Perspective | Specialized videos that convey a brand's essence on the rise

A new trend has been on the rise these days. As experts in the digital and social media space have been predicting, engaging a brand’s consumer through video on the internet is on the rise. Video are becoming more important and clients see this as an opportunity to engage the audience by way of creating specialized content. The best example that fits here is the video especially created by Aviva for social media consumption.

Consumption of video means consumption of quirks, entertainment, style and reflecting the society as it is today. Take consumer’s time better gratify him with tone and manner, slang, quirks or something eternally truthful and emotive. Consumer’s reaction to the messaging when done in interesting videos / music videos is unguarded. That is a definite plus for the brand.

Adgully spoke to several industry experts to find out what is happening. Says Manoj Motiani, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Thought Bubbles, “When interestingly done, it’s a beautifully workable tool in the world of advertising.”

With digital as a democratic media, this becomes even more tempting. There are some companies who use videos as a platform to create brand essence. However, this trend is not fully established. Says Bhupendra Khanal, CEO, Simplify360, “Some advanced users of social media like Aviva are doing it, others are watching the progress of brands before opting for this method,”

According to Samar Singh Sheikhawat, Senior Vice-President, Marketing, United Breweries, “it’s true that clients are adapting to this new trend but one has to be innovative to be in the limelight.” UBL have been  using digital and social media quite innovatively since the start. Their recent ‘Heineken Social Reporter’ initiative and the earlier one, ‘The Date’ shows that they have been quite engaging on the social media and You Tube.
  
On the flip side says Priti Nair, Director Curry Nation, “We are not so much into this yet as 85 per cent of our clients are still using the internet for banners and a standard Facebook page.” They are not to be blamed for this as Curry Nation’s TG is still very far from access to the net and staying long hours on it. It is in a way realistic also as the mass of India that most brands cater to are not so internet savvy. For the brands to accept video as a new medium this has to change, internet access has to get meatier. Add to that the longevity factor, on the net the involvement with something last for maximum four days after which something new takes over. Therefore keeping consumer’s interest or keeping them engaged for a long time is difficult and blurred.

As far as India is concerned, You Tube and social media are still at a nascent stage. Internationally of course this trend works but people still are not ready in India for such a platform. Says Tarun Khanna, AVP and Head, Marketing, Fiat India, “When it comes to car and automobiles, internationally we have a lot of social media and You Tube campaigns, some really crazy stuff, however the Indian consumers are not so ready.”

There are other factors as well. Social Media needs to be driven by content. It can be text, images or videos. Video content requires a good amount of time and passion from the team to make it a success. A brand’s engagement is imperative for great videos. Mediocre content is bound to fail and go unnoticed. Adds Sheikhawat, “When it comes to digital and social media we clearly believe in strong engagement and involvement which social media is all about. Also on social media, Heineken more than a beer company is a content and a media company. So we believe when the content is right the customers get attracted. Secondly technology, matters a lot.”

The question here arises that with all this giving a rise to the promotion, what does a brand achieves out of it and how much of brand engagement do they expect? Answering that Bhupendra Khanal said, “With successful videos, brand gain is multi-fold. Most good videos not only generate views on You Tube; it also drives a good amount of engagement on Twitter and Facebook. The best ones grab the attention of bloggers and mainline media as well.”

Manoj Motiani says, “This is also stealth marketing, ambush or buzz marketing of sorts. You engage, sign off by sponsoring with the ideology of the brand. It’s a smart thing to do. Also it’s not in your face advertising so everyone gets a break.”

Says Priti Nair, “On the net you never know what will suddenly become popular, it is about a bunch of people getting excited and then making something viral and that gets people seeing it. There is a lot of original stuff out there but relatively there is more crap out there than great work that sticks out.”

As far as the cost of engaging with this medium goes, how does it work?

It is quite effective. There is more time to connect, talk and build the mood. The cost of production is only incremental. But the canvas goes wide and flexible. One can play a nice game. However the methodology is cost effective only if the execution of content on video is correct.

With 3G coming in and enabling internet on mobile, video has undoubtedly seen a rise. People are moving on from audio to video these days. They are grabbing a lot of eyeballs and are expected to rise at a much higher right. Going forward it will surely take over the minds of brands, agencies and consumers. Says Siddharth Roy, Chief Operating Officer, Consumer Business & Allied Services, “Video consumption has increased to 60 per cent today. Forget how marketers are using social media, the interesting part is how consumers are using it. So when a customer sees merit in something automatically the companies also see the benefit.” 

What is needed is more innovation. For that the brand agencies and the digital agencies have to work together. Each discipline brings a different strength to the table and they need to build off each other strengths rather than work in silos. An agency should advice the client to understand and respect the consumer way of living. Adds Motiani, “If we introduce our brand as sponsors of an ideology we know he likes, and don’t make him see the exchange or transaction in our relation, we enter his inner circle. We stay there, and become someone he likes. It’s always better to stay raw, stay real. Not rush into pushy or cold advertising and be happy that we have done our jobs. Consumers keep evolving. We have to do that too.”

Also if a brand wants to be seen as a leader, it has to be comprehensively aware of customer behavioral patterns. Video content on a social media platform cannot be ignored. Brands need to be wary while venturing into this space and not see it as an experimental step. Video based campaigns need to be well planned before they are executed. A good budget is a prerequisite for a good quality video.

It is being observed that social media, especially when it comes to creating specialized videos to convey their brands essence is still growing and depends totally on innovation.  The platform of video is huge and there much more to be explored and secondly content should be relevant to the idea and the brand’s essence. Content should be created keeping in mind the way it is being consumed on internet.

“I guess brands are heading in the direction. Video is the way forward and it does attract a lot of eyeballs since you get a really good opportunity in terms of storytelling on/in video,” says Vineet Gupta, Managing Partner, 22feet. And there being no reason shying away from this medium, we are seeing more action on this front and it is only bound to increase.

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