Advertisers can develop and create inspiring video adverts, but if the timing and delivery of a campaign comes second in the pecking order, they will find the impact of all this effort and creativity is completely lost when the ad goes to air. So how can advertisers enhance the effectiveness of their video ad campaign?
America’s top universities are busy graduating a new crop of highly-skilled scientists, engineers and mathematicians — more than half of them foreign-born — but many of them will not remain in the US after graduation. The fact is, many of our foreign-born students will accept jobs elsewhere because current immigration policy makes it difficult for them to stay and work. How do we solve this problem?
In this interview with iMedia Connection, Stuart Smith talks about using data to drive more effective advertising.
How are brands and agencies making the transition to a model where data takes centre stage?
Data is becoming increasingly central to the delivery of effective marketing. The priority for any brand should be to ensure the business questions are right and then evaluate whether data will help answer those questions. The data isn’t the starting point – only with the right questions can data be molded into valuable insight.
A key priority is to connect data sets and data in isolation to create a strong proposition. Media metrics are a part of the process, but have to be joined robustly to another source, for example, sales data.
Once an evaluation can be undertaken to find out how, one affects the other, then marketers can unlock the ‘gold’. The most significant challenges are often around permission. Many marketers would love to have greater access to their organisation’s customer data for marketing purposes, but sensitivities around personal data are more heightened than ever before. Consumers understand the value of their own data and want to know that this value exchange is a good and relevant one before information is passed to the marketer.
Another challenge is in the area of talent. It’s tough for agencies to grow a data team organically at scale, and agencies can attempt to enhance their data credentials through acquisition or through partnering with the right data companies in the marketplace. For Mediaocean business, we aim to make our platform an open one that can handle the inputs and outputs that result from using an array of data sources.
How is the relationship between brands, agencies and technology providers changing in the quest to deliver targeted and integrated advertising solutions?
Collaboration is key for effective digital marketing. An advertiser would prefer to produce a single brief, so it’s imperative that media and creative agencies, content providers, ad-tech companies and brands all work closely together. The technology available to target consumers is constantly evolving and, from an industry perspective, we need to ensure that the technology we use to plan, manage and measure advertising continues to evolve, we can only do this through collaboration.
The immediate challenge for Mediaocean and our agency partners is to centralise the connection between offline and online media by enabling an open, central platform to connect to the various ad tech, data and supply side companies. This improves the flow of communication and reduces manual workflows in disconnected systems.
Where is the sweet spot in terms of integrating traditional and digital media?
The sweet spot exists wherever the consumer is. Any campaign should start with a detailed understanding of behaviours – not just audience behaviours, but customer and prospect behaviours. What media do your most valuable customers use and when?
What is their path to purchase? How many times do they need to see an ad on TV before going online to find out more or heading to a bricks and mortar store?
Our job at Mediaocean is not to assume to know the answers to these questions, but to enable our agency clients to execute across channels seamlessly so that their clients can reach their customers wherever they are present.
What technologies are you most excited by in terms of helping clients to address the attribution issue?
There are few things more complicated than multi-channel attribution modelling and for marketers to better understand the best performing channels from which they gain their return on investment. I see the challenges falling into three areas.
Firstly, attributing the offline effect of online marketing or advertising is still difficult. So, in other words, how do I know whether a customer who came into my store, called my sales team or simply changed the way they feel about my brand, was inspired to do so by my digital marketing activity?
Secondly, accurately attributing the impact of marketing activity across different devices is also very challenging.
Thirdly, understanding the contribution of each digital channel can be tough, so if I combined social, video, display and organic search components to my digital marketing, how much value do I attribute to each in the run up to that last click?
Technology companies are making great strides in automating improved attribution and analytical capability, but what really excites us at Mediaocean is the ability to combine this information together under one platform.
We are currently in the process of exploring a number of technology, data and system integrations with the intent of allowing agencies and their clients to more easily and effectively access cross channel marketing attribution metrics, which will provide an important context at points where decisions are made.
How do you expect to see media and consumer change shaping the future structure of agencies and media planning workflows?
If we think about the consumer, most people don’t use the word “digital” in relation to their media consumption. Nonetheless, more and more media is being consumed through connected devices and services, and so convergence is a key trend.
In terms of TV and radio, linear viewing is increasingly being supplemented by live streaming, catch-up, on demand, mobile or second screen viewing delivered via internet enabled services. Commuters in London now consume more news on tablets than through printed newspapers and a large proportion of the outdoor ads they are exposed to are supported by what we loosely describe as digital technologies.
Then, of course, social media platforms are jockeying to become the companion of choice to TV and other media, which is another form of convergence. Equally, consumers don’t think of their browsing, search and online purchase activity as “digital”, but these behaviours are crucial for marketers to understand.
It is therefore becoming increasingly important for marketers to effectively address the right audience with integrated campaigns to deliver strong creative and relevant messages to the consumer across channels to influence purchasing decisions.
I was born and raised in Argentina – fútbol country. And as such, the World Cup is something you can't avoid. We would (and we still) wait patiently for the largest sporting event in the world to kick off every four years. You have likely heard the stats, but to give you some context – in 2010, at least 3.2 billion people watched the World Cup around the world. That's roughly 46 percent of the global population! There are very few media events of this magnitude left, where people still gather around the TV – and even the radio in some rural areas – to watch their country's greatest players and athletes battle it out on the field on behalf of their countrymen.
Outside of the competition itself, two of the biggest components that make it possible, media and advertising, have changed profoundly since I watched my first World Cup in 1982. While still requiring major coordination, marketers only had a few options back then: TV, print, out-of-home, and radio. Today any brand – official sponsor or not – has the ability to join the bandwagon across a multitude of media options. And even though the teams haven't walked on the field yet, some of the world's biggest brands have already been battling it out on digital screens.
So I cannot help but wonder how global brands like Coke, Adidas, McDonald's and any of the official sponsors planning a campaign of such magnitude approach this event. How can a brand effectively produce a campaign where its products might actually traverse ALL of the 204 countries where the World Cup will be broadcasted, across all media channels, and audiences?
To triumph at such scale certainly requires intense coordination and intelligence by brands and agencies – everything from managing multinational operations to turning local data into global action. The beginning is certainly all about logistics and balancing global goals with local markets.
But beyond the usual suspects – dialect, cultural sensitivities, local laws and regulations – today's brands must focus on understanding which touchpoints drive engagement for each market. Which channel – TV, mobile, radio, social, etc. – or combination of channels holds weight in each country? And most critically, since we can no longer separate the message from the technology it is delivered on, which devices are used in local markets? Are consumers in South Africa on feature phones or smartphones? Will Italians use a second screen while they watch a match?
Then there is the question of which content is relevant for which region. Most of my fellow Argentinians would have a strong, positive reaction to a campaign featuring Diego Maradona. Most Americans – not anywhere near as heavily invested in football/soccer – might even be bored, asking their buddies, "Who is this guy?" (Hear the collective gasp of Argentinians everywhere.) In other words, in one region the content could easily go viral, but in another it would likely fall flat. The amount of money you spent on both regions could be equal, but guess where you got more out of your media dollars?
Then there is the sharing of that content, which is a phenomenon all marketers are looking to crack the code for all around the world. There are hundreds of tools that consumers use to absorb their content from that device. Since content is the key to campaigns in today's media landscape (we'll get into that shortly), knowing how and where to deliver that campaign before you start is critical. Do Koreans share through Facebook, or do they prefer Cyworld?
Although the Super Bowl has been able to evolve each year with new mediums and content sharing tools, this year's World Cup will be a new playing field for advertisers by way of touchpoints many of them didn't even exist at the last games in 2010! Even FIFA will have an official hashtag for the first time. Will any brand manage to score another Super Bowl Oreo moment?
What World Cup advertisers should have learned from modern "campaigns" like Oreo's is that content is still king. But if that isn't enough proof for you, just take a look at the views and shares for this campaign, or this one, and you can see the power of reaching peoples' hearts. These campaigns are proof that consumers – all of us – don't hate advertising, we simply just don't like bad creative. In the era of big data and calculated decisions, compelling creative can propel your campaign to the world stage for maximum exposure. And the payoffs seem to be well worth it: a beautiful campaign could transform a brand into a worldwide powerhouse.
All in all, Brazil 2014 will be a completely new experience for fans around the world given the media tools at our fingertips today. On the same token, it is also a whole new game for marketers and established brands, who may even see their efforts get trumped by newcomers. So who will take gold home? We will find out on July 13. I know I'll be watching.