Human Creativity: The Next Dimension

VidMob Partners with Amazon to Tap the Power of Machine Learning for Content Creation, Optimization, and Discovery

This is the start of a new chapter for VidMobthe launch of the Agile Creative StudioTM.

We have spent the past seven months building a first-of-its-kind creative insights platform to enable marketers to understand, at a deep level, which creative choices drive business goals. Up until now, marketers have been limited to “asset level” performance data, e.g. Asset A did better/worse than Asset B. No data to explain why, and thus, nothing to take action on.  Guesswork is so 2017. We are building a complete set of tools to give brands a comprehensive understanding of how specific creative attributes within videos impact campaign performance.

Not sure where to place your logo?
Wondering which color pairings drive view duration?
Curious as to how a celebrity spokesperson impacts conversion?

We can tell you.

Want to know if showing the puppy boosts ROAS?
Need to prove to your boss that giggles drive more leads?
Interested to know if drum beats generate higher ROI than violin melodies?

Easy.

The Agile Creative Studio is about knowing which creative characteristics move the needle on the KPIs you care about. It doesn’t end there, because, what good is knowing cool stuff if you can’t act on it?  Our creative analysts and expert creators are at the ready to deliver optimized creative assets based on insights while campaigns are live. This means your creative keeps getting stronger and your campaign performance improves with time.    

Over the course of the next few months, we will unveil the full toolset, but we don’t want to keep you in suspense. Here is an overview of what we’ve got cooking.  

If you want to learn more about how Agile Creative Studio can work for your business, drop us a line at agile@vidmob.com.

 

Why Should Brands Care About Agile Marketing?

VidMob CMO Stephanie Bohn Breaks It All Down for AdWeek  

Have you ever wondered how the engineering concept of agile software development became the new framework for content production in digital marketing? Well, when you look back to the television of the 1970s and compare it to the mobile device of today, the answers start to take shape.

In the past, one hero idea dreamed up by a highly reputable agency was typically enough to cover all the bases. One great idea for one placement and one general audience.

Today, however, brands must overcome the challenge of connecting with many audiences across many social platforms and digital placements. Not only that, they’re expected to reach highly specific audiences with targeted, personalized content at the right place, right time, and with the right message. Oh, and to do all that in near real-time.

Luckily, agile development was created to solve big problems and solve them fast. Adopting the agile development formula of launching small, strategic experiments in order to receive bigger and faster wins, helped brands reimagine the way to successfully approach creative while saving time and money.

As brands and marketers stay in this constant loop of production, discovery, and optimization, they’ll never have to worry about producing the elusive, one-size-fits-all campaign again. Because, as Stephanie Bohn mentions in this AdWeek piece, “what is the point of building unique customer segments if everyone gets served the same ad?”  

 

The Cost of Inaction: How You Can Meet the IAB’s Video Innovation Challenge — Today.

Yesterday, the IAB released a great piece, Building 21st Century Brands: Video Creative Innovation, in which they laid out a video innovation mandate for the marketers and the digital advertising industry. It was a long read (20 pages) and so, for many of us, we’ll read it over the course of a few days. And for every day we wait—we are losing money for our brands.

Of the many pertinent data points addressed, one worth noting is that marketers on average will spend $10MM this year on their brand’s digital and mobile video. To frame it differently, this amounts to $27,937 a day or $191,780 a week. This underlines the point that if we set video innovation as an issue to discuss and tackle later or as an item on our 2018 roadmap, we are actively constraining our brand’s potential growth.

But here’s the real danger: not creating video (or making weak creative) for the platforms and formats with which the audiences are engaging.

So why is it that marketers often stumble in terms of creative? We often hear them cite 4 challenges:

  • “The cost of creating compelling video is prohibitively expensive.”
  • “Making high-quality video takes too much time and takes up too many resources.”
  • “We lack the expertise needed to produce great video.”
  • “We don’t understand enough about the videos we make from a data perspective.”

So, how do you solve these challenges when best practices are often lacking or your in-house or agency teams can’t keep up with your vision for video innovation?

Start.

At VidMob, we’re helping hundreds of marketers, agencies, and platforms whose video and emerging media aspirations are greater than the resources they have. By leveraging our curated pools of talent, we are helping marketers go from concept to execution not only for 6s or vertical videos but also on the emerging formats that are most daunting for advertisers like stories, lenses or filters in a matter of days and for a fraction of the costs to which they’ve been accustomed.

Solving the video creation challenge is only the beginning. Unearthing the insights around videos will help brands understand the power of their creative and enable them to iterate quickly. This is the guiding principle behind our deep-learning powered Agile Creative Suite, which is transforming the creative process into a full connected loop of data → production → publishing.

So today, do something to meet the IAB’s innovation challenge: explore a new format, iterate a new concept, create, test and try again. While that immediate next step is daunting, the cost of inaction is worse.

And it’s easier than you think.

View story at Medium.com

VidMob Named a Twitter Official Partner!

While Twitter may have started out as a place to send a quick, 140-character soundbite, it has since evolved into a real-time communication powerhouse—one that can’t be ignored for brands who seek to develop meaningful relationships with their customers.

Today, Twitter’s users have developed a strong taste for dynamic visual content. Most notably, they’re requesting it, with 37% eager to see more video from brands alone. Couple that with the fact that Twitter users are almost three times as likely to interact with tweets that have native video, and marketers have one amazing opportunity (i.e. video!) to engage with Twitter’s global audience like never before.

During last year’s Twitter #Promote Innovation Challenge, VidMob excelled in the Video category as a solution for marketers to scale their video production and get moving on Twitter.

twitter-official-partner-vidmob-video-marketingThis year, we’re excited to announce that VidMob is now a Twitter Official Partner!

We look forward to helping brands stand out in the feed and tell amazing stories on Twitter.

Want to create compelling Twitter videos? Get in touch see how easy it is to make Twitter ads with VidMob.

Cheers to a Great 2017!

This past year has given us so much to be grateful for. From opening new offices in Chicago and Los Angeles to ramping up relationships with our awesome partners, it has a been a milestone year for us as a company. And we couldn’t have gotten here without your enduring support!

Here’s a brief roundup of our most memorable stories as we reflect on 2017:

January-March (2017)

April-June (2017)

July-September (2017)

October-December (2017)

For more on this past year’s stories, check out VidMob in the press.

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.