In a seminar titled ‘Reporting Live from the Future’ held yesterday in Hong Kong, Ipsos presented a report on trends that will impact tomorrow’s advertisers.
During the seminar, Ipsos warned against brands focusing on low prices for business success. “It’s hard to beat private label and low-cost price brands and ongoing promotions train consumers to only buy at discounted prices,” said the research firm.
Brands instead need to leverage innovation, and create marketing properties such as icons, spokes people and sponsorships to sell the emotional experience of the brand. “With many similar products in any given category, the role of emotions and human values are becoming more important for brand management,” said Ipsos.
As P&G’s Marc Pritchard pointed out at Cannes, the FMCG giant is built on ‘non-passion’ commoditised products, and getting customers to choose them over and over takes “noticeably better products and fresh creative communication.”
Just as brand marketing must strive to make a greater impact, so must traditional advertising as technologies that allow consumers to skip or fast-forward through TV ads and prevent spam and pop ups reduce the advertiser’s chances to ‘interrupt’ their target audience.
According to Ipsos, communication will evolve toward a greater focus on social-network opportunities, online TV advertising and mobile targeting. Already in 2009, the share of ‘interrupt-driven’ advertising online had dropped to a third with the rest going towards consumer-driven approaches including search and video.
A major differentiator that will allow advertisers to draw consumers to them, rather than building a better pop-up blocker defeater, is creativity. “There is a growing pressure to find THE creative big idea,” said Ipsos. “We’ve observed in our ASI (advertising research) databases that ‘creative’ explains 75 per cent of the variance in campaign success.”
As the impact (ROI) of great creative is several times better than ‘average’ creative, advertisers should do everything in their power to create and leverage great creative content, said the research firm. “The opportunity cost is equal to (if not more than) the cost of the whole media budget.”
Some best practices identified by Ipsos include evolving the process with the right incentives to reward the desired outcome, and not risking those ideas being offered to another brand. “Find the ‘big idea’ early, pre-test many ideas early, this approach has proven to produce better quality adverts, faster and cheaper,” it said.
Furthermore, marketers may be best served to plan their creative content and media plans together as one exercise, recommended Ipsos. This will allow holistic planning across all touchpoints, which may reduce gross rating points but will allow advertisers to focus more on reach and consider real-time changes to creative.