Senator Barack Obama visited Google's headquarters nearly one year ago to announce his innovation agenda, speak with Google CEO Eric Schmidt, and take questions from Google employees. Senator John McCain also participated in a similar session as part of the company's Candidates@Google series.
Karen O, lead singer for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, is like a modern Siouxsie Sioux in this video for the band’s single, “Zero,” off of the new album It’s Blitz!
There’s plenty of chatter about Microsoft’s new viral video. Great. You got some people to watch it, and with this post, even more. At a technical level, the spot is working (pun intended). At a brand level, I am at a loss.
Broken Social Scene’s hugely talented founding member, Brendan Canning, busted out on his own in 2008 with his album Something for All of Us. The Brothers Gibbsian track “Love is New” features Canning using his walk, with very little time to talk.
Seth Godin makes a great case for not using Twitter... if you’re Seth Godin. Can you be the best at Twitter in your little world? Maybe. Can you be the best in your world at Twitter, Flickr and Facebook? Probably not. Seth’s advice: find your niche. Be the best at it. Don’t spread yourself too thin. Create a brilliant little product, service, or idea that people want to talk about. Then craft a compelling story that helps them do just that.
MIT’s Pattie Maes and her sidekick Pranav Mistry set out to bridge the divide between the real and digital world. Their goal: leverage the vast amounts of data currently living on the web and in our social networks to aid real-time, real-world decision-making. The results of their work, demonstrated at TED, are jaw-dropping.
Glen Kertz has people excited about pond scum. His company’s algae biofuel system boasts staggering numbers. An acre of corn can produce 18 gallons of oil per year. Valcent’s algae: 20,000+ gallons per acre per year. The vertical system currently under development promises to push that number even higher, using a fraction of the water and energy needed to grow traditional biofuel crops.
Surgeon and writer Sherwin Nuland makes a brilliant connection between medicine and language. “If there’s one operation for a disease,” he explains, “you know it works. If there are 15 operations, you know that none of them work.” Such it is, he suggests, with the many definitions of the word hope. In this talk, Nuland traces the latest political and cultural buzzword to its IndoEuropean root to find its original meaning. Studying the etymology of this powerful concept, he proposes, is the only way we can hope to make sense of it.
For Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, being the earth’s most customer-centric company means more than giving customers what they want. It requires inventing “on their behalf,” moving beyond dialog to predict future needs and develop the necessary skills to meet them. Such action begot Kindle, and through new collaboration with IBM, is moving cloud computing forward.
Love’m or hate’m (please hate them), the brand managers at Axe have their formula, and they’re sticking to it. Sophomoric? Check. Misogynistic? Check. Aggressively Sexual? Check. Perfectly aligned with their audience of high school boys and socially delayed college students? Check mate.
It’s hard to overstate how off-target TeleFlora’s Valentine’s Day spot is, both in concept and context.
This week we’ve discussed a few Super Bowl standouts, good and bad. But what of the ads that didn’t make the cut? PETA doesn’t shy away from extreme antics, from flinging paint to flashing skin. This year’s Super Bowl submission was no different. Borrowing a page from Victoria’s Secret, a few of PETA’s leggy veggies turned up the heat and brought some serious steak-free sizzle.
For those who think TeleFlora’s verbally abusive bouquet delivered the most offensive lines of the Super Bowl, behold the purple prose of Heineken’s Warrior...
This morning, February 3, Denny’s is treating America to breakfast. Seriously.
Last Friday's video, Johnny Cash's cover of "Hurt," demonstrated how a powerful voice can transform the meaning of a song. Cash told the story in a way Trent Reznor could not. This week, we look at Duran Duran’s cover of Public Enemy’s “911 Is A Joke.” Duran Duran tells the story in a way Flavor Flav could not: like pathetic posers.
A new campaign from Diet Pepsi is an odd departure for a brand long-associated with hip celebrity. No Sean Combs or Jackie Chan here. No dramatic red carpet entrances or Hollywood magic. Just a young professional and a sobering dose of reality.
“Hurt” was first released on Nine Inch Nails' 1994 album, The Downward Spiral . In 2002, legendary singer/songwriter Johnny Cash partnered with producer Rick Rubin to cover Reznor’s bleak account of addiction and isolation for American IV: The Man Comes Around. The Man in Black’s gritty sound and decades of struggle and pain transformed the song into a dark, desperate retrospective. Cash died soon after.
The third spot in a series of new Geico ads featuring 'Kash," a googly-eyed stack of bills representing the savings at Geico, premiered Tuesday. When asked about the inspiration for the character, Martin Agency creative director Mike Lear explained that "Geico loves to talk about savings... We just dumbed it down to the most basic thing in the world, 'I want more money.'"
IDEO CEO Tim Brown discusses freedom from judgement and the importance of play to the creative process.
New York Times food writer Mark Bittman gives a brief history of eating in America, and how too much meat, too few plants, too much fast food, and too little home cooking started killing us.
Many of America’s greatest achievements were born of our bleakest eras. This week we look at how constraints inspire innovation... Google Vice President of User Experience Marissa Mayer explains how starting inside the lines can inspire great ideas.
As debate over the Detroit bailout rages on, we look back at the Big Three’s record of foresight and innovation: The 80s. A rejection of the free-spirited 70s and celebration of conspicuous consumption epitomized by the "Greed is Good" mantra of Wall Street's Gordon Gekko. Ford Motor Co’s Mercury Cougar is ahead of the zeitgeist in this '78 spot for the XR-7.
When Aaron Sorkin cleverly integrated the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line throughout the 2001 Thanksgiving episode of The West Wing, awareness of the free service skyrocketed. The banter between Sheen’s know-it-all Bartlet and the Butterball representative remains a fan favorite.
Santogold, a.k.a. Santi White, is a singer and songwriter currently based in Brooklyn. Her self-titled debut solo album was released earlier this year to much critical acclaim.
The post-agency age is upon us. With remarkable speed and effectiveness, technologies and consumer preferences have coalesced, forcing a broad and deep cultural demand for direct, honest relationships. The go-between agent is less relevant than ever before, and the global financial crisis is likely the final blow to the inefficient and long-suffering agency structure. Winning in the post-agency age will require these new priorities.
Regardless of your political persuasion, it is difficult to deny that brand Obama made participating in the political process cool again. MC Yogi is just one of many who took Obama’s voice, messages and logo, mashed it up and made it their own. The result: a malleable, inspiring brand that was expressed in myriad unique ways by the people, for the people.
Instagram is starting to look every bit the billion dollar company Facebook made it out to be in 2012. The photo sharing app hit some major milestones in 2013, most notably the addition of video, posting of its first advertisements, and the recent roll out of Instagram Direct, a private messaging feature that allows users to share photos with individuals or small groups with in the app.
With just 15 seconds, you'd think it'd be difficult to create visually compelling videos, but more users are getting the hang of it every day. Artists, athletes, journalists and musicians are all using Instagram to express themselves in fascinating ways.
Does it seem like your social feeds are jammed with your friends’ latest baby video or vacation pictures? Helped by Snapchat and Instagram, image-sharing has increased significantly in the past year, with more than half of Internet users now posting their own pictures and videos online, a new Pew Internet Project report reveals.
Good news for Instagram's plans to introduce advertising: Branded videos are proving to be quite popular on the social network.
Despite Instagram’s massive following and its new video feature, many brands have committed to Vine.
When a plane crashes or a protest turns violent, television crews speed to the scene. But they typically do not arrive for minutes or even hours, so these days photos and videos by amateurs — what the news industry calls “user-generated content” — fill the void.
Hey, I just heard of this great new tool for marketers called Vine … oh wait, it’s dead.
Owned by Twitter and launched in January, Vine is to short videos what Instagram is to snapshots: You shoot, edit, and share clips, all through a mobile app.
Social news site and meme aggregator Buzzfeed is partnering with CNN and YouTube to create a new online-video channel called “CNN BuzzFeed” that will be unveiled later today.
Beautiful design is a key element of online business in this era, which has resulted in more images and video all across the Web.
YouTube recently celebrated its eighth birthday, reminding us that less than a decade ago we had no access to cute cat videos, screaming goat clips and viral trends such as the Harlem Shake.
The sharing impulse is an increasingly important tool for marketers. These recent examples of successful virality foreground what makes a social person want to click and pass along.
Small publishers taking it on the chin as they deal with OCR challenges
In the pre-digital days there really wasn’t a need for brands to produce more than the ads that went on traditional media. Now they need to produce an almost constant stream of fresh content to keep up with digital channels and social media.
The proliferation of media-able devices in our households (PCs, smartphones, tablets) is leading to a division of our attention when it comes to traditional television viewing and programming.
The YouTube One Channel, as it's called, gives users the ability to slap a big header (called Channel Art) on the top of their channels and to have a video trailer which starts playing for all visitors who aren't yet subscribed to the channel.
When Instagram joined Facebook last April, a race to crown a “Instagram for Video” revved into full throttle. With Instagram's $1 billion price tag fresh in their minds, investors rushed to fund or acquire a piece of what seemed to be the next step in the evolution of social media.
Sixty-three percent of video streaming on mobile phones happens when folks are in their homes, per research from the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). And according to the IAB, mobile videos are watched during primetime television hours more than any other time of the day.
NDN has grown because online publishers can’t get enough video content (and the ad dollars that come with it). The company's selling point is that it provides the platform and video content and sells the advertising at no cost to its partner publishers—while giving content creators wider distribution for their video content.
I would argue that we have yet to see a startup nail ANY part of the video experience except for sharing. Apps in this category include Viddy, SocialCam, Klip, Chill, Vodio, and more. To me, this is classic Silicon Valley just building something they’re comfortable building: platforms, social graphs, viral hooks, blah, blah, blah.
With ever-increasing YouTube lunch breaks and Vimeo dinner dates, online video is becoming a constant companion--one that every brand is rushing to take advantage of. Follow these five tips so you don't turn off would-be viewers.
Those "Will It Blend?" videos of some guy throwing an iPhone in a blender and the instantly viral Shakeweight ads have millions and millions of views. Your company's new "viral" spot has 500. Here's what separates great branded video content from the flops.
All kinds of media companies are trying to crack the social TV code -- and those that produce live sports are no exception. The traditional TV platform will persist at least as well in sports as in any other genre, Mr. Bowman suggested. "People will always watch sports on the largest screen they can find," he said. The second screen is just complementing viewers' traditional experience.
'The Guardian' huffed and puffed and made one of the year's best ads. Did it sell papers? Newspapers aren't known for their compelling self-promotion. Yet in the grip of their existential crisis, that's what they need—a riveting argument for their own value, evolution and place in the cultural conversation. In late February, London ad agency Bartle Bogle Hegarty delivered just that for The Guardian.
Every day, more and more brands are creating compelling, original content, and the medium of choice for these initiatives is Web video. The latest example is Ford Motor Company’s collaboration with eco-focused media company SHFT.com, “The Big SHFT: 10 Innovators Changing Our World”, a documentary series profiling industry professionals who are trying to transform their industries with eco-friendly sustainability solutions.
One Romanian man's tribute to the end of the space shuttle era may leave you slightly misty-eyed.
MTV has introduced a mobile app in Europe that fits somewhere on between HBO Go and social-TV platforms, letting users watch the network's shows on demand and invite friends to chat. Don't Expect a U.S. Version Anytime Soon.
The big question for anyone in television is how to get in front of - rather than be trampled by - the onslaught of seminal change coming from a multitude of places. This year's fall television season unfolds against an increasingly connected world and consumer indifference to how and where they access network fare. Many will access the programs they want to see streaming online from network Web sites and third parties, such as Apple's iTunes.
The Internet of Things is what happens when you take everyday ordinary objects and put Internet-connected microchips inside them. These microchips help you not only keep track of your belongings, but many of these devices sense their surroundings and report it to other machines as well as to you when you most need it. From RFID to the Nabaztag Bunny to Arduino hobbyists, innovation is growing at a rapid rate. Our collection features popular videos about how to make your own objects, as well as overviews, interviews and lectures. The intent of these devices is to make our lives easier, yet as David Orban suggests in the eighth video, this is not guaranteed. Issues of data-overload and a lack of privacy may interfere with how these devices ultimately help us. As the growth of this trend continues you'll be seeing many more videos about the Internet of Things.
Coca-Cola is free. No, not in calories or caffeine, but the media that fans generate about the brand. Michael Donnelly, the Atlanta-based company's group director of worldwide interactive marketing, speaking at the ANA's Social Media conference in New York on Thursday, said fan-generated content and commentary costs nothing, and is a major benefit of using social media. The company, which fields 500 brands worldwide in some 206 countries, is putting a lot of attention on how to do that as efficiently as possible in its various markets.
The comedians Will Arnett and Jason Bateman are introducing their first videos created in concert with brands, five months after announcing DumbDumb, something they call a “sponsor-driven advertising and production company.” What is that, exactly? It is a company, backed by IAC, controlled by Barry Diller, that is creating Web videos on behalf of paid sponsors, the first one being Orbit gum.
CEO Steve Jobs also unveiled some new metrics. Among them: Apple expects to control 48% of the mobile display ad market in the second half of 2010; it already has $60 million in commitments for its mobile iAd format; and it has paid out more than $1 billion in revenue to app developers. Here are some takeaways from Mr. Jobs' presentation at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference today.
Six weeks after oil began gushing into the Gulf of Mexico, BP is letting the public see live pictures from all 12 of the underwater cameras that are trained on its damaged well. There it is, streaming at all times on a panoply of Web sites, hard to miss in the lower right corner on CNN and other cable news channels: the oil gusher cam, a remarkable view of an unfolding disaster. “Among viewers, the initial reaction is shock and awe,” said Travis Daub, the creative director for the “PBS NewsHour,” which is one of the outlets that has encoded the live feeds so that any Web site can republish them. Commentators have called the images of the gusher grotesque, frustrating and simply too distressing to watch.
Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg defended the company's privacy practices and expressed regret for some of his behavior during the company's early history, speaking at the Wall Street Journal's All Things Digital technology conference Wednesday.
Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question "Why?" His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers -- and as a counterpoint Tivo, which (until a recent court victory that tripled its stock price) appeared to be struggling.
The success of Apple’s mobile devices gives the firm an opportunity to capture a goodly chunk of the emerging mobile-advertising market. Indeed, that is the reason why Apple recently acquired Quattro Wireless, a mobile advertising agency. Becoming an advertising powerhouse is certainly attractive. But Mr Jobs has far bigger fish to fry. The biggest of them all is turning Apple into the Microsoft of mobility. But first there is a little matter of locking as many software developers as possible into the Apple ecosystem. If the applications are there, so the argument goes, users will follow in droves.
Kapitaal is a short animated film by a Dutch design studio, Studio Smack. The video tries to convey the huge amount of visual information surrounding us, which renders branding and advertising simply ineffective as we have become immune to it. The video, which received several awards, has everything in black except content hoping to demand attention, which is in white.
Is a computer terminal like a movie screen? Well, for the past few years, TV networks and other purveyors of TV programs online have tried to display their wares in an environment much like an old movie house: The screen around the video is dark, the lights can be dimmed, and the tableau contains little else to distract you from your snippet of entertainment. But a computer monitor isn't the untouchable silver screen. With that in mind, some media outlets have been slowly mixing in other elements to keep activity-prone online viewers rooted. NBC today is unveiling an online-video viewer placed smack dab in the midst of other interactive content related to the program a fan chooses.
The television medium was barely 15 years old, and large-format magazines were wildly popular, when Life devoted 13 pages to photos by Charles. Moore, Flip Schulke and others at the University of Mississippi showdown in 1962, then 11 pages to the deployment of dogs and fire hoses in Birmingham the next year. The unsettling images from civil rights battlegrounds, followed closely by the disturbing images from Vietnam battlefields by Horst Faas, Eddie Adams, Nick Ut and others, created a golden era for photojournalism. Today, everyone with a cellphone is a photographer/videographer and streaming video has become a national obsession. But has the proliferation of images devalued photojournalism and dulled its influence?
There's a reason Polaroid figures nearly as prominently as Lady Gaga does in the pop singer's latest music video "Telephone": it's in her financial interest to make sure the once iconic brand gets as much camera time as she does. While Gaga and Polaroid each got a lot of ink in January when she struck an unconventional partnership with the company that made her the brand's "creative director and inventor of specialty products," a source close to the situation told The Post that the 23-year-old pop star has a financial stake in Polaroid that allows her to participate "in the future of the company in a meaningful way."
Instead of our usual text-based Trend Briefings, we bring you a light-hearted yet insight-heavy video edition this month, featuring consumers from all over the world speaking their minds on a variety of trend topics. After all, one consumer video sometimes says more than a 20-page Trend Briefing ;-) Enjoy!
Hasbro CMO John Frascotti discusses managing 1500 brands.
There is no doubt that 2009 was a fierce battleground for online marketers to reach the hearts and minds of Generation Y. Between the economic downturn, the proliferation of new media and blogs and the explosive growth of social networking sites, advertisers were challenged like never before to reach millennials and do it with the tightest marketing budgets seen in years. Many marketers, such as Vitaminwater, launched great campaigns and won, while others barely made it off the battlefield.
The nightmare scenario for cable companies is that customers drop their TV subscriptions and grab their video directly from the Web, turning the cable guys into mere providers of "dumb pipes." But here's a comprehensive set of instructions from a big cable company showing its customers how to do just that.
"Web sites such as CNN.com and ESPN.com are discovering that readers ... are a lot more likely to want to interact with their content when video clips are a significant part of the overall package ... The trend suggests a new wrinkle in the way people want to experience online news and information." The New York Times (Nov. 11, 2009) New wrinkle, come on! Brands need to open their eyes to the reality of the communications process. Astute visual marketing strategists like Toniq's Cheryl Swanson have long advocated what neuroscientists have proven -- 70% of human stimuli arrives via our eyes, a meager 15% enters the ears. So if you want to successfully communicate your brand story ... go to the video.
Viral video marketing has exploded in the years since (and you no longer need Guy Ritchie to direct them). Along the way, there have been some great standouts like Smirnoff's Tea Partay, but also a lot of complete rubbish. This year, it feels like every marketing plan features viral video as a tactic. Yet, many brands treat these videos in the same dull way as placing a grocery cart ad or staging an on-pack promotion. They feel like infomercials. These brands assume that if they build it, viewers will come (and watch, and share).
When it comes to touting music, movies, books or TV shows I really really really like, I tend to cross the line between enthusiastic advocacy and combative over-promotion. I sent so many copies of "American Tabloid" and "I Love You, Beth Cooper" to friends that I found myself on the receiving end of a U.S. Postal Service restraining order. My inability to comprehend the li'l sister's decision not to re-up her HBO subscription for season four of "The Wire" eventually boiled over into a hostage situation. I am capable of great feats of annoyance. Well, the roommate/Missus-To-Be better gird herself for a Larry-generated hype tsunami, because I've latched onto a series that threatens to enthrall me through 2010: ESPN's "30 for 30" sports documentary series, which is as ambitious an undertaking as anything the network has ever attempted. Hell, it might be one of the most ambitious projects in the history of TV.
Every hour thousands of new videos are uploaded online. Blog posts are written and published. Millions of tweets and other short messages are shared. To say there is a flood of content being created online now seems like a serious understatement. Until now, the interesting thing is that there are relatively few technologies or tools that have been adopted in a widespread way to manage this deluge. We pretty much just have algorithmic search, with Google (and other search engines) as the most obvious example. Social bookmarking and social news have been around for some time (ie - sites like Digg or delicious), and new models of aggregation like Alltop are springing up to help us navigate all this content as well. The real question is whether solutions like these will be enough. By some estimates in just a few years we will reach a point where all the information on the Internet will double every 72 hours. Double.
Tim Brown says the design profession is preoccupied with creating nifty, fashionable objects -- even as pressing questions like clean water access show it has a bigger role to play. He calls for a shift to local, collaborative, participatory "design thinking."
Major League Baseball has become a large-scale player in the digital-media business. Its latest application has hundreds of thousands of users watching baseball games live on their iPhone screens. And MLB.com, its digital arm, has grappled with the question of whether WAP -- mobile web pages -- or downloadable apps are the best road forward to higher digital revenue streams. MLB.com President Robert Bowman discusses his conclusions at the recent Ad Age Apps for Brands Conference.
I was talking with a senior marketer at one of the most famous brands in the world last week. She said, "executives keep coming to me with stuff they find on the internet, stuff they find on YouTube about us, and say, 'take it down!' Of course, I have to explain that I can't take it down. No one can." If your brand has any traction at all, people are talking about you. Of course, they've always talked about you, but now they're doing it in writing, in video and in public. Today, Squidoo (a company I founded) is launching Brands in Public.
Blockbuster Inc. is planning to close as many as 40% of its stores over the next two years as the company continues to struggle against new competitors. The Dallas-based movie-rental company had previously planned to close 1,000 stores, but on Tuesday it raised that number to as many as 1,560 of its 3,750 retail outlets. Of those, up to 300 may be converted to outlets, and up to 300 are undergoing lease mitigation or termination efforts. It said the move would help boost profitability and save $26 million in working capital. Blockbuster has come under increasing pressure in recent years as lower-cost rivals have entered the field.
The ﬁrst video on YouTube was uploaded at 8:27 p.m. on Saturday, April 23, 2005. It’s called “Me at the Zoo,” and it features the musings of Jawed Karim, one of the site’s founders, as elephants nose around in hay behind him. The video has a certain pleasing obviousness. “Here we are in front of the, uh, elephants,” Karim says. “They have really, really, really long” — suspense, but no double entendre — “trunks.” Karim turns to face the elephants as if to confirm his observation. Waits a beat. Readdresses the camera. “And that’s pretty much all there is to say.” The video is 19 seconds long.
In 2001, Jonathan Kaplan and Ariel Braunstein noticed a quirk in the camera market. All the growth was in expensive digital cameras, but the best-selling units by far were still cheap, disposable film models. That year, a whopping 181 million disposables were sold in the US, compared with around 7 million digital cameras. Spotting an opportunity, Kaplan and Braunstein formed a company called Pure Digital Technologies and set out to see if they could mix the rich chocolate of digital imaging with the mass-market peanut butter of throwaway point-and-shoots. They called their brainchild the Single Use Digital Camera and cobranded it with retailers, mostly pharmacies like CVS.
The marketing media was buzzing last week with news that CBS will promote its fall program lineup via a teeny-weeny video player inserted in an issue of Entertainment Weekly magazine. I know the ad industry is in dire need of some good news, but doesn't anybody else think this is utterly stupid?
Fun, but futile. That's my response to the news this week that technology heretofore seen only in Harry Potter films will soon grace a mainstream magazine's pages. Some copies of Entertainment Weekly's September issue will contain a video page advertising CBS's fall programming and PepsiMax, using a pliant and super-thin LCD screen powered by battery.
These days most companies have no choice but to cut their marketing budgets. And that's a good thing. You read that right -- it's a good thing. The reason it's a good thing is that most marketing bucks are spent on depreciating messaging. Either the medium is failing to deliver the numbers it used to or the creative is ignored by the target audience. Think about it. Most marketing teams are investing in a product that has gone down in value for the past 30 years, that product being network television.
On the morning of April 15, 2009, everything looked bright for Domino’s Pizza. The company’s share price had risen overnight, the group’s expansion plan was on track, and the brand was as strong as ever. But at 3:32 pm that very afternoon, the first text messages began beeping their arrival on the CEO’s mobile phone. They kept coming – one after the next, after the next. The phone’s inbox maxed out. The voicemail message light was blinking in overdrive, and soon filled to capacity.
Erik Beck, a 27-year-old Californian, has some 3 million fans who tune in monthly to his Web-based show, IndyMogul. The special effects video guide teaches aspiring film makers how to create car crash scenes without actually destroying their vehicles. The longtime amateur video maker has become the go-to guy for the 18- to 34 year-old crowd and, more recently, the marketers trying to woo them.
By now, we’re all pretty familiar with how digital music works: People get sued, content gets deleted, and start-ups go bankrupt. YouTube’s ContentID marks a welcome change from that routine by freeing people to infringe copyright while generally keeping copyright holders happy. In an area known for bitter lawsuits and hastily issued “take down” notices, this is that rarest of birds: a feel-good digital music story.
Google Inc., which has struggled for nearly three years to turn YouTube into an advertising platform, is aggressively pushing new ad formats and ramping up deals with media companies for the online video site.
For more than five months, a minute-long clip featuring a pair of children gyrating their eyebrows to the old-school hip-hop hit "Don't Stop the Rock" has been one of the most popular videos around, racking up millions of views around the internet. Made by Fallon, London, for Cadbury, "Eyebrow Dance" is one of several odd, soft-selling commercial creations from this side of the Atlantic Ocean now dominating Advertising Age's Viral Video Chart. Its wild popularity, along with that of T-Mobile's "Dance," Evian's "Rollerbabies" and Samsung's LED Sheep, begs the question: What makes U.K. ads so infectious?
If you love to hate ads, you might enjoy two new books that train their sights on modern marketing. The first makes the case that advertising as we know it is about to be obliterated. The second suggests that we should all dance a gleeful polka on its grave.
"I love her, she's clean," says Juan Román Riquelme while kissing a soccer ball in a viral video Buenos Aires' digital agency Brandigital made for Adidas. In it, he "hace jueguito" (plays with the ball to show his skills), while being shot at with paintballs. Why did Riquelme -- one of Argentina's most acclaimed and controversial football players -- talk about the ball being clean? Well, "clean" in Argentine slang means untouched and unstained in its honor. And "the ball must not be stained" were Diego Maradona's parting words the days he officially retired as a player.
It has been said recently that online digital video as a medium is like the early days of movies, in that people are getting used to watching longer online-video content (longer than two minutes) because "the medium is growing up." In effect, these people feel that, as the online-video medium and its audience continue to mature, that audience, like early movie-going audiences, will learn to accept longer-form content.
Nearly a fifth of Internet users watch video online almost every day. Women are catching up to men in terms of online video usage. And a growing number of recession-conscious Americans claim they are using the Web as a cable TV substitute.
Universal Pictures spent some $35 million promoting Bruno a summer movie with Sacha Baron Cohen about a homosexual fashion reporter. There were the typical TV and radio ads, says Doug Neil, Universal Pictures' senior vice president of digital marketing, but the plugs that built a viral hum and motivated moviegoers were video display ads embedded in instant messages.
As actors such as Ashton Kutcher use their production companies to experiment with branded entertainment in front of the camera, others, including Milo Ventimiglia, are looking to go one step further by developing original web content with brands in mind.
Gene Munster, the analyst with Piper Jaffray, put a report out Thursday looking at the finances of YouTube, and he makes a suggestion that I haven’t seen before: Google should charge a “nominal fee” to people to upload videos to YouTube if the video isn’t appropriate for advertising.
How do you get your boss to approve something, the customer service people to understand the pain a system is causing or the folks in engineering to see things your way? Powerpoint was invented for this precise function, and we all know what's become of that. Here's a new way that's extraordinarily effective: Make a video.
Why were so many people in the technology world wrong about Hulu? It was an idea that seemed like a relic of the worst excesses of the dot-com era: a portal for content run by a joint venture of media companies. Could any venture have more going against it?
Television programs such as “The Simpsons” and “CSI” are for the first time commanding higher advertising rates at Web sites including Hulu.com and TV.com than on prime-time TV.
So you want to watch TV on the Internet. You canceled cable in a spasm of austerity and figured you’d catch your shows online. If you had any shows left. Because really, TV, the kind that chains you to a sofa and a grid schedule, is not part of your life anymore. And you don’t miss it. Except “The Rachel Maddow Show,” “Weeds” and (guilty pleasure) “The Hills.” You found some of that on Netflix, some on YouTube or, via Hulu, on the shows’ sites. But now you’re looking for more TV. Maybe a spirit-lifting summertime diversion, like “Friends” back in the day, or “TRL.” Good times. But your remote conjures nothing from your uncabled flat screen. It’s just you and the Internet now.
Google would like YouTube to become profitable -- a tough task when it's providing free bandwidth and video storage for much of the world's videos, most of which have limited interest to advertisers. But providing all that bandwidth isn't as expensive and YouTube is far closer to break-even than previously thought, according to IT outsourcing firm RampRate.
YouTube has just enabled a new feature that allows users to directly share their recently uploaded videos to Facebook, Twitter, and Google Reader. This means you’ll be able to syndicate your newly uploaded content directly into your friends’ feeds. You can link your accounts on YouTube’s ‘Upload’ page.
As YouTube has grown into the preeminent video sharing service online, marketers have tried, with limited success, to broadcast themselves and to reach audiences with their messaging. And while individuals have used YouTube as a platform to step into the spotlight, most brands have been left behind in the shadows. Save for the occasional media-supported viral video blitz, or user generated contest, commercial success on YouTube has been elusive to the many brands that have tried to reach for that brass ring.
Justine Ezarik might not be a household name, but the 25-year-old has a cable TV-size audience. The only difference: Ezarik's audience is on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.
This is the first full episode 100% dedicated to content itself. Last week was a context setter. In this episode, I test drive the Kindle 2 from a marketing/branding perspective.
Search giant Google announced it is closing down its AdSense video unit—which allows Web sites to show YouTube content and ads—a bit more than a year after the service was introduced.
Martin Lindstrom's Buyology brain scanning project monitors a shopper named Kelly as she goes about her regular supermarket visit. As chronicled in Lindstrom's book of the same name, the Buyology project has monitored the brain activities of thousands of consumers as they've been exposed to various aspects of commercial messaging. In this instance, he reports how Kelly reacts to the crispness and cleanliness of the packaging of products on the shelf.
On Peter Day’s always-informative business show on the BBC, Cisco’s John Chambers said earlier this month that a downturn is a chance to go into new lines of business. Buying the maker of the consumer hit video camera Flip is certainly is that. I think it could be genius. It’s about new ways to communicate easily, new networks. The Flip has many surprising uses.
One of the most basic requirements of effective problem solving is a clear definition what that problem is. This truism came strongly to mind as we watched a panel at this week's McGraw-Hill Media Summit moderated by Businessweek columnist Jon Fine.
It seemed like magic back when barcodes could simply identify a grocery store item. And when QR codes hit the scene, pictures pointed us to URLs. Now "barcodes" have reached the next level of complexity.
The Blockbuster is dead, long live the blockbuster. At least that's what the technology omens are saying. The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that Blockbuster Video, whose shares are trading below $1, is seeking advice on how to file for bankruptcy. Blockbuster counters it's only trying to get help to restructure its debt.
Flickr’s premium members have enjoyed video uploads for some time, and now all users will be able to upload video content.
I’m really impressed with this project featuring Bigelow Tea president Cindi Bigelow asking people on the streets of New York who drinks Bigelow tea. Take a look for yourself:
The appetite for video continued to grow in the fourth quarter as U.S. consumers watched more programming across television, the Internet and mobile devices in the fourth quarter than the prior quarter, according to Nielsen's latest A2/M2 Three Screen report .
We found this visualization of the current credit crisis remarkably informative. The ten minute long video does a really great job breaking down all the different players and provides a general overview of how investment banking works. By the end of it, terms like sub-prime mortgages, collateralized debt obligations, frozen credit markers, and credit default swaps actually make sense.
Calling all novice songwriters: Microsoft is pitching software designed for you, no musical training required. You sing the words as best you can, and its Songsmith software supplies computer-matched musical accompaniment.