VidMob Selected for Launch of Snap Lens Studio!

For Snapchatters, 2017 was arguably the year of the dancing hotdog. This quirky, fun hotdog quickly won the hearts of users, appearing alongside or as the starring role in hundreds of thousands of snaps.

Between these World Lenses (like the hotdog) and Snap’s Face Lenses (like the fan-favorite puppy dog), Snapchat offers an incredibly unique opportunity for brands to both enter into and interact with their audience in real time. Notably, this ability to seamlessly immerse a brand into a user’s day-to-day communications has a serious impact on brand favorability and affinity—some brands boasting a boost of 19+ and 6+ points respectively.

Which is why, today, we’re so thrilled to announce that VidMob has been selected by Snap to be an expert lens creator as part of the Snap Lens Studio! Only a small handful of agencies and creative platforms were given the distinction, and we are honored to be among them. As an official Snapchat Creative Partner, we’re excited to be at the forefront of this amazing product. Our pool of specially trained AR and 3D specialists are eager to begin creating your brand’s version of the dancing hotdog superstar.

Editing Is the New Coding

One of the first movies that really left a mark on me was WarGames. It was the summer of 1983. I was 8 years old and was already what can probably best be described as “an optimism fundamentalist.”  So, instead of focusing on the dystopian reality that the threat of nuclear holocaust was going to be a permanent cloud over society for the rest of my life, what struck me was the exciting realization that computers were going to play a far bigger role in people’s lives than simply making it easier for them to delete misspelled words in a document.

Even though I was still a decade away from thinking about things like careers and life-callings, I realized then that if I stayed close to technology I would have opportunities to do interesting things in my life.

Across my personal circle of influence, and across the nation writ large, millions of kids were being inspired and directed like me. It would pick up steam in the 90’s as the internet became mainstream, and, for the next 3 decades, the constant theme of advice was that anyone who was interested in technology should consider being an engineer. As communications moved onto computing platforms, the people capable of helping that advancement would never want for work.

In the 80’s, there were only a handful of software engineers in the US. But by 2002, that number had grown to 677,000. By 2013 there were over 1 million. And that figure is expected to continue growing at a rapid pace, with 22% annual growth expected over the next decade. The folks who predicted during my youth that engineers would have a rosy future pretty much nailed it. But labor markets will always evolve, and while many new jobs are being created, others are being eliminated. So my question is this: can we learn from the rise of computer technology and the associated growth in software engineering jobs in order to predict future areas of the economy poised for similarly explosive growth? I believe the answer is yes.

Today, the medium of communication is shifting once again.

For tens of thousands of years, our ancestors communicated verbally. Sure, there were markings and early writings, but the primary thrust of communication was the spoken word. This changed with the advent of print thanks to Gutenberg, and, for over 550 years, text and static imagery have dominated human communication.

It was a good run. But it’s coming to an end.

Everywhere you look, you see screens. Screens at the gas station pump. Screens at the dentist office. Screens in the back of taxi cabs. And, most importantly, screens in your pocket. Increasingly, if a company has something to say, they’re going to say it in video.

How significant is this shift? Well, think of it this way—at the beginning of 2015, there were 50 million companies using Facebook pages. By September of 2016, that number had climbed to over 60 million. That’s 60 million companies choosing to use a platform to communicate with their customers—a platform that is very publicly transitioning to a video network. And as communications, in general, migrate from static means (text and imagery) to moving imagery (video, AR, and VR), those 60 million companies won’t just need a small handful of video advertisements per year. This may have been the case a decade ago for the Fortune 500, but it doesn’t hold anymore. No, they each will need hundreds, if not thousands of videos per year. Remember, it’s not just advertising that’s changing. It is all communications.

But here’s the kicker as it relates to job creation in this field. We are simultaneously shifting from a world where scarcity ruled in video content to an era of abundance. It wasn’t long ago that distribution was choked, and where it was available, it came with costs. Channels were relatively finite. As a result, quality demands were forgiving. If you had distribution, you basically just needed to fill the pipe. Today, video exists in abundance. Distribution is effectively free and infinitely scalable.

Now, more than ever, quality matters when it comes to video communications.

If you’ve ever read a script created by an algorithm or watched editorial pieces made by any of the myriad algorithmic editing tools, you’ll realize that we’re still a very long way away from having emotive communications created by anything other than a human being. So, if the communications have to be good in order to be effective, and to do so means that they have to be made by people, just how many jobs are we talking about creating?

Between advertising, hiring, internal communications, and general social marketing, I’m going to assume that the average company will need 10 videos per year. Keep in mind that many companies will need literally thousands of pieces of video content—social advertising is quickly evolving into a model where companies should never create a single ad, but rather create many ads and test them all (more on this in another post soon). But if you assume 10 as a good blended average, that means 600 million pieces of video content will need to be created per year in the near future. If the average creative can make 5 pieces of quality video content per week, that means over 2.3 million editors will be needed to service this coming demand, just from the companies that are currently on Facebook. You can quibble with me over the exact numbers, but not the scope and scale of the coming video revolution.

As with coding, there will be a wide range of job types and compensation structures that come along with this era of scaled video production. But make no mistake about it, in an environment of abundant video, the folks who can create emotionally resonant moving communications will be in high demand, and they will be well-paid by any standards.

Does this mean that engineers won’t be needed in the future? Of course not. All of the key disciplines associated with creating and maintaining the technology that forms such an important part of our personal and professional lives will remain attractive careers for many.

 

But when you hear people complain that technology is taking away all of our jobs, know that this is no truer today than it was when the same fear was voiced during the Industrial Revolution, or in the early days of the computer age for that matter.

The need for people who can create quality video communications will grow dramatically in the next few decades. Guidance counselors of today can still push certain kids into considering engineering paths. But for countless others who thrive on creativity, who understand communication at its root level, and who have a knack for visual storytelling, a huge new window of opportunity is about to open up. And when we say we’re out to create a million jobs, you better believe we mean it.

Highlights from Our Creator Meet & Greet in LA

Earlier this week we invited a group of our LA-based creators to swing by our new office in West Hollywood and get to know some of the VidMob team. We feasted on hearty barbeque and sipped on cocktails, as we learned more about the talented people that make up our community.

We were blown away by the enthusiasm and above-and-beyond dedication of our creators. Their excitement and passion for what we’re building, their insights for how to grow the platform, and their down-for-anything hustle meant so much to hear in person. We’re so lucky to have them on our team!

It was also great to see both old and new faces alike—from those that have been with us from the very start and those who’ve recently joined the ranks. Providing an opportunity for our creators to meet in person and get to know one another was a fantastic way to not only learn more about the similarities and differences, but also to foster our growing creator community.

Even VidMob West’s office pup, Burt, got in on the action.

Many thanks to all who attended! We feel so lucky and energized after meeting with our community. We learned a great deal by getting everyone together to share their stories, discuss how they use the platform, and get to know one another. We can’t wait to announce some of the exciting updates we have coming your way as a result of this event, and we look forward to hosting our next meet-and-greet!

Stay tuned for our next creator mixer, which will be held at our headquarters in NYC. Want to attend? Reach out to us at support@vidmob.com to get on the invite list and receive event updates. 

Our New LA Office!

Our west coast team is growing fast (we’re hiring!), so it was high time for an office space upgrade to accommodate. We’re excited to share with you a little behind-the-scenes tour of VidMob West’s new home base.

Take the Office Tour

Nestled at the base of the Hollywood Hills, VidMob West secured a spacious condo and converted into a pretty rad place to work.

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The big, open-air layout and high ceilings allow for plenty of energizing California sunshine and blue sky views—with the added bennie of a conference room that overlooks a pool!

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The industrial-mod decor gives the space a streamlined, polished look, while the pops of teal are a bright nod to the vibrancy of the nearby Pacific coast.

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But the best part has got to be the killer vinyl selection, brightening the background noise.

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And, of course, the company of resident office pooch, Burt!

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For even more office pics, check out the gallery below.

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We’d love to hear what you think of the new space. Drop us a line in the comments below or get in touch at support@vidmob.com. Want to join the team? Check out these positions!

3 Spooktacular Ads to Create & Run in Time for Halloween

With Halloween right around the corner, we came up with a few easy ads ideas that you can create and run in time for the 31st—even if you don’t have any video to start with.

Carving Pumpkin

What else says Halloween like a Jack-o-lantern? Get in the spirit and customize your brand’s own pumpkin to showcase a seasonal discount, a big announcement teaser, or to simply wish your followers well this all hallow’s eve.

How to execute: Animate the carving of a secret message or deal into the pumpkin or create a cinemagraph or GIF of candlelight flickering inside a logo-, discount-, message-carved pumpkin.

Spooky Trees

Go all Sleepy Hollow with your creative by decorating some eerie-looking trees with leaf-like animations. Hide special deals, discounts, messages, or products behind tree limbs lined with bats or ghosts. Encourage users to click or swipe up to reveal what’s underneath.

How to execute: Subtly animate the movement of a bat wing or the swoosh of a ghost to slip a sneak peek of what’s waiting to be uncovered.

Trick or Treat

Tempt viewers to click or swipe up for a trick or a treat. Lead those that engage to a landing page that randomizes results with an exciting discount, trick GIF, or early product release.

How to execute: Animate a bowl of candy with different pieces revealing potential tricks and treats they might see on the landing page.

Now that you have three at-the-ready ideas for Halloween, jump right in to start creating. All set for Halloween weekend? We look forward to seeing your creative in our social feeds!

Wrap Your Head around the Holidays

With Labor Day in the rearview mirror, it’s time to start plotting your holiday campaigns. We’ve put together a list of creative ideas to help you build an arsenal of amazing videos that will keep your brand top of mind all season long.

The singular “hero” ad is an obsolete concept because consumers are bombarded daily with ads and editorial content. Your hero ad may stand out, but it will be quickly forgotten. The way to stay relevant is to stay in the conversation with a steady flow of great video. VidMob is here to help.

Work with What You’ve Got

No need to reinvent the wheel. Gather together your top-performing ads and we’ll help bring them up to speed for the season.

[Did you know? Videos can be made from stills. A little motion can have great emotional impact.]

Deck the Ads with Boughs of Holly

Decorate your super-star ads—from product shots to popular UCG content—with blinking lights, bows, ribbons, or (as the song goes) boughs of holly.

Letters to Santa

Take your stills and freshen them up with festive, handwritten copy that writes in over your top-performing product shots. “Dear Santa, all I want for Christmas is…

Unwrap Ads

Tap into the element of surprise this season by “wrapping” a special message in a cinemagraph. Try crinkling holiday paper or a swaying red ribbon to tempt users to swipe up and “unwrap” the ad. Inside, they can receive anything from a special dancing image, holiday greeting, or a decorated discount.

[sidebar: If you’re down with the idea that you need a lot of video and want information about our Holiday Video Packages, drop us a line at info@vidmob.com]

Everything’s Better with an Ugly Sweater

Nothing says “the holidays” quite like an ugly sweater. With a touch of motion, you can slip on an ugly sweater overlay onto product shots, employee photos, or happy customer testimonials for a good laugh and lighthearted brand expression.

Animated Logo Wishes Happy Holidays

Everyone has a logo. And the ways you can dress it up for the holidays are endless. Even if you have no idea what you want to do, one of our creators can help you come up with a clever, festive concept for getting your brand in the holiday spirit—think donning a Santa hat, wrapping it in a gift box, hanging it on a tree, or writing it in lights.

Add a Jingle

For platforms where sound-on is a key part of the user experience, adding holiday music to your ads is a great way to give them an added kick of festive energy.

12 Days of Ads

By using a combination of any of the above ideas, you can create a 12-day campaign in the spirit of the “Twelve Days of Christmas.” The campaign can center around anything: promotional discounts, your top-selling products, client testimonials, inspirational messages, gift-giving/donations, contests, wish lists—you name it.

Bonus points for setting it to the theme of the original song.

Black Friday / Cyber Monday / Giving Tuesday

Put a different spin on any of our ideas by tailoring it to one (or all!) of these big-sell holidays. We’ll help you create fast cuts to stay top of mind during these prime opportunities.

Quick-Create from Stock, UGC, or Easy Internal Shoots:

Eager to create something 100% fresh? Here are a few more ideas for creating on-the-fly:

Inspirational Thank You Videos

Spend a day with your team, recording a quick note on what they’re grateful for this year. We’ll touch it up with plenty of time to carve the Thanksgiving turkey.

Employees too busy to get on camera? Come up with a list of what’s good in the world that your company can get behind—use stock video, photos, and a VidMob editor to send out something that will remind us all of what to be grateful for.

Day-parted Stories or Ads

Share the experience in play-by-play fashion of how you prepare for a festive meal, strategize holiday shopping, or a walkthrough favorite holiday traditions. Share piecemeal to keep audiences engaged throughout the day. Our favorite idea? A step-by-step of a perfect Thanksgiving day—from putting the Turkey in the oven in the AM to feasting in the PM to family flag football to round out the night.

Geofilters

Rare (and lucky!) are the folks who don’t have to travel for the holidays. For the rest of us, creating traveler-friendly holiday greetings and geo-targeted video ads is a surefire way to pleasantly surprise travelers (and distract from mind-numbing traffic). Offer weekly holiday greetings by incorporating copy and/or imagery from quintessential local landmarks.

Feeling inspired? Great! Start any of the above projects today to get holiday-ready ads in no time. We’re so excited to see what you come up with.

Drop us a line at info@vidmob.com to brainstorm ideas and request more info about our Holiday Packages.

Create & Run Audience Filters on Snapchat

You’re likely familiar with the fun, captivating filters Snapchatters love to overlay on their selfies and snaps. These filters vary daily—most prolifically with the changing seasons, big holidays, or by city and location. They’re part of what makes Snapchat a standout social media platform and are iconic of the Snap experience, allowing users an additional layer of personalization and play in their day-to-day communications.

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Previously, brands could tap into this play by creating Geofilters, accessible by Snapchatters in a fenced location. Now, Snapchat has expanded their targeting capabilities, allowing brands to create filters tailored to a specific audience no matter their location—which is huge. Now, brands can guarantee their message is seen only by their intended audience. Win!

So how do you get your Snapchat audience to start snapping with your filter? Well, first you’ll need to create one. (If you have something designed and ready to rock, skip ahead to the “Deploy Your Filter on Snapchat with VidMob”)

Connect with One of VidMob’s Snapchat Specialists

Snapchat named us a Creative Partner because they trust in the quality of work our creators consistently produce. Our Snapchat specialists can design your custom filter in a matter of days—or even hours if you’ve got a particularly tight deadline.

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Already have a few assets you think could work? Send it to one of our creators for the finishing touches so it’s approve-ready in a flash.

Deploy Your Filter on Snapchat with VidMob

Ready for Snapchatters to start playing with your filter? Head over to our Snapchat Manager to launch your new filter into the Snapchat ether. From there, you can track your filter’s performance and compare it to others within your larger media strategy—making adjustments to budget as necessary.

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It’s that simple. Let VidMob be your one-stop shop for creating and running timely, magnetic filters your fans will love to snap.