Magazines more than doubled their paid digital circulation in the most recent reporting period, but print remains the overwhelming majority of their business, according to a new analysis by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
Magazines more than doubled their paid digital circulation in the most recent reporting period, but print remains the overwhelming majority of their business, according to a new analysis by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
Video is readily accessible to consumers, available whenever they want it from a smartphone, tablet, or computer. And now the streaming world of online video is available on the traditional TV set, with manufacturers expected to push out more models of connected TV this year.
Connected TV promises a blissful union of the TV advertising experience and online audience targeting. Yet it's not that easy to plug the online targeting model into interactive TV, because of the noticeable absence of one key factor: data.
Online audience targeting is possible online because users go from site to site, bouncing between retail and news and video and entertainment, creating advertising opportunities in the process. It's safe to say consumers aren't going to use their TV set as their primary web-browsing device, leaving no historic web behavior data or cookies to fall back on. Advertisers need to get creative to find and target their audience.
The Hunger Games won the weekend box office with over $150 million in ticket sales in North America alone. The film has now entered the top 3 highest grossing premiere weekends of all time, only behind the last Harry Potter installment and The Dark Knight.
How did this film adaptation of a young adult book series become a blockbuster that has left people saying, “Twilight who?”
The answer lies in an effective digital marketing campaign that took some unconventional approaches and leveraged emerging media channels.
Worldbuilding on Facebook
The first place to learn from the Hunger Games is Facebook.
Multiple Facebook Pages were used to promote the film to flesh out the world of the books. In the books, competitors in the Hunger Games come from 12 Districts in Panem, a dystopian United States. On Facebook, each district has its own Page, and exclusive content was made available that was unique to each district to reward fans who took a deeper dive into the world built online.
The Facebook experience wasn’t just a digital extension of the world of Panem, but also an opportunity to extend Panem into the physical world as well. Facebook fans are eligible to get free ID cards from their district of choice thanks to a partnership between the film and Cafe Press.
The Hunger Games campaign also effectively used Tumblr. According to a recent ComScore report, time spent on Tumblr is second only to Facebook within the social media space, so social marketing on Tumblr makes a lot of sense for entertainment if you’ve got the right content.
To promote the film, the Hunger Games marketers focused on content that catered to Tumblr audience:
• Fashion: The Capitol Couture theme of the Hunger Games Tumblr provides fashion from the film and also real clothing from famous designers that align with the visual aesthetic of the film. The site even features guides for Hunger Games fashion and etiquette.
• Animated GIFs: The site made extensive use of animated GIFs, a digital medium extremely popular within the Tumblr community. The GIFs of characters like Seneca Crane and Effie Trinket managed to be on par with the average amount of “shares” that images posted to Facebook have (around 1500) with fewer followers on Tumblr than on Facebook.
• Challenges and Contests: The Hunger Games and Moviefone also feature District Style Challenges and the #LookYourBest contest. The style challenges required Tumblr users to submit their own fashions inspired by the series with real images or simply mockups. The #LookYourBest contest was a simple way for Tumblr users to win advance tickets to the screening by sending an email with the address to their Tumblr blog.
Mobile and Social Gaming
When it comes to gaming, the Hunger Games is both a great example and a poor example of game-based marketing.
The mobile game for the movie is a great example of creating simple, addicting fun. The gameplay is relaxed, low stakes, and a simple way to kill some time. It’s also a great example of impulse commerce since the “Extras” section makes it easy to buy movie tickets directly from the app.
The social game on Facebook is lackluster and currently non-existent despite a proposed launch date of March 23. Marketers looking to integrate games into a campaign need to stick to launch deadlines to capitalize more effectively on pre-launch buzz. People looking for a more effective use of social gaming in entertainment marketing may want to look to the Game of Thrones social game launched last year or a host of in-game integrations other films have used.
While not every film is destined to break box office records, the marketing efforts behind the Hunger Games demonstrate how transmedia storytelling can help build anticipation for a film and more effectively bring fictional worlds to life through the use of social media.
Simeon Spearman, 03.26.2012
Posted by Cristina Lucero & Christina Mannarino, Performics Research & Insights Team
-What If Yahoo! Sells Right Media? (ClickZ)
- Yahoo! may sell off some of its ad platforms. The move is seen as an alternative to investing resources needed to upgrade the platforms.
- Such a move wouldn't exit Yahoo! from ad technology entirely. The company owns a large portfolio of ad products, including Blue Lithium, Dapper, and a huge ad optimization platform - each of which has a technology component. However the sale of Right Media in particular would change the company's role in the ad-buying ecosystem.
- Performics reaction: "As an advertiser, we're less concerned about the technology and more concerned about the inventory changing. Right Media has probably the most extensive selection of high-quality bidded inventory available to trading desks like ours at Performics, so as long as they don't lose anything we're happy."
- Read the full article here.
-comScore Media Metrix Ranks Top 50 U.S. Web Properties for February 2012
- comScore's stats for February show that Google still rules the Web, with 186.6 million visitors
- Pinterest really is on fire, with a 52% increase in unique visitors over a single month
- The next biggest properties were Microsoft Sites with 174.4 million and Yahoo! sites with 173.5 million. Facebook, in the meantime, came in at number four with 158.6 million visitors, and, curiously, MySpace jumped 8 positions to rank number 42 with 25.5 million visitors.
-Mobile Barcodes Drive Traffic to Brand Sites from Print (eMarketer)
- A February 2012 report found that well-planned campaigns put mobile barcodes in attention-grabbing places, and then gave customers a clear call to action to lead them to content
- More than 40% of 2-D barcodes took users to general commerce and product information online, and just over 23% led customers to brand-building sites
- The pairing of video with mobile barcodes was also a popular approach, with about 13% of landing pages containing video content
- The open-source QR code remains the advertising industry standard with almost 90% market penetration
-Tablets to Be Major Player in Mobile Games (Juniper Research)
- A new study suggests that their large screen sizes and impressive graphics will make tablets a growing force in mobile games
- Juniper Research predicts total end-user revenue from tablet games will grow to $3.1 billion by 2014, up from $491 million in 2011
- Juniper projects that social and casual games will drive the bulk of mobile game downloads overall. And because of the proliferation of smartphones and tablets, game revenue on feature phones will be cut in half by 2016.
- Read the full article here
-Twitter Takes Promoted Tweets Mobile (Twitter)
- Twitter has announced that it is to begin showing Promoted Tweets to mobile users who don’t follow the advertiser's feed
- Twitter has also added new targeting tools that allow advertisers to target their messages to desktop computers and laptops or specifically to mobile devices
- Given that 55% of the more than 100 million users who log in to Twitter every month do so at least once via mobile, this expanded roll out of Promoted Tweets in mobile is a great opportunity for brands to connect with more users, more of the time
- Read the Twitter blog post here
-Teens, Smartphones & Texting (PewResearchCenter)
- 63% of U.S. teens were text-messaging daily as of July 2011, up from 54% in September 2009
- The Pew report also showed that about one in four (23%) of teens have a smartphone. There are no differences in ownership of smartphones compared to regular cell phones by race, ethnicity, or income
- When it comes to tablets, about 16% of teens used the devices to go online in the last 30 days
- 18% of smartphone users shared their location compared with 8% of regular phone owners and 2% of all other teens. Older teens, at 9%, are most likely to use location services like Foursquare
- Read the full report here
-Men Show Online-Shopping Savvy (eMarketer)
- Men not only check online for the best prices on products and services in traditionally “male” categories such as auto and tech, but they also do a significant amount of online comparing of prices in more “female” sectors like health/wellness and food/cooking
- Men go even further in their research, too, with over half reading reviews of products and services and nearly as many sharing positive research results with friends
- Men’s shopping savvy continues when they are in the store, too. There, they use their smartphones as tools to make decisions. Nearly as many men as women will call a friend to ask advice about a purchase while they’re shopping in a store.
-Brazil’s Social Networking Activity Accelerates in the Past Year Fueled by Facebook Growth (comScore)
- Key insights from the 2012 Brazil Digital Future in Focus include:
- Brazil ranks as the 7th largest Internet market globally with a home and work computer audience of 46.3 million visitors age 15 and older, up 16% from the previous year
- Facebook surpassed Orkut in December 2011, taking the lead as the top social networking destination in Brazil with 36.1 million visitors, up 192% from the previous year
- Facebook also became the most-engaging social networking site with visitors averaging 4.8 hours on the site in December 2011, up from just 37 minutes a year ago. Mobile phones and tablets continue to alter the digital landscape, accounting for 1.5% of all digital traffic in Brazil during December. Of this proportion of total activity, more than 42% was driven by page views occurring on tablet devices.
- Read the press release here
-Mobile Internet Uptake on the Rise in France (eMarketer)
- Mobile Internet usage surged in 2011, after stagnating from 2009 to 2010
- In addition, reading email (19%), downloading applications (17%) and watching TV (8%) all nearly doubled in adoption rates over 2010, according to the annual report from French telecom and postal regulator l’Autorité de Régulation des Communications électroniques et des Postes (ARCEP) and the Conseil général de l'industrie, de l'énergie et des technologies (CGEIET)
- By the end of 2012, eMarketer estimates total mobile phone users in France will reach 50 million and mobile internet users will reach 14 million, or roughly 28% of all mobile users in the country
-Auto Brands Must Play by Five New Rules to Win Over Chinese Consumers (TNS)
- The dealer is your new best friend: In China, car dealers are viewed as the most reliable source of advice throughout the buying process
- "We" matters more than "me": In a nation where 80% of people are first-time buyers, people rely heavily on the advice of friends and family, as well as on social media, when it comes to choosing a car. Manufacturers need to understand how to mobilize customers and fans to become brand ambassadors, for instance by providing practical advice for new drivers via social media and customer support.
- Once people start looking, it’s too late: Brand loyalty towards cars in China is low and fewer people have fixed ideas about what they want at the outset
- Offer the right deal: Getting a good deal is extremely important to Chinese buyers: 80% buy a car having secured a discount
- Ignore digital at your peril: 95% of Chinese participants use online sources during the buying process, and around a quarter are classed as heavy users
- Read the report brief here
Consumers want greater control over their media. They want it to look great on whatever device they’re using, and they want their media to align with their emotional and physical needs in real-time. Three emerging media spaces are giving consumers this control, and they will change the way we think about consuming print, video, and audio.
For marketers looking for emerging alternatives to print beyond websites and run-of-the-mill status updates, an emerging slate of digital readers are making it easy to view content optimized for smartphones, tablets, and social media.
• Social Magazines: Tablet and smartphone owners are looking for news readers that bring their social feeds, blogs, and mainstream news sources together without the clutter found on most websites. Flipboard and Google Currents solve for that. Flipboard claims that reading sessions on the app are 8 to 10 times longer than those on the Web. Publishers are taking note. For example, Forbes already has over 450,000 Flipboard subscribers and 900,000 Currents subscribers and is looking to expand ad partnerships with both publishers.
• Digital Catalogs: One of the more surprising updates to Apple’s App Store following the new iPad announcement was the creation of a Catalogs section. Google’s Catalogs app also brings old print catalogs to the digital space. Digital catalogs will turn tablets and smartphones into important new e-commerce drivers. Moving beyond apps, Pinterest, Fancy, and other image bookmarking sites are serving as social catalogs, as evidenced by their growing referral traffic.
• Facebook News Readers: A recent Pew Research study found that only 9% of Americans get their news “very often” from Facebook and Twitter. Facebook is looking to change that alongside publishers. The Guardian and other traditional news outlets have turned to Facebook apps to increase their audience. Facebook “Frictionless Sharing” makes it easy for users to share what they read across through these apps without having to click share buttons, and publishers are benefitting. Meanwhile, Facebook’s “Interest Lists” make it easy for people to turn Facebook into a news stand.
Ubiquitous Video Players
Online video viewing continues to go up as more people turn to the Internet to get their entertainment. New video players make it easy for brands to broadcast their owned video assets across multiple platforms.
• Social Video Players: ShowYou aggregates videos shared across social networks in a single, easy to use interface for tablet and smartphone owners. This makes it easy for people to filter out everything else that pops up in their social streams and focus on video, potentially increasing visibility for your brand’s online videos. Apps like ShowYou will play a role in mobile video similar to how Flipboard and Currents function for news.
• Leanback Players: YouTube launched Leanback a while back to make it easy for people to view videos on connected TVs and tablets. With the smart TV market highly fragmented across a small, but growing, audience, Web-based leanback players are a compelling alternative to developing apps for every smart TV platform. Cartoon Network developed such an experience for its online video player. The leanback approach more closely mimics TV viewing, making online video advertising a more compelling alternative or complement to TV as the couch experience improves.
• Live Video Players: 2012 is showing that live video is becoming an important part of the marketing mix. The political campaigns for President Obama and Mitt Romney have used Google+ Hangouts and YouTube Live to engage with voters. Coca-Cola is using Hangouts to showcase memorabilia to fans and drive live conversations.
Media creates emotional reactions. Sometimes consumers want media that fits their mood or that will put them in a certain mood. We’ve discussed the potential of the mood graph before, and now the concept is expanding into new areas.
• Mood-based Music: Music has become highly social and interactive. Spotify’s app platform makes it easy to discover music in new ways. Moodagent is an app for Spotify and other devices that lets people generate playlists based on the mood they’re in. The emotional data collected will now drive a new audio advertising partnership between Moodagent and Mixberry Media. Ads will be targeted based on the moods that brands do, or don’t, want to be associated with.
• Mood-based News: Buzzfeed is a social news site that categorizes its content based on the emotional reactions readers have had to an article. The company is moving into specific topic verticals, but the site has been built on the emotional links between users and content. Brands have used the site to advertise against different emotions and even create custom “reactions” for visitors of the site to use on articles.
• Mood-based Ads: This is an emerging space, but brands love to guarantee that their messaging is aligned with a certain emotional state. Mood graphs and emotion analytics provide a new way to do this. Potential applications beyond music and news could be in video, with platforms like Hulu Ad Swap making it easy for viewers to choose their own ads, an emotional cue could provide a new way to build an emotional connection with your audience.
The new media sources give people more control over how they consume news, video, and music, which is a big part of why the above examples are being adopted.
These emerging platforms are changing how consumers discover and interact with media, and they present new opportunities for advertising that complements content instead of interrupting it.
Take a test and learn approach. The audiences for these platforms remain comparatively small to well established traditional and online media alternatives, but brands looking for new approaches to digital marketing will want to explore these emerging spaces in depth.
Simeon Spearman, 03.21.2012
2012-2013 FOX Development Meeting
Last week, FOX held its annual programming development meeting for key advertisers at News Corp.’s headquarters in NYC. Kevin Reilly, President of FOX Entertainment presented the network’s 2012-2013 development slate.
Following a number of viewership stats touting the 11/12 season thus far, Reilly launched into FOX’s comedy agenda, a big initiative for the network next year. With the success of New Girl, FOX plans to premiere no less than four new comedies, pairing them with current programs (Glee, Raising Hope and New Girl). A focus on young ensemble casts and family relationships has spearheaded much of comedy development. Reilly stated moderate-performing Raising Hope is a quality family comedy that he expects to improve if combined with another compatible family sitcom. From Emmy-nominated Mindy Kaling, writer, producer and actress of The Office, Mindy is a romantic comedy set in a medical practice about an OB/GYN doctor (Kaling), who succeeds in her career, but not her love life, receiving little help from her colleagues and friends. According to Reilly, he’d ideally like to pair Mindy with New Girl. Following the theme of young adult ensembles is Rebounding. Executive produced by Steve Levitan of Modern Family fame, the comedy revolves around a group of friends who rally around Danny (Will Forte) after his fiancée suddenly dies.
Featuring the trials and tribulations of family relationships, FOX has a number of comedies in the pipeline. From producer Dana Fox (New Girl), Ben Fox Is My Manny is a sibling relationship about an irresponsible brother who moves in with his younger sister to help raise her five-year-old daughter. Abby Elliot (SNL) is committed to star in this project. Goodwin Games follows three siblings who have grown apart, but come together to claim their father’s $20 million inheritance. Speaking from the grave, the father has made claiming the money a game, hoping to rebuild the siblings’ relationships. Scott Foley (Felicity) and Becky Newton (Ugly Betty) are set to star. Comedy pilot, Little Brother, provides a different perspective, as a recently incarcerated man moves in with his long lost brother (John Stamos) and family to try and turn his life around.
Switching to parental relationships, Like Father centers on Van (Colin Ferguson), a father of a 19-year-old son who has always been more of a peer with a frat boy mentality than a father figure, that follows his son to college after his mother passes away. Mike O’Malley (Glee) stars as the father in Prodigy Bully, about a 11-year-old boy genius who grew up in a working class neighborhood and is enrolled in a gifted school with very sheltered and upper class prodigy students.
Reviewing recent dramas this season, O’Reilly discussed the potential for freshman series, Alcatraz, to return next season as well as their anticipation over Touch, which previewed in January with its regular run scheduled to begin this Thursday (3/22/12). Looking to fill Monday nights in the absence of House and Terra Nova next year, FOX has an aggressive slate of high impact, action dramas in development. Rogue comes from Brett Ratner, about a 14 year old girl named Jane who moves in with an assassin after her CIA operative father is killed in action. Part action-spy drama and part coming-of-age tale, Rogue follows Jane as she acclimates to life at her new high school, while also participating in CIA missions. The drama stars Julian McMahon and Angela Bassett. Also providing a CIA storyline is The Asset, featuring Ali Larter (Heros) as Anna, a photojournalist and undercover CIA agent who will go to great lengths to accomplish an assignment. Noting the return of Kevin Bacon to network television, FOX is developing Mastermind, a new thriller created and executive produced by Kevin Williamson (Scream, Dawson’s Creek). Joe Carroll (James Purefoy) is a serial killer who has escaped from prison just before his scheduled execution. Authorities call on former FBI agent Ryan Hardy (Bacon) for help as he was the one who originally tracked down and caught Carroll nine years ago.
Crossing the line between medical and crime drama, Mob Doctor centers around a Chicago cardiothoracic surgeon (Jordana Spiro) who is indebted to the mob to pay off her brother’s life-threatening gambling debts. By day she a well-renowned leading surgeon in her field, but by night she provides medical care to the mafia under dangerous circumstances. Transitioning to the legal world in pilots, Cuba Gooding Jr. stars as Billy Weston, a top corporate attorney in Guilty, who is disbarred after being framed. After assembling a group of renegade attorneys, Weston and his associates work both inside and outside the courtroom to help clients. McG is credited as an executive producer and directs the pilot episode.
Among alternative programming, FOX is taking advantage of its leader status among animation, providing an animation block on Saturday nights from 11pm-12:30am beginning in January 2013. Coined Animation Domination HD (AD/HD) and headed by former Adult Swim exec, Nick Weidenfield, the unit will develop and air original animated shorts and series on the linear channel, while also making content available online. With The X-Factor returning, there is little need for reality content, with O’Reilly only reviewing one unscripted series, Take Me Out. Based on a popular U.K. format, Take Me Out is a game-show style dating competition program where one man is given the chance to make a positive first impression among 30 women. However, it is the man that gets final say on who he plans to take on a dream date. The show is planned to launch this summer.
The Zenith Media Research Team will continue to monitor future development meetings and Upfront announcements with the latest information on the upcoming 2012-2013 season.
posted by Strategic Resources @ Zenithmedia at 12:39 PM