How Netflix is helping brands harness the power of interactive content

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30-second summary: Netflix’s Bandersnatch offers a new window into creating a seamless and uninterrupted way to embed branded content into its programming, and in the process, the company may have shown other streaming platforms how to take advantage of an important new revenue stream. More than simply allowing their viewers to choose whether their hero takes a dark path or not, the film also offered them a choice between a pack of Sugar Puff cereal and Kellogg’s Frosties. Bandersnatach also showed that Netflix could leverage its platform and features to make product integrations much less intrusive and more curated around the specific content. As in TV platforms, interactive media is also a great way for digital publishers to engage their audiences and derive new data, complete the feedback loop on their content, and get better insights about what their audiences are interested in. Interactive content experiences are not just for the sake of advertising or entertainment, but for creating a stronger connection between the user and the platform, a kind of direct link brands have always dreamt of since the rise of Facebook. In 2019, when Netflix released its choose-your-own-adventure interactive film — Black Mirror: Bandersnatch — it was not only a groundbreaking piece of cinema, but also a lightbulb moment for the streaming giant. With Bandersnatch, a multi-layered content viewing experience, Netflix may have stumbled onto something big . The film offered a new window into creating a seamless and uninterrupted way to embed branded content into its programming, and in the process, the company may have shown other streaming platforms how to take advantage of an important new revenue stream. A new paradigm for interactive storytelling Essentially, Bandersnatch lets viewers navigate their way across the plot themselves, giving them the ability to not only choose from multiple storylines, but also select the brands that characters interact with throughout the course of the film. While most of the viewers watched the linear version in 90 minutes, it’s actual length estimated at more than 5 hours. That is a considerable swath of behavioral data brands would love to get their hands on. More than simply allowing their viewers to choose whether their hero takes a dark path or not, the film also offered them a choice between a pack of Sugar Puff cereal and Kellogg’s Frosties. Even Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings was proud to present the results of the audience’s …

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How Netflix could dominate the Black TV renaissance

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Black TV has been a boon to networks in the past, only to be shunted aside for white audiences. Netflix could make Black storytelling “more than a moment”—if its data and algorithms stay out of the way. Last month, in response to the protests against police brutality and racial injustice, Netflix joined the ranks of other media companies spotlighting film and TV shows centered on the Black experience. Read Full Story

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Why consumers follow and unfollow brands on social media

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30-second summary: Sprout Social has been compiling a consumer index report of social media trends since 2013. Their 2020 report contains new insights and statics about how brands and consumers interact on social platforms. Marketers can use this information to better align their social media strategy to their customers’ expectations, ensuring that their content resonates. The survey revealed that 89% of consumers will buy from a brand they follow on social media and 75% will increase spending with that same brand. Understanding why consumers follow (and unfollow) brands, what type of content they’re most (and least) interested in, and what stand-out brands are doing right can help marketers gain more followers, while driving leads, sales, and growth for their organization. Sprout Social’s 2020 consumer index survey, Edition XVI: Above & Beyond , found that 50% of consumers have increased their social media usage in the past six months. The data …

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He green-lighted Netflix hits “Love is Blind,” “Queer Eye,” and “Cheer.” Here’s how he picks reality TV concepts.

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For making Netflix a go-to platform for nonscripted shows including “Love is Blind,” “Queer Eye,” and “Cheer,” Brandon Riegg is one of Fast Company’s Most Creative People of 2020. In the first months of 2020, streaming giant Netflix began dominating yet another realm of content: unscripted original programming. Love Is Blind , a reality show on which contestants dated and got engaged without ever meeting each other face-to-face, spawned a fervent subculture of viewers online; docuseries Cheer propelled a tiny junior college’s cheerleading squad to national fame; and social media competition The Circle revealed the ways people connect and deceive each other on the internet. All three shows were created under Brandon Riegg, who founded Netflix’s unscripted originals and acquisitions division in 2016. “Because we had no precedent of what worked and what didn’t [at Netflix], we felt emboldened to take risks,” says Riegg, who allowed his producers to try …

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5 emerging tech and how to leverage them for marketing success

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30-second summary: OTT is solving many of the problems that traditional TV advertising has faced, and the ability for brands to get extremely granular and target their ideal customers better will make this marketing medium a hot topic in the new year. Amazon’s Twitch is a perfect example of a niche network that is Gen Z heavy, has an audience that’s uber-engaged, and offers its own advertising placements that can be catered to reach this audience, like in-stream and video advertising. The real magic of AI image recognition lies with the innovative companies that have started to crawl all of the images on the web and offer them as a way for advertisers to get placements on those pages — even on the images themselves in some situations. Pinterest’s demographics and usage are a match made in heaven for a wide swath of B2C products. Whether it’s fashion, home decor …

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4 industries that can make the most of interactive 3D configurators

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30-second summary: The internet is beyond saturated, which means challenges for marketers who want to attract and engage customers. Interactive 3D configurators can help companies can create smooth, interactive experiences that will keep customers engaged for longer periods and have them coming back for more. PureWeb’s Elly Uz details which industries are uniquely suited to having 3D configurators enhance the customer experience. For roughly two decades, the rapid growth of people new to the internet meant that unique traffic to websites grew steadily. This was generated in many ways: Digital ads were enough to bring in new users, and standard websites with images, something to read, and maybe even some videos were enough to keep viewers interested. Now, the web’s growth rate has more or less plateaued in developed countries. Today’s users are accustomed to the typical eye-catching tactics of online marketing, and that means it’s more difficult to make …

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The new normal post COVID-19 will require a deep understanding of the consumer

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30-second summary: Lean on real-time data and insights to understand and engage consumers in meaningful ways. Elevate marketing and engagement strategies, acknowledging new consumer needs and shifts in behavior — increased e-commerce, social media usage and streaming TV. Deliver real value to consumers using localized approaches, messaging and incentives. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is rapidly changing consumers’ shopping habits, brand engagement and media consumption behaviors both now and in what will be our “new normal.” While much of life has changed due to social distancing, the temporary closure of businesses and apprehension even as restrictions are lifted, it’s important for brands and marketers to connect with customers in meaningful ways. Rather than pulling back on marketing or pausing engagement efforts, marketers have an opportunity to engage consumers in powerful ways by tailoring campaigns to new needs and priorities. During this unprecedented time, recent research from Valassis shows consumers value communication …

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TikTok vs. Snapchat: A guide for marketers

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TikTok is having a moment. Whether you use the app already or have spotted TikToks popping up on other social platforms, it’s clear that TikTok isn’t just another fleeting trend. It’s here to stay. Yet it’s easy to see how someone not familiar with TikTok (ahem, your boss) might dismiss it as a Snapchat reboot. Worse, they might assume content from Snapchat can be repurposed on TikTok. The two platforms share similar features (and yes, similar audiences) but their value offerings are entirely different. TikTok is a video sharing app for short clips set to music while Snapchat is a photo and video messaging app centered on ‘Stories’ and other short-lived formats. Each platform offers unique ways to connect with audiences if used the right way by the right type of brand. If you’re not sure where your brand fits in – or if it even fits in at all …

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A definitive guide to video marketing 2020: Stats, strategies, and challenges

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30-second summary: Today, video marketing is a tool for building every marketing campaign, raising click-through rate, conversion rate, and memorability of the brand message. Although nearly 63% of marketers regularly use video marketing strategies, lots of them don’t know that the right ad formats and platforms can do wonders for their ad campaigns. Piling up the freshest conference insights with the customer data aggregated by SmartyAds DSP, I made a short and definitive video marketing guide specifically tailored to the year 2020. More on video marketing strategies that will work in 2020, stats, platforms, and challenges. Everyone agrees — the future of video marketing is bright and filled with innovations. Still, no one is talking about how to overcome challenges to get the most out of application strategies. What is video marketing in 2020? Today, it is a tool for building every marketing campaign, raising click-through rate, conversion rate, and …

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Pitfalls of influencer marketing in Russia and how to avoid them

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30-second summary: As YouTube content is not restricted to the territories of single states we shall define “Russian market” as “Russian linguistic area”. In this respect, defining “Russian consumer market” one can safely add 10 million of Belarus’ population, 18 million of Kazakhstan’s and 40 million of Ukraine’s population to 150 million population of Russia itself totaling nearly 220 million of potential users. Pricing itself is a very sensitive issue. In this regard influencer marketing in Russia is still very much “The Wild East”. Rates, especially if creators are contacted by foreign brands directly or through marketplaces, come out of thin air. An international cloud-based web development platform started their first efforts to generate awareness in Russia, using influencer marketing on YouTube as one of their major marketing strategies. The company chose to partner up with mediacube — a YouTube MCN operating in the market since 2015. The primary aim …

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7 enterprise level providers of AI-enabled marketing solutions

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30-second summary: We provide seven examples of enterprise-level providers of AI-enabled marketing solutions as well as case studies for each. Each of these companies are leaders in their respective category, with B2B and B2C organizations each benefiting from their AI-enabled solutions. This list is not inclusive of every enterprise-level provider, but is meant to give mid-to-enterprise-level organizations an sense of the best-in-class tools that exist in the market today, and how organizations are using them to improve their marketing, sales, and customer experience initiatives. As part of our ongoing coverage of artificial intelligence (AI) in marketing, we’ve compiled a list of ten enterprise-level providers of technology solutions that utilize AI in some capacity. This list covers key categories within the martech space including digital asset management, marketing and sales enablement, customer experience/engagement, and account-based marketing. This list is not – by any stretch of the imagination – comprehensive in terms …

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