The idea that brands are underspending in digital is a common assumption that needs to be tested. Some brands are already spending a huge portion of their marketing budget in digital, and this is growing
The Future Of Advertising
Net#work BBDO and Sinister Studios are applying technology to advertising in ways that have never been seen before. The result of their technological evolution is an experience that fully engages the senses and appeals to peoples hearts.
Net#work BBDO and visual effects and animation agency, Sinister Studios, has delivered on a brief for Mercedes-Benz South Africa, above and beyond the clients wildest expectations. The brief was to launch the new range of Mercedes-Benz Roadsters and Cabriolets by bringing to life the sense of child-like wonder embodied in the range, and appealing to the emotions of the brands fan base, both young and old.
Net#work BBDO ECD, Brad Reilly, says that Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) has set the benchmark for innovative ways of pulling fans and customers closer to the brand, and the creative challenge was to top everything that had gone before.
We decided to use virtual reality to expand on Mercedes-Benzs #LookUp campaign. But we wanted to push the boundaries, we wanted to push past the limits of what virtual reality has been used to do in the past - thats why we partnered with Sinister Studios.
Four test-drive videos were developed, with the first one showcasing the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupé and the second the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Both of these utilised technology to profile the cars features in ways not previously possible.
The tricky part of filming cars, says Sinister Studios, Christian van der Walt, is that there are lighting and depth of field issues to reconcile. When filming, the interior of a vehicle is generally darker than the environment its being driven in and this needs to be compensated for. So what we did was use a pod of cameras to shoot a 360-degree view of the outside world, and then we completely created the cars interiors with computer graphics. This allowed us to seamlessly integrate the two aspects.
The third video saw the Mercedes-AMG C 63 being tested at high speed at the Kyalami race-track. Again, computer graphics and 360-degree film combined to create a fantastical experience. We later superimposed Lewis Hamilton, pilot of the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 car, into the test drive, another first. The success of this approach is entirely due to the technology we used.
But the fourth video featuring the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet pulled all the elements together in an overlay of characters, fantasy and animation that weve never seen done before.
This digital world is truly experiential and allows viewers to feel as if they are the protagonist of the journey. Our video incorporates the fantasy of childrens imagination as they have an unrestricted ability to look up and wonder, and takes the virtual experience to the next level.
As a teaser, a short video featuring three children and a dog in the back of a cabriolet was captured. The children were asked how they felt driving in the vehicle and what they saw when they were asked to #LookUp, and their responses were amazing animals without feet and it feels like Im on a bubble thats flying away. Their thoughts and words were used in the virtual reality to physically portray what they saw and express how they felt.
"This type of Virtual Reality campaign has not been produced by any other automotive company, and has the potential to build love for the Mercedes-Benz brand by appealing to the emotions of our fan base," says Selvin Govender, Marketing Director, Mercedes-Benz Cars South Africa.
Users are able to view the content as a 360-degree video on their PCs, smartphones and tablets, or they can familiarise themselves with the full virtual reality experience on devices such as the Samsung Gear VR or even the Google cardboard, using their own mobile devices.
"We believe that Virtual Reality could offer fans and customers the convenience of having an incredible experience that could come as close as possible to driving and enjoying the thrill of a new product, while in the convenience of their homes with their personal devices, says Govender.
Most VR experiences let consumers immerse themselves in a fantasy world, but adding a story telling layer above and beyond the technology is critical. Thats what makes the experience sticky. Were not just pushing product or technology; were giving people an experience built around a human story, he says. And if this is the future of advertising, Im all for it.
See the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Cabriolet #LookUp video here:
See the Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupé 360-degree video here:
See the Mercedes-Benz E-Class 360-degree video here:
See a link to the App here:
E: p.mokoko@bdcomms | T: @thabang23
S: peter_mokoko | W: www.bydesigncommunications.co.za
The industry as of late has been abuzz with the pending ad blocking apocalypse. Reactions have been mixed: some publishers are indifferent while others think the sky is falling. However, publishers shouldn’t panic just yet. This latest round of ad blocking doesn’t spell the end of the digital advertising world.
Do people pay attention to ads anymore? I seriously doubt it! We have seen the average click through rates on digital banners decreasing by more than 60% in the past ten years and ever more declining day-after recall rates for TV advertising.
Effective marketing is becoming more and more of a challenge these days, because the customer is well-informed, interacts through multiple channels, uses their peers as a primary information source and wants the best customer experience possible.
People are still consuming content, but the desire to consume it and pay for it on their own terms based on individual wants and needs has caused a massive shift in behaviour. People have gone from sitting in front of a television – at a specific time - to watching shows, to recording programmes, to viewing at their convenience