Category Archives: Development

Development and Servers

Gmail Apps Configure Inbox

Google Mail (Apps for Business) not showing emails from distribution lists

So after a few weeks of scratching my head, relating to where all the emails that were sent to my “group” distribution lists in Google Apps for Business were going, following a support call to them, I’ve established three things.

1. Check that the emails are actually arriving to the gmail service through the new; Email Log Search

2. If they are arriving, and you still can’t see them in your inbox a) do a search for the email distribution alias (eg. in the gmail search OR in the Left Hand Navigation, navigate in your “inboxes” down to all mail.

Gmail Apps Configure Inbox

3. To fix the “bug” you need to go to the settings cog (top RHS), and click “configure inbox” (above) , and uncheck “Forums”.

Configure inbox "Forums"

If you note, the default function of the inbox tabs includes “messages from mailing lists”

My 2014 Digital Predictions

In my 2014 predictions and views posts, I thought that I would share a few more expectations, on what I (broadly speaking) anticipate developing in the digital space in 2014.

In a year with a world cup in Brazil – widely mooted as one of the understated emerging economies (BRIC), I would be expecting to see great creative innovation and possibly new creative media and app executions on existing platforms to reach the largest sporting audience globally (especially in Asia).

I have tried to include a mix of both out-there and in-there predictions:

1. Atlas Relaunching at Facebook’s F8 event

I would expect to see Facebook move into the ad-serving space to attempt to validate  and measure Facebook engagement driving purchase or action through web or mobile. Suspect that this could be announced at F8 –

Why is this interesting? Facebook’s like button isn’t giving them enough information about user engagement –  IE. It was great that you could build a community on Facebook, you now need to pay to engage with them, now you are paying to engage with this audience, Facebook need to monetise the post FB advertising value – this can be done effectively with the AdServer Tracking Technology. I expect this to be powering the like button and the conversion pixels/ad optimisation of the future.

2. A New DMP Player / Audience Management Platform

Google don’t have a DMP currently. I would anticipate that to effectively compete with Adobe and Turn in the Audience Management and segmentation space, that this would be an interesting addition to their product suite.

3. Ad-Visibility becoming a normal metric

Pretty self explanatory. Did the ad that I paid for, reach the desired audience, and was it seen?

Not just whether the ad was seen, but did it reach the audience profile and segment that I paid to reach.

4. Attribution Modelling including Visible Impression Metrics and Path To Conversion

Attribution modelling will likely be enhanced by visible impression path to conversion (PTC).

I anticipate reporting will be enhanced to view segments of total (viewed and non viewed impressions) and published assets (which publishers and placements) fell into these categories.

I also anticipate the inclusion of mobile app engagement for Android users on the Google Stack (DCM), as with the Mobile Config inclusion within Google Tag Manager (GTM), it’s likely to be a relatively logical next step.

5. TV Inventory Video DSP

TubeMogul are the market leaders for Video DSP by a country mile. I anticipate huge enhancements to the Google Video DSP prodcut, and possibly yet more players getting involved. It would be interesting to see the premium publishers going to market with a Demand Side Platform (DSP) for TV. In the US, it was possible (for a while) to buy TV inventory through adwords. This is an area of exceptional interest for me personally.

Edit 28/12 – Would Google buy TubeMogul?

6. Ad-Visibility challenges for traditional publishers

With online publishers now explicitly being able to measure whether a digital ad was seen by a browser, or not, I anticipate that this spells trouble for traditional publishers from two perspectives;

  • TV Metrics will be challenged by online further still by the ever increasing accountability, and measurement of online. When will Comscore, Nielsen and others revise their panel based approach to measurement. (A thought – In Australia, all TV signals are now digital, surely this presents a new opportunity for measurement?)
  • Traditional publishers (and news outlets) have their websites, pages and portals littered with advertising. Google for a long time has said that it will start to penalise ad-heavy pages in search, now, with ad-visibility measurement, it may be that advertisers force publishers to revisit their page layouts and ad placements

7. Use of Ad and Cookie Blockers being further limited by publishers

Increasing consumer use of browser plugins like AdBlock (and ABP), Ghostery, Disconnect2 and the encouragement by leading groups and figures to circumnavigate geo-fencing is likely to be of interest to many publishers.

I have noticed on my test VM‘s that many website functionality is being limited by ad-blocking and tracking blocking technology. Users may stop using sites that restrict the application functionality through cookie blocking.

8. FaceFall or Twitter Bomb

I worked through the first dotcom crash where businesses were valued at millions based on their potential (impression based) advertising revenue, I am now working through a second spill of dotcom 2.0 boom, where demographic, Geographic and sociographic value is being implied by the likes of Facebook and Twitter.

I believe that with the emerging ad stacks (Mediamind, Google, et al), and the DSP and Audience technologies that integrate with the ad-stacks, it will be possible to garner this information independently of FB and Twitter. This is not to say that these two platforms do not have value, but their perceived exclusivity in the space for me is false. I can get the same or better from combining other sources, without the community management team required to support these channels.

Regardless, I anticipate that there will be a lot of discussion about the “value” of these two companies, now post IPO, and their revenue models, and the acquisitions that they have made in the recent past.

Side Point: Facebook is struggling with the youth audience. Yet another article in recent days is lauding the fallout of the “new potential” user base of FB to emerging “private” platforms.

9. Privacy

Privacy is going to continue to be top of the discussion pile throughout 2014. Since the Edward Snowdon revelations in Mid-2013, they have rarely failed to make it to the front pages of the leading titles with a new privacy based revelation.

Mark Zuckerberg’s comments on public being the social norm was treated as a ambitious when it was said, I feel that it was proven, and essentially we have a generation of people who have given their data, their networks, their contacts and their locations to many technology firms. It isn’t however right that this should then be dragnet harvested to spy on the populous.

A right to privacy will be a huge discussion and debate over the whole of the year

From a media perspective, the impacts of these discussions could be quite serious – The development and adoption of Do Not Track (DNT), as browsers limit (optional) publishers, they have the option to abide by the users request. Publishers who chose to ignore this, may find themselves at the wrath of users.

The advancement of Single Customer View (SCV) and Cookieless tracking will likely leap ahead of legislation attempting to kerb tracking of users.

10. Out there prediction: Jeff Bezos & Washington Post creating a new revenue model for publishers

I hope that Jeff Bezos’s acquisition of the Washington Post springs a new innovative approach to the  monetisation of content online – either through new platforms, innovative delivery on existing platforms or some kind of pay per use basis – I’m intrigued.

So, what else?

Why haven’t I included HTML5? Well, I am still struggling to see adoption by anyone other that the most tech-savvy of publishers and brands really leveraging HTML5 to anywhere close to it’s potential. I would hope that by mid-year with the formalisation of the schema that it would start to become the norm.

HTML5 offline storage is likely to underpin much of the migration away from cookies from a ad-stack perspective, but that is going to be a long burn, and I would be suprised to see much of that realised in 2014.

What about Bitcoin… I don’t know is the honest answer. Without banking support, it will be difficult to see a future. Many businesses accepting bitcoin are being pressured by their banking institutions, with a number of documented cases of forced account closures. I have great hopes, as do the Winklevoss brothers.

Hope that you’ve enjoyed my ramblings, and I will revisit this in December 2014 to see how I fared against my predictions.


Mediabrands Playground – Excellent Creative, Digital and Innovation

Mediabrands Playground – Top 10 Countdowns of Cool

Every couple of months, I get the opportunity to share great, inspirational content and thinking to the Mediabrands team to try to spread new thinking and ideas through the team.

Some of this is intended to engage, some to stimulate, some to share campaigns that are doing exceptionally well (viral etc.)

 March Presentation

February Presentation

Some additional content and all my links are on #MBPlayground


Google Tag Manager Launches

Google announces free inclusion tag solution – Google Tag Manger

Google Tag Manager LogoSo for the last six months or so, I’ve been working on a number of solutions related to Inclusion Tags to improve de-duplication, reporting accuracy and increase efficiency relating to tracking over a number of solutions including; Qubit – OpenTag, Datalicious – Supertag and GTM (Google Tag Manager beta) I have also used Tagman in the past, and have been exposed to some of the MAP Totaltag team’s work in the US.

Today Google have announced their Tag Manager solution publicly, and I thought that I would share some of the recent experience that we have had with it in Beta.

These platforms all have their very unique specifications, however, the opportunity to participate in the Beta with GTM has given us plenty of opportunity to experiment over recent weeks with what the capabilities of the new platform are.

Google Tag Manager Container Tags Page

In my opinion, GTM will certainly shake up the market from a number of angles:

  • I anticipate that it will offer full integration with Google Analytics & DFA in the future
  • Base cost – It’s free – and most other solutions (with the exception of OpenTag) are paid solutions – even OpenTag has a cost for high volume users.
  • On Going Price – There is no per impression (CPM) cost
  • Swift Development Cycle – It will be continued to be developed to include new functionality for a number of leading reporting platforms (Eg. Omniture) – It has launched with the below (all Google) tag templates as standard:GTM Tag Templates
  • Versatility – A bit of a hack that we played with while we had access to the tool in beta was setting up multiple tags to load within a page – it didn’t work for all elements, however, one can experiment to use the inclusion tag to call in additional code through the Asynchronous Inclusion tag.Multiple GTM Containers
  • The security, integrity and validity of data should be improved through loading through any inclusion tag. As is well documented – it is easy for anyone to destroy your Google Analytics data by including your GA UI in their own website – the fix is pretty simple through using filters correctly in GA, but the tag solution allows you to chose to fire individual tags on a per page basis. It would be possible for someone to take individual conversion codes (Mediamind/Atlas/Adwords/Floodlight) and include them on their page – but it would be quite a hassle.
  • Site Speed – As with any Asynchronous inclusion or container tag, site speed should be improved, as should Ux and content load speed.

The only downsides that we experienced using GTM were that when using Clicktale, they require a document.write function within the code – a feature currently blocked (for security grounds we believe). This code is we believe to distinguish between http:// and https:// pages, and we simply removed it, as we only have http:// pages on the Reprise Media Australia website.

Overall experience with GTM was very positive – I will be migrating to it in the coming weeks – I may leave SearchEverywhere on the current QuBit solution as a side by side test of the two platforms going forward, but at the point of launch, I have nothing but positive feedback on the product.

It will be interesting to see if eConsultancy update their inclusion/container tag buyers guide/overview of a few months ago.


Google Developer Day Sydney 2011 #gdd2011

(Live Blog-ish)

Day at Google Developer Day at Sydney Exhibition Centre 2011.

The event overview

Session #1 – Making Your Web Apps Accessible Using HTML5 and ChromeVox

Looking at web accessibility – with HTML5

“Think about using the web without activating the page with a mouse”

Google has build a screen reader designed for Chrome regardless of platform – ChromeVox

Session #2 – Bleeding Edge HTML5

Incredible opportunities for pre-rending and page visibility through HTML5.

WebIntents – Framework

WebRTC for HTML5 Real Time Communication

Programatic full screen API in HTML5 – Full Screen API

Web Audio API: W3C Working Spec