The Power Of Now: MEC @DubaiLynx: Day 2


Let me start off with a corrigendum on yesterday’s blog. The song ‘The Times they are a changin’ most obviously belongs to Bob Dylan and not to the fictitious gentleman it was attributed to. Apologies for the error which can only be attributed a draining day at the festival. I’ve had Dylanphiles up in arms and with good reason.

Bob Dylan was very much part of pop culture when I was growing up and this links me back to yesterday’s session. The words of Shingy, ‘Your content competes with popular culture’ kept ringing in my ears. The sessions today reinforced that thought. Google’s Vikram Tank showed us the wonderful example of the collaborative work they did with Lionsgate for ‘The Hunger Games’ which remains in the realm of pop culture. Two other speakers, Sandrine de Raspide from Sanrio and the boys from Film and Comic Con showed us how brands can leverage pop culture, icons and mnemonics.

I would like to particularly talk about the Google session. The collaborative work of Google with Lionsgate in using YouTube creators to bring the film to life for fans and give them a look at fictional world of Panem’s districts was really inspiring. Tank talks about three imperatives to a successful content driven campaign – (1) Capture Enthusiasm, (2) Celebrate Individuality and (3) Scale it everywhere and showed how this was done with ‘District Voices’ for Hunger Games.

This really echoes Shingy’s assertions yesterday when he said that successful brands create content around ‘breaking news’ and that you need to use your audience who is a creator, critic and curator.

A theme begins to emerge on what it takes to create successful content, and that is clearly about changing the mindset and thinking to ‘Content Now’. Marketing Communications practitioners have to constantly look to deliver content that is relevant at a particular moment in time. This calls for a change of culture, organizational structures, technology, measurement frameworks and operating models to make real time marketing and communications decisions. This requires a collaborative effort between insight miners, trend spotters, producers, data analysts and channel planners.

Data will obviously be the key to making real-time decisions and the session from Serviceplan demonstrated how Value of Data along with 5 other V’s – Volume, Velocity, Variety and veracity plays a key role. How well data can be used was very eloquently put by Haroon Syed of Annalect which I thought was one of the more enjoyable sessions of today as he moved away from jargons to make a complex topic rather easy to comprehend.

The #lookup campaign from British Airways, a Cannes Lions Grand Prix winner was really inspiring on how Big Data can be used for an engaging creative.

On the whole, however, I was disappointed with lack of emphasis on two topics which I was hoping will be covered in the festival – Data and Consumer purchase pathway. The fact that the Festival was more a celebration of creativity perhaps pushed back the emphasis on these two key pillars.

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