The Webrepublican Nr. 39, May 2017

07 May 2017 / by Natalie Schönbächler and Simon Wüthrich / Webrepublic / Comments

Duplicate text ad placements, a new dashboard for marketing data, Amazon’s Influencer program, a virtual scenic flight and a hiccup. 1,348 readers, an open rate of 42.7% and 4 minutes and 45 seconds of reading time. That’s Webrepublican no. 39.



Newsletter Teaser Image - The Webrepublican 39


  • For the next three years, we are in charge of all Swiss Post group companies’ performance advertising activities. The trade press has covered this news here, here and here – and we’re looking forward to working together.
  • Marketing & Kommunikation popped in on Tom Hanan to give him the “Digital Lifetime Award” and honor him for founding Webrepublic, team spirit and his contributions to data science.
  • There is no digital marketing, but rather marketing with digital channels – Tobias Zehnder lectures on this topic as part of the CAS Digital Leadership program at the HWZ.
  • Apropos digital channels: Use our Digital Health Check to discover where you have the greatest potential for optimization in your digital marketing processes.
  • Welcome aboard: Gentian (frontend developer), Mirco (SEO) and Katerina (data scientist).

Newbies WR Mai

  • We currently have seven vacancies, including vacancies in the areas of business development and SEA.


Google is testing the effects of duplicate text ad placements on the same search results page. We’ve sussed out the experiment and its possible implications in this blog post, providing our own conclusions: duplicate text ads placements have the potential to enhance users’ ability to recognize brands. But the experiment brings up a lot of questions for advertisers: How are CTRs calculated for double impressions? And how do you generate click prices? Even Google has refrained from taking a public stand on these issues so far. Perhaps that will change on May 23 during the annual Google livestream on AdWords, Analytics and DoubleClick.


The results of this year's Local Search Ranking Factors Survey have arrived. Forty experts from the US provided their assessments of today’s most important ranking factors for local search engine optimization. The most important finding: links and online reviews have made a huge jump in significance since last year. Speaking of this issue, here's our infographic on the «Importance of Online Reviews».

150128 [EN] Infographic Online Reviews Blog


At the F8 Facebook Developer Conference, it became apparent: Mark Zuckerberg is banking on virtual reality with smartphone cameras and augmented reality. For advertisers, the new Messenger platform 2.0 is especially exciting. Chat extensions that allow bots, smart replies and new interaction possibilities with Facebook's virtual assistant M make the new Messenger version a powerful tool. The latest changes are certainly due, since Messenger has received a lot of flak recently, as we discussed in the last issue of Webrepublican.


The waves in the public debate around the topic of brand safety have somewhat subsided, but that doesn’t mean that Google has been idle in the meantime. New filters allow inappropriate YouTube videos to be more quickly flagged and paused. Machine-learning tools are being used more frequently to strictly control YouTube video libraries. YouTube videos are also increasingly being checked for brand risks by external partners like comScore, Inc. and Integral Ad Science. So we know that Google is taking the issue very seriously – which is being lauded by markets and marketing experts. It also appears advertising customers haven’t really lost their trust in the company: Google’s parent company, Alphabet, posted 29% more earnings in the first quarter than this time last year. Particularly impressive given the brand safety debate: according to Google CEO Sundar Pichai, even YouTube demonstrated significant growth in revenue.


A Google ad blocker for Chrome? That might seem like a paradox at first, but Google has been promoting the idea of a user-friendly internet for quite some time. And the ad blocker wouldn’t hide all ads – only the disruptive ones. This includes forms of advertising that have been criticized by the «Coalition for Better Ads». This association, which includes marketers like Google and Facebook, adtech service providers such as Appnexus, trade associations and media agencies, establishes global standards for online advertising – and makes things difficult for those that violate them.


Processing marketing data in a conclusive and traceable way is much easier said than done. The new Google Data Studio has promised to simplify things. Our experts have taken a look at the tool and are duly impressed – particularly by the user-friendliness and data integration.

But data processing alone is not enough to make business-relevant decisions. What marketers really need is an integrated approach in order to understand all customer touchpoints. The greatest challenge here is to not only describe user behavior, but also understand it. Google demonstrates how advertisers can get valuable insights using Google Surveys 360.


It’s hard to talk about marketing trends today without mentioning Influencer marketing. The same goes for e-commerce. Amazon, which has posted a growth rate of 23% to USD 35.7 billion in the first quarter of 2017, has been developing an Influencer program over the past year and just launched the beta version. It will be interesting to see how users react to this.

Amazon Influencer What's Up Moms


Google launched a new version of Google Earth in April. It is currently available only with Chrome and as an Android app, but will soon be ready to use on iOS and other browsers. Google seems to be preparing for new virtual reality features: Google Earth now allows scenic flights, provides knowledge maps for destinations and offers an improved search function. Try it out – for example, with a sightseeing flight through the Kennedy Space Center.


We trained our messenger bots to send an automated greeting to Webrepublican subscribers, but towards the end of April they became a bit hyperactive, sending delayed or duplicate messages. We’re not sure if it was the April weather or what, but we’d like to apologize for any possible confusion.