More than a Blip

Matt Ellwood
July 9, 2020

We’ve found (like no doubt most agencies have) that more and more briefs coming into the building no longer have TV as the assumed channel of choice. There are a lot of misconceptions about this shift, but we believe that this new world will open up more opportunities to connect and build value with audiences. Here are some of the common misconceptions we hear:

“We don’t have a big budget, so its a social only brief”

Why do we devalue social advertising compared to cinema, TV or outdoor? Yes, the pixel size may be smaller, but many a company have built up their brand and revenue just by using social advertising. In just 13 months, Koala mattresses went from $0 in revenue to 13 million. The key to their success was how they flooded Facebook and Instagram with social-first content.

As of today, Koala has 1,200 live ads running in Australia (they recently pulled out of New Zealand to focus on Australian growth). Each ad has a different purpose in their buyer journey and funnels to relevant sections on their landing pages. Tell me, can you be this smart through TV?

In New Zealand, there are also individuals that have “clocked” the cost per click model on social. They have deployed thousands of variants of ads that target people by selling T-shirts with their job title on it. They know how much it costs to convert an ad, and scale their budget to match how much they want to earn that month. This has lead to 3-4 individuals to spend more on Social Ads than some of NZ’s biggest companies.

“People will only see it once and then that’s it”

People often say the placement is “just social” and content will be posted one day, and be gone the next. Sure, for most brands, organic reach is dead. Facebook’s organic algorithm demotes older content down the newsfeed, and with meme pages creating 5mps (memes per second), organic brand content doesn’t stand a chance. But that isn’t really a problem. TV has no free placements, I haven’t seen any free outdoor offers recently. Organic reach should be a bonus for great content above and beyond the paid spend.

We’ve found that when a campaign is set up with multiple images and copy variations, it can last about 6 weeks before suffering wear out leading to a higher CPC or CPM. Generally speaking, brand campaigns are strengthened with exposure. The objective is to earn space in the consumer’s mindshare, so even if repeated impressions are less impactful than the first, at the very least, they’re still reminding the consumer of the brand. Direct response campaigns are different. Direct ads that are overexposed tend to get noticed less by consumers, which is detrimental to the task of sparking clicks and conversions.

Data from Nielsen’s Digital Brand Effect reveals that exposure to digital advertising 5-9 times is the optimal range to improve the overall brand lift of the campaign – increasing the resonance by 51% on average.

“You can’t tell stories in social, you have to give the payoff within 3 seconds?”

Mobile has not only ushered in a new era of consumption for people, it’s given marketers, brands, and advertisers a new canvas to tell stories. Now that thumbs are in charge, it is time for us to rethink storytelling.

There are so many wonderful examples of great storytelling on social.. Every single post on social is storytelling. It could be an Instagram story from your niece or a Facebook post from your aunt. The content they are making creates the context for brands ads to live in. Designing for social does not mean watermarking the logo into the ad 3 seconds in, it means a simple get, much like how advertisers did before long form TV video. A good idea should be able to be expressed in a 10 second story and in a 30 second mid roll on TVNZ on demand.

If you think this new mix of media isn’t effective, just look at Trump’s 2016 campaign, Brexit or Scott Morrison’s recent win in Australia. By playing with new ad formats and creative types, testing new approaches and, most importantly, putting mobile at the center of our strategies, we can find new and better ways to inspire people to stop, look, feel, share, vote, do and buy.

So, there are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to social marketing. But it should also be the place where we feel the most comfortable to play, since we all use it in our personal lives every day already. We’ve doubled down in this space with the recent appointments of Performance Marketer Andy Schick as Head of Digital (and partner) and Grace Russel as Performance Marketing Director. These two new hires specialise in mapping out customer journeys and providing a framework for our creative to work the hardest it can.  Flick us an email if you want us to think about how this channel can be used to connect with your audience.

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