What’s Next For Advertising By The People Who Are Already Doing It

Whilst TV and radio are still the major players in the South African advertising scene, new categories of media have emerged over the past few years that are reshaping the marketing landscape. Initially all falling under the umbrella term ‘digital’, these new non-traditional marketing channels have mushroomed into their own independent fields with entire specialised businesses that employ a whole troop of highly skilled professionals whose job titles didn’t exist 10 years ago.

 

Today, it’s impossible to talk about marketing and advertising without including social media experts, bloggers, seeders, influencers, online video producers, branded content specialists, digital marketing gurus, mobile mavens and the like, who each play a pivotal role in connecting brands to their audience in new ways.

 

With the Loerie Awards taking place this weekend, which will celebrate and award the biggest and the best campaigns of the year, we decided to check in with fellow ‘future advertising’ specialists to hear their views, opinions and predictions for the future of advertising and marketing. We asked each person, collective and agency the same set of questions, and received a whole truck-load of insight.

 

 

Jason Xenopoulos

CEO & CCO of NATIVE VML:

 

What do you do?

NATIVE VML is a full-service agency designed to service clients and their customers in the digital era.

 

How did you get into doing this?

The company was formed in 2011 through the merger of three digital specialists.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

It depends on your definition of advertising. The word is often associated with interruption marketing (short interstitials that are shoe-horned between content like TV ads, radio ads, print ads, banner ads etc.) We avoid doing this kind of work wherever possible.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

The Digital Revolution is a Consumer Revolution. Power has shifted from the hands of marketers, media owners, and even governments into the hands of the people. Building brands in this new consumer-led marketplace requires a new approach to “advertising”. It is no longer enough to simply communicate a brand or product message. Today, your marketing has to provide customers, and their communities, with something of value. That’s where we come in. At NATIVE VML we are obsessed with creating what we refer to as “purpose-driven work that lives in people’s lives”.  That is work that becomes a valuable part of your daily routine, rather than simply stealing a moment of your attention.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Work that has a purpose for the brand, a purpose for the consumer, and a purpose for the wider world.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

Having a brand positioning is no longer enough. Brands must have a higher purpose, a set of values that they share with their customers. Similarly, marketing can no longer simply “tell and sell”, it must provide customers with something of value.

 

I agree with Keith Weed, the CMO of Unilever, who says that marketing has evolved from “marketing to people (during the mass media era), to marketing with people (during the social media era), to marketing for people” today.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

There will always be a demand for creativity and storytelling… these are the fundamental building blocks required to create compelling and relevant communication.

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/rMMlqRHLjZs[/youtube]

 

 

Greg Potterton

Director and co-founder of Instant Grass:

 

What do you do? 

Instant Grass is a consumer collaboration agency – we create and manage communities allowing our clients to collaborate directly with their consumers.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

As a planner in the advertising industry, I realized that the consumer’s voice was almost always precluded from the creative process.

 

Agencies, and their clients, were living in their respective ivory towers and paid little attention to what the consumers were asking for. Instead, a creative concept would be approved and the planning department had to reverse-engineer a consumer need. I was working on a fashion retail brand and put together a panel of 4 consumers to validate my strategy. It turns out it was the first time the client had met their consumers. Eleven years later we are still introducing clients to their consumers.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…  

Our model is really an extension of the advertising journey. Advertising 1.0 relied on interrupting someone long enough to catch their attention. Advertising 2.0 was all about making messaging that disguised itself as valuable content. Consumer Collaboration is the next logical step – ask people what they want, get them to help you create it and then offer it back to them.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

There are two prime movers that have worked in our favour. Firstly, technology empowered the consumer by giving them information and access to intelligence that was historically off-limits. The consumer became smarter and consequently in charge of the advertising transaction.

 

Secondly, as the consumer was armed they were intuitively smarter. They developed powerful bullsh*t radars. Advertising that ignored consumer insight and human needs ended up adding to the noise instead of breaking through it.

 

All we do is introduce smart consumers to smart clients.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

A campaign that is unapologetic about its intentions. Consumers don’t mind being targeted (in fact they mostly enjoy it), if the message is relevant to them.

 

Effective campaigns understand what is relevant to the individual and are honest in rewarding this need in a brutally commercial manner.

 

It is when advertising masquerades as a friend that it loses all its credibility.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future? 

Nano-Targeting. All this data that we have been gathering over the past 5 years will be converted into intelligence that will make it possible to target people as individuals and not clusters. Messaging will become intuitive and idiosyncratic and will morph as each individual consumer evolves.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

Advertisers will remain storytellers. The only consistent throughout the past decade of industrial and technological disruption has been the power of a good story. A good story is one that is platform-agnostic. The way we reach people is guaranteed to change in ways that we are not yet able to comprehend but there will always be a need for people who are effective storytellers.

 

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/76517373[/vimeo]

 

 

Andrew Berry

Co-founder of We-are-awesome: 

 

What do you do? 

We-are-awesome is a platform with a large following of consumers, whether it be art, design, brands or a lifestyle, our readers are there to consume and digest. We create content and that content lives on the platform and beyond. All our video content is created by We-are-awesome FILM, a separate company under the same umbrella name. The content we create is often branded or sponsored but is sometimes just content we feel our audience should be or would be interested in. We-are-awesome is both an audience for local creatives to make use of as well as a source of cool things.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

We-are-awesome was birthed out of a desire to bring greater exposure to what was happening creatively in South Africa, at first focusing on Cape Town, but this has developed since the start. We have stayed true to this through a desire to create cool shit while we also share the cool things those around us are making and creating. We had a desire for South Africans to consume better local creativity, and have easily access to it.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

Yes, we are paid by brands to make either their products or their brands as a whole more desirable or better known to more people. It’s most definitely advertising, but that advertising allows us to create content, stories and other interesting things we wouldn’t have been able to if their wasn’t a large marketing budget.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

There are lots of things that have changed but I think the most important for us is the technological advancement that has happened over the last 10-15 years. The internet has become one of the main platforms for advertisement and creating content has become extremely easy due to the advances made in camera equipment. This means if you can create a following, which is free, and make relevant content for that audience, also free, then you can sell both of those things you have created for free to a brand looking for greater credibility as usually internet audiences are built around a common set of opinions or a common lifestyle. Brands want to tap into particular markets and the internet makes it very easy to determine whether your audience is that market and if the content you create will effectively portray their desired message.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

I don’t think awards should be the focus of a campaign –  awards don’t necessarily sell products or achieve a desired brand image, the goal of most advertising. Awards are nice but usually just an indication to your boss whether you are doing a good job or not. Advertising is not for your boss, it’s for your client and if the client’s objectives are met and possibly surpassed then it’s a successful campaign.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future? 

Advertising will inevitably take over any platform that gains a lot of natural attention, in the past that was TV screens and newspapers, and to a certain degree that will continue but as the market moves to other platforms, advertising in turn will move there too. I think advertising will eventually become more personal and customised, obviously that has already started with Google Ads.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

Research and problem solving will always be the most important parts of advertising – it’s not really important what you label the positions that perform these actions. You just need to make sure you stay educated and up to date with contemporary tools and platforms.

 

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/92013340[/vimeo]

 

 

Anthea Poulos

Co-founder of The Bread – Creative Consultancy:

 

What do you do?

I guess it’s easier to say ‘what don’t we do?’ The 3 of us have backgrounds in design, web & social as well as research and strategy but a lot of the jobs we get in are a mix of all this plus some. We work with a group of creative freelancers so whatever task the 3 of us can’t grasp from spatial design to production we outsource and bring in the correct team, which means we can pull off almost anything. We aim to be a turn key from creative solution through to the final product.

 

How did you get into doing this?

We saw that brands seemed to have a need to reach the market in a new and relevant way, we felt that as individuals we’d learnt enough to come together and answer that need. Beyond that we’d have a chance to work with all the incredible creatives around us while still keeping a small workforce and being able to produce work we really believe in.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

I guess not in the traditional sense, but yes in that we bring awareness and understanding of a brand to new and existing consumers. In many cases we trump traditional advertising and bring something completely new so let’s call us the future of advertising?

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

A lot of people working at agencies and in big office complexes have lost touch with the part of the market they’re actually trying to communicate with. They sit in these stuffy boardrooms in middle class suburbs figuring out solutions for people they don’t really understand.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

One that people actually get to see and interact with? Don’t get me wrong I love something beautiful and smart as much as the next guy but how far do we go to look at the impact it actually has on the market? Maybe there should be two sets of awards 1) Look how much better my work is than yours, and 2) Did this actually impact the market in terms of sales and awareness.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

I think a lot is going to move strictly online, and by that I don’t mean banner ads and Facebook, but rather that advertising in its traditional sense won’t work for much longer. People are too busy and too distracted to really be spending time watching your advert or whatever the case. SO, I think interactive solutions for the consumer by brands in the connected space is where things are going – something that really works for and assists the consumer.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

I’d say developers and people able to build apps etc. will be full-time staff at agencies. It’ll become more and more necessary to have people who are able to understand that and able to create it in-house as quickly as possible.

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/ZBWScCsQ-4Y[/youtube]

 

 

Mike Sharman

Owner of Retroviral Digital Communications:

 

What do you do? 

Retroviral is an agency that creates word of mouth spread for brands in the digital space. Our four pillars pertain to strategy (developing key insights to support business objectives), content creation (from social media content to YouTube videos), content dissemination (working with online influencers such as bloggers and social media personalities via Webfluential.com, and via paid-for means – YouTube / Facebook media), and tracking / reporting / analytics (ORM tools such as BrandsEye, brand Google Analytics, benchmarking success and failures of brand online communication)

 

How did you get into doing this?

I worked in London for two years from 2008. I noticed the growth in social media adoption and the influx of consumers to platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. I am passionate about brand narratives and storytelling to aid brands in selling products or services. I realised that internet prices would plummet in SA in the coming years due to advancements in tech on the mobile front and with Seacom, so I realised it would be a good time to a launch a new kind of communications agency in SA.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

Advertising is essentially communicating a product or service to a target market, so yes, we do advertising. Our conduit for this communication is the internet and various social platforms that are populated with consumers with disposable income. We would even go so far as to say that we are in the Radvertising industry 😉

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

Accessibility to the internet and various social platforms, especially via mobile has aided our cause. There is more than 100% mobile penetration in SA, so everyone has access to a communication tool in their pocket now.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Something that moves people to laugh, cry, and/or have goosebumps and is so infectious that people can’t help but share it. Something that creates this impulse for people to exclaim or to realise – ‘OMG, I need to have this product in my life’. Remarkable communication that supports sales is the holy grail.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

Influencer marketing will continue to grow. Disruptive services such as Firefly video will cease to exist due to their invasive nature and outdated attention seeking techniques. Brands will start to invest more in digital and see the value in spending media to support video content.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

My job didn’t exist when I left varsity less than 10 years ago, there is no way anyone can predict where this industry will be in 15 years; that’s the most exciting part of this job – the constant evolution 😉

 

[vimeo]http://vimeo.com/38620013[/vimeo]

 

 

Terri De Sousa

Copy Director at Liquorice:

 

What do you do?

I’m the Copy Director at Liquorice.

 

How did you get into doing this?

After a few years in advertising, I went Freelance. This was when I first realised that digital is what I wanted to do. It suddenly felt like above-the-line advertising was 2D compared to the multi-dimensional world of digital and that the above-the-line ‘canvas’ was just too small and limited for the things I wanted to do. Now I’m part of Liquorice where the likes of a Twerk Activated Vending Machine is possible!

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

Yes, definitely. You could say that online marketing is concentrate advertising. The dictionary defines advertising as the practice of calling public attention to one’s product or service. The public we’re speaking to is targeted with amazing accuracy and how we get their attention is so considered. We don’t get your attention because you like soccer; we get your attention because we know you’re a Chiefs supporter.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

Today, just about everyone in South Africa is connected, whether through a desktop computer with high-speed internet or a feature phone with WAP. As more people gain access to the internet and new technology, the more opportunity there is for us as a business.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Innovation is one I think most would agree on, but I think that satisfaction needs to be present too. A campaign that innovates and truly satisfies all stakeholders is award-winning. The client’s objectives should be met, the user should have an enjoyable and gratifying experience and the team should feel proud of what they have produced. The Magnum Twitter Auction we did at Liquorice checks all the boxes and has become my personal benchmark of award-worthy.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

In the near future, I think that the measurable channels like digital will see bigger budgets. With this money brands will be delving into publishing and entertainment like never before. With the likes of Netflix, TV advertising could be shifting from 30 second commercials, to full-length branded series.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years’ time?

I think we will see the career opportunities in social media evolve tremendously. Think highly specialised community managers – if someone manages a homeware brand’s page, they are a qualified interior decorator. I foresee brands taking over the publishing world with whole publishing teams with revered editors at the helm. Just as Anna Wintour is the curator of Vogue, so these editors will become the highly sought-after keepers of brands.

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/012o9VVuLo4[/youtube]

 

 

Helen Raine

Co-founder and director at Motion City Films:

 

What do you do? 

I am a director at Motion City Films.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

I first started out directing music videos, which somehow led to working on a number of online-based videos. The realm of online-based video content was growing fairly rapidly, and we realised there was a need for production companies who specialised in producing online content. So, Kim Hinrichs and I started Motion City Films in 2010 and here we are…

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain… 

Definitely! By definition, ‘advertising’ includes any medium that seeks to promote and engage with an audience on a commercial level. We work with agencies to create online videos for brands; by default that’s advertising.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

THE INTERNET! Particularly social media. The growth of digital campaigns that include video has had a major effect on the growth of our industry. The nature of many digital campaigns demands quick turn-around so that the audience remains engaged throughout. A major challenge in what we do is coping with these narrow timeframes, but that’s a big part of working in digital. We’ve built Motion City Films around these expectations so that we’re able to work within the timelines. Also, just being a filmmaker at this point in time. It takes a certain understanding of film and video online, and how people engage with the medium. This has given us a lot of opportunity in the kind work and ideas we’ve been able to present to clients. Online is constantly evolving, impatient and very demanding, but it’s also really exciting.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

I think more and more people are looking for something that adds value to their lives or provides them with some sort of experience, be it practical or emotional. People don’t want to be dictated to, they want to engage with brands, rather than simply being ‘sold’ something. I believe any campaign that successfully works to communicate with people on a personal and relatable level, that goes beyond ‘the product’ is a winner.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future? 

Because the realm of online video production is still fairly new in South Africa, the budgets aren’t quite where they should be. This is sometimes quite limiting in terms of production for the reason that brands are still spending the big bucks on TVCs and less of the budget on their online-based video content. In the small amount of time we’ve been working in online video production, we’ve seen a major increase in the spend for online video. I believe there is going to be a gradual, but major shift in budgets for TV to online, which will organically create an increase in the variety of video and film brands are going to invest in for online.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

I’m not sure if there will be ‘new’ jobs, rather than a ‘merging’ of current job descriptions. For instance, I think the traditional model of copy writer/ art director will grow to include a ‘film director’ function, and vice-versa. Similiarly, I think there will be a change in the way agencies operate with production companies, I think the demands of the digital world will see much closer relationships between agency and production, with video departments forming in-house and the other way around.

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/AivgWEVtrEI[/youtube]

 

 

 Natalie Roos
Founder and blogger behind Tails of a Mermaid:

 

What do you do? 

I’m a freelance blogger and social media specialist. I work predominantly with destination clients, promoting destinations across digital platforms. I work mostly with Destinate, a boutique destination marketing agency headed by Mariette du Toit-Helmbold, who was the CEO of Cape Town Tourism for 10 years. Our clients include Stellenbosch and Reunion Island.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

After starting my blog on a whim in 2010, I started getting more involved with brands in the digital space. I had my first social media job at a small PR agency called Positive Dialogue. Combining my love for Cape Town and digital, I started working on the Cape Town Tourism brand in 2012. I decided to go freelance in the beginning of 2014 and I have not yet looked back.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…  

I think so. Essentially we are advertising experiences. The great thing about destination marketing is that you are marketing something that a person can never have enough of. You can have too many pairs of shoes, but you can never have too much travel. I get to marketing something that helps people have meaningful, life-changing experiences, which is really fun.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

Well, when I graduated from high school in 2006, there was no such thing as a job in social media. Maybe if you worked for MySpace, but that was so far removed from my Afrikaans world. Social media has created the opportunity for people to make their own positions. I don’t have any formal degree in marketing, writing or digital, but I’ve made a space for myself in the world of marketing by using platforms that appeal to me.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Simplicity. A campaign that makes you feel something. A campaign that you want to tell other people about. A great example is the Recife Sport Club Immortal Fans campaign by Ogilvy Brazil. It’s simple and it gives me goosebumps every time.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

In terms of digital in the destination marketing space, I think we will see a lot more user-generated content. A few years ago it would have cost a destination hundreds of thousand of dollars to create a destination video, which mostly trade would see. Now, with social media, GoPros and drones, users are creating travel stories that reach millions of people and don’t cost the destination a cent.

 

I also think there will be a rise in healthy, socially-aware travel. Travellers want to connect with locals, eat healthy food and help out the community they visit. Destinations will need to start marketing responsible tourism through story-telling.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

Who knows? I image one or two travel agents will be running sightseeing trips to Mars? Hopefully I’ll still have space to play. Possibly we will be reverting back to real-world bookings and holiday planning, so I’ll have to work at a good old-fashioned travel desk?

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/115cQp0RdnA[/youtube]

 

 

Michael Hazell

Co-owner  of AVA Online

 

What do you do? 

We are a digital media company that specialises in online video. In short we Capture, Create and Circulate digital video content.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

5 years ago we decided to set up a subdivision of the Dont Party blog in partnership with the 2 founders, called Dont Party TV. We did this in order to document the South African club and festival scene with a special focus on electronic music through video. We noticed things happening overseas and wanted to bring it to South Africa in a way that would entice and get a response from the South African youth market. Back then we were working with 512kb and 2 meg lines. It was imperative that we gave them the motivation to have the patience to engage with the content we were creating. In short we pioneered the event video industry and paved the way for others. The rest I guess is history really.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…  

Yes, AVA as an evolution is specifically focused on creating strong shareable video executions that get people talking. The brands we work with then get direct exposure by extension. An example of this is a project we are working on with Red Bull over the festival season called Camp Site Covers where we are getting up-and-coming local bands to cover more established South African artists in their own style and genre. An example of this is pairing between Grassy Spark (an up-and-coming scar band) with P.H. Fat. They did “Lights Out” and the result was pretty rad. In this instance Red Bull scored big time.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

People and their expectations, this generation are not blind. The internet has opened their minds to the lies that most companies spew trying to persuade them to buy their products. In short people trust people and by extension people trust brands that are trusted by people.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

The most impressive campaign we have seen recently is probably the second round of Jameson’s First Shot short films. It exemplifies the future of advertising in the context of a brand creating content that entertains rather then entices.

 

In terms of things we have done, I think the most successful of our projects has been something called “The Rage Mansion Experience with Caspar Lee”. One of our clients, G&G, wanted to generate a better relationship with their target market through the use of strategic online video because they were waisting bucket loads of money on conventional above the line television advertising, so we conceptualised an execution whereby we created a positive brand association with an online video figure that people trust and are entertained by. We ran a competition for 2 months in the lead up to the event whereby 3 lucky kids could win the opportunity to spend a week living with Caspar in a 5 star mansion at Rage Festival in Durban and star in one of his videos. The video he created was about Rage and through annotation, we cumulatively managed to generate 670,000 YouTube views and over 722 024 Facebook impressions. This year we are going even bigger and we predict over a million views and millions of rands worth of free publicity for a fraction of the cost of a conventional television mechanism.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future?

It’s hard to predict because the industry is still developing and it changes every day but in terms of what we see developing, IPTV, live streaming and brand TV are the future. An example of this is Red Bull TV. They aren’t creating sensationalist video that shoves their product in people’s faces anymore. They are telling stories. The future of advertising and marketing is going to be in telling interesting stories.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

This is also hard to predict because as stated, the industry is still developing but personally we don’t think that the infrastructure will change, just the model. People’s positions within the context of marketing, PR and production companies will stay the same they will just be redefined by the changing world we live in. If we were to predict the potential for a new job in 15 years time, we would wager that people will probably be paid good money to just sit and watch YouTube all day…… Wait, that’s kind of what we do.

 

[youtube]http://youtu.be/joxw3lPlK-c[/youtube]

 

 

Thoban Jappie

Co-founder of Mobile Media Mob:

 

What do you do? 

Mobile Media Mob [MMM] is a Content Agency, specialising in visual communication. MMM conceptualise, produce, and broadcast unique visual content, via Instagram, Twitter & Facebook, to drive our client’s key objectives – creating a social media stream, that engages with their followers / consumers / users. MMM has a countrywide network of local TopLine Influencers and Shooters, plus strong ties to the national, and international Instagram communities. Some of our clients and the Instagram accounts we work on, include:

@BigConcerts@RedBullZA, @SamsungAfrica, @UltraSouthAfrica, @SKYYvodkaSA, @MeetSouthAfrica, @ElectricMusicSA@947Joburg@JohnnieWalkerSA, @VelocityFilms@AireyScott@GrandDesignsSA, @CameralandCT@GalloMusic@BridgesForMusic@SkullCandySA@RedBullMobileZA

 

MMM have also executed special projects for: Cape Point, adidasZA, BOS IceTea, Samsung Africa, Levi Strauss SA, Supersport and their client Castle Lager, MSF (Doctors Without Borders), Sony Music, SA Tourism, Miller Genuine Draft (USA) and Red Bull.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

MMM Co-Founder Roy Potterill (@roywrench) and I have been following each other on Instagram since early 2012. We went on a photo mission when he was visiting Cape Town, and realised that we had a similar idea to turn our prolific Instagram habits into a viable business – MMM was subsequently formed in October 2012. I’m an audio producer by trade, and approached a client, Big Concerts, with the idea of covering the Linkin Park SA Tour in the social media space. We offered our services for free, started up an IG account for them, spread this cool photo content to their existing Twitter & FB accounts, and everything blew up! Thereafter, Big Concerts became our first client and MMM have since been paid to work on all their shows!

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…

No, we’re not advertisers. MMM are digital age storytellers – we aim to share a personal, experiential and visual window into our clients’ world. MMM specialise in the conceptualisation, production, and broadcast of unique visual content, that is destined to reach the screens of thousands of social media users. There are great opportunities for ‘traditional’ advertising to cross-over into this space, and truly engage with consumers in new, innovative ways.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

Today’s “mobile-centric” consumers, and the world’s escalating obsession with social media, has changed everything! Other key factors is the increase in User Generated Content, and the rise of the Social Media Influencer!

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Internationally: Mercedes-Benz USA’s (@mbusa) #clatakethewheel Instagram campaign:

Mercedes-Benz (MB) selected five Instagram photographers who have around 500,000 followers. They gave them the new CLA for a week, and let them do their thing, capturing the car as they travelled around the USA. The photographer with the most likes, got to keep the car. It generated a ton of great content for MB, showing off their new car through the lens of five different photographers, each with their own style. By leveraging Instagram influencers, MB was guaranteed an audience and the account following exploded!

 

Locally: 2 of MMM’s projects:

FNB Art Fair 2013

We incentivized Instagram users to win tickets to the #FNBJoburgArtFair and a chance for their photo to be exhibited, by interpreting a theme and sharing content with their network of Instagram followers. Using only the MMM network of IG Influencers, and with no support from client’s social channels, we successfully seeded the concept and mechanic to SA Instagrammers, and delivered results beyond our client’s expectations – over 100 000 impressions to date!

 

@SACitiesNetwork

Maybe not award winning, but definitely an innovative use of Instagram! South African Cities Network hosted a conference in JHB, to explore issues around spacial transformation of cities. The conference delegates – city planners, architects, and government officials from all over South Africa and the world – participated in an “Amazing Race” style journey around Jozi. All participants were divided into teams and tasked to make their way through the city using public transport. Each team was assigned a MMM Instagram “chaperone”, responsible for documenting the team’s progress and helping navigate. The geotagged images were uploaded to IG realtime, and tracked each team’s journey, as they proceeded to all the prearranged checkpoints. All the data captured was then used for analysis in the ensuing 2 day conference.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future? 

Anti-Advertising!

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

That’s the million-dollar question…

 

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Duncan MacLennan

Director at ANDPEOPLE

 

What do you do? 

ANDPEOPLE are Youth Culture Engagement Specialists.

 

We guide brands in connecting authentically with youth culture through custom solutions, which create sustainable value for both brand and audience.

 

We believe in the power of communities, and our approach to community creation is based on human social dynamics, i.e. through the curation of spaces, experiences and content.

 

How did you get into doing this? 

My good friend and ANDPEOPLE founder Mike Leslie spent the better part of a decade working in marketing roles at Levi’s® and Red Bull. Working with multiple agencies he found what was missing was a genuine specialism in the youth culture space. Traditional advertising agencies were simply not connected enough to the audience and culture, tending to focus more on the advertising they were making and less on the people they were making it for. The industry needed a change, something disruptive to challenge the traditional way of thinking and working that was intrinsically linked to youth culture. ANDPEOPLE was born.

 

Do you consider what you do ‘advertising’? Please explain…  

No. We absolutely acknowledge and understand the role of advertising in the overall marketing mix (I spent a decade working in global advertising, trust me, I respect it). But what we’re passionate about is that fact that today our consumers make their decisions based more on what brands do, not on what they say they’re going to do. We believe in authentic engagement, giving our audience an active role to play and focusing on tangible value exchange as opposed to eyeballs.

 

What’s changed in the world or in marketing that has created a space for what you do?

For years and years, what advertisers did was sell metaphors to their consumers. In today’s age, the metaphor is no more. It’s no longer good enough. There is a genuine shift from creating big ideas, to creating big actions and real behavior change. Technology has been at the core of that shift and is helping us build more engaging, relevant and personal interactions and experiences than ever before.

 

What’s an award-winning campaign to you?

Does it solve a problem? Yes? Good start. Secondly, if you can demonstrate the sustainable value of an initiative for both the consumer and the brand over time, then I believe it should be award worthy. This would reduce the number of awards we give out, but would lead to brands and businesses thinking about the impact of their activity over time, rather than a campaign over a key sales period.

 

What do you predict the new trends in advertising/marketing are going to be in the future? 

Technology is changing everything at a rate it’s very difficult to conceive. The sheer enormity of the data we’re creating today means we’ll definitely see personalization playing a key role in everything we do. We’re already growing increasingly reliant on it. From the things we watch, to how we interact, to the things we buy, to how and where we buy them, everything will become more personal.

 

I also think we’re only scratching the surface of social technology can really do. If you’d asked me the same question 10 years ago could I have predicted the impact of Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/WhatsApp and the deluge of other platforms out there? No chance. And that was only 10 years ago. Think about it.

 

What will the new jobs in advertising/marketing be in another 15 years time?

That’s a great question. At the rate at which the world is going, the last thing the world might need is more people in advertising/marketing.

 

 

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