Digiday Mobile Innovation Camp

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Written By: Brittany Lee, Integrated Communications Associate

As another year was about to conclude claiming to be the “Year of Mobile” in media, I was beginning to doubt if it would ever actually be a truthful phrase.  Although mobile accounted for over 12% of all media consumption in 2012 and swiftly rising as people always have their phone or tablet in hand, advertisers only spent about 2% of media budgets on mobile that same year.

That mindset quickly changed after my sunny three day trip to the Digiday Mobile Innovation Camp in Bonita Springs, Florida that I was gratefully able to attend with John Lee over the week of November 19th.

About 200 professionals from the mobile advertising industry – media, sales, development, creative, etc. – took part in what we considered the mobile marketing version of the Hunger Games. We were broken up into teams and competed in physical, mental and collaborative challenges, complete with a brand hackathon where fictitious marketing briefs were given to us to complete, similar to that of a real pitch.

Throughout my short stay in Florida, I was not only able to help secure my team a first place victory in the camps team rankings (Team Orange, yay!), but more importantly, I was able to learn several different capabilities of mobile advertising, especially outside my comfort zone of media.

It was fascinating to see the amount of creative and technical development that went behind mobile advertising – from custom built apps, to location and personal device precision targeting, to the number of steps it requires to execute one single rich media placement. The brains behind these processes were incredible and I realized how pivotal of a role they play in the success of a brand’s campaign. It also opened my eyes to see how much success could come out of all of these different types of professionals coming and working together, for it unfortunately tends to be segregated between media, creative, tech, etc.

Overall, the camp not only expanded my knowledge of the mobile capabilities and tactics, but it actually transformed my perception of mobile advertising as a whole. If 2013 wasn’t the “Year of Mobile,” my bet is 2014 will be, for the talent behind the scenes and technology are only getting smarter and more efficient.

The brand hackathon presentations and more on the camp as a whole can be seen here on the Digiday website: http://digiday.com/announcement/brand-hacking-digiday-mobile-innovation-camp/


High quality content is the driver of audience engagement

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A recently published research study by Ovum and Avid research ( 3,001 respondents across  US UK Germany, and Brazil) confirms what we have always known as consumers, media experts and advertisers  - Content is King!

  • The consumer wants to be provided high quality editorial content and ad content.
  • Recall is greatest among ads that are funny, have a rich story and well developed characters.
  • Second screen engagement is most alive during mass media events (like the Olympics or Grammy’s) which drive audiences to the “digital water coolers” – i.e Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc.

Ninety-one percent of consumer respondents to the Ovum and Avid study see multi-screen delivery as a key source of growth for TV content.

  • Respondents believe that 30% of audience viewing time will shift to web based services by 2017.

This type of research assists broadcasters to find the platform that maximizes the value of each media asset (screen). Whether consumers choose to consume content on their phone, tablet, computer or HD television, high quality image and audio rendering is the driving force behind the growing trend of online/ digital viewership.

What is new about this study is that it provides a fresh perspective with respect to competing video delivery technology. The study recommends that programmers view VOD and DVR as discovery mechanisms rather than competition to current airings.  “Multi-platform web video services, whether delivered via subscription VOD or catch-up models, create the opportunity for audiences to experiment with new shows at their own convenience.” The convenience of catching up at ones own speed, currently called binge viewing, can ultimately lead to a rise in appointment based viewing and loyalty.

Future research will focus on understanding how each screen works independently and in concert with each other to positively drive consumer discovery engagement, loyalty and ad recall. It is undeniable that content is king, but in order to rule the hearts and minds of today’s audiences the providers of content and advertisers must find the right balance of accessibility, convenience across digital channels to grow and maintain consumer intent to tune-in and be engaged with the message of the advertising.

Tonight’s NBA Draft Is Bound To Be A “MoMo”

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Here at TargetCast, when we say “MoMo” we mean Mobile Moment.  That is, an event or action empowered or enhanced by the use of mobile technology.

As exemplified by social interaction via Twitter, the NBA Finals was nothing short of a MoMo.  Over the course of the extremely engaging (ie: pay for the whole seat, only use the edge) seven game series, TwitterBlog reported over 26.7 million tweets were sent, with game seven alone generating 7.4 million tweets.

Twitter bird

While tonight’s NBA Draft certainly won’t deliver the same degree of athleticism (or viewership for that matter) we expect the hard-core NBA fans to keep the MoMo streak alive so to speak, and engage with one another in the social space via their mobile devices en force.

And this author will be Tweeting away right there with them, fingers crossed the Knicks manage to pick up a solid point guard prospect at pick no. 24.  ’Nuff said! #knickstape



Eye Tracker Brings Digital Advertisers One (Large) Step Closer to a “Real CPM”

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Since the beginning of mass-scale advertising, the idealistic goal of measuring a campaign’s effect on an individual-by-individual level has been continuously attempted with newer and more granular-targeted technologies.  Inevitably, measuring millions of consumers in the consistently dynamic mediums has proven too complex to measure at that precise of a level, despite these efforts. The advent of digital advertising presented new hope for this ideal, however as it has grown to its current mass, issues such as below-the-fold banners, un-viewable impressions, and auto-play or muted pre-roll videos have led to an environment where “fifty percent of all ad impressions are never seen,” according to Jeff Bander, president of Sticky.

This, along with most ads carrying an industry accepted 50% bounce rate – who click on ads yet leave the landing page immediately –  seems pretty scary, and is at least in some part why many advertisers shy away from allocating more budget online. The current gold standard in this realm is “viewability”, meaning an ad is served within viewable screen of a user, however this technology does not account if the person’s is actually engaging with a specific brand’s ad.

Bander and Sticky (formerly EyeTrackShop) have taken this to the next step by developing an eye tracking tool that verifies which ads users look at, leading to a potential “Real CPM” where every impression is guaranteed to be seen. While eye-tracking technology is nothing new, Sticky’s new product is unique in its ability to track in real-time and in the real world, giving it mass-scale implementation potential.

The next step for Sticky’s team is to place themselves within the media negotiations happening on Madison Ave, and from there ultimately prove that ubiquitous eye-tracking and the idea of a “Real” CPM should become the new standard in how online ads are bought. There’s no question that as advertising technology gets inevitably more granular, new tracking issues will be unearthed or introduced by technologies/mediums we are currently unaware of, but for the moment Sticky looks to be positioned optimally as the next big thing in the digital space.

Advil #Reliefinaction

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After many months of uncertainly, changes in direction, meetings about meetings on tweaks to tweaks, the Advil #reliefinaction campaign finally kicked off at the Barclays Center last night in Brooklyn. Advil honors and provides relief to volunteers who don´t let pain get in the way of helping others. And they announced that to the public at an NBA game. Nets vs Bulls, branded in Blue and Yellow. Aziz Ansari (although I’m admittedly not much of a Parks & Rec fan) private stand-up show for 100 volunteers who have helped their communities. Happy agencies and happy clients. Relief in Action has been a labor of love for so many people for so many months and last night kicked it off in style and grace.
There is no one outside of the proverbial target consumer for Advil so I urge all of you to join the cause on Instagram and Twitter. Upload your own picture of how you demonstrate active volunteerism, how you rise above your own pain to help relieve the pain of others. Or anything else that so inspires you in the spirit of the campaign. It’s @reliefinaction, #reliefinaction. Go there. Join the conversation. Upload. Be inspired. Get involved.

Multi-Screen Pathways Reveal New Opportunities

in Advertising, Browsers, Creativity, innovation, Internet, Just for fun, Mobile, Online, Social Media, Technology, Television, Uncategorized No Comments

If you have read my previous posts on how we are gradually switching our attention to multiple screens, the latest research study coming out of Microsoft confirms that we are indeed on our way there. According to Microsoft Advertising and Flamingo Research, multi-screen pathways reveal new opportunities for marketers to reach and engage consumers. The 41 page research study goes into great detail on how consumers attentions are switching to the “always-on” screen by combining devices in new ways to multi-task. By doing this we can amplify experience, share, connect, browse, engage, and be more efficient. “Understanding the motivations behind these behaviors can help marketers gain digital advantage through authentic interaction with customers under a new set of ‘always-on’ rules.”

Below are some of the key takeaways from the study. There are four pathways of multi-screening behavior, which include Content Grazing, Investigative Spider-Webbing, Social Spider Webbing, and Quantum that are explained below:

1. Content Grazing is the most common of the pathways and is described as when consumers use two or more screens simultaneously to access separate or unrelated content.


2. Investigative Spider-Webbing is the simultaneous journey where consumers view related content on two or more devices at the same time. For example; watching “The Walking Dead” and engaging with the “Story Sync” feature of the show on your tablet.


3. Social Spider-Webbing is the same as Investigative Spider-Webbing, but focused on sharing and connecting. For example; taking a picture with your phone, but sharing it on your tablet because all your photo editing apps are on your tablet.

social sharing

4. Quantum consumers start an activity on one screen and continue it on another. Efficiency is the main factor for these consumers, such as working, shopping, or completing tasks.


One other key takeaway from the study explains how multi-screening consumers are more open to the idea of the right kind of advertising. 74% of the people they questioned agreed that “Advertising can be helpful in telling me about new products or brands that might interest me,” while 87% of consumers agree that “It’s great that I can check out products or brands that interest me whenever or wherever I see them.”

I really suggest if you have some spare time to read through the entire study, which can be downloaded HERE. This study definitely sheds more light that the future of advertising is constantly evolving and taking new shapes by studying peoples content behavior, habits, and overall reception of products.

Pepsi MAX and Jeff Gordon Pull Off Test Drive Prank

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Last week Pepsi MAX posted their newest commercial with Jeff Gordon. Instantly going viral with over 25 million views on YouTube, Jeff Gordon pulls off the ultimate prank. Disguising himself as an average Joe who is not very familiar with cars, Jeff lures in an unsuspecting salesman for the ride of his life. For those who don’t know, Jeff Gordon is a professional NASCAR driver. This short 4 minute video really takes you for a ride, and gives you a real appreciation for Pepsi MAX to have pulled this off. These types of branded story telling really gives the viewer an emotional reaction, which I think is the best way to create brand equity.

This isn’t the first time Pepsi MAX has pulled off a branded prank. Last year they got NBA star Kyrie Irving to play the role of an old man past his prime, but throughout the game gradually getting better and better. Watch below!

Not So Master-ful

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Due to my intrigue and love for Philip Seymour Hoffman and as a post-mortem Oscars tribute, I recently made the decision to rent The Master on demand. After all, two hours rife with PSH and Amy Adams couldn’t possibly be anything but fantastic, right? The Master is their second of two films together, the first being the deeply philosophical and dry-humor infused Doubt. Doubt was two hours of pure on-screen brilliance and not attributed solely to its all-star Meryl-inclusive cast. The film was thought-provoking, raw and real. It penetrated the core of the best of us, making us ponder the essence of the most seemingly mundane human emotions. We left Doubt questioning what was truth and what was fiction, finding ourselves stuck in the mental space in between. It had that tangible intensity that gives dramatic films their heart.
The Master, on the other hand, embodied nearly none of the aforementioned qualities. While I can partially appreciate what the film set out to accomplish, when the final credits rolled, I was left not so much in the space between fact and fiction but instead at the crossroads of confusion and annoyance. Joaquin Phoenix plays Freddie Quell, an alcoholic World War II veteran who we watch morph from fragile at the film’s inception to completely broken. During his nearly two hour demise, we watch as Phillip Seymour Hoffman’s preacher/motivational speaker Lancaster Dodd attempts to stop him from crumbling. In scene after scene, we hear Hoffman hypnotizing and preaching to Phoenix as well as  other groups of people on the likes of free will, attempting to heal their deepest set problems and dry the tears of their damaged souls. I’ll be honest, there were times during this film when I was not sure whether I was watching a documentary on Scientology, witchcraft, or any of several other illegal religious practices. Perhaps the most intense scene came when Dodd (Hoffman) hurled a rapid-fire sequence of personal inquisitions at Freddie, mandating that he not blink all the while. It was a clear attempt on his part at hypnosis but which came across more like an exorcism to the common viewer. By the time the strangely intense scene came to a close, I was completely exhausted. And not in a good way.
I really cannot concisely sum up an overall take on the film in my usual last witty sentence or two…it was simply too out of the ordinary to do so. What I will say is this — if you are in the mood to be confused, stupefied, and mildly disturbed all at the same time, The Master is definitely for you. Seriously, go run and rent it right now. If you’re not, though, I would advise that you steer clear of this adeptly-cast-but-poorly-done docudrama. All that said, I am cutting PSH his losses on this one and will optimistically wait for his next sure bet…no doubt.

Innovid Aims to Make Multiplatform Interactive Video Ads

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Our friends at Innovid are making big moves in the online video ad space. If you haven’t heard, earlier this year they announced a partnership with Flingo to make traditional video advertising more interactive.

Flingo utilizes a platform called Samba, which allows users to connect their TV’s and mobile devices through automatic content recognition. ACR is pretty cool because it allows the user to be simultaneously targeted through the users TV and mobile device. Say you’re viewing a commercial on a TV network and playing with your iPad, which most of us do anyway. If I am in an ACR supported app, it will recognize the TV commercial and then I can be served a display/interactive complementary ad on my iPad.

As we all know, we are consuming more and more content through different devices. Streaming video has expanded to connected TVs, video game consoles, tablets, phones, and Smart TV interfaces, which all have different ad-serving capabilities. Innovid aims to capture the video ad market for all these cross-platform video platforms by using this ACR technology. This will create scale, and will allow advertisers to create interactive experiences that run alongside our streaming content. They have managed to raise $11 million in funding to make this all happen.

To read more about Innovid’s plan on the matter, click here and to get a better understanding about their partnership with Flingo, click here.

Google Glass

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Just take a look at how awesome this is!

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