Transmedia – Opportunity or Trend??

Most recently marketers and publishers have been buzzing about the impending demise of TV and print. Some have heralded cord cutters as the new breed of viewers, who took the first stab at completely disconnecting from TV and instead relying on the Netflix and Amazons of the world. Some have even said that its cord switchers, those who oscillate between  TV and online. Forrester Research went so far as to predict TV’s demise by 2016, when advertisers will spend almost $77 billion online, comprising 35% of overall ad spending. While, highly likely I am a bit weary of this statistic, I don’t doubt this will eventually happen but probably not this soon.

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I dont always watch commercials but when I do its Dos Equis

I have a confession to make, I skip ads. That’s right, I often leave the room after skipping the episode right to the end of the digital episode  and then come back to watch it all in one go without the pesky ads.

But every now and then there are a few commercials where I will actually sit and watch, rather than finding something to kill those 30-60 seconds that feel like eternity. Few advertisements have caught the attention of the public, target audience and advertising world as Dos Equis – The Most Interesting Man in the World campaign.

If viewing the commercial for the first time, one might think this is a  Whiskey or Cognac commercial, but you would be wrong. Its beer.

Dos Equis’s brand spokesperson/symbol is a gray-bearded man engaging in a series of adventurous pursuits: close-combat sparring, jumping off a plane in a kayak, piloting a motorboat full of beauty-pageant winners, lifting two nurses simultaneously at a party.  He lives vicariously through himself. He is the most interesting man in the world.

While, most campaigns rarely last a few years. The most interesting man in the world campaign has been running since 2007. Of course what really sticks about this ad is the tag line. “I don’t always drink beer,” he says, “but when I do, I prefer Dos Equis. Stay thirsty, my friends.”

The brand certainly took a bold approach to advertising in the beer category, which typically targets 20-30 year old men with humor laden ads featuring their peers. Well for one the advertising clearly makes an impact. The grainy spots, mix humor with old world charm and charisma. I would even go so far as to call this an aspirational brand play, with a focus on standing apart from the frat boy advertising. This truly an integrated marketing campaign with TV spots, print, interactive, out-of-home (OOH) and event marketing components.

Now I don’t always watch commercials but when I do its Dos Equis.

So what do you think of the Dos Equis campaign? Do you find it odd that the brand spokes person is so divergent from the target audience?

Video Advertising and its growing role in the Online Display Industry

The saying “a picture is worth a thousand words” has never been more true in marketing than today. This old expression not only highlights the effectiveness of pictures to capture our imagination but also its ability to communicate ideas succinctly. So it’s not very surprising that video is fast becoming a driving force in the online advertising industry.

Growth in display advertising dollars has prompted eMarketer to double its ad growth projections. According to projections, overall the market for display advertising is expected to grow at 20.2%, overtaking search to become the largest online ad spending category by 2015. One of the key factors driving this surge is the move towards video based advertising, with its share of pie expected to grow from 19.4% in 2011 to 35.9% in 2014, while Rich Media and Banner Ads are expected to moderately, by steadily, decline.So why are advertisers moving dollars from the once trusty search and banner advertising to video?

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The memory pill – Multiplatform Advertising

I came across an interesting piece of news regarding ESPN, on Advertising Age yesterday. What was particularly interesting is its plans to launch more cross-platform / multi platform ad units.

As part of this initiative, ESPN will distribute its sports content on multiple platforms – and they have the stats to prove it might just work in attracting more eyeballs and shoring up recall rates. Approx. 2.2 million interact with the ESPN app every day, and its live-streaming service has attracted 50 advertisers. ESPN is especially counting on Nielsen’s efforts to measure iPad video viewing that will allow it to convince advertisers to extend campaigns across multiple platforms by showing it the numbers.

While most statistics readily available online are relatively dated, it does show that multi platform advertising, offering increased frequency (number of times a viewer is exposed to an advertising), results in higher conversion ratesclick for details. According to a Nielsen study, simultaneously surfing the web and watching TV is getting more and more common. In 2009, 12.8% of Super Bowl viewers and 8.7% of Oscar viewers simultaneously browsed the Internet, but in 2010, that number shot up to 14.5% and 13.3%, respectively. So it’s no surprise that ESPN and I imagine most/more media companies are likely to push or rather recommend multi platform campaigns to their advertisers.

In fact, IBM has developed a tool for media networks to develop an effective media mix and leverage multi platform advertising. IBM® Cognos® is a cross-platform advertising transformation and analytics solution that can help firms turn unstructured data into usable business information, aiding marketers to figure out how best to invest.

My perspective: Consumers of media are inundated with messages, and most know how to ignore advertising (whether getting a snack during the commercial break, ignoring the banner advertising on web pages, and hitting the forward button on the DVR). Multi platform advertising helps ensure that the advertisers message is put in front of the right audience several times so they can actually remember the campaign.