04/09/15: Maker Studios signs Mr.Kate; Netflix still winning over Amazon Prime subscribers?; Pixability raises $18 million Series C financing round


Good morning. It’s Thursday April 9, 2015, and this is your first early morning digital briefing.


Maker Studios
signed lifestyle expert Kate Albrecht, aka Mr. Kate, to its multi-channel network. Maker and Mr. K will work together on original content initiatives across platforms. Albrecht is known for content such as Kate’s Take and OMG We Bought a House series; a lifestyle blog covering home, fashion and beauty; a Mr. Kate e-commerce platform; licensing deals with major retailers such as Lamps Plus; and guest appearances on The TODAY Show and The Nate Berkus Show.
PBS Digital Studios
and NOVA are digging into the latest and most disgusting in its series Gross Science, which launched yesterday. In two-to-three minute videos, the 40-episode YouTube series will include topics that range from the smell of diseases to the death of the Dragon Worms. “This is one of the grossest shows we’ve ever encountered, and we couldn’t be more delighted!” PBS Digital Vice President Don Wilcox said.
CBS and Shaftesbury digital studio Smokebomb Entertainment unveiled the online interactive series Murdoch Mysteries: The Infernal Device. New chapters of the mystery will come out weekly through May 16. The TV series, Murdoch Mysteries, boasts 64,000 likes on Facebook and more than 60,000 followers for the series and its cast on Twitter.
Join us on Thursday, April 23 at Astor Center in NYC as we honor those who excel in digital content, marketing, advertising, social media, and online at the Top Women in Digital reception. These dynamos have helped clear a path in what is still a relatively young industry and Cynopsis Digital is proud to shine a spotlight on them! View the honorees and register at: http://cynopsis.com/event/2015twd/ 


Video ad buying and marketing tech company Pixability closed an $18 million Series C financing round led by Jump Capital and Edison Partners. Existing investors Point Judith Capital and Quad Graphics also contributed, which brings Pixability’s total funds to $28 million. The additional capital will be used to expand the company’s patent-pending ad buying and video marketing tech platform, international sales, partnerships and business development. Pixability customers have included brands and agencies such as L’Oréal USA, PUMA, Viacom, Publicis Groupe, Mindshare and Omnicom’s Resolution Media.


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added a feature for advertisers to target native and search mobile ads based on app activity within its Gemini platform. Called Personas, the new feature works with the app analytics tracker Flurry. "If a developer uses tags to track when someone searches for shows in their app, they can create a custom targeting feature," Flurry Vice President, Analytics and Marketing Jarah Euston said.


Americans are more likely to subscribe to Amazon Prime for free two-day shipping than for the tech giant’s Prime Instant Video, according to a new study from Strategy Analytics. The research showed that 63 percent of U.S. Prime subscribers use Netflix compared to 59 percent who used Amazon’s SVOD service. “Amazon is needlessly ‘losing’ users to Netflix when, in fact, it should be eating into their user base,” Strategy Analytics’ Digital Media Analyst Leika Kawasaki said. “One avenue [to correct that] is to entice more people to use Amazon devices, such as the Kindle and Fire TV, as these owners are 10% more likely to use Prime Instant Video regularly. However, this won’t be easy; Amazon has not had the same level of success as Apple in creating a unified ecosystem of device and services.” Other key highlights include:
–      40 percent of U.S. Amazon Prime subs use Netflix only, 36 percent use Prime Instant Video only and 23 percent use both.
–      Less than half (44%) of Amazon Prime subscribers in the U.S. use Prime Instant Video at least once a week, compared to 55% in Germany and 54% in the U.K.
–      Among online U.S. adults not currently subscribing to Amazon Prime, 12 percent are “somewhat likely” to subscribe in the next year, while 4 percent are “very likely” to subscribe. The main reason people won’t subscribe (cited by 53 percent of respondents) is the price is too high.
Social media analytics firm Unruly released the Top Social Video Brands in March 2015, and the results are:
1) Ad Council: 2,637,256 shares; notable campaign A bunch of skeletons kiss, hug, and dance in front of a crowd with 2,637,256; Not listed in top 100 last month.
2) The Collective Project: 2,025,499 shares; notable campaign was Had
the absolute privilege of presenting a brand spanking new 3D-printed bionic Iron Man arm to Alex, the most dapper 7-year-old I’ve ever met
with 2,025,499 shares; not listed in top 100 last month.
3) United Healthcare: 367,685 shares; notable campaign was Our Song Commercial | UnitedHealthcare :60 with 349,579 shares; not listed in top 100 last month.
4) Adidas: 319,899 shares; notable campaign was adidas: Take It with 272,177 shares; ranked #8 in top 100 last month.
5) Disney: 213,876 shares; notable campaign was Oh, boy! with 213,876 shares; ranked #4 in top 100 last month.
6) Castrol: 147,842 shares; notable campaign was Castrol Footkhana: Neymar Jr. v Ken Block with 147,842 shares; not listed in top 100 last month.
7) Android: 145,509 shares; notable campaign was Android: Friends Furever with 139,903 shares; ranked #2 last in top 100 last month.
8) Samsung: 139,858 shares; notable campaign was Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 edge – Official Introduction with 85,562 shares; ranked #53 in top 100 last month.
9) Durex: 131,276 shares; notable campaign was DUREX – #Connect with 113,375 shares; ranked #68 in top 100 last month.
10) Levi’s: 130,553 shares; notable campaign was Introducing Levi’s® 501 CT Jeans (Customised & Tapered) with 130,553 shares; not ranked in top 100 last month.


The HBO Now stand-alone service may have just come out this week, but the idea first made waves when Twitter user Jake Caputo started floating the concept in 2012. To promote HBO Now, the premium cable network revisited those three-year-old tweets, #takemymoneyHBO and Caputo in a video stunt. The vid features some of HBO’s most well-known characters from The Sopranos demanding that Caputo pay up the money he originally offered to HBO. Check it out at www.cynopsis.com/#video.

See you tomorrow,
Jessica Reese  @JMarieReese

Roberta Caploe: Associate Publisher @robertacaploe
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