Issue 867 in Advertising http://gifshop.tv/m/VH533575E/
I think Jamie Beck from From Me To You is doing some really groundbreaking stuff with visuals for brands. These assets are obviously Tumblr gold- just look at the notes on her posts and you will know why, but more interestingly these could be used as creative for extremely compelling banner campaigns in digital display advertising.
To serve a rich media ad unit with video and interactivity requires a big budget. There is a premium on ad serving, a premium in creative services and sometimes a premium on the ad space itself even if only to accommodate a large piece of real estate. If you run a Flash banner, there is a whole bunch of people on iPads and other apple devices that will not see it, though the ad serving won’t have the same premium as a rich media unit.
That all said, rotating GIFs require no additional premiums in ad serving or otherwise and you still get the visibility and movement. The only hurdle you would face is the requirement from publishers that the rotation stops after 3 times around, this is to avoid annoying the crap out of their audiences because a traditional rotating GIF actually is very abrupt and annoying. If you look at the elegant subtleties in the image above, I think a brand would have a solid argument to go to their publishing partners for special dispensation on the maximum rotation. This animation is charming, interesting and delicate- but certainly not annoying.
I also love the idea of using this onsite for brands. Gilt Taste has done a lovely job of incorporating this movement/aesthetic into the silo pages of their site- but they are being served as mp4s, not GIFs. This doesn’t render on my iPhone- but it doesn’t matter because they have a kickass mobile site. Anyway, check them out, but look carefully they are really subtle:
Check out the 300x250 companion ad on the homepage of the NYTimes… I don’t think Marc Jacobs is going to be very happy running on the same page.
Brands pay a very high premium for these ad units and this anti-Jerusalem campaign is a pretty inappropriate ad to run in tandem. They are basically calling our president an anti-semite… very poor taste.
Companies On My Radar from Y-Combinator
Y-Combinator just had their semi-annual “demo day” for promising start ups to share their pitch in 2 minutes in front of some very heavy hitting investors. This year’s audience included Ashton Kutcher, Demi Moore, Mark Andreessen, Roelof Botha & Ron Conway.
Below you will find the companies that I have found most interesting whether it be professionally or personally. Either way, creative juices are flowing, money is being spent and the tech “bubble” doesn’t show any sign of popping in the near future. All good stuff for us digital marketers who ultimately use these platforms to do our jobs.
It would be nice to have some uniformity in QR Code strategy… that is if you can use a QR Code in an effective manner.
This could be perfect for my relatives who aren’t getting the 4000 pictures of my kids via facebook.
I am a movie JUNKY.
This is very interesting for social media strategists.
As the consummate media buyer, this intrigues me. I want to know more about it…. researching commencing, NOW.
Anything that gives you a insight into Google’s search product is worth checking out!
(via TechCrunch - thanks for doing all the hard work so punks like me on Tumblr can just poach your content)
QR Codes = Marketing Masturbation
I recently had a meeting with a very BIG luxury brand and the topic of them not being on Instagram came up. She said "I know, I know- we need to be there, but we just haven’t found the right ‘filter’ for our brand. I know it’s there, but we have to convince our creative director it will fit into our brand aesthetic". This is a fair enough statement because when brands go on a “filter bonanza” it’s pretty annoying. For our brands we have a group of approved filters we use, but mostly we don’t use any.
What does this have to do with QR Codes you ask? Take a look at the fucking hideous print/outdoor ads or window displays some luxury advertisers are using below.
So, just to recap- brands are SO sensitive about their brand image that they would hold off on joining a free 7mm+ member social network where your images would be a flash of content soon to be buried in users feeds forever - BUT you are willing to put a fucking hideous digital diarrhea mark on your beautiful static print imagery that you probably spent millions of dollars on? So chic.
The truth is that QR Codes are only cool to marketers, and lame marketers at that. These people are struggling so hard to find relevance in traditional marketing that they are willing to do anything to show their boss that this 100K spread in September Vogue is multidimensional and cutting edge. Then their boss prints out an article from mashable and says- ‘oh wow, QR Codes are effective because an infographic put out by a QR Code generating/scanning app says so’. And the masturbation continues… oh it feels so good.
I came across this excellent piece written by Dave Wieneke (don’t ask me to pronounce that) in AdAge and one bit really resonated with me:
"QR codes can actually impede the conversation. First, you have to assume not everyone knows what they are, so you have to explain how they work. Then, you just hope people are willing to download the app and go through the hassle of getting it to work. Then and only then will they be exposed to whatever brilliant website you have put together. And the majority of the time, this process neglects the critical issue of why someone would want to do any of this in the first place. Right now the answer to that seems to be, ‘Because marketers thinks it’s cool.’"
Moreover, marketers in luxury fashion use QR Codes to drive people to the dumbest shit ever. I’m sorry Calvin Klein, why on earth would I go through the trouble of downloading a scanner & taking a photo of your billboard just so I can see the behind the scenes of your anorexia orgy to learn more about the models in your CKOne ads?
Using QR codes to add value could be interesting, in fact a study that was put out by MGH Marketing Blog (whoever that is) said that 87% of people who use QR Codes are interesting getting a coupon, discount or deal. That could be interesting, but it is a completely inappropriate strategy for luxury retail.
When bullshitting with my attorney Dr. Gonzo, also known as Tim Baker, he provided this gem:
And that pretty much sums it up.
In addition to all the points above, I have been researching all day (also read: procrastinating reading all the emails I have in my inbox from being on vacation) and I cannot find ONE source that actually gives me details on the reach and audience for QR Codes. Sure there are studies out their putting out data on usage, but they are all coming from companies that are invested in this technology. I can also get data on how many other advertisers are planning on using this tactic, so sheep are welcome to that information, but nothing on the number of people who have downloaded and used QR Codes with results. No case studies from brands, nada. (To be fair, I haven’t looked at every piece of research out there that requires $ to access, I am too cheap- so if you have a study, do share & thanks for footing the bill)
I think QR Codes may become relevant if the scanners are embedded at the production level of smart phones, but unless luxury fashion brands are willing to truly add value to the dopes that take the time to scan them, it’s time to surrender the fantasy.
One more thing… to the Domino’s Pizza UK marketing team, I tip my cap to you in awe of your highest level of jackassery. Below is a “non-clickable” display banner that was served with a QR Code, that drove people to their mobile site to order pizza, when you could just put a URL behind the banner and drive them to their desktop site which offers the SAME service.
hater of bellybuttons.
RJK Project is my new gig