Monthly Brandtech Blend – May 2022

Home Blends & Trends 6 May 2022

What’s happening in the brandtech ecosystem this month?

Read the latest on Elon Musk’s Twitter buyout deal; read more on the Big Tech’s rocky start to 2022 and get the latest on the trans-Atlantic data flow agreement.

Musk to control Twitter: good news or bad news for marketers?

Following weeks of negotiations, Twitter’s board announced on 25 April that they had approved Elon Musk’s buyout deal for $44 billion. This deal, which should be completed later this year, has been greeted with mixed-feelings: Musk is not only the richest man in the world, but also a strong advocate of free speech. What would the consequences of the deregulation of free speech be on Twitter? This is the question that many marketers are considering. The main concerns are around brand safety and suitability – as there had been with YouTube and Facebook when brands saw their content next to unsuitable material. In addition, advertisers will want to see whether the number of Twitter users diminishes. 

For others, however, Musk is ‘a maverick and a magician’ whose innovative style could produce new opportunities and higher advertising returns – though Musk may introduce a subscription-type model for businesses. 

Because of these mixed reactions to the news, social media expert Dr Karen Freberg believes that many brands will ‘wait and see’ before making serious decisions regarding their marketing strategy in relation to Twitter. 

For more details regarding the marketing reactions to the news, read The Drum, The Drum and TechCrunch.

A rocky 2022 for the Big Tech giants?

Nasdaq reported its biggest drop in April since the financial crisis in 2008. With inflation in the US hitting its highest level in 40 years, the war in Ukraine, in addition to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Big Tech giants are facing unprecented challenges. And the remainder of the year does not seem promising.

Whilst c-level executives at Amazon pointed to labour shortages in China and high fuel prices, to name a few, Meta cited the global regulatory risks as its biggest obstacle, “as the rules that are governing the internet are being rethought and rewritten”, explained Sheryl Sandberg (COO, Meta). Apple, on the other hand, did not perform as poorly as its big tech counterparts, though did reiterate it was not immune to supply-chain disruptions, partly due to strict pandemic lockdowns in China.

However, they have rarely shied away from obstacles thrown their way. In fact, growth in enterprise spending is strong within the tech giants, as they now seem to be focusing on their Cloud divisions as an answer to many of these challenges.

Read more about it in the Financial Times, MarketWatch and abc News.

What’s next for the US-EU data transfer agreement?

Following on the breaking news that the EU and the US had reached an agreement on trans-Atlantic data flows back in March, details on how this framework will actually work has yet to be unveiled. 

Several obstacles could stand in the way of the smooth process of the agreement, leading to internationally-operating companies in endless doubt. Whilst the European Commission avoids defining a precise timeline for the new EU-U.S. data transfers deal, some imply that everything could be finalized by the end of the year. 

So what exactly is going on behind closed doors? The European Commission and the US Government have to focus on translating the data flow agreement, which until now is just ‘in principle’, into concrete legal documentation. Knowing that the adoption of the Privacy Shield took 5 months to process, we can assume that the trans-Atlantic data flow agreement is not to be expected any time soon.

Watch this space!

Read more about it in The Drum and Tech Crunch.

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