Our Managing Director, Marketing Innovation reflects on the R/GA Marketing Tech Venture Studio with Snap & IPG
Snap’s partners promise to “complete the picture for advertisers,” offering everything from a better way to deliver mobile wallet content to a new network for influencers and a platform for sensory advertising. So what does this mean for the future of mobile advertising? How does it shape the way we look at ads and define them?
As we increasingly live our lives on mobile, marketers need to rethink how, when and where people come into contact with their brands. No longer can a one-way, channel-centric approach serve as the basis for communication. Brands now need to orchestrate experiences across a variety of touchpoints, and collect data that can help them tell more personalized stories at scale.
Together with Snap, Inc. and IPG, we set out to explore this landscape through our Marketing Technology Venture Studio. We focused on companies taking an innovative approach to areas like analytics, content creation and the connection between physical and digital spaces — and over the course of three months, as we helped them grow and scale, we learned a few things.
They’re not “customers.” They’re individuals.
Every marketer should be focused on having one-to-one conversations with their customers. Companies like Lytics help them do just that. Lytics is a Customer Data Platform that serves as the “central nervous system” of your marketing tech stack; making it simple to build customer profiles, orchestrate cross-channel campaigns, and predict behaviors and affinities with built-in machine learning. Their MO: Put your customers first.
It’s not just who you speak to, it’s how you speak to them.
Relative Insight and Dashbot are two companies that apply technology to conversational data sets, helping brands better understand their audiences. While they’re focused on different industries — Relative Insight is a comparative language analysis tool; Dashbot offers analytics for conversational interfaces — they both recognize that it’s not just about reaching the right people. It’s about saying the right things in the right way.
The mobile wallet isn’t just for payments anymore.
That’s why companies like Popwallet are helping brands use the mobile wallet to turn their communication into conversion, close the loop between physical and digital, and find smarter ways to be geographically and contextually relevant. Think about this: By 2020, more than 5 billion smartphones will come pre-installed with mobile wallets.
Consumption doesn’t need to be passive.
In other words: we’ve moved beyond the banner ad. Companies like Adludio help brands engage consumers’ senses, and encourage their active participation in content consumption, by taking advantage of mobile technologies like haptics and the accelerometer. The result is ads that feel less like ads (because we’ll scroll past them) and more like experiences.
Creators are the future of content.
Social platforms are hungry for content, and brands are struggling to feed them. That’s why we’re seeing more marketers tap into a global network of content creators.
QuickFrame believes that brands need a quicker and more cost-effective way to produce original, short-form video for social. So they’re reimagining traditional video production by connecting marketers with creators who can deliver on a brief in less time, for less money. This approach empowers agile teams to rapidly test video and scale across audiences, platform, and message.
But there’s another problem. As brands focus on creating endless content, there’s inevitably a great deal of video that never sees the light of day, or sits on the wrong channel for the intended audience. Sightworthy helps brands “repurpose” and “revive” this content in a matter of hours, breathing new life into assets that can help them tell their story.
Whalar takes a different approach to creators: seeking those who have an influence on social and matching them with brands who want to reach people with a message that feels authentic across feeds and continents. These creators are proof that you don’t need a $1MM+ marketing budget to tell interesting stories and make them beautiful.
In short: as brands find new ways to connect with their audiences, and communicate in a way that’s authentic, they’re turning to platforms and technologies that can help them navigate a complex and rapidly shifting landscape. This is the future of marketing. It’s personal. It’s never passive. It’s driven data and defined by culture. It’s not constrained to a single channel. And it’s fueled by the participation of the community.