Throughout the recent iMedia Video Summit, there were many mentions about penetration, reach, targeting, disruption and scale, but the discussions about actual audience experiences or emotional connections were limited. The question pertaining to what the user would get out of the impressions was usually answered with a reading of stats, samplings and other tidbits, but nothing conveying the emotional connection – no matter how hard that is to quantify. Even in the section with the creatives shown, there were some cool looking things and some stats. But many didn’t marry the the impressions/penetration numbers with the user experience to enable us to delve deeper into what the benefit of the perfect storm of good placement and good creative. Just yesterday, there were a couple of announcements that related to the same ideal for mobile – additional inventory available for reaching consumers with the question of the user’s experience. Because of the user experience related to these platforms, should these mobile bits of ad inventory be leveraged?
Ipsos recently posed the questions to consumers whether they would prefer to receive SMS messages to their mobile or emails to the in-box. 75% said they would prefer the latter. It used to be more of a legal issue as people had to pay for each SMS message they received or sent. Therefore, companies could find themselves in trouble as users were effectively paying to receive their spam. Now that many mobile providers offer unlimited packages for text and then cap their access to data before charging more, some might think its better to send SMS messages. The thing is, that while there might be a cost difference for the consumer in the free text/limited data model above, the real question comes down to user experience and preferences. SMS is more intrusive and is the norm for getting communications from friends – not from businesses.
Courtesy of Conduit
Along the same lines, Conduit has announced their new product that allows for graphic – and even app – placements on mobile lock-screens. Currently, they are just touting the availability for Android phones through a downloadable App. The future could see opportunities to provide free phones in exchange for this type of inventory being locked to the phone. Other than that, I would be hard-pressed to see there being a demand to download these just so one could have ads pushed to them whenever they go to unlock their screen. The exception might be if the user can select something like a sports app that shows their team’s scores at the onset. Currently, the only thing similar for most people is when they see SMS messages easily. That functionality is generally seen as a benefit to the user – will ads be felt in the same way?
In both, the consideration clearly needs to be focused on the end-user. There may be situations that are perfect for serving out advertising using this type of inventory. It could just depend on what you’re pushing out. There might also be a high risk factor to turning people off. Interestingly, in the Ipsos study, they found that there are some markets that would absolutely prefer to receive SMS messages rather than emails.
Ultimately, it’s not about how you put it out there. It’s about your audience and how they would most want to accept the message. You might have the coolest or most beautiful execution ever, but if the audience perceives it as being too invasive, you’ve lost. Just because you’ve got some open space to tout some wares doesn’t mean that you should jump on it.
Posted in Core
Tagged Advertising, Android, App, Conduit, iMedia Video Summit, Innovation, Ipsos, Lock-Screen, Marketing, Media, Mobile, SMS, Strategy, Text Messaging
The following campaign blurb was really exciting until the third line where it describes throwing a consumer on the top of a van:
The makers of Stride gum will go to extreme lengths to have consumers upgrade to Stride 2.0. Stride’s CEO, a human billboard at a mall, accosts a consumer unwilling to upgrade his gum. The CEO hops on a skateboard and chases the young man throughout the mall, eventually catching him and throwing him atop a waiting van. After switching the gum, the CEO hops into the van, driven by snowboarder Shaun White.
Stride is usually pretty good at being ahead of the curve technology-wise (incorporating color QR codes early-on) so I was assuming they were doing the same here. The thing is, it was all just in a video created by JWT NEW YORK. And it did not happen in a real environment like I was hoping.
I thought they had taken the step that might have been thought of as Science Fiction Fantasy when the billiboards were interacting with consumers in the film, MINORITY REPORT. That fantasy is absolutely doable now with the progress in RFID, displays, bluetooth, wi-fi and cloud-computing. You can see elements of it in place in Japan and you will see more of it here when Apple incorporates RFID in iPhone 5.
Companies have made good use of RFID on a limited scale for marketing with the strongest example being the Israel Coca-Cola Village event last Summer that incorporated Facebook. That experience made it simple, immediate and cool to share socially, but there are so many opportunities to build a phenomenal narrative and emotional connection with consumers in the near future.
In simplest terms, imagine that the Stride video was cut into pieces so that consumers could feel that they were the ones being followed through a mall like the Culver City Westfield – where the video was actually filmed. As the user with an RFID transmitter passed by the specific displays, the videos could be presented progressively - taking them through the narrative. Certainly, within the next 6-9 months, those folks who have the RFID transmitter would be the most likely to like and engage with the guy pestering them – they just don’t seem like the types who would get annoyed by it. As part of the experience, there would hopefully be kiosks that allow interaction – whether just posting to FB or registering to get a coupon sent to their email or SMS.
This really is not so far in the future – with a number of groups already developing the technology. It just takes a strong advertiser with the correct target audience (like Stride is going after) to pull the trigger smartly. It can be done on a small scale in strategically placed locations. But, don’t forget to get all your ducks in a row to have your PR and Digital teams ready to pounce and leverage all the buzz, video, etc to turn it into something much bigger than a local execution.
Also, don’t forget to credit Scarlet Strategic with the idea. Better yet, come to us and we’ll execute the whole thing for you!
Posted in Core
Tagged Apple, Bluetooth, Consumers, Displays, Experience, Facebook, iPhone 5, JWT New York, MINORITY REPORT, Narrative, PR, RFID, Scarlet Strategic, SMS, Strategy, Stride, Stride 2.0, Wifi