Google says brands should 'experiment' with ads as consumers adapt to new normal

Jessica Fenol, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 18 2020 11:21 AM

Screengrab from Nike's You Can't Stop Us campaign launched in July. Nike's Official YouTube Page

MANILA - Brands engaging customers through ads should "experiment" on new strategies as the pandemic limits large-scale production and as consumers adapt to the new normal, Google said Thursday.

Companies should consider using remixes, animation and CGI (computer-generated imagery), new shoots with restrictions in mind, creative reuse of existing videos and editing ads by changing some elements to create new contents, Google creative director for Unstoppable Labs Ben Jones told Philippine media in a virtual press briefing on Thursday. 

"Advertisers are rethinking how to make ads...Brands have an opportunity to experiment in a way that they’ve never done before," Jones said during YouTube's Brandcast Delivered event held online.

"The new world of the pandemic is more intimate and small and advertisers need to understand how to communicate in this space...You should lean on the power of experimentation to help you," he added.

One "creative" way to produce ads in the new normal is clever editing of existing ads to produce "fresh and amazing content" just like what Nike did in its most recent campaign, Jones said.

The ad, showing athletes from different sporting events spliced together in a split screen, has drawn praises worldwide after its release in July.

"That's a lot of hours of editing but it shows creativity... Because of the constraints we’ve never had more permission to explore," Jones said.

Brands are also collaborating and experimenting with celebrities by offering a peek into their "private lives" filmed using smartphones, which appeal to consumers, he said.

Jones said unique messaging can also "add great power to any campaign."

Based on Google's data some 90 percent of effective ads made no reference to the health crisis at all, Jones said. 

"You need to understand your role in the lives of consumers, but you don’t need to make the ads about COVID-19, you need to make it about the role you need to play," he said.

Jones said the diversity in ads could be a "lasting change" even after the pandemic.

Google Philippines said advertisers could use its video streaming platform YouTube as more Filipinos spend more time watching contents online. 

YouTube has at least 40 million adult unique monthly viewers. "Watch time" has also grown by 50 percent year-on-year, Google Philippines said.