9 Eye-Opening Digital Marketing Stats From the Past Week

Emirates scores huge win with Casey Neistat; Facebook ads dip

It was an unusually interesting week in digital marketing stats, with some numbers proving to be surprising and others mind-boggling. The following nine data points particularly got our attention.

1. Talk about a ridiculous YouTube win

Emirates, the airline from United Arab Emirates, was fortunate that social media star Casey Neistat created a nine-minute video about his experience in first class on the airline, as he recently flew from Dubai to New York City. The superbly luxurious accommodations included his own private cabin, a cozy bed, a private mini-bar, showering facilities and caviar. This plane ticket costs more than $21,000, and he told Adweek on Friday that he was not financially compensated for the effort. 

His video was published on Sept. 19, but people can't stop watching it—the clip has now been viewed a whopping 23 million times on YouTube. Taking people to the lap of luxury is an old content trick—so maybe Neistat is his generation's Robin Leach.

2. Pinterest booms

According to social marketing company Kinetic, Pinterest advertisers spent around 3.5 times more on the platform in the third quarter compared to the prior quarter.

3. Facebook dips

IgnitionOne's Q3 study found that Facebook ad spend is down 22 percent because of the gradual elimination of the social network's ad exchange, called FBX, which is being shut down on Nov. 1. FBX, which entails desktop ad retargeting tools, has been winding down since May.

4. AI interest isn't superficial

Artificial intelligence is all the rage. The latest example is ContentSquare—which counts Best Western, L'Oreal, Unilever and Lacoste as clients—getting $20 million in series B funding. 

Co-headquartered in New York and Paris, ContentSquare employs AI to capture behavioral data for ecommerce and digital marketing.  

5. Undebatable success

Excedrin benefited from 46,000 Twitter mentions on Wednesday during the presidential debate between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, according to Talkwalker. That raw number represents a 3,100 percent increase compared to the prior day. The mentions also constituted a 360 percent jump when comparing the first three days of this week and Monday through Wednesday last week, per the social media analytics player.

How did the brand pull it off? It bought Twitter's promoted trend ad for the debate, while tweeting a handful of times with a clever hashtag—#DebateHeadache.

6. Uber growth

At Vanity Fair's New Establishment Summit, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said that his app has 40 million monthly riders paying an average of $50 for the company's ride-sharing services.

That's approximately $6 billion per quarter, which is roughly $1 billion more in bookings than Uber reported to shareholders for the second quarter. Uber's growth this year has been staggering: A late August story in Bloomberg reported the technology company had $3.8 billion in bookings during Q1. So in just two quarters, ride bookings have jumped 58 percent.

7. Activision is much bigger than Netflix

Speaking of growth, Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick said his company has 500 million monthly active users in 196 countries, claiming that his network of players is five times bigger than Netflix. 

8. $400 million equals confidence

NBCUniversal is investing another $200 million in BuzzFeed, according to Recode. Comcast's TV and movie division is literally doubling down on the digital publisher, after it originally invested $200 million in BuzzFeed 14 months ago.

The confidence shown by NBCUniversal is intriguing, since BuzzFeed has struggled with revenue growth expectations this year. 

9. Mobile elusiveness

Holiday shoppers can be pretty fickle, according to Google's retail-based study being released today. Fickle to the point that 76 percent of shoppers change their mind about which brand to purchase thanks to a Google mobile search. 

UPDATE: This post originally suggested Emirates paid Casey Neistat to create his video.