About danpankraz

I'm a Youth Marketing Strategist working as Regional Strategy Director, APAC at Iris Worldwide- based in Sydney. I've spent my whole career working on youth brands including Adidas, Axe, Smirnoff, Lonely Planet & many others

Paradox of connectedness: the sad state of Gen C holiday experiences

Gen Y bali holiday I’ve blogged alot over the years about Generation C – the ‘Connected Generation’ and their need to be constantly connected to their friends, sharing content with the world. But this pic, which popped up on my newsfeed this morning, just blew me away. Here’s a handful of cool, educated late 20 somethings from Australia, NYC and London all gathering in Bali for a wedding, yet they’re completely engrossed in their screens when you’d think they’d be engrossed in conversation.

Gen C crave experiences over material goods. We know this. They crave connection. We know this. They crave sharing their world to show off and belong. We know this. Showing that you’re always connected (even on holidays with your closest mates eating brekky) on Facebook is now a badge. New to me.

This pic is very symbolic of Gen C and the paradox of connectedness.  These friends, who likely haven’t seen each other for a while seem more disconnected than connected in the physical sense. The impact of screens on our youth is being studied by people  much more intelligent than me, but it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that our screens are having a profound impact on our interpersonal skills. The Gen C mantra of ‘I share, therefore I am’ has completely taken over.

What happened to holidays where you just talk to people, chill and catch up?

Look, I’m not on this holiday and I’m sure they’ve all had an amazing time catching up, sharing stories about their lives etc, but the fact that they’re all compelled to start their day ‘together’ by uploading to Instagram, Facebook and check emails is really a sad state of affairs for this generation. If ever a ‘digital detox diet’ was in need, it’s for these cool cats :) Chill out. Unplug. Talk to each other. Live in the moment. Ban wi-fi at resorts ;)

The King is Back. Which brand delivers the best LeBron homecoming ad? #LeBron

The King is back. LeBron James plays his first home game tonight for the Cleveland Cavaliers after 4 years (and two Championship Rings) with the Miami Heat. It’s been the biggest topic in basketball media for the past 3 months.

Of course, brands are leveraging the biggest story in basketball and the big boys have all thrown their hat in the ring,  creating epic emotive spots showcasing his return. It is amazing to see the power one athlete can have over the people of a city. Here’s a look at my three favourite LeBron spots:

Nike ‘Together’

Really love this spot. Feels like the Nike I grew up with talking to me & the inspiraitonal Jordan ads of old. It’s about unity, it’s about belief.  For the fans of the game, makes you feel connected to both LeBron and the people of the great city of Cleveland. I love the line ‘we owe them’. Nike plays where they belong, in the stadium. Big. Bold and a little cult-ish, which is what I like about it as Nike’s basketball ads of late have been about individuality and extroversion. A great ‘Just Do It’ ad that taps into the brands roots really well. Score: 8.5/10

Beats ‘Re-established’

This spot has grown on me. Positioning the brand for emerging athletes, centred on the gym & streets  it talks to performance whilst also going hard on integrating the new Wireless headphones into this narrative (good on them). It balances this with a softer ‘people’s narrative.  Music is killer and you feel the storyline.  Score: 7.5/10

Sprite ‘First Home Game’

The low budget one, but probably has the most original idea. This one’s for the teens out there and cleverly uses kids in the narrative to showcase the fans love of LeBron and his importance to the city. I like the fact that’s it’s about going back to the real roots, street basketball which is very much Sprite territory. Feels gritty and positions him as a man of the people. Sprite plays a strong role as his ‘thirst comes from the people’. A little cliche at times in terms of the storytelling but the idea of ‘my first home game’ being on the streets with the kids is strong.  Score: 7/10

How social can help in the era of #TVEverywhere

Screen shot 2014-08-06 at PM 03.16.18

How people are watching and engaging with broadcast TV content is changing dramatically in the USA. Surprise, surprise, It’s no longer linear. It’s no longer scheduled. It’s no longer exclusively in front of a TV screen. “TV Everywhere” is becoming mainstream. It’s the latest buzzword for viewing broadcast shows from channels you subscribe to on your satellite network or devices. TV apps like HBO Go, Watch ESPN, CNBC, and cable companies offering their own branded apps like Comcast’s Xfinity TV Go. 1 in 5 American households are watching TV Everywhere content and it’s growing significantly faster than other online video sources like YouTube, Hulu or Daily Motion according to Adobe’s Digital Index.

Closer to home, the Australian TV networks and telco’s no doubt have picked up on this new revenue stream as Foxtel Go is our best example of this model, but how are they driving engagement around their content?

Several American TV networks are re-imagining the second screen experience and experimenting with new ways for people to participate with social elements when the person is already on their phone/tablet. Here are 5 recent innovative American examples:

1. High quality, bold, branded content:
To promote the second season of the Showtime series “Masters of Sex”, the network hired filmmaker Tatia Pilieva (“The Kiss” creator whose video for clothing line Wren earned 86m views) to create a video clip on YouTube titled “Undress Me,”. Seeding innovative teasers on YouTube is proving to be an effective strategy to generate interest in ‘tune-into’ events.

2. Tease Exclusive bonus content and Insider Info in real time:

As an official sponsor of Pretty Little Liars, Audi Snapchatted exclusive bonus content from the ABC Family program and the show’s stars in real time. SnapChat and Instagram are Millennial mediums of choice and need to be considered in delivering ‘first to view’ content.

3. Experiment with social platform features to build plot suspense

Hulu is the first brand to test sponsored posts on Whisper, an app that lets users post anonymous messages about their deepest secrets, biggest regrets, and strangest desires. For their new series Deadbeat, about a New York resident who helps ghosts take care of their nasty unfinished business they’re posting prompts, i.e.:. “Describe the worst fight you’ve ever gotten into with a rival” to pique interest in the show. A great example of matching a show’s narrative with a social platform’s unique context.

4. Contextually relevant media partnerships:

To promote the release of its new series “Satisfaction,” a show that deals with modern marriages, USA Network teamed up with Vice Media and HowAboutWe - a dating site – to start a cultural dialogue around the subjects of today’s relationships with the thought–provoking question: #AreYouSatisfied? among the very people who might be pondering this question and thus be interested in the show.

5. Use characters to “meet” new fans:

To plug Season 4, The Walking Dead, a Zombie show in New Zealand, TVNZ deployed female models to engage with over 500 guys on Tinder, and as their ‘relationships’ deepened, photos and responses slowly deteriorated, leaving little more than incoherent zombies who rattled off the launch date. Mindy Kaling (star of Fox’s The Mindy Project) also surprises viewers on Tinder, a clever way to attract potential new viewers with matching interests.

If TV Everywhere trend continues it’s global growth, brands like Foxtel Go should be experimenting with innovative social ideas to drive engagement and advocacy around their shows.

Forget what you know about luxury marketing

A little bit blingy???

A little bit blingy???

I was recently asked by Marketing Magazine Australia to write about the new codes of luxury marketing. Here’s my viewpoint on how luxury brands need to think about engaging the neo luxury consumer.

How do you be exclusive, sell the dream, retain the magic and mystique, craft the message in an area of transparency, open access and democratic sharing? These are the fundamental issues facing luxury marketers today.

The next generation of younger multi-channel luxury consumers are rising in influence, seeking demonstrations of discernment rather than badges of bling. Luxury is no longer about outward displays of wealth, it’s a state of mind, with self-fulfillment trumping traditional status symbols. Here are my emerging codes of luxury marketing worth thinking about:

  1. Provocation over poise

Whilst superlative storytelling has always been the bread and butter to create desire for luxury goods, brands now need to look to new more provocative brand archetype to cut through and engage. Jaguar’s latest ‘Villains’ #GoodToBeBad campaign has successfully positioned Jaguar as an alternative Anti Hero in a stuffy luxury car world.

  1. Timely beats timeless

Luxury brands need to think about how they are offering cultural value in real time. Thomas Pink in the UK recently launched their ’90 minute service delivery in London’ to fix dressing woes. 

  1. Making exclusive inclusive

More than ever, people want to help craft the narrative of a luxury brand. Brands need to think about hey they involve people in interactive stories at all stages of the product and marketing process. Burberry’s famous Art of the Trench project and Mont Blanc’s Beauty of a Second are best practice here.

  1. Living is more than owning

The era of Experiential Luxury means status and social currency is derived through engaging in unique and rare experiences often powered my immersive technology. Innovative examples include the Mercedes Benz Travel program in China and our Johnnie Walker Blue Label Gallery .

  1. Personalisation over conformity

Luxury consumers are craving hyper personalisation at every touch point, so luxury brands need to think about how their products and experiences are delivering more personal moments for people.

So luxury marketers need to tear up the traditional marketing toolkit, cleverly leveraging the myriad of digital channels and tools at their disposal to demonstrate discernment rather than blast them with bling.

UNICEF Change For Good: Save a life with the power of 5

Video

Am so proud of our teams work to launch #5Fund – an initiative for UNICEF’s Change for Good partnership with Qantas. To drum up domestic donations here in Australia, we’re honing in on the power of Australia’s most useless coin, the 5 cent piece and dramatising how powerful your loose change can be in saving the lives of kids in need around the world Please share and donate at 5fund.org.au

How to engage the A-D-D Generation with #LifestyleHacking

A recent piece I wrote for Marketing Mag column with the lovely Kat Edwards from KontentedImage

A screenshot from one of our iris Worldwide presentations courtesy of our guru CSO, Sammy Noble.

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Today’s digitally savvy Millenials have been termed the A-D-D generation, constantly flipping and flopping between jobs, digital devices, having attention spans the size of ants and being brand flirts. It’s not surprising given they’re dealing with 60 million Instagram pics being posted daily, 200 hours of YouTube video content uploaded every minute and 30 billion pieces of content shared monthly on Facebook.

Marketers need to understand those born after 1995 have been forced to develop a finely tuned editing and curating skills to process the endless streams of content bombarding their screens. How they absorb information in the networked world has fundamentally changed.

Today’s Millenials live on a diet of quick fix information nuggets where their memories are becoming hyperlinks to information triggered by hashtags, Instagram pics and Snapchat one-liners. When it comes to content they take a quick glance, sort it, and tag it for future reference. Forget multi-taskers. They are super-taskers.

So how can marketers engage the A-D-D generation?

In todays networked, post modern world, the biggest influence on youth patterns of thought and behaviour are their everyday experiences and social milieu. Their participation in the world around them is the key guide for marketers.

So the role of brands today is to ‘hack’ into and become more of an intrinsic and visible participant in the flow of their lifestyles. I call it ‘lifestyle hacking.’ Here are 5 principles for successful lifestyle hacks:

1. Design distinctive and instinctive interactions

Where milliseconds matter, moving beyond bland consistency, marketers need to focus on visceral, interactive and detailed experiences at every encounter creating distinctive and instinctive interactions.

2. Practical magic

Think about turning life’s pain points into little moments of pleasure and delightful discovery. More than digital utility it’s building in lots of sticky details. The Uber app is a great recent example of this.

3. Tribal identity

Baking in meaningful signs of tribal belonging and affiliation with groups of others to help frame their social identity is key. Our MINI UK #notnormal platform moved beyond the metal to celebrate the inventive relationships MINI owners had with their cars.

4. Social currency beyond WOM

Making your brand a unit of social currency, not just your branded content is the new centre ground for marketing. How do you always stay abreast of the zeitgeist and be part of the emerging shift to the collaboration economy? Online thrift shop ThredUp.com is kicking goals here.

5. Immersive connectivity

Millenials crave connectivity and they love 4D immersion. Why else would Facebook buy virtual reality company Oculus Rift? Look for new ways to create brand experiences leveraging accessible virtual reality.

Top 10 #RealTimeMarketing Moments from April Fools Day

Well we’ve had the best of in real time marketing from the SuperBowl,Valentines Day and Oscars; last week brands across the world were at it again on trying to generate cultural conversation around weird and wacky April Fools Day pranks. 

 Here are my top 10 real time marketing moments from around the world:

 1. Google Maps Pokemon Challenge

Google Maps goes into recruitment mode with the help of Pokemon to find Pokemon Masters around the world.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YMD6xELI_k#t=22

2. Headdit: a quirky new way to browse Reddit

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rqoKxLB8GH8#t=30

3. Dominos Edibox: a world first in snacking innovation

 

(Disclaimer: our Iris London office did this one)Image

4. LELO Dextrus: World’s first vibrator that makes you smart

The left handed orgasm for lovemakers around the world.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJernQ4gxtA#t=23

 5. Virgin America & NEST’s ‘Total Temperature Control’ give passengers control over their seating temperatures onboard

Sir Richard shows us how to feel a Chicago polar vortex onboard.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1nzWY3JFJQ

 6. Rent out your desk on AirBrb: some fun from Airbnb

What could be better than earning money while you work?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0MmNM0a_RU

 7. LEGO offered free shipping by Turtle for one day only on Twitter

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8. King’s College Choir in London offered up helium as a solution to replacing high male voices

Nice to see a religious group getting in on the fun

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukDAfF0-8q8

 9. SONY launched #SONYPowerFood to power their products via a new voltaic enzyme

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPRYB_PNWlA

 Last but not least, even the French got in on the fun

10. AirFrance introduced inflight selfies via #SelfintheAir camera

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