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May 20, 2014

Facebook and Publicis sign multi-year digital marketing partnership

Digital media and mobile - social, marketing and tech forces combine

By Vinod

Social networking giant Facebook has entered into a multi-year partnership with advertising holding company Publicis Groupe, which will focus on future areas of digital marketing.

The partnership will give Publicis increased access to Facebook’s ad inventory and data, it will leverage opportunities in video and co-creation of content across Facebook and Instagram.

Facebook wants to enhance its working relationship with marketers.

Patrick Harris, director, Global Agency Development at Facebook said, "Agencies, brands, and Facebook all have one common goal: to make great ads and put them in front of the right people. Our work with Publicis will center on bringing clients closer to our products, and creating new planning and measurement tools to make buying easier, more efficient, and ultimately prove out ROI [return on investment]."

Publicis Groupe’s Starcom MediaVest Group CEO Laura Desmond said, "This is a new breed of partnership between agency networks and publishers. The deal didn’t start from a standpoint of ad pricing or inventory. It started from standpoint of three big pillars that clients, ourselves and Facebook are working on now."

The deal has a five-pronged strategy.

It will enable close integration of Facebook’s information with Publicis’ systems for ad targeting, optimization and planning purposes.

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Facebook data will be fed into Publicis’ media-mix-modeling platform, which will enable Publicis to see how Facebook ads are performing, experiment with measurements and create advanced analytics to study campaigns.

Publicis’ Content@Scale ad platform will be integrated into the Facebook Audience Network, recently launched on mobile, which serves ads on partner apps outside the social network.

Publicis will have access to inventory on Instagram, which is very selective about content.

Facebook will work closely with Publicis to create ads for its new autoplay video product, which displays on users’ News Feeds.

The partnership is said to be the largest between an agency network and a tech company, and would make use of global spending from Publicis media networks Starcom Media Vest and Zenith Optimedia as well as digital shops like Digitas, Razorfish and Rosetta.

The deal will facilitate favourable rates on few Facebook products for Publicis and its clients, as per sources.

On behalf of Starcom MediaVest Group, Desmond led the negotiation deal with Facebook, which took months to complete. The deal is designed to be long-term in nature.

Starcom MediaVest Group also entered into a similar partnership with Twitter in April 2013, which was pegged at around $200 million.
Separately Instagram struck a $100 million deal with Omnicom in March for ads.

All these deals show evidence of growing success of digital media companies in securing upfront commitments from advertisers.

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