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Live at SXSW – Weekend Recap

The DGC team hit the ground running on Saturday morning at SXSWi with a quick stop at and an 11 a.m. deep-dive into how data will build high-performing humans. The panel featured New York Giants star wide receiver Victor Cruz and Equinox President Sarah Robb O’Hagan, joined by Michael Gervais and Mashable’s Haile Owens. We were fascinated with the panel’s discussion on how data can make even the highest achieving athletes more powerful on and off the field. One nugget we took away from the session was data and tools are great, but don’t forget about your body’s biggest source of information: your brain.

cruz After a quick selfie with the man of the hour, our team dispersed to other sessions before gathering to prep for DGC’s first-ever #SXSWi happy hour. The team set up shop at the JW Marriott to entertain clients and friends of DGC over margaritas, chips and guacamole, and the best darn jalapeño cornbread Austin has to offer.

 

sxsw

Day three saw us checking out some of the week’s best brand activations and experiences. We swung by Samsung’s Studio Experience, where our colleague, Sara Ajemian, made a DGC t-shirt in its design studio. While the A&E network offered up nightly stays at a faux Bates Motel to promote its series of the same name, neighboring station National Geographic took it to the extreme with a challenge to promote its new season of “Life Below Zero.” We dared to see if we had what it takes to Escape the Cold, as the promo was called, encouraged players to find clues to get out of the room in twenty minutes working with teams of 6. It was tough going – we didn’t find the key. Brands should take note for 2016 as this was an incredible way to bridge the gap between brand experience and user interaction. It tied to “life below zero” which is a show about people living in isolation in Alaska

escapethecold

Other panels we checked out:

– Argonaut, an agency that’s part of Project Worldwide, had two executives on a panel: Robbie Whiting, Creative Technologist, and Garrick Schmitt, digital advisor,  who spoke to a packed house about “Malevolent Marketing.” Recap the conversation on Twitter with #letsbeevil.

– Deep Focus CMO Jamie Gutfreund cracked the code on Millennials at the Pandora Lounge, encouraging marketers to be smart about their consumer and audience. She was later joined on stage by Nana Menya, AVP of Investment Strategy of GE, whose talk on the mindset of music was equally intriguing.

– DDB’s Global Business Director Marina Zuber discussed art, tigers and an #EndangeredSong with the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and on-the-rise band Portugal the Man.

Stay tuned for more!

Think Nothing Big Happened at the Super Bowl? Think Again.

Sunday night proved to be a bit of a bore with the Seahawks dominating the entirety of the game. So what kept us watching at DGC? The marketing showdown of course! Here are a few trends that emerged from the biggest night in advertising:

  • Nostalgia trumped glitz: A lot of brands like Anheuser-Busch, Chevrolet and Maserati took the sentimental route, opting for feel-good over splashy spots. For example, Microsoft inspired us with a :60 spot narrated by Steve Gleason, a former NFL player with ALS, through the use of eye tracking technology on a tablet. Steve speaks about how technology has the power to “take us places we’ve only dreamed of” as we see images of technology helping a woman hear for the first time, a child run with prosthetic legs and an elderly man losing his eyesight paint.
  • Brands ambush the Super Bowl: Brands that didn’t have TV spots during the big game got creative in how to reach large audiences. Newcastle was a winner, enlisting Anna Kendrick to star in its video “Behind the Scenes of the Mega Huge Football Game Ad Newcastle Brown Ale Almost Made.” While on the other end of the spectrum, jcpenney was sending out tweets filled with typos, calling it a stunt to promote its “Go USA” mittens. Other brands certainly had fun in the social conversation – Coors Light chimed in to suggest the department store drink responsibly and Kia offered a designated driver.
  • Light humor reigned: There was far less over the top, slapstick humor during this year’s big game. Outside of the expected Go Daddy ad, brands and advertisers went with lighter humor. Take Volkswagen’s “Wings” spot created by Project: Worldwide agency ARGONAUT where every 100,000 miles, a German engineer received a pair of wings. And in TurboTax’s “Love Hurts,” the brand compared watching the game between two teams that aren’t your own to watching your crush dance the night away at prom with a cool dude that isn’t you. And, on another nostalgic note, DGC client David&Goliath brought us back to The Matrix in its newest spot for Kia.
  • Double spots: Brands like Pistachio and Chevy doubled up on spots during the game. For instance, we got to see Stephen Colbert try to rely on his fame alone to carry the pistachio commercial but unfortunately fell short. In the second spot, the branding is amplified to the point where Colbert cracks his head open to reveal a pistachio inside.

And it didn’t stop there. Denver-based DGC client and Project: Worldwide agency Motive, along with Mekanism, created the Super Bowl Halftime Show for Pepsi. And DGC client Pandora hosted a “Pandora Presents” Event at the Bud Light Hotel in NYC on January 31. The show was headlined by Imagine Dragons, who just came off its well-received Grammy performance and Grammy award win the previous weekend.

We hope you enjoyed game day as much as we did. What was your favorite part?

Successful Women Share “Perspectives” on Work-Life Balance with Katie Kempner

Katie Kempner was on set at this year’s Advertising Week event, filming episodes for her show, “Perspectives with Katie Kempner.” The interviews were also streamed live through a partnership with Huffington Post LIVE to help deliver insights from many highly successful women to those that couldn’t attend this year’s Advertising Week in person.

The interviews are designed to inspire and empower women in their quest to live happy, healthy and meaningful lives, both personally and professionally through their career. Katie’s interviewees share their personal (and sometimes hilarious) stories of work-life balance and how to embrace all of the twists and turns that a career in advertising and marketing can present, from how to create your own version of modern-day balance, the challenges that come with trying to be “always on” and why a fabulous pair of shoes can help you more than you think.

Check out these “Perspectives” interviews from Advertising Week to hear more insights from these successful business women:

Amanda_Morgan_McAllister

Amanda Morgan McAllister, Head of U.S. Marketing for Microsoft Advertising

Heidi_Browning

Heidi Browning, SVP, Strategic Solutions at Pandora

Sharon Napier

Sharon Napier, CEO Partners + Napier, a Project:WorldWide Agency

Nancy Reyes

Nancy Reyes, Managing Director of Goodby Silverstein & Partners NY

DGC Live at Advertising Week: Building The Sound of Your Brand

Music has become infused into plenty of marketers’ strategies – from using songs in ad campaigns, partnering with artists for tours, and creating live events with an artist in mind. Finding a pitch perfect song or artist for your brand is part art, part science – and all about authenticity.

Pandora SVP Strategic Solutions Heidi Browning moderates “Building the Sounds of Your Brand”

Pandora SVP Strategic Solutions Heidi Browning moderates “Building the Sounds of Your Brand”

That was the focus of the panel hosted by Pandora Radio titled “Building The Sound of Your Brand,” moderated by Pandora’s Heidi Browning.  Panelists included Aaron Fetters from Kellogg, Ryan Gavin from Microsoft, Colin Jeffery from David&Goliath, and Jeannette Perez from Sony Music Entertainment.

“Music is a huge part of what we do on the creative side,” said Colin Jeffery, Executive Creative Director at David&Goliath. “When we launched the Kia Soul campaign six years ago, we had an odd brief on a semi-odd car. So we created the ad, and played it with different music, to help see what felt right. Our spot with the Hamsters has been one of the top 5 commercials viewed on YouTube.”

Ryan Gavin had a different approach to incorporating music into ads. “What we did with our Internet Explorer commercial was to find the right song, then carve the ad from there. We just played it on repeat and created a great spot. When you have people searching ‘Internet Explorer Commercial Song,’ you’ve done your job right for both the artist and the brand.”

As data continues to be one of the top trends to predict success and influence, Heidi Browning, SVP Strategic Solutions at Pandora noted the success of a song in an advertisement. “After the Internet Explorer ad with Alex Clare, Alex saw a 6000% increase in new radio stations. LMFAO saw a similar increase and only continued to climb in following their ad with the Kia Hamsters.”

For Kellogg’s, they’ve partnered with several companies, including Pandora and Live Nation, to create custom radio stations and events on behalf of their Pop Tarts Brand. “Pop Tarts is meant to be a fun, ‘crazy good’ brand,” said Aaron Fetters, Director of Insights and Analytics Solutions Center at Kellogg Company. “We created a right music that fit the brand, and we were able to meet all of our key metrics of success and reach our target audience in a fun, unique way.”

One of the keys to success is remembering the human element to working with bands. “We are dealing with human beings,” said Jeannette Perez, VP, Music for Brands, Advertising & Licensing, Sony Music Entertainment. “We have to fulfill the client’s needs, but we also need to respect our artists. It needs to be an authentic partnership.” The entire panel was in agreement.

At the close of the panel, the panelists all agreed that music is a universally appealing medium to connect with consumers, but stressed the importance that the brand, artist, and song must all be in alignment for the partnership to truly work and be considered a success for everyone – especially consumers.

Insights From TargetCast’s 2011 Advertising Week Panel “Phoenix Rising”

In this video interview with DGC, Steve Farella, co-founder and President, TargetCast tcm, discusses how technology is changing foundational media following TargetCast’s 2011 Advertising Week Panel “Phoenix Rising.”  In this annual  event, TargetCast execs talk to media insiders from companies like the NY Times, Hulu, and Emmis about how advertisers are using new technology to reach consumers.

Steve, whose panel focused on radio, shared the following takeaways: broadcast radio is healthy —  the revenue is there and people are listening —  and digital platforms like Pandora and iheartradio continue to enhance radio as an effective medium for advertisers.

A theme running through TargetCast’s three discussions on print, radio and video is that technology is increasing audiences overall — but the verdict is still out on how to marry scale and and targetability for some emerging technologies.

Audrey Siegel, co-founder and President of TargetCast tcm, also shared key insights from her discussion on the impact of technology on print media at “Phoenix Rising.”

Her key takeaways: content drives consumption and technology facilitates it, and there is good reason to be optimistic about the print business. Though the industry has faced challenges driven by advertising usage, readership is consistently strong, and tablet technology will only enhance that.

IPOs on the Rise – Social Media, Digital Driving Trend

With the success of recent IPOs like LinkedIn and Pandora, everyone is buzzing about the prospect of social media companies going public. The trend of social media IPOs is a sign of the times and the importance of online networking to consumers and businesses at large.

In PBS’ Nightly Business Report this week, Founder of Palazzo Advisory | Acquisition — Phillip Palazzo Jr. — weighed in on the hot topic and why companies like Facebook and Yelp are so intriguing to the financial world:

Vodpod videos no longer available.
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