really never caught on. A lot of people didn’t do. In fact, myself, I always thought of doing it, but then I found it very cumbersome to create a seven-second clip, put it up there and whatnot, I just slapped in my photo on Facebook and I’m off I go and I’m happy with it. Maybe people like there are way too many people on Facebook who are busy and don’t want to go through the hassle of doing all these things. But we’ll see, who knows.

[Update 7 – Instagram Rolls Out A Live Banner Feature] – 09:46

Okay, the next stop on the Facebook land is Instagram. Instagram rolls out a live banner feature. So now what’s happened is when you schedule a live on Instagram, that schedule is going to show up under your profile, which is a great thing if you ask me. And you can have more than one live schedule. So like, if someone checks out your profile, they can see, oh, there’s a live coming up and they can actually subscribe from there. They can RSVP from there they can get notified, things like that, which I like it. I really like it for a change. There is a very good update that’s coming out of Instagram. Live is something that’s kicking off. I think LinkedIn, a lot of live Facebook used to do live. It still does live. Instagram has done this and I like this. I wish they copied. Also the TikTok feature that they launched in late December where you can have a live banner. But other than that, this is a great update.

[Update 8 – Twitter’s New Flock Feature Lets You Tweet to Select Followers] – 10:51

Twitter has a new feature called a ‘Flock’ feature that allows you to tweet to select followers. What this is all about is people are sometimes like, for example, my times, I have a personal profile and a business profile. I want to share with some group of people that I don’t want everyone in the whole world to know about me because it’s sensitive. So Twitter is allowing you to create a circle or a flock or that you can have up to 150 people onto your flock, where I could just tweet to those flocks and the rest of the world would not know what I’m talking about. This works pretty good for, say, if you have a paid group, people who follow you, but obviously it’s capped at 150 for now. Who knows if they’re going to expand it or not and you want to share something or paid members, you want to engage with something or discuss something else, then this is a great option. I hope they allow you to create flock based on topics. So maybe I can have five different flocks. One for health, one for money making, investment, real estate, things like that. That would be awesome. They haven’t really shared what this is all going to entail, but that’s just some of my ideas in here.

[Update 9 – Twitter Updates Its Ad Platform] – 12:03

Along the same lines, Twitter also has updated its ad platform. They are changing the name of a couple of options so that it’s more broad updating how they are working to mitigate the Apple iOS ATT issue which is app transparency tracking issue. And they’re also adding a new events manager dashboard to manage your Twitter website tag and associated web-based conversion events. Overall, these are small, minor updates, but great. If you are spending money on Twitter and you want to get better in tracking your ROI, this is what matters to you. If not, you can just safely ignore it until you get ready to start spending money on Twitter.

[Update 10 – Microsoft Earnings: Search, LinkedIn Advertising Revenue Rise] – 12:53

This brings us to the last update of this week, which is Microsoft’s annual sorry, Microsoft quarterly earnings. Now, if you’ve been following our show, you know I like to cover quarterly earnings because the numbers tells a lot about how the platform is doing, if the platform is growing traction, things like that. So Microsoft in Q2 2022. But hang on a second, Sajid This is January 2022. How did Microsoft have Q2 2022? Well, the short answer is that as some corporations have, as a Corporation, you get to pick when your quarter starts and when your quarter ends. So for Microsoft, this is Q2. Basically, that means their quarter starts somewhere around July. So July, July, August, September, October, November, December 2, quarter of 2022. And they just reported their earnings this week. So basically, it makes sense. That’s how their quarter runs. So back to the numbers. They had a revenue of 51.7 billion. Yes. With a B and a net income of 18.8 billion. With a B, the revenue is up 20% and net income has gone up by 21%. Now, you could say, hey, Sajid, Microsoft is a tech company. It has Microsoft Windows, Microsoft whatever, Office, things like that, PCs, gaming, things like that. So why this matters? Well, that is true. But what you need to hear about is the search and news advertising revenue up was up by 32% year over year, which is impressive when you consider the fact that Microsoft was not even a major player in the industry not too long ago, which represents how many new revenue streams it has developed over the years. Another area of growth is LinkedIn. The social media platform geared towards professional networking got a 37% increase in revenue year over year. Now this is where I am going to actually, I will add one more thing. Overall, Microsoft earned 10 billion from advertising alone if you include LinkedIn. So they made $10 billion with a B in Q2 2022 from advertising. So whether you look at the number of the search, whether you look at the search volume growth, which is 32%, or the $10 billion, either or it’s a great big platform. What this means is like, I keep talking about Google ads, Google ads, Google ads. Maybe it’s time also to look at Microsoft ads because Microsoft audience also has LinkedIn. That’s all that matters. That’s why I’m covering this for you to know, give you that situational awareness that, you know, hey, it’s not always about Google. It’s not always about TikTok. It’s not always about Facebook. It’s about finding new opportunities and leveraging those and implementing those. Like, if you listen to Gary V. Gary V. became Gary V. because he started  going this Google search ads back in the day when no one was doing it. So he was just crushing it. Right. And now when people go to Google, search ads is expensive, obviously, because everyone is doing it and it’s expensive. And what that basically means is that competition is high. I’m not saying stop doing Google search ads. I’m saying you need to do Google searches, but also you need to find new opportunities that you can leverage that other people are not leveraging and be in the winning front. Okay. But it has to be a mix of everything. You cannot just be one or the other.

[Announcements] – 16:24

with that, folks. That’s it for this week. This was a busy week. There were a few things that didn’t make it to our cut because I wanted to keep it to ten news articles. There were things about Google flock going away and creating topics, which is a great thing that Google is doing. And I really wanted to cover how it works. There were some Google ads update, but not so major, but minor. But it’s probably going to come up in the future. So I skipped it intentionally. But, folks, stay on. Again, if you’re finding value, definitely share with your group of friends, people who you think can benefit from it. With that, this is your host Sajid Islam, signing off until next week. Take care. Bye bye.

[Closing] – 17:04

Thank you for tuning in this week, it was a pleasure to serve you all. Hit the subscribe button so that you remember to sign on next week. Same place, same time for another round of This Week In Marketing.

1. TikTok Launches ‘TikTok Tactics’ Online Course (00:17) – TikTok has launched a new, video-aligned platform training course for marketers, designed to provide tips and insights on how to make the best use of the platform for brand promotion and development.

The new ‘TikTok Tactics’ course is an ‘easy to follow, best-practice guide to advertising on TikTok’, which provides a range of lessons on attribution, targeting, creative best practices, and more.

The course, which you can sign-up for here, focuses on four key elements:

  1. Attribution
  2. Targeting, Bidding + Optimization
  3. Catalog
  4. Creative

You can sign-up and go through the TikTok Tactics course here

 

2. TikTok Instant Page Meets Users’ and Brands’ Needs for Speed (01:20) – As it looks to maximize business engagement in the app, and boost its revenue opportunities, TikTok is rolling out a new ‘Instant Page’ shopping display option, which will enable brands to connect their TikTok ads through to a lightweight, native landing page, built within TikTok itself, which will load up to 11 times faster than standard mobile pages.

The process is a lot like Facebook’s Instant Articles, with the content built into the app itself, as opposed to referring users off to a third-party website. In the case of Instant Articles, that comes with inherent problems, because it limits the data collection capacity of publishers, where the IA offering is primarily aimed. TikTok’s Instant Pages are a little different, in that they’re focused, ideally, on direct conversion for brands, but it is still a consideration. If people aren’t clicking through to your site, and you’re not getting referral traffic data, that could be a concern.

To set up a TikTok Instant Page, businesses will need to create an eligible ad on TikTok Ads Manager (full eligibility details here) and then build an Instant Page as the destination link for the campaign.

Once you’ve created an Instant Page, you can save it to your TikTok ad library, so you can add it to multiple campaigns.

P.S: TikTok’s Instant Pages are currently in testing, available via a TikTok sales rep, but they’ll likely be rolled out to more businesses soon. Another consideration for your strategy. 

 

3. YouTube Creators to Receive a Separate Account for YouTube Earnings (03:39) – Google sent emails to YouTube publishers that their YouTube AdSense payments will be separated from their other AdSense payments. So if you get paid through Google AdSense for AdSense ads on your sites and also on YouTube, you will now get payments individually for each.

The issue is, that means each has to hit the $100 payment threshold individually and you might get paid out slower. That is, some publishers take time to hit the $100 payment threshold but when you combine AdSense for Search, AdSense for Content, YouTube, and other earnings together, you can hit the $100 payment threshold sooner. Now that Google is paying YouTube out differently, it may take you longer to get a payment from Google if your payments are small – thus hurting smaller publishers. 

 

4. YouTube Adds New Guided Support Process for Community Guidelines Violations (05:18) – YouTube’s looking to provide more guidance for creators who’ve been hit with guideline violations via a new, more detailed reporting process that will take them through the specifics of the issue with their content, and what they can do to resolve it.

The updated process will provide more information on the specifics of each violation, and what it means for the visibility and monetization of your content, before taking you through the next steps of how you can resolve the issue.

The review process specifies the element in question and then enables creators to update the clip to address the noted concern/s.

The last element provides an easy way for creators to ask for a second review if they feel the report was incorrect, while they can also add additional contextual info for YouTube in relation to the violation reported.

It’s a good update, with many YouTube creators expressing frustration at the platform’s current reporting process, which has seen a lot of videos penalized incorrectly. Violations are also reported via a general email template that offers little insight on specifics.

 

5. The Rise of YouTube Shorts And Creator Economy Update (06:19) – YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki has shared an overview of the platform’s key areas of focus for 2022, and where it sees new opportunities, which points to some interesting developments in the platform’s roadmap, and for online video more broadly.

Key elements of focus for YouTube include Shorts, its TikTok-like short video platform, which YouTube reports has now hit 5 trillion all-time views, underlining the potential of the format.

Wojcicki also shared that:

“The number of channels around the world making more than $10,000 a year is up 40% year over year [while] YouTube’s creative ecosystem supported more than 800,000 jobs in 2020. Now there are 10 ways for creators to make money on YouTube. Last year, YouTube Channel Memberships and paid digital goods were purchased or renewed more than 110 million times.”

6. Facebook Is Removing Profile Video Feature (08:52) – Facebook has announced that it’s removing video profile images as of February 7th, with people who currently have a video profile image being reverted back to a still picture instead.

Originally launched in 2015, profile videos enable users to upload a 7-second video clip, which then loops on repeat, adding an animated, engaging element to their Facebook presence.

It hasn’t been a highly used feature, but some people have been able to create interesting, even entertaining profile video clips, which adds to the personality of their profile.

It’s not a major shift, and again, I doubt it will impact many users, nor that many people will care. But if you do have a video profile image, prepare to say goodbye to your clever, 7-second clip that encapsulated your ‘crazy’ personality. 

 

7. Instagram Rolls Out A Live Banner Feature (09:46) – Instagram has now outlined its new display of scheduled live streams on creator profiles, providing another way to raise awareness of upcoming live broadcasts in the app.

The new display option will enable you to list your upcoming IG live streams on your profile, which, when tapped, will provide additional info in a pop-up prompt, where people can also sign-up for a reminder of when the stream is set to begin.

Users can create as many scheduled lives as they like, with a side-scrolling list then added to your profile display.

 

8. Twitter’s New Flock Feature Lets You Tweet to Select Followers (10:51) – Creating a separation between your public and personal lives has become more difficult than ever before due to the rise of social media, and there is no platform in which this difficulty of separation becomes more apparent than with Twitter. Having a large following on Twitter can often result in you being forced to censor yourself for fear of revealing too much to followers that you might not even know. Going private is one way to curb this issue, but many users felt that this left them between a rock and hard place because private Twitter accounts are rather limited in their scope.

Twitter is trying to fix this by taking a leaf out of Instagram’s book. Similar to how on Instagram you can have a circle of close friends that you share more personal or private content with that would not be visible to your regular followers, Twitter is rolling out a new feature called “Flocks”. You can add up to 150 people to your Flock, and anything that you tweet to said Flock would not be visible by anyone else. This gives most users the best of both worlds. We already saw an experiment called Trusted Friends back in July, and it seems that Twitter is now rolling it out properly with a new name that appears to be more or less on brand from most points of view.

 

9. Twitter Updates Its Ad Platform (12:03) – Twitter has announced some new updates to its ad platform which are designed to streamline ad targeting, while also providing more insights on campaign performance.

First off, Twitter’s changing the name of its ‘Website Clicks & Conversions’ objective to ‘Website Traffic’, a more generalized header, which will now also include a new ‘Site Visits Optimization’ goal within your available campaign objectives.

Now, when setting up a Website Traffic campaign, you’ll be able to use ‘Site visits’ as the goal, which will then direct Twitter’s system to serve your ads to audiences most likely to visit your website. That will then enable Twitter’s systems to better determine audience objectives, and present your ads to the right users. Twitter says that it’s seen strong results with site visits in testing, and it’ll be interesting to see whether the new goal generates a better direct response to your promoted tweets.

In addition to this, Twitter’s also adding a new aggregated view of site metrics and conversion events within Twitter Ads Manager, which Twitter’s adding as a means to counter data loss as a result of Apple’s ATT update, and more users opting out of in-app tracking.

The process will utilize data gathered via Twitter’s website tag to provide a generalized estimate of key metrics, by Ad Group, at campaign level, by device type (iOS or Android), and placement level, where possible. The data obviously won’t be as accurate as you would get from direct reporting via the Twitter tag on each user response, but by providing some insight into user actions, Twitter will be able to replace a level of indicative insight that’s been lost due to the iOS change.

And finally, Twitter’s adding a new ‘Events Manager’ dashboard to manage your Twitter Website Tag and its associated web-based conversion events.

The new Events Manager overview will provide in-depth insight on tag events, enabling you to better track and utilize the data being gathered from your site visitors.

 

10. Microsoft Earnings: Search, LinkedIn Advertising Revenue Rise (12:53) – Microsoft posted the second quarter of its 2022 financial results today, reporting revenue of $51.7 billion and a net income of $18.8 billion. Revenue is up 20 percent, and net income has increased by 21 percent.

Search and news advertising revenue was up by 32% year on year, which is impressive when you consider the fact that Microsoft was not even a major player in this industry not too long ago which represents just how many new revenue streams it has developed over the years.

Another area of growth is LinkedIn. The social media platform geared towards professional networking got a 37% increase in revenue year over year. A lot of that has to do with an increased demand for advertising on the platform, making this one of the most successful acquisitions that Microsoft has managed to complete during its recent history. LinkedIn has gone from being a relative footnote in the social media industry to a major player that is considered one of the top social media sites from an advertising point of view.

Overall, Microsoft earned $10 billion from advertising alone if you include LinkedIn. It has also seen strong growth in some of its more traditional areas of expertise like PC which earned Microsoft well over $17 billion, representing a 15% increase in that area during a time when many other industries are seeing decreased sales.