HBO Launches Campaign On Whisper To Turn Secrets Into Branded Content

What Happened
HBO has launched a hybrid content campaign to generate buzz for its upcoming new series Little Big Lies. Partnering with anonymous secret-sharing social network Whisper, which has since pivoted into a “digital media publisher that helps brands develop content,” HBO will images from “Big Little Lies” will pair with people creating Whisper posts about lies they told.  Whisper employs machine-learning technology to analyze the site’s data and identify the most popular posts. The popular and most interesting ones will then be curated into stories and videos to be posted on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Whisper’s homepage.

What Brands Need To Do
This campaign smartly combines organic user-generated content with branded content (in this case, images from the show) and repackage them into share-worthy content with the help of algorithms powered by machine learning. With subpar mobile ad experience drives many users to use ad-blockers, it is becoming more and more difficult for brands to reach their desired audience via traditional digital ads. In fact, a new study shows that over 40% of millennials now browse the internet on a device that has an ad blocker enabled. Therefore, brands should take a cue from this HBO campaign and be open to exploring new forms of advertising such as sponsored or branded content.


Source: AdAge

Snuggle Turns To User-Generated Videos For Valentine’s Day Campaign

What Happened
Fabric softener brand Snuggle found a lovely way to generate branded content that people want to share – by lending the voice of its mascot Snuggle Bear to people looking to create their own Valentine’s Day video. The company launched a dedicated website that allows people to generate a customized serenading video by select a classic love song and uploading up to four photos of the recipient. The site will then generate a short video with the Snuggle Bear singing the song and the uploaded photos displayed throughout the video. Since the launch of the campaign on Jan. 21, over 50,000 customized videos have been created and the effort has reached an estimated audience of over 140 million.

What Brands Need To Do
A recent study from Marvck shows that user-generated content drives nearly seven times higher engagement than video ads on Facebook. And this new campaign from Snuggle serves as a good example of how crucial it is for brands to inject some customizable options into their branded content to make it more appealing and engaging to consumers. With more and more companies start to explore the vast potential of machine learning and AI-powered solutions, including the capability of transforming customer data into insights for personalization, it is time for brand marketers to start thinking about new ways to engage digital audiences with customizable, dynamic branded content.


Source: Marketing Dive

Header image courtesy of Snuggle’s YouTube video

Intel Plans User-Generated 360 Video For Super Bowl Campaign

What Happened
For its upcoming Super Bowl campaign, Intel is aiming to get football fans involved to create a 360-degree video spot. The company launched a social push to get fans to visit to submit a selfie and create a frame featuring Tom Brady. The best images will be incorporated into a 360-degree video to be released on Feb. 5 as part of its Super Bowl campaign, which also includes a TV spot showing Brady going about his day from every angle using Intel’s 360 replay technology.

What Brands Need To Do
With 360 video content gaining traction among consumers, it is important for brands to start working closely with content creators to produce engaging and immersive content. The crowdsourcing approach that Intel took helps establish a more intimate connection with the consumers through the personalized experience. Brands wishing to stay ahead of the curve need to take a cue from this initiative and start developing immersive content that can engage their audience in innovative and fun ways.

How We Can Help
Our dedicated team of experts is here to guide marketers through the distribution landscape. We work closely with brands to develop sustainable content strategies to promote branded VR and 360 video content across various apps and platforms. With our proprietary technology stack powered by a combination of best-in-class VR partners and backed by the media fire-power of IPG Mediabrands, we offer customized solutions for distributing and measuring branded VR content that truly enhance brand messaging and contribute to the campaign objectives.

If you’d like to learn more about how the Lab can help you tap into the immersive power of VR content to engage with customers, please contact our Client Services Director Samantha Holland ([email protected]) to schedule a visit to the Lab.


Source: AdWeek

SXSW 2015: Solutions for Augmented and Virtual Reality

The nexus of virtual and augmented reality is one of the most interesting topics at SXSW, and content creators are currently exploring the new tools. Augmented reality (“AR”) like Google Glass and Microsoft HoloLens, is a way of transmitting digital content into the real world. Virtual reality (“VR”), as used by Oculus and Samsung, is completely immersive. Both can create great, consumable content, but in the coming years, brand will need to understand and execute on the best use cases for each. For instance, DAQRI, an augmented reality developer working in industrial and enterprise-grade solutions, believes that the enclosed environment of virtual reality is best suited toward immersive experiences, while augmented reality is best when needing to interface with the world around the audience.

But it’s not just brands who are interested in AR and VR; consumers are becoming more active in the space as well. Video multi-channel network Machinima is attempting to bridge the gap between user-generated content and the new space. “You can’t create a medium with a lot of content if 1% of the population has the tools to do so,” admitted Machinima CEO Allen DeBevoise. Brands may be able to pay for expensive and beautiful VR content, but if the public can’t create its own, there may be a small audience.

Top 5 ways brands can utilize augmented reality

Top 5 ways marketers are utilizing augmented reality Augmented reality is everywhere right now. Some are questioning whether it is a fad, or could it be a viable tool for marketers. Yes, there are some technical bugs to be worked out and some ill conceived campaigns but used strategically and creatively AR can be a powerful experience. Here is a list of some of the best ways brands have been using AR:

Enhancing Traditional Print Campaigns
Instead of just having a small “www” invitation to a brand website on a magazine ad, entice them with a teaser for additional content or even an exclusive offer they can only see using the printed piece to unlock the information online.

One of the first brands to use AR, Mini Cooper enhanced their campaign across multiple German auto magazines with a detailed 3D model of the MINI convertible. Continue reading “Top 5 ways brands can utilize augmented reality”