Future Gazing: Exploring digital advertising avenues outside the box
Industry experts mull over the elevated growth of the digital space and speculate upcoming avenues encompassing the traditional ad formats in advertising.
The stalwarts outline what the gaze at the future looks like, innovative formats, tools, and resources that are underway, share their thoughts on the ‘data debate’, and explore up and coming digital advertising avenues.
- Sunny Nagpal, Regional MD, Httpool APAC
- Shambhavi Ramanathan, Strategy Director, Dentsu Webchutney
- Pete O’Mara-Kane, General Manager – Asia Pacific, LoopMe
- Yasin Dabhelia, Director, Global Demand Partnerships and Agency Sales, Bidstack
- Krishna Iyer, Head, Channel Sales, Twitter India
Sunny Nagpal, Regional MD, Httpool APAC reckons experiences are going to be multi-fold and multiple screens. The question of how we are enriching the users’ lives will be more prominent.
Pete O’Mara-Kane, General Manager – Asia Pacific, LoopMe shares future-gazing is good, but he hates future forecasting. So we need to take notes from the past economic trends, make assumptions and test them with technology.
He adds every company must concentrate on the cause of their digital transformation, and mentions that 2020 marked the return of storytelling but most of the stories looked similar.
Krishna Iyer, Head, Channel Sales, Twitter India states that as a brand, the future is going to be more about how do you become an ideology that the consumer is attentive to, and acknowledges the rise and success of conversational brands.
He reckons earlier storytelling was about creativity for the most part, but now it has to be creative and also get the job done.
Yasin Dabhelia, Director, Global Demand Partnerships and Agency Sales, Bidstack shares if they would go by the predictive mentality, he couldn’t have predicted the sharp spike in gaming, and what the pandemic has done for the gaming industry.
Shambhavi Ramanathan, Strategy Director, Dentsu Webchutney mentions the pandemic has relieved advertising from an unempathetic view, riding on FOMO, and making the consumer feel that they don’t have something or they need to upgrade. She cites making the consumers feel delighted would be the new positive drivers for the business.
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The Data Discourse
Nagpal shares cases of brands demanding more and more optics into the campaigns for smarter targeting and insights. Transparency and data exposure continue to be the consumers’ concerns. Effective utilization of data is still rare, but he has seen a lot of companies using data to evolve their creatives and personalize the experience provided.
O’Mara-Kane shares that the data debate has grown on a global level, citing the Apple v/s Facebook example that is turning out to be a hero v/s villain battle, wherein Tim Cook, CEO, Apple is trying to protect its users by giving them the option to not share their data.
He mentions we need more people in leadership positions taking such steps. Transparency of fraud, viewability, source of the data, permissions, and more of such concerns should be addressed. Brands and partners should take ownership and lead. “Nobody wants to be the creepy guy at the party, staring at everyone”.
Dabhelia says personalization opportunities for brands are at the heart of gaming, but personalization is looked at from an engagement point of view, the ads should not annoy the player but be a part of the whole experience so the value is created for all parties involved. Intrusive ads may result in backlash for both the game and brand.
Iyer reckons data is constantly evolving and we need to adapt continually. A lot of fear tends to surround data, but a level of transparency is critical, and it cant be one entity doing it, the responsibility depends on the whole ecosystem. “We need to work with data to empower and evangelize, and not encroach.
Ramanathan shares she is not sure if data and creativity go hand in hand, it’s a little fence and wall. Creation requires you to be a little distant from data. Although, she touts immersive experiences hold a lot of potential for optimal utilization of data.
Sharing his thoughts on innovation in the future on digital avenues, automatic dynamic optimism of ads holds potential in the innovative space. He reckons, “Fundamentally advertising is persuasion” and persuasion is driven by art, and not science.
Dabhelia believes E-Sports and live gaming content is soon going to be bigger than live sports content, gaming advertising will be categorically outlined as an individual media channel.
He cites ad formats such as billboards in (for example) road-racing games being customized for each player, i.e. each player seeing a different ad on the same billboard, personalized according to their interests, and players trying on a brand’s outfits from its new collection to dress up their players, and more of such innovative formats would benefit the brands and the games as well.
Exploring the upcoming digital avenues, Iyer mentions innovation is not doing everything all the time, but what works for your objective at that time, not just from the service point of view. He cites examples from various brands drawing parallels with the content that surrounds the ads. “Going that extra mile to get an extra mindshare”.
On the execution of innovative concepts, O’Mara-Kane states, “The creative side should artistic, optimization and delivery should be scientific”.
Sharing her thoughts on the end-to-end process, Ramanathan says, “The science of persuasion is going to be fairly logical”.
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