Festival Intelligence: Brands get real (-time) | M&M Global

Festival Intelligence: Brands get real (-time)

‘Content is King, but Context is Key’ – it’s one of those quotes that tends to follow us around in ad land and while some may sneer at the phrase, there’s no doubting its meaning. And with context comes the rapid rise in real-time marketing, which is proving to be a critical technique for engaging with consumers in the very moment they are most receptive to the communication.

Talon research shows that contextualised and relevant content drives campaign awareness, and importantly also increases purchase intent by +35% – so naturally real-time marketing is a no brainer.

We all remember Oreo’s ‘You can still dunk in the dark’ reaction to the blackout during the SuperBowl XLVII in 2013. With nothing happening on TV, viewer attention was instantly turned to social media and Oreo, along with agencies 360i and MediaVest, was quick to react in a perfectly-timed execution, proving that this is a brand that understands the speed of digital culture. It was retweeted over 12,600 times, ‘favourited’ nearly 4,000 times and on Facebook received over 19,000 likes and 6,500 shares. And, of course, there are many other great examples.

This year’s Festival of Media Global Awards featured a dedicated category for ‘Best Use of Real-time Marketing’ and it uncovered a number of trends. The underlying theme across all entries was, indeed, context but perhaps more interesting is the different types of media used in the execution. While digital and social were pertinent in all campaigns, digital out-of-home turned out to be the unsung hero for five of the seven shortlisted entries.

Drawing data from a variety of sources – from the stock market to weather conditions to political elections – the shortlisted brands, which span a number of categories (travel / airlines, publishing, food & beverage, finance and pharma), were able to make real-time decisions and reactions to present their message and increase visibility at key moments.

We saw hints of AI throughout some entries across the entire shortlist, examples of leveraging data to better personalise ads, but as awards judge Adam Gerhart, CEO of Mindshare US, noted: “Our industry is awash in headlines about artificial intelligence, but there weren’t any campaigns that hit on that area (at least not from the work that I judged). Frankly, it’s just too early in the game; the practical applications aren’t there yet.”

However, according to Emi Gal, CEO of Teads Studio, who delivered a presentation at the Festival of Media Global in Rome around unleashing creativity and inspiration through AI, the future for AI in advertising isn’t as far off as we think.

“We can today already create AIs that can target and personalise ads for hundreds and even thousands of audience segments. In the future I believe we will be able to do it for every single impression that’s delivered for an advertiser, so we’ll have millions of variations of these ads, personalised for every single individual,” said Gal. “Instead of showing one person an ad and another person the same ad, we’re going to use AI to learn everything we can about an individual, create a 360 profile of that individual and then create a different version of an ad for every single person exposed to it. So, what that will look like is instead of having one video ad you will create a storyline for a brand and then let the AI decide what content to put where within that storyline. The AI decides what content to show based on the audience demographic.”

From external events to weather triggers, AI, machine learning and data predictions, real-time marketing is only set to propel further as brands put context at the heart of their communications.

We put the spotlight on two FOMG Awards 2018 shortlisted entries, which highlight this trend:

The Secret to Success is… Timing | Royal Mint | Manning Gottlieb OMD | UK

Shortlisted for: Effective Use of e-Commerce, Best Use of Real-time Marketing (SILVER WINNER)


Royal Mint Bullion’s business model, selling gold to investors, is a low margin business, so there’s a constant need to squeeze the most from advertising. To try and hit its targets, Manning Gottlieb OMD needed to probe deeper into why consumers bought gold in the first place.

It began by analysing historic search volumes to understand when interest spikes and then matched those peaks to news stories. It discovered that interest in gold was driven by turmoil. These moments caused such an increase as investors turned to gold because of its reputation as a safe haven. The strategy followed naturally from the insight. It moved from the standard and cluttered approach of bidding on keywords to a unique approach in the category of focusing spend on moments of turmoil.

When the agency cross-referenced search interest with news it noticed that when gold interest boomed so did FTSE volatility. TVTY was used to track the real-time performance of the stock-market. When the FTSE conditions mentioned above were hit TVTY would trigger all campaigns to increase bids which, in turn, increased visibility at key moments.

Read the full case study here.


ROMBOT | Rom | UM | Romania

Shortlisted for: Best Use of Real-time Marketing (BRONZE WINNER)


In 2016, ROM Autentic, the beloved chocolate bar wrapped in the Romanian national flag, was losing share in a crowded market. Aiming for a new and young audience to boost its sales, Rom’s mission was to renew its meaningful connection with them.

For the new generation of Romanians who felt misrepresented in the eyes of the world, UM created ROMBOT, the first artificial intelligent virtual ambassador to represent a nation based on the viewpoints of its proud young inhabitants. ROMBOT was designed to learn directly from Romanians about Romania, with a mission to tell the right story about the country and help a generation take ownership of their reputation with a renewed sense of pride and optimism.

The agency enabled the collective voice of Romania through imprinted messages on Rom chocolate bar’s label. Rom consumers could scan their chocolate bars, designed in special packaging to promote the initiative, or visit the website to talk directly to ROMBOT.

Read the full case study here.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply