Walmart's ad execs to know, hot DTC companies, iHeartMedia breaks hearts

Walmart shopper

Hello!

We've been tracking Walmart's efforts to challenge Amazon's ad business. Walmart's ad business is estimated to be just a fraction of Amazon's, so it's banking on its physical stores and the sales data they generate to set itself apart. It's also amassed a team of people from agency, brand, and media backgrounds to lead the push, as Lauren Johnson detailed here.

Advertisers are eager for a company to challenge Amazon, which is now the third-largest digital-advertising company behind Google and Facebook, but Target, Best Buy, and Kroger are also getting into advertising as their retail businesses struggle to compete with Amazon.

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Meanwhile, the direct-to-consumer craze is still capturing readers' attention. VCs believe there's still plenty of growth in startups that are seizing on the health and wellness trend and taking advantage of product categories that have lagged in innovation.

As for media, 2020 is shaping up to be the year of audio, with investors seeing a lot of opportunity in paid podcasts.
Five investors told us which companies they're betting on, from TuneIn to Wondery, and why.

Here are other great stories from media and advertising. (Not a BI Prime subscriber? You can read them all and more by subscribing here.)

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Meet the power-player execs running NBCU's Peacock, Comcast's big bet to challenge Netflix and rule ad-supported streaming
NBCUniversal introduced its big streaming TV play, Peacock, an ad-supported service that will have free and paid tiers. During the investor presentation, between bits by "Saturday Night Live" alum like Tina Fey and Seth Meyers, the key executives who are leading the upcoming service came into view.

Read the WPP pitch deck that lays out the biggest ad holding company's plans to return to growth
Patrick Coffee got ahold of a pitch deck where WPP execs laid out their plans to turn around the holding company, but analysts had mixed reactions. Morningstar said its overall outlook on WPP remained positive. Bank of America downgraded its rating to "underperform."

Internal Tesla marketing document reveals how the company tried to position itself as a lifestyle brand that makes the world's best cars
Tesla doesn't do traditional advertising and is known for its secrecy, so this internal brand positioning document created for Tesla gives a rare peek into how the car company thinks about itself.

Media

We talked to 12 laid-off iHeartMedia employees about its recent wave of job cuts, which they said sacrificed local radio and caught many totally off guard
"I hope the best for the company's and radio's future, but I'm afraid this move will prove damaging to the emotion that makes radio successful, to the culture and soul of the industry," said one laid-off employee.

Bloomberg Media is launching a new brand, Bloomberg Green, that aims to be the 'definitive' source on capitalism and climate change
Bloomberg saw climate change as being of growing concern to clients of its parent company's core business.

A college TikTok influencer with 1.6 million followers explains how much money she makes - and her 3 main sources of income
While not in class, Cosette Rinab makes money through brand promotions, music integrations, and livestreaming.

3 Pinterest influencers break down how much money they make for sponsored pins - and how that compares to Instagram
Pinterest is usually not the first place that brands go to run sponsored content, but Pinterest has its own creators with millions of followers and evergreen content that can drive traffic for an influencer for years.

Exclusive FREE Slide Deck: 40 Big Tech Predictions for 2019 by Business Insider Intelligence

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