Not long ago, marketers the world over were buzzing about the clever drones display in Shanghai. 1,500 drones took to the skies to form the image of a scannable QR code to promote a video game. Along with the QR code, the drones formed images of characters from the game.
Only a few weeks later, another notorious brand used drones to promote an app, projecting the app’s push notification on the side of a city block. While common media channels and standard advertising will continue as the go-to solution for most brands, creating marketing that grabs and enthralls consumers, will only succeed for the bold and daring. Fundamentally, advertising is persuasion, and persuasion is easier when the initiatives engage customers in exciting, and unexpected ways.
Innovation in the future will include new and different media channels. Video games for example, have become the most important form of youth culture in today’s day and age. eSports captivate over 380 million viewers around the world. Gaming advertising is likely to soon replace other traditional media channels for this target group.
The creative opportunities are countless for new ad formats in the gaming world. Billboards in road-racing games could be customized for each player in the future. Gamers would see a different ad personalized according to their interests on the same billboard. Virtual product placement and brand integration can be taken to new levels and then transferred to the real world.
Immediately after winning the US Open earlier this month and before being congratulated by his opponent, Russian tennis player Daniil Medvedev dropped motionless to the court. What looked like a medical emergency turned out to be his rendition of the FIFA video game “dead fish” celebration. With millions of fans around the world watching live, FIFA got more exposure than any of the high-paying corporate sponsors on the center court. Just imagine the dead fish fall as a branded stunt and you’ll begin to understand the creative potential for marketers. There are countless ways to realize added value by developing marketed content that becomes an interactive part of video games. Such innovative formats stand to benefit both the brands and the video games.
Customers today are not just consumers. They are active social media users and tech-loving content creators. Creativity in marketing means collaborating with customers from the outset.
All of the new media channels, platforms and devices give consumers greater access to brand stories, and marketers need to create innovative ways to convey a brand’s identity and vision. From direct marketing to video campaigns, this creates a range of creative ways that will better transport brand stories, sell products and form valuable relationships.
Outside the box marketing requires us to think like entrepreneurs, adopting similar business practices to a Silicon Valley startup. The ability to be agile and continuously fine-tune strategies is imperative to creating exceptional customer experiences.
Next step: We hope you enjoyed our four-part mini-series on rethinking marketing. At ITMS, we are always on top of the latest trends and conceiving creative marketing ideas is part of the everyday. We’d love to speak to you about developing out-of-the-box marketing to engage your customers in new, fun, and surprising ways.