Ad­ver­tis­ing on mo­bile – it’s all about ‘stop­ping the thumb’

The Sun (Malaysia) - - MEDIA & MARKETING -

NEW YORK: Al­most 80 years old, the de­odor­ant Old Spice is learn­ing new tricks for find­ing cus­tomers in the era of smart­phones and so­cial me­dia.

The Proc­ter & Gam­ble prod­uct, hav­ing spoofed it­self for years with ad­vice on how to be­come more “man­tas­tic,” posts to its 2.6 mil­lion Face­book fol­low­ers a steady stream of video games, prize en­tries, and ad­ver­tise­ments as short as two sec­onds.

Cre­at­ing “thumb-stop­ping” con­tent is the goal, and mar­keters are do­ing ev­ery­thing they can to achieve it. That in­cludes us­ing neu­ro­science to study which vis­ual and au­dio cues of­fer the best bet to grab­bing and keep­ing an im­pa­tient smart­phone user’s at­ten­tion.

Es­ti­mates show that the av­er­age per­son looks at his or her smart­phone as much as 150 times a day. The at­ten­tion is there, but it’s just not long-lived.

“You get the three-sec­ond au­di­tion,” said Frank Amorese, me­dia di­rec­tor at Heineken USA. “If you are re­ly­ing on the 14th or 15th sec­ond to do the heavy lift­ing of the ad, it’s not go­ing to work.”

Ad­ver­tis­ers are in a dizzy­ing race to con­nect with cus­tomers as new mo­bile­borne so­cial me­dia plat­forms emerge and evolve.

“The land­scape changes every six months,” Amorese said. “It’s chang­ing at an in­creas­ingly fast rate.”

Dig­i­tal ad spend­ing is pro­jected to reach US$72.1 bil­lion (RM298 bil­lion) in 2016, grow­ing at a rate of 21 % and now com­pris­ing al­most 37% of the over­all mar­ket, ac­cord­ing to eMar­keter. So­cial me­dia ac­counts for US$15.4 bil­lion of this.

Heineken has dou­bled its spend­ing on dig­i­tal ads to 30% over the last five years.

The dom­i­nance of smaller mo­bile de­vices has height­ened the chal­lenge of cap­tur­ing the at­ten­tion of po­ten­tial shop­pers.

Ad­ver­tise­ments must be tai­lored de­pend­ing on whether they are be­ing seen on a widescreen tele­vi­sion, a tablet or a smart­phone and must not de­mand too much time if a con­sumer is merely glanc­ing at a feed and not plan­ning on a lengthy stay.

“We have to re­ally iden­tify how do con­sumers en­gage with every sin­gle plat­form and then what is the cre­ative ex­pe­ri­ence we need to give them,” said P&G chief brand of­fi­cer Marc Pritchard at the four-day Ad­ver­tis­ing Week con­fer­ence in New York last week.

“But it also has to look like one brand be­cause peo­ple have 5,000 ads com­ing at them every day and that’s 10 times what it was just 10 years ago.”

Anna Fieler, chief mar­ket­ing of­fi­cer at PopSu­gar, a women’s shop­ping and con­tent site, said mar­keters are de­vis­ing bench­marks like “shar­ing ve­loc­ity” to mon­i­tor res­o­nance.

“Share­abil­ity is the gold stan­dard of how en­gaged peo­ple are,” she said. “Peo­ple like it so much that they want to share it with some­one else.”

Not all ad­ver­tise­ments place the brand front and cen­tre. Frito-Lay, which spends about 40% of its ad­ver­tis­ing bud­get on dig­i­tal me­dia, of­fers tips on its Face­book feed on pro­fes­sional men­tor­ing and net­work­ing, in ad­di­tion to the usual fare of ads that aim to ex­cite and amuse.

“Peo­ple are us­ing so­cial me­dia to build their (per­sonal) brand,” said Jeff Klein, vice pres­i­dent of brands and port­fo­lio mar­ket­ing. Some­times Frito-Lay just “takes a lit­tle bit of a back seat”.

Much of the buzz at the Ad­ver­tis­ing Week con­fer­ence was the wild­fire growth of video stream­ing and broad­cast of live events.

Face­book vice-pres­i­dent Will Plat­tHig­gins pre­dicted video could com­prise 80% of all smart­phone con­tent by 2020. – AFP

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