In brief: Australians to brands: Shut up

In other news: Advertisers not pulling money from TLC despite Duggars ... So-so numbers for TV ads ... McDonald's sponsors live events for MTV ... Big shifts ahead for media spend?

From the Campaign family:

Australians don't want to talk to brands. (Campaign Asia-Pacific) According to new research from Sensis, marketers are missing the mark when it comes to engaging consumers on social media, with many respondents stating that they want nothing at all to do with brands. Sensis surveyed 1,100 Australian businesses and 800 consumers. While businesses are mainly investing in social media as a two-way communication channel with their customers, but consumers said they were not interested in conversations. Discounts topped the list (45%), followed by giveaways (35%) and coupons (30%). In addition, the survey revealed a large increase in consumers stating they wanted nothing at all from brands (34%, up from 26% in 2014).

Big shifts in media spending? (Direct Marketing News) $41.8 billion: That's how much global business advisory firm FTI Consulting Inc. predicts that brands will spend on core online advertising in 2015. (This excludes online advertising revenues captured by traditional media such as magazine, newspapers, and TV broadcast companies.) The firm expects 2015 broadcast ad revenues to reach $38.9 billion this year. According to its annual U.S. Media Industry Forecast, the firm also forecasts an estimated annual growth rate of 10.3% for digital ad spending through 2018, but only a 4.2% average annual increase over that same time frame for broadcast. This translates to a predicted $55.6 billion in spending on core online advertising and $45.5 billion in spending on broadcast by 2018. Luke Schaeffer, senior managing director and co-leader of the M&E team, boldly predicts that if digital spending continues to accelerate, spending on digital video advertising could "eliminate much of the forecasted growth in television advertising over the next five years."

In UK, ice-bucket challenge follow-up draws heat. (Marketing) One of the leading UK charities to benefit from the challenge has hit back at social media criticism of its follow-up campaign, called "Last Summer." The Motor Neurone Disease Association is looking at its "last opportunity" to keep awareness levels high. One particular poster for the "Last Summer" campaign has caught public attention, after social media users spotted it at London Underground stations. The ad shows 33-year-old Michael, with the caption: "Last Summer I was the only person I knew who didn’t do the ice bucket challenge. Five months later I was diagnosed with motor neurone disease." Some commentators have interpreted this to mean that not participating in the Ice Bucket Challenge was the reason Michael was diagnosed with motor neurone disease.

McDonald's will sponsor live UK events on behalf of McFlurry. (Campaign UK) The integrated campaign, called "Mixing Up Your Summer," was brokered by Sky Media and OMD UK. It will allow McDonald’s to promote its McFlurry range to MTV’s 16- to 24-year-old core audience. McFlurry will be the headline sponsor of the MTV Crashes event in Plymouth in July, featuring Tinie Tempah and Jess Glynne. The deal also includes on-air sponsorship when the event is broadcast in August and September on MTV Music and MTV Live HD, alongside on-air competition spots, a co-branded website and a social media strategy.

Around the web:

Brands still support TLC despite Duggars. (Variety) Advertisers last week said would no longer support TLC's "19 Kids and Counting." Few if any of them, however, have put their money in the same space as their collective mouth. General Mills, Yum Brands’ Pizza Hut, PepsiCo’s Pure Leaf Iced Tea, Choice Hotels and Crayola LLC are among the companies that have professed to have ended support of the program in the wake of revelations that Josh Duggar molested teenage girls 12 years ago. Yet none of them have pulled any of the ad money previously earmarked for TLC or other Discovery Communications-owned outlets, according to a person familiar with the situation. "We still advertise on TLC," said Mike Siemienas, a manager of brand relations at General Mills, via email. A spokesman for Choice Hotels would only confirm that the company was no longer advertising on "19 Kids." Pizza Hut, PepsiCo and Crayola did not return calls or emailed queries seeking comment.

'Tepid' upfronts for TV ads. (TVNewsCheck) Brian Wieser, a securities analyst at Pivotal Research Group, says the consensus on the upfront is that volume will be down by a few percentage points while pricing will increase by a few, but he cautions against using those numbers as a gauge of the health of the media companies. In this Q&A he also talks about excessive media concern about the shift of ad dollars to digital media, the need for big new ad categories, the pluses of programmatic buying and more.

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