Friday, February 28, 2014

A digital poster triggered by sound

A very creative use of technology in this Swedish example.  When a train arrives a sensor triggers movement on the digital screen, and hair appears to move!

Full story

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

'Ripper Street' saved by Amazon

This shows how the economic model of TV is changing.

Ripper Street, a BBC1 drama show that was cancelled by the BBC, has been saved by a deal between the BBC, Amazon and the producer Tiger Aspect.  It will be shown first on Amazon, on demand, and on the BBC a few months later.  

This comes in the wake of Netflix original series, of course, but it's notable I think that this is happening in the UK, for a show that is much less high profile in terms of talent than what Netflix is doing.

There are also parallels with the re-commissioning of Family Guy back in 2004, after DVD sales showed what a money-spinner the show could be.  There's no mention of DVD sales this time - the world has moved on.

The announcement comes on the day that Amazon is launching its combined Prime and Streaming service for £49 a year, so the new economics of TV in this case is linked to streaming, ecommerce and all sorts of loss leading and cross subsidy.

But hurrah for the return of Ripper Street!

Monday, February 24, 2014

3 Location-based targeting examples

Three good examples spotted last week:

Mondelez' Stride gum on mapping app Waze - ad appears if person has been static for 3 or so seconds, within a geo-fenced area

“Stride partnered with mobile navigational application Waze last year with a campaign that doled out mobile coupons to consumers that could be redeemed at retailers including Target and Kum & Go.
The pilot last year took place in California and Illinois with some successful initial results that are now being rolled out more broadly.
Per Ms. Moens, the main learning from the Stride pilot program is that there is an ability to influence shopping behavior from mobile, and it is a tactic that the brand will use going forward.
Stride also leveraged rich media takeover ads that automatically pop up when Waze detects that a consumer has been still for three seconds or more within roughly a six mile geofenced location.
According to Jordan Grossman, senior director of sales at Waze, Mountain View, CA, the average click-through rate on a pin button is about .3 percent. Three percent of consumers in Mondel─ôz's campaign clicked through to get directions to a store and were also served a rich media ad.
Going forward, the Stride and Waze campaign is being rolled out a bit to include additional retail locations.”

Heineken uses Foursquare to connect with US fans of the Champions League when they visit certain bars - checkin to get the chance to win prizes, inc a trip to Europe

"Connect your Foursquare account with Heineken for your chance to Match Your Half Ticket daily and win UEFA Champions League signed memorabilia and Heineken prizes. The more you check in, the better your chances to win. (And we’ll create a map that shows the most active fans across the country!)
Fans name their team allegiance so you can see which teams are the most popular across the US, and track the competition between cities. You can also find which local bars and restaurants are popular with each club’s supporters.
One lucky person from the city with the most active fans will win a trip to Europe with two of their friends to see a UEFA Champions League match in person during the 2014-2015 season (courtesy of Heineken.)"

"It goes almost without saying that Pinterest has a massive opportunity to drive e-commerce and offline retail transactions. The question for Pinterest is how deeply it wants to coordinate with retailers. I would argue the more integrated the better for all parties.
There’s quite a significant local opportunity for Pinterest, but that’s really another discussion. For now, you can see the power of this example and being able to direct users to local stores and even specific locations within the store.
This is in many ways the fulfillment of what I’ve been writing about for a decade.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Burberry on WeChat for the #AW14 Runway Show

Burberry, always very innovative in their media use, have created a special way of interacting with their Autumn Winter 2014 runway collection at Lndon Fashion Week:

Because WeChat is a messaging app, not a social network, it's very tailored to the individual.  Burberry's connections on WeChat can send them a message, and get personalised clips and content in return.  It's an automated process, and shows the sorts of things that you can do through messaging that are different to what you would do with social networks.

Full story here (ignore the bit where they describe WeChat as 'a mobile-based social network)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Kidrated - Video Reviews by Kids

A friend Simon, and his partner Natalie, have set up a site and YouTube channel called Kidrated.  It's a site to review London attractions, for kids, by kids.

At present there are 99 videos on the YouTube channel, with more in store to upload in the next few weeks.  The aim is for kids to start making their own - there are tutorials to show you how to - and also 'Mum Reports' where Tiff, the resident mum, reviews things from a parents' perspective.

There are even short film reviews:

The site came about because Simon realised how much of his son's online use use video, and how his son and his friends would rather watch videos than any other sort of content.  (This also ties in with research that I took part in for Tremor Video last summer).

The other thing I like about it is that it's a great example of a local niche site, albeit a very big niche.

Good luck Simon - let's see this take off!

15 Second Recipes on Instagram

I love these!

Bart's fish tales -

& also

See them all here

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Pay with WeChat in a department store

WeChat, the Chinese messaging app owned by Tencent, has signed a deal to allow users to pay with the app in China's Wangfujing department store.

According to Beijing News, via Marbridge Daily,

"According to an e-commerce supervisor with Wangfujing Department Store, the cooperation with Tencent will take two forms:

1. Customers will be able to pay for Wangfujing Department Store merchandise using WeChat Pay at checkout counters and some specialty counters;

2. Customers will be able to select and purchase merchandise through the Wangfujing Department Store public account on WeChat, later visiting an in-store specialty counter to pick up merchandise."

I think that we'll look back on this in a couple of years and wonder why it took so long!

Answers to questions from my Warc Webinar

Last week I presented 5 of my 10 digital trends at a webinar for Warc.  Over a thousand people registered to listen to me, and in addition to answering some questions from David Tiltman from Warc there were lots of questions from people listening in.

The 5 trends I looked at from my main presentation of 10 were:

Smart Devices
Bluetooth Beacons
Location & Local
Actionable Intelligence, and

I didn't get time to answer all of these - and some needed me to do some more research - so here are the answers in italics to the other questions:

Smart devices
Do you think things like google glasses will be embeded in new prescription glasses where there is already a customer base?
Not sure – I think ‘smart glasses’ may turn out to have a pretty small market size
Which company is looking into grafting the technology into the body? – This came from chart 6 of this presentation from PSFK: .  One of the companies they mention is Proteus Digital Health, which is developing technology that can be swallowed in pills:
There is also quite a lot of writing about biomedical engineering, for example using technology harnessed to the human body, but a lot of this seems very theoretical at the moment.

How about fridges that tell you when you're out of certain products?
There are lots of examples of companies proposing things like this – I’m told that every year at CES there’s at least one.  (See this blog for examples: )   I’m pretty sceptical in that I think people like their kitchens to be quite low tech, but if someone makes one that works automatically without people having to scan things in and out, then maybe…

Bluetooth beacons
Beacons at the moment are OpenSource. Do you anticipate any co.s spearheading ad solutions with Beacons, or can we expect a huge slew of ad co.s to be born offering similar solutions?
Maybe.  I don’t think that Apple’s will be, or at least they will retain a lot of control over how people use them

Is this the same as 'bluecasting'?
Yes, similar, and also BlueJacking

How would a "Wowcher" or a "Groupon" type product interact with a bluetooth beacon?
It could work by interacting with an existing Wowcher or Groupon app on your phone, and offering you a very location-specific deal.  The company offering the deal would be able to see redemption in real time, so could turn it off if it became too popular.  Maybe something like ‘First 5 people to get to the store get 50% discount’

If there will be beacons everywhere, won't it become like the email direct marketing? i.e. in the end, people will simply ignore them?
Yes, that would be one danger, and that’s why companies like Apple need to be able to control them, or no one would ever turn their Bluetooth on

What are the advantages of bluetooth beacons over WiFi/geofencing?
I think it would be easier, and more accurate in terms of placing someone in a location

How could a "Wowcher" or a "Groupon" type product best maximise the concept of local?
One example is that a local or national chain could have different offers at different locations, based on its specific sales patterns and types of customer.  E.g. Starbucks in suburb is going to have a different type of customer to Starbucks in a city centre.

In your opinion, does this trend actually provide more interesting opportunities for x-media comms of local-based-services and out-of-home advertising?
Yes, potentially, but it will also involve more work.  Whether the extra work leads to a greater ROI is down to the skill of the marketer, and the quality of the data

Local could be corrupted into not being local any more when one of the big players gets in and dominates. It has happened with radio. The big players will bully their way in as they always do.
I think there will always be small differences between areas, although I accept that the world is more homogeneous than it was 20 years ago

When it comes to strategy for mobile presence most brands hesitate between native apps and web apps. Pros and cons of both? What are the trends on this front for 2014?
It’s a long question!  I can’t really do any better than the pros and cons given here: 
In terms of the trend, I think that for the time being native apps are the best option, given the consolidation into two main operating systems, but in the long run I expect web apps to be best

Actionable intelligence
Simpler question for the blog: are there any examples where actionable intelligence has been able to track cross channel journeys - so you can gauge the ROI on different media in the plan that influenced sales?
Google have done a lot of work on attribution across multiple channels, for example this case study with MAAF in France in 2012 - 
But it’s still very hard, and involves a lot of econometric modelling.  I haven’t seen a follow-up study to show how what they learned improved performance over the next x months!

The dating app Tinder builds on this, it makes it very easy to gain users by allowing them to sign up via facebook. Will we see more companies like this?
Yes – signing up via Facebook is much easier than keying in your own data to set up an account, especially on mobile.  There’s also a dating app, that is trying to use Instagram in the same way

Polarisation suggests aggression. Maybe diversification is a more neutral term?
I don’t think so – polarisation (to me) suggests grouping into different areas (expensive, cheap; long, short), while diversification suggests lots of variety

Can you throw some light on trends related to emerging markets like India ?
I think India’s very interesting because you have a very well educated workforce, and strong links to silicon valley,  but also a very low average income, and so there is lots potential for interesting things to happen.  I’m really not an expert on India though, so I’d recommend following sources like

Have we started moving from the age of multi-channel marketing to the age of multi-eco system marketing? If by this you mean moving from marketing through TV, mobile, web and so on, to marketing through Google, Facebook, iOS and so on, then yes, but we’re probably not quite there yet. 

I choose to deny many requests to allow me to be tracked and wonder if I am missing out on certain useful applications?
I think it depends on how curious you are and how willing you are to compromise your privacy to experiment with things.  I know I’m too lax - [example redacted to stop myself compromising too much more of my provacy] – but I think there’s a happy medium.  I think in this industry you should be willing to play with things, and that usually involves a degree of openness.  You can always put fake details in for things though.

Monday, February 10, 2014

The LEGO Advert Break for The LEGO Movie

Last night on ITV a special break had all its ads re-made as LEGO films, as a promotion for The LEGO Movie.

The ads were:

British Heart Foundation
BT Boadband
Premier Inn
... & finally a trailer for The LEGO Movie

Incredibly well done!

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