Ever heard of screen hopping?

What with moving house, xmas, panicking to get my tax return in on time and pandering to my newborn baby boy, I’ve rather neglected my blogging duties I’m afraid!¬† Not that you noticed ūüėČ Anyhow, I’m back on track now with this rather cool campaign.

Honda has just unveiled ‚ÄúThis Unpredictable Life‚ÄĚ – an interactive TV campaign to launch the new Honda Jazz which enables viewers to interact with the ad via a dedicated iphone app.¬† Whether you’re watching it on your TV, computer, or on another iPhone, you can basically grab the characters from the film using your iphone as they appear on screen.

‘Screen hopping’ is a new term for me but I believe it works by using sound recognition in the iphone app to register what’s being played on the ad. In doing so you can effectively present pre-defined elements on your iphone app to give¬† the impression they’ve hopped over from the TV screen. I think even David Blaine would be impressed with that trick!

But to me it feels like the technology is driving the idea here rather than the other way round. Whilst it’s definitely an neat innovative idea I’m not convinced consumers will go to the trouble to download the app as there’s little reward for their efforts apart from the obvious wow factor of experiencing the technology.¬† I’m also struggling to see the connection with the model positioning for the Honda Jazz.¬† That said, this is the first time I’ve seen a brand adopt screen hopping as a way to engage consumers, so it will be interesting to see if other brands will try to emulate this and take it to the next level.

via digitalbuzz

MINI Launch Mobile Geolocation Multiplayer Reality Game

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Rather cool iphone app courtesy of Mini which uses geolocation data as part of the game mechanic.¬† Players have the chance to win a brand spanking new Mini too. ¬† But don’t get too excited unless you live in Stockholm!

Via mobile inc

Using iphone apps as a CRM tool

At TMW we’ve just finished developing a new iPhone app for my client Infiniti Europe called Infiniti in Motion. I’m genuinely excited about this app as it’s quite different to a lot of the branded free apps you see on itunes these days.

The challenges

A popular approach (particularly within the automotive market) is to design an app around an advergame and hope this has sufficient appeal to generate awareness and engagement with your brand or product.¬† For example, Nissan CubeParty,¬† Audi A4 driving game, Mercedes E Coupe memory game, VW New Polo and VW Golf GTi (another driving game) have all adopted this approach in some shape or form. There’s no denying there’s merit in this approach particularly if it reaches the top of the app charts.

But the slight problem I have with this approach is that it tends to appeal to casual gamers rather than perhaps your core target audience.¬† Admittedly, if it gains enough popularity you will reach some of your audience by default but it does seem a fairly scattergun approach.¬† For the VW Golf GTi launch this wasn’t a problem as they identified their target audience over-indexed heavily with online gaming but for most brands this isn’t the case.

The other challenge with these types of branded apps is that they’re rarely used more than once. According to a Pinch Media Survey which analysed 30 million downloads, only 30% of people who buy from Apple’s App Store use the application the day after downloading it. With free applications it’s even worse, with 95% of people using it no more than once.¬† Hardly a decent return on your investment!

Applying CRM principles

This got me thinking.  If we want an app which has a shelf life longer than a day, then we really need to find a way to engage them on an ongoing basis.   It also occured to me that the great thing about mobile apps is that they allow consumers to proactively engage with branded content without any personal data ever needing to change hands.  That puts mobile apps in a unique position as you can essentially acquire handraisers and build prospect relationships over time to complement your database marketing efforts.

So for Infiniti, the strategic rationale behind this particular app was to extend the prospect nurture programme we already have in place so that enthusiasts, prospects and handraisers could keep in touch with the brand via their handsets.  So in the same way one can keep up to date with news and current affairs via the wonderful Guardian app you can do the same with Infiniti in Motion.

Interactive product demonstrations and shopping tools

As well as receiving regular updates the app showcases the entire range, allowing prospects to fully explore each model, from photography, 360¬į spins and colour selections to in-depth¬†films, interviews and listening to the sound of their V6 engines.

Having explored the range, they have the option of requesting a brochure or test drive, or finding their nearest Infiniti Centre using the iPhone‚Äôs GPS technology.¬† All enquiries are fully integrated with Infiniti’s lead management and prospect database.


As I see it, it’s all about giving prospects a choice in the way they wish to interact with the brand. Whereas some prospects may be prepared to hand over their contact details to receive online or offline communications, others may prefer the anonymity and convenience of keeping up-to-date via their iPhone.

If you wish to download it for yourself please do – here is the link on itunes.¬† For the best user experience make sure you have wifi enabled.¬† If you’re aware of other brands which are using mobile apps as a CRM tool to foster closer relationships with prospects or customers, let us know.

Audi A1 Augmented Reality

The automotive industry were one of the first¬†industries¬†to embrace AR within marketing communications¬†so it’s probably not surprising¬†to see Audi now taking full advantage of this technology to promote the A1.

What’s interesting¬†for me, however, is that they’ve integrated AR within their main website so that it will remain a permanent feature for that model. In this example, you can add a panoramic sunroof, open¬†doors and explore the interior or even take it for a¬†virtual spin. Admittedly AR can be a bit gimmicky for some tastes but I like the fact that people have the option to interact with this¬†if they choose to do so, in much the same way that some prospects prefer video content whilst others devour technical specs. ¬† Also, now that it’s a permanent fixture on the site they should be able to include the AR code on other marketing collateral to help drive offline prospects online.

If Audi can demonstrate that AR is well received with some online personas and improves their conversion rates, I wouldn’t be surprised if they roll this out for¬†all future¬†product launches.

If you want to read my other posts on Augmented Reality click here.

A new framework for measuring social media

As part of my role on the IAB Social Media Council, I’ve been working on the formulation of a new framework for measuring social media activity.¬† We firmly believe the industry needs to be much more aligned when it comes to measurement.¬† Not only will a robust methodology help us evaluate our own success but it will also help us when it comes to draw comparative learnings from other players in the industry.

But this isn’t possible unless there’s a lot more standardisation in the way we measure social media activity.¬† Hence this model.

I’ve called it the IAB Framework, not just because of the association with the Internet Advertising Bureau but also because the acronym¬† respresents the 3 stages of the methodology I’m proposing. Quite chuffed with that one actually ūüėČ

  • Intent
  • 4 As – Awareness, Appreciation, Action and Advocacy
  • Benchmark

You can view the rationale behind this framework in the presentation below or alternatively read the post I wrote last week on the IAB Social Media Blog.¬† In fact, I discovered over the weekend that this was the most tweeted presentation on Slideshare, making it onto their home page under the¬† ‘Hot on Twitter’ section. Clearly it must have been when most of the twitterati were asleep!

I’m also pleased to say (and somewhat relieved) the Council is largely in agreement this framework and will be promoting it to the press in a couple of weeks.¬† So let me know if you’ve got any feedback or suggestions as I’d rather hear your feedback now than after it’s in the public domain!

Social media isn’t the answer to everything

I may be an avid proponent of social media but I think we all need a reality check every now and again, just to ensure we don’t get too carried away with ourselves!

Yes, we live in exciting times where a new social ecosystem is having massive implications in the way brands try to engage consumers.¬† But that’s not to mean social media is the Holy Grail.¬† Far from it.¬† Traditional media still plays a pivotal role whether that’s to build brand awareness, brand saliency or brand reappraisal, to generating brand engagement and soliciting a response.¬† Social media marketing is just another versatile tool at our disposal within the proverbial marketing toolbox.¬† (In fact, some might call it a Swiss Army penknife but that’s beside the point!)

Anyhow, this promotional clip is a hilarious reminder that social media won’t solve all our problems and can get up its own arse at times.¬† Fair cop. Although I have to say it’s somewhat ironic that they chose to seed an online video to get their point across;-)

Why limit yourself to a small video player?

Vodpod videos no longer available.

A few weeks ago I posted about this engaging idea where the charity used the whole YouTube canvas to help bring the idea to life. I’ve since discovered a couple of other interesting creative executions which follow similar principles, but this time on the vimeo platform.

The first example is by Tostitos Restaurant Style Salsa which is a beautiful visual feast in its own right but which becomes even more dramatic when you watch it take over the whole vimeo screen. Watch it here if you want to enjoy the full visual experience.

The other example is from the classic ‘Let it Shine’ campaign for the Honda Insight where the whole screen dims to black for your cinematic viewing pleasure!

For me, the reason why all three examples work so well is because they not only surprise and delight but also because they provide a much richer and more immersive brand experience.   But as with all these things, you only have a small window of opportunity before everyone else jumps on the bandwagon.

Actually make that a rather big window!! ūüėČ