Welcome to the July 20th edition of our 5 for Friday digital marketing round-up series. With tons of stories filling our feeds this week, we had a rough time narrowing our picks to those you'll find below!

New Google Partners Program Sets Sites on Data and Measurement

Google has introduced a new partners program aimed at giving advertisers access to a broader range of data options for tracking and measurement purposes. Announced by Babak Pahlavan, Senior Director of Product Management, Analytics Solutions and Measurement, the new offering is powered by more than 20 verified companies including comScore, Integral Ad Science, Nielsen, Neustar, Oracle and MOAT. Areas of specialization -- which will work across advertising products like Google Marketing Platform (including Display and Video 360 and Search Ads 360), Google Ads, and YouTube, include viewability, reach, brand safety, brand lift, sales lift, app attribution and marketing mix modeling. "With trust and transparency at its foundation," writes Pahlavan, "Measurement Partners continues our commitment to providing both quality and choice when it comes to measuring performance and helping marketers better understand their customers. Alongside our partners, we'll keep working to establish commonly accepted standards and advanced measurement solutions that help raise the bar for the industry."

Billion-Dollar Brand Uses Artificial Intelligence to Double Conversion Rate

Arguing a strong case for the business-building potential of artificial intelligence (AI), CPG colossus Procter & Gamble recently shared a case study related to one of their biggest brands. Olay, the popular skin care product that sits high atop P&G's roster of billion-dollar brands, started using AI in back in 2016 when it launched the Olay Skin Advisor, a Web-based application that analyzes selfies in order to provide personalized product regimens designed to treat detected problem areas. Using an AI-powered engine and technology that "decides" which product (or combination of products) to recommend, the tool is the latest example of a "retail company that has turned to AI to boost its engagement with users to increase its top line."

AI Tools Coming to Google's Search, YouTube and Maps Properties

Designed to foster healthier eating habits among its customers, Kroger has launched OptUP, a new mobile app that encourages users to "engage in a balanced, holistic approach to self-care." Filled with nutritional information, the app is part of the grocery giant's Wellness Your Way initiative, and is available to through the iTunes and Google Play marketplaces. "OptUP is collaboration among our health, tech, digital and 84.51° teams," said Yael Cosset, Kroger's chief digital officer. "The data-driven app creates a more transparent and educational experience for our customers, continuing our commitment to help Americans shop, eat and live healthier on their terms." Kroger plans to build upon the current experience by "adding more features and greater personalization for specific health needs and preferences."

New Report Sheds (Even More) Light on Millennials' Expectations of Brands

Standing for something isn't the only way to win with millennials. According to a new study, they want values and value. Helmed by researchers Morning Consult, the findings suggest that "there isn't any kind of secret sauce to building brand loyalty;" millennials - just like older consumers - "want reliable, well-priced goods" above all, and look for those that are "high quality," and "trustworthy," from brands that are "loyal to customers. The survey, which was based on interviews conducted with 2,202 young adults, also included a list of "most loved" brands. Those cited included YouTube, Google, Netflix, Amazon, Sony, Nike, Home Depot, Starbucks, Dove and Dollar Tree.

Rival Retailers Co-Opt Prime Day Buzz to Spike Sales

Technical issues and 404s aside, early reports indicate that Amazon's fourth annual Prime Day was a smashing success, contributing to the company's biggest ever sales day. Besting sales generated on Cyber Monday and Black Friday, Prime members ordered more than 100 million products, with Fire TV Sticks, Alexa Voice Remotes and Echo Dots named "best-sellers." According to Adobe, the event - which is now seen as the kickoff of the back-to-school shopping season - also gave the broader e-commerce sector a boost, with Target, WalMart, Kohl's, ebay, Macy's and others cashing in with offers and incentives of their own.
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