The “Creator Era”

With the Super Bowl just around the corner, it will be interesting to see how brands are leveraging influencers through social media to be a part of the new “creator era.”

The Super Bowl and other live events are the last vestige of a dying era of mass media. Sports–along with The Bachelor, The Voice and other major primetime events–are the few programs that remain impervious to DVR ad-skipping, as the immediacy of the live coverage is key to the viewing experience.

But does advertising on these mass outlets still make sense with increasing prices and changing consumer preferences?

Since fewer alternatives now exist to capture consumer attention en masse, the cost of the options that remain has risen quickly over the past 10 years, as referenced in Harvard Business working paper The Rising Cost of Consumer Attention. A Super Bowl ad for 2017 sells for $5 million–an effective CPM (cost per thousand impressions) of $38, quite an expensive price for the least–targeted advertising buy available.

The cost per eyeball becomes even higher when you take into account the increasingly divided nature of attention today versus 20 or even just 10 years ago. It’s been well-documented that attention spans are shorter than they once were. It’s no longer just running to the kitchen to grab a beer during the commercials, but instead diving headlong into a second-screen device.

One out of three viewers now watches part of the Super Bowl on a mobile device, and 50 percent of this group are millennials. On Super Bowl Sunday 2016, there were 200 million Facebook posts and 27 million tweets about the game. Social media conversation is an ingrained part of major live events.

Studies have shown that millennials are often blind to traditional TV ads or even have a negative perception of brands advertised. Growing up with TiVo and YouTube has conditioned many millennials to be in complete control of what they want to see and when. The result is that social media and smartphones have made millennials both followers and creators.

We deem this new age of participatory social media the “creator era.” Collaborative social engagement is a much deeper experience than the passive consumption of a TV commercial. It’s here, in social creation, where brands will have much higher attention for their marketing dollar.

Why its hot?

As digital marketers we have a challenge, engage audiences within the shortest amount of time and overcome the “second-screen syndrome.” Millennials have grown up with the a negative perception of advertisements and brands interjecting themselves into spaces where they just want to be themselves and talk to friends. They are conditioned to be in control of what they want to see and when they want to see it. Social media in particular has made them creators. To engage this audience we have to provide them with content that is experiential and not passive like TV.

It will be interesting to see how brands approach the super bowl this year.. Snickers is testing a LIVE TV sport and more attention may be put on the second screen this year than past years. In the new “creator era,” successful brands communicate awareness in a personalized manner through co-creation with influencers and advocates speaking in their voice to their audiences.

McDonald’s ‘Pay With Lovin’ Pays Off In WOM, Intent

We are all familiar with McDonald’s ‘Pay With Lovin’ campaign, having discussed it in Hot Sauce, prior to its SuperBowl debut. Now, independent brand monitors have shared results: an increase in WOM & purchase intent, w/little movement in favorability (sentiment was and is neutral).


– WOM saw a five percentage-point bump, with 29% of adults 18 and over reporting that they had talked about McDonald’s with friends and family over the past two weeks, compared to 24% just prior to the campaign launch.

– On game day, 36% of adults said they would consider making their next fast food purchase at McDonald’s; 11 days later, 39% said the same. One possible reason for the increase: people hoping to be chosen randomly for a free meal or watch others asked to perform a task, says YouGov.

Why It’s Hot: You might say the campaign is gimmicky, but it is fresh and new and kind of sweet…and, it worked. A 20% lift in WOM and 8% lift in PI are major accomplishments, especially for a brand that has such a huge volume base. This isn’t just reinforcing the idea that brand marketing should “be good”, but should “do good” (in this case, asking people to hug each other)!

SuperBowl: Negative buzz around the “Dead Child” ad drove big lift in Purchase Intention for Nationwide

Whaaaaaaat? That can’t be right, right? But it is. At least according to YouGov BrandIndex. Here’s the story:

We know that Nationwide got a lot of negative buzz, as soon as the ad featuring the death of a child debuted on the Super Bowl. We can debate the creative idea, and even the communication and brand strategies behind it, all we want. All I’ll say is that the idea is, at least, controversial; and that it’s not surprising that it generated such a negative reaction during (and after) the game.


Well, according to YouGov BrandIndex, in the ranking of the brands that saw the biggest lift in purchase consideration compared to pre-game baseline, Nationwide comes second with an impressive 6% lift, on top of well established brands like T-Mobile, Doritos, Coca Cola and BMW.



Purchase_ConsiderationThis may strike you as odd, considering the outcry in the wake of Nationwide’s ad, and you may not be alone. So what’s going on here? We can hypothesize about ads, consumers, and the like, but the reality is that we don’t know. All I can say is that, in general, people say what they think, but do what they feel.

Maybe the ad message did get to people’s heart, despite the anger expressed online? What do you think?


Why is this hot?

Because it forces us to question everything we hear from consumers, not just on focus groups, consumer studies, surveys, online panels and social listening. It forces us to “listen between the lines”.

#LikeABoy Backlash Only Proves the Point that #LikeAGirl Makes

During Super Bowl XLIX, feminine care brand Always caused a bit of a ruckus among Internet haters with its #LikeAGirl campaign. The campaign, which aired its first spot in June of last year, uses “real people” to act out how girls run, jump, punch and kick. The aim is to female empowerment, meant to draw attention to the crippling social atmosphere that tells us doing something “like a girl” is to do it badly, weakly and ultimately inferior to how a boy would do it.

Now, you might think a message that promotes women would be universally lauded. And by most accounts it was. Always cut through football’s male-oriented culture with a positive, eye-opening message and inspired movement where few women’s brands play. Always was right brand, in the right moment, with the right message. Women loved it, helping push the hashtag to trend by sharing powerful content about strength and femininity.

good tweet

But that didn’t sit right with the meninists of the world.

Following the spots airing during the big game, anti-feminist oafs galvanized to mount a virulent reaction against the ad. Dubbed #LikeABoy, the response took many shapes. From misunderstanding that the #LikeAGirl message was an attack of men, not promoting gender equality…



…to flat out sexism rooted in patriarchy, ignorance and hate not even worth sharing on this platform.

What these  “men’s rights” advocates miss is critical point: they as part of the patriarchy are the majority, and part of the problem. #LikeAGirl isn’t a campaign to establish female superiority; it’s a movement to identify that our language and culture (and through their use, we) are degrading women by associating women with the lesser. It’s no different than the negativity around the term “gay” (i.e. “Yo that’s gay!” to mean “bad”).

Fortunately, women and feminist allies showed they were up for the fight. When #LikeABoy began to gain steam, this vocal group took over the hashtag to point out its stupidity and misunderstanding of how gender inequality works.



And yes, men “who get it” got in on the action and show their support:

OE Tweet

Why It’s Hot

Always took a bold step forward for women everywhere with #LikeAGirl. The spot got people talking, good and bad. And the power of the women’s rights movement shows that brands who speak to and empower under-served communities online can do more than with brownie points. what’s funny out of all this is that the Always brand didn’t get caught in the fight, their audience did. And their audience fought back. Scrolling through the top tweets in #LikeABoy are evidence of that.

Source: Huffington Post

Don’t Doubt The Win When It Comes To Snapchat

Over the past couple of years, brands have discovered the value in targeting consumers via mobile. Everyone is on the go nowadays and by targeting consumers through social media applications, brands can interact with their audience 24/7.

Snapchat, a photo-messaging application is a growing tool that brands can use to interact with their audiences. Recently, Snapchat launched “Discover” in an effort to make the app more brand friendly.

Many brands dropped the ball when it came to utilizing Snapchat as a tool to engage their audience during the Super Bowl. However, Mountain Dew knew exactly where to be on social to promote their new campaign.

Mountain Dew took to Snapchat in an effort to promote the launch of new flavors for their Kickstart Morning Drink.  The brand appealed to the application’s influencers the day before the big game by initiating Kickstory. Mountain Dew’s Kickstory was a real time, “fan-driven,” Snapchat story featuring content pulled from various social media platforms and web celebrities. The brand’s story was extremely interactive because they encouraged fans to vote for what was to be revealed in their next story. The audience voted by taking a screenshot of their favorite option and this was a great way for Mountain Dew to indicate the engagement of their audience.Mountain Dew Kickstory


The story ended just shy of kick-off at the Super Bowl. This shows how great their timing truly was because they knew what everyones priority was going to be during game time.

Why It’s Hot:

Some brands saw the value in taking advantage of an underutilized social media platform to interact on a 1:1 level with their audience. Since the app isn’t time consuming, it was a quick and easy way for brands to connect with viewers in an exciting and cool way.

Facebook Packages Own Super Bowl Audience for Ad Dollars

Facebook is creating its own Super Bowl audience as the social network looks to intercept the big game’s ad dollars. Starting on Wednesday, Facebook will track the status updates and comments people post to the social network for keywords related to the Super Bowl. People who post something Super Bowl-related will be added to an audience pool — and the aggregated data will be anonymized — alongside the more than 50 million people who interacted with Super Bowl-related content on Facebook last year. Advertisers will be able to buy ads against Facebook’s Super Bowl audience leading up to and during the Super Bowl, which will take place on February 1.

There’s another twist to Facebook’s use of conversation data for Super Bowl-related ad targeting. It will be used in nearly real time. Normally there’s a day-long delay between when someone says something on Facebook and when they are added to a relevant ad-targeting group. But for the Super Bowl ad-targeting group — which Facebook calls the “Big Game” targeting segment — that person would be added within a couple minutes of posting. As a result, if this year’s Super Bowl includes another blackout, brands will be able to promote their clever “real-time marketing” responses to people talking about the blackout on Facebook within minutes.

Why It’s Hot

This is timely for the media team as we’re in the midst of 2015 planning. One of our goals for this year is to create true offline/online synergy with our client’s TV plan. This includes utilizing data targeting online to align with our client’s TV schedule. Since our client’s product is a black box drug we haven’t been able to advertise on Facebook yet. However, once more social opportunities opens up this type of targeting would be a great way for us to reach consumers while on their second screen to build frequency and increase brand awareness.



YouTube to Produce its Own Super Bowl Halftime Show

As part of a broad initiative to promote advertisements on YouTube, YouTube will be holding a halftime show during the Super Bowl with its top stars. The program will be just like the “real” halftime show, with musical guests, stunt, and commercials. It might seem like a stretch for YouTube to compete with the SuperBowl, but more than 60 million people subscribe to the channels of the stars participating in the program. Some of those stars are even featured on billboards in major U.S. cities.

Aside from raising interest in YouTube stars and also giving YouTube fans what they want, the program aims to demonstrate value of advertising on YouTube to top brands. As Freddie Wong, popular YouTube star, puts it. ““YouTube is the place where people go to consume advertisements willingly.”







Read more about YouTube’s halftime show on Bloomberg.

Why It’s Hot | As we move further away from paid TV and more consumers adopt OTT services, it will be interesting to watch what happens to viewership and second-screen engagement during live events. Many analysts agree that live events are a big part of what keeps people subscribed to paid TV, so while YouTube might be trying to acknowledge changing viewing behaviors, perhaps the largest live event of the year isn’t the best time to test a new program. That being said, many watch the Super Bowl just for the commercials, and since YouTube is the place to go to view those commercials, it could be a winning situation to capture and engage that influx in traffic.


Life Size Pac Man: Bud Light’s Super Bowl Spot

Bud Light is known for its entertaining commercials during the annual big game and from the looks of it, the brand did not disappoint this year. The full 90 second teaser, which is by Energy BBDO, was released on ‘The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’ Thursday. (Jimmy Fallon’s show airs on NBC, which is the same network that shows the Superbowl.)

Continuing last year’s theme, Bud Light’s spot begins with a real man, who claims he is “up for whatever.” The man is then whisked away to a legendary night of iconic ’80s fun. In the latest teaser we see him being led to a giant interactive Pac Man game, where he is told he is actually Pac Man and must play the game. (Note this features actual people and events, not actors.)

Why This is Hot 

Bud Light strikes again and from the looks of things they have done it well. This brand has been consistent in standing out in the crowded Super Bowl advertising space. They have been able to continuously produce buzz-worthy, highly anticipated spots. In my opinion, part of the reason these ads are so epic is because they make consumers actually want to jump into the ad and join the night of fun (I mean who wouldn’t want to play a life-size Pac Man game?) Thus far consumers’ reactions have been overwhelmingly positive with high mentions on social media, increasing the buzz. Kudos, Bud Light!

Mindy Kaling is “Invisible” in New Nationwide Spot

Nationwide is charging into its first Super Bowl since 2007, and not with recent frontman Peyton Manning, but with a seemingly less likely spokesperson—Mindy Kaling, the talent behind Fox’s sitcom The Mindy Project. In a newly released teaser for the Big Game spot “Invisible,” Kaling decides that after years of being treated as if she was invisible—think taxis bypassing her on city streets—she might actually be invisible and has some fun with the idea. She eats food from a stranger’s plate at an outdoor café, sunbathes nude in a park, helps herself to a bucket of ice cream as she strolls through a supermarket aisle and walks through an automated carwash. Against strains of the Roy Orbison song “Oh, Pretty Woman,” the narrator ends the teaser with “But Mindy was actually not invisible.”

Why It’s Hot

While I didn’t find Nationwide’s teaser to be particularly groundbreaking I thought the company’s message behind the ad was really interesting:

“The insight here is consumers feel dissatisfied and considered invisible by companies out there,” said Matt Jauchius, Nationwide’s chief marketing officer. “The best advertising combines head and heart. With ‘Invisible,’ we’re saying we understand you, America—you feel treated by brands as being invisible. That’s the rational message, and for the emotional one we’re using humor because it’s the Super Bowl.”

By using humor and a celebrity influencer I think that this ad will help to improve brand perception among the millennial target and I’ll be interested to see where Nationwide takes this “Invisible” message in the future.

Follow more at #InvisibleMindy



7 YouTube Stars Help Tease Nissan’s Return to the Super Bowl

Nissan has turned to YouTube stars to build buzz around its first Super Bowl appearance in 18 years.

Seven YouTube stars, including Roman Atwood, Action Movie Kid, Dude Perfect and Jabbawockeez, are creating their own videos around the theme #withdad. And while the videos are all visually different and therefore not illustrative of the Big Game ad, they suggest a unifying theme: how fathers make families more exciting.

Nissan’s lead agency, TBWA\Chiat\Day in Playa del Rey, Calif., is creating the spot, which the automaker previously confirmed. Neither the company nor the agency will release the execution before the Feb. 1 game. But it’s expected to be at least 60 seconds long and air during the first half.

“With so many commercials airing before the Big Game, I fundamentally believe it takes away much of the magic of showing the commercial on the biggest stage of the year,” said Fred Diaz, svp of sales, marketing and operations for Nissan North America. “We do, however, want to build suspense around our story while provoking a social conversation around the overarching theme.”

Here’s a look at the first four YouTube teaser videos, which Nissan posted on today

Why it’s hot:

Another touchdown ? Super Bowl XLIX is still more than a week away, but fans are already eagerly anticipating the big game — and the commercials that come with it. Buzz building efforts like leveraging social influencers help to not just build momentum for advertising but also help to justify the business case for the expensive superbowl spot.