Creating a mindset change that a unique brand experience is for your minimal viable audience

Adam Good Baby Photo

When I first joined the world of advertising many moons ago (yes that’s me above), the purpose, the business discipline and group of people who worked in and around it had a mindset geared towards trying to create a brand to reach a maximum audience.

To be seen by millions to have a huge impact was the goal of any advertising brief and piece of work.

We ran around the agency with our clients spending time looking backward from past advertising, admiring great memorable ads as well as digging into research on what people liked and didn’t like about ads.

We researched what had happened, generally believing that past advertising techniques would show us the way to great future advertising programs of work.

While there is no doubt the advertising science has matured over the last twenty-five years. We have learned to talk about a mass market ambition via using data, target audiences, look-alikes. We also use consumer research to produce a brand proposition that is the basis to drive an Omnichannel idea.

However, I still wonder often when in the day to day of work if we have the right mindset on what a great brand experience should be?

If we look closely, advertising has not evolved anywhere to the levels and changes that consumer media behavior has.

The millions of media channels we have in the world today has resulted in an explosion of ‘ad noise,’ and the result is people actively go out to resist advertising and focus on their own personal content consumer journey with the mobile phone the prime access point.

I think many of the problems with the advertising industry we are experiencing today, means the industry transformation we are on today fundamentally is not addressing the one major issue. Our advertising industry mindset.

The advertising industry still thinks its role is to create mass marketing.

Today the always-connected consumer is far from a mass target yet the advertising process we have in place, and the conversation that results around it still has a mindset advertising is for the mass market.

I think the tipping point was ten years ago. We still had limited media channels to chose from and social media was not mainstream or making the impact it does today on owned media. The professional advertising solution could do a mass marketing campaign. Alternatively, at least it was possible to make a significant impact pending on how much press spend you put behind your campaigns.

Today, however, paid media is not a silver bullet.

Paid advertising is being filtered out both with ad blockers but more by a changed content behavior where we just don’t want ads in our life. Alternatively, as few as possible.

The growth of Netflix with no advertising is an example of change, and you only have to look up from this screen you are reading this blog, and you will see all the world’s faces staring down into their mobile phone for hours per day viewing a personally delivered channel of content.

While this goes on and more often than not old tied advertising processes are being rolled by agencies with clients saying they have the magic approach to do some mass marketing and to appeal to the mass.

They are saying there is now a promise paid media can find your exact audience target and with that push a targeted impression can be placed on them.

The result is an Ad that looks like an Ad, the creative is usually dumbed down, and the click from the ad is also to an average consumer click to the conversion experience. It’s frankly just got to stop.

When you seek to push a paid advertising unit of any description onto someone, you rarely delight anyone. Moreover, if you’re not the unique, essential, one-of-a-kind changemaker brand, you never get a chance to engage with the market on any mass level.

The solution today in marketing is counterintuitive but straightforward.

Stake out the smallest market you can imagine.

The smallest market that can sustain you, the smallest market you can adequately serve. This goes against everything you the advertising media planned promises, but in fact, it’s the simplest way to matter.

When you have your eyes firmly focused on the minimum viable audience, you will double down on all the changes you seek to make. Your quality, your story, and your impact will all get better.

Moreover, then, ironically enough, the word will spread. It will take longer, but you are more likely going to please that audience, maybe even create some purpose and longevity.

It’s easy to talk about in the abstract, but difficult to put into practice I appreciate but once that mindset is firmly accepted I think so much change can take place.

Just about every brand you care about, just about every organization that matters to you–this is how they got there.

By focusing on only a few and ignoring the non-believers, the uninvolved and the average.

FOOTNOTE:

This is my last day at Dentsu Inc as Chief Digitial Officer at Dentsu Brand Agencies in the Asia Pacific. It has been a real privilege to be in the network during what has been constant change and evolution of the Dentsu Inc and Dentsu Aegis communication business.

Dentsu Aegis Network is today a highly-integrated and highly-competitive global marketing services group built for the digital economy. Since 2013, Dentsu Aegis Network has doubled its revenues from £1.8bn to £3.6bn and grown organically at twice the rate of its competitors.

I will be returning to Australia during November and basing myself in my homeland while also seeking out my next digital transformation assignment for 2019 and beyond. Stay tuned.

 

Dentsu Sports Technology Venture

San Francisco-based Scrum Ventures and Dentsu have developed Sports Tech Tokyo, a one-year accelerator program for sports technology companies to provide business opportunities to test marketable products.

Scrum Ventures invests in sports technology for athletes and consumers, including wearable devices, sensors, and virtual reality (VR) technology.

Available from January 2019, the program is seeking applications from startups focused on a wide range of sports-related technologies and will initially select 150 companies to work with.

The use of technology in sport is extensive today. Some thematic applications include coaching and competition analysis, clothing and wearables, science and human performance, media broadcasting and communications, entertainment, e-sports, business and digital transformation, and sporting facility planning and use.

Venture investments in sports startups grew to US$1.5 billion in 2017, according to Deloitte – marking a 50-per-cent increase in two years.

With Japan hosting two major sporting events in the next two years – the 2019 Rugby World Cup and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics – the country hopes to add further value to the sports technology business.

While the Sports Tech initiative is not directly related to Dentsu’s advertising business, the company is exploring ways to manage fan engagement, an area of marketing and that working with companies that develop new technologies for sports fans can garner large amounts of useful data.

Examples as yet unconnected to Sports Tech could include systems enabling micro-sponsorship of sports teams or smart clothing that could send data about an athlete’s movements to insurance providers.

This venture will see Dentsu developing ideas with the start-ups that wish to participate in the programme. The first is technology to help athletes in their training, both physical and mental.

Another area of innovation is to improve the viewing experiences for audiences, which could include innovations in the field of virtual reality and programs to improve technologies at stadiums, such as smart payment systems.

This tech-based sports program will be integrated with many new forms of business models and revenue streams that are in development across the Dentsu Inc portfolio. 

 

 

Dentsu Jayme Syfu Greenpeace Dead Whale, Refuse Plastic campaign

The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, also described as the Pacific trash vortex, is a gyre of marine debris particles in the central North Pacific Ocean discovered between 1984 and 1988.

A study this year, based on what researchers called a mega-expedition to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in 2015 – suggests there is about 16 times more waste than previously thought floating there. The mass of waste spans 617,763 square miles(1.6 million square km), about three times the size of France.

Something has to be done.

Philippine creative agency, Dentsu Jayme Syfu, put the problem of dumping rubbish in the middle of a Philippine beach.

In just five days, Dentsu Jayme Syfu and a team of local artists created the sculpture of a blue whale stretching 73 feet long.

Starting with a bamboo structure, the group worked to exploit the aesthetic qualities of the plastics they salvaged to make the installation look as realistic as possible, including using plastic bags to simulate the slimy texture of a whale’s decomposing body.

The strikingly unusual awareness campaign for Greenpeace Philippines was an installation – a dead whale made of plastic – placed on a beach in Naic in Cavite in Manila Bay in The Philippines. Manila Bay is considered to be one the most polluted bodies of water in the country.

From a distance, the 26.3 x 3.3 metre whale looked like any of the other 30 whales that had died on beaches in the past year.

But this whale was made entirely of plastic waste. The agency had used local artists to craft every detail, including texture, in just five days. The whale appeared to be bleeding, and spewing out of its mouth were the choking remains of plastic containers, garbage bags and bottles.

All of the whale’s colours were achieved with rubbish. Blue sacks; black, grey, and white garbage bags; red net onion sacks for the “bleeding” sections; twisted white sacks for the underbelly; PET bottles were for the baleen teeth;  black, white and red strings and straw for the skin.

Dead Whale (the Refuse Plastic campaign) has won Best of Show, Green Award, and Platinum Award APAC at the 2018 AME Awards. At the 2018 Cannes Advertising Awards it picked up silver and gold in the art installation category. It won the most awards at Spikes Festival Awards 2017- a Gold Spike in Media, in Outdoor, Silver in PR, Bronze in Design, and Bronze in Direct – and made Dentsu Jayme Syfu Country Agency of the Year. It also won awards at Ad Summit’s Kidlat Awards and Adfest 2018 and is shortlisted for the APAC Effie Awards.

Coca-Cola promotes ‘peace, hope and understanding’ during Trump and Kim Singapore Summit from Dentsu Merdeka LHS Malaysia

It’s about time — literally. If you want to successfully engage today’s impatient consumers, you have to be ready to meet them on their time, with the perfect message for each of their changing needs. Sometime a good way to use time is to captivate your audience with topics the world is talking about and caring about.

On June 12 such a timely and history making moment was taking place, US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met at a summit in Singapore, the first between a North Korean leader and a sitting American president.

To commemorate this timely moment in history, Coca-Cola made limited-edition cans designed by Dentsu Aegis Network Malaysia’s creative agency, Merdeka LHS, with logos written half in English, half in Korean with a message in both languages that reads “Here’s to Peace, Hope and Understanding.

The Dentsu agency then took to the streets to interview people in Singapore on their thoughts and feelings about this historical event. See link on Facebook below;

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fcocacolasg%2Fvideos%2F1363835733718663%2F&show_text=0&width=560

The video ends with the song “I’d Like To Teach The World To Sing (In Perfect Harmony)” made popular by Coca-Cola’s 1971 “Hilltop” advertisement. The song is one of Coke’s most famous television campaigns where the brand celebrated multiculturalism, unity, peace and love.

The summit was a perfect platform for the Coke brand to demonstrate one of it’s core beliefs. The idea was to seize the moment to be at the crossroad of an important time in history to spread a brand message of hope and optimism and use Facebook platform to push it out quickly.

For a quick turn around idea to work it all boils down to the client and agency having trust in each other, adding that there should be no layers in the decision making process.

Project Rejoice from BWM Dentsu Group Australia

Non-profit initiative ‘Project Revoice’ by BWM Dentsu Group Australia for The ALS Association has bagged the Grand Prix for Good at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

The ALS Association is a non-profit that provides assistance for people with ALS (Motor Neurone Disease). Their mission is to build hope and enhance quality of life while aggressively searching for a cure.

Within a couple of years of diagnosis, most ALS patients end up paralysed in a wheelchair and forced to communicate via text-to-speech devices, typically through a default ‘computer’ voice.

‘Project Revoice’ introduced a breakthrough in speech technology for people living with ALS (motor neuron disease), enabling those who lose the ability to talk to continue speaking in their own authentic and personal voice.

In the past, people with ALS could use pre-recorded messages to communicate, but the team at BWM Dentsu Group worked with Canadian software partner Lyrebird to create a complete voice clone.

To launch the initiative, Project Revoice has given Pat Quinn, co-founder of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, his voice back.

Quinn did not record (or bank) his voice before ALS robbed him of his ability to speak. Using footage from his many Ice Bucket interviews, the team were able to re-build his voice.

It allows Quinn to speak freely and naturally in his own voice, rather than a ‘machine’ voice, when linked to his eye reader assistive technology. The man who gave ALS a voice now has his own voice back.

Some highlights from this work.

Over 900 million earned media reach.
Week one: Over one million organic video views.
By week two: Over 41 million people joined the conversation online.
Over 680 articles globally.
Over 500 patients joined the program in the first month alone.

Disappearing Person Alerts from BWM Dentsu Australia

Every 20 minutes a teenager is reported missing In Australia.

In the search for missing persons, the first 24-hours are the most critical, but traditional alerts are failing to reach the public in time – particularly teenagers.

So, BWM Dentsu created a new social media tool to assist Queensland Police with missing person investigations. Sent through Snapchat, Disappearing Person Alerts instantly notify the public when someone goes missing near them.

Using the native functionality of Snapchat, the alert communicates an informative and emotive message, ‘Help find John Citizen before he disappears.’

Launched in conjunction with the 2017 National Missing Persons Week, Disappearing Person Alerts continue to be used today as a powerful policing tool.

‘Disappearing Person Alerts,’ helped BWM Dentsu Australia earn Agency of the Year honors at the 2018 Asia-Pacific Tambuli Awards held at Shangri-la at The Fort. Dentsu Aegis Network earned the coveted Network of the Year award.

The awards for ‘Disappearing Person Alerts, included In Responsible Citizenship, Humanity & Culture cluster and Gold was earned by the same campaign in Youth Brand, Humanity & Culture cluster; a Silver in Mobile, Media & Digital cluster; another Silver in Social Media, Media & Digital cluster; and a Bronze in Best Brand Idea for Good, Creative cluster.

Clean Light Hand Soap from Dentsu One Bangkok

Norovirus, or the ‘winter vomiting bug,’ is highly virulent. A vaccine to combat the virus does not exist today and the virus cannot be killed by using hand gel alone.

However, vigorous hand washing with soap for 20 seconds, as directed by U.S. Centers for Disease Control, is highly effective in preventing infection.

People are not aware of this fact. So Zantiis, an organic skincare brand, and Dentsu One Bangkok developed Clean Light Hand Soap, a soap bar that flashes for 20 seconds.

This blinking soap bar started a buzz on social media and got people talking about how long they clean their hands. Zantiis posted a video on its Facebook site to demonstrate effective hand washing, which boosted the site’s engagement rate by 1700%.

The soap bar was used as a health education tool in schools and promoted in shopping malls in Thailand.

 This simple and effective product was 1 of 7 pieces of work shortlisted at the National Design Innovation Contest.