Year: 2015

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Johnnie Walker – Dear Brother

This might just be this year’s most powerful storytelling video. Dear Brother is a spec ad for Johnnie Walker that centers on two brothers and their emotional journey in the beautiful wilderness of Scotland. In just 90 seconds, the video stuns with its subtle mood, a familiar yet startling story, and an impressive cinematographic artistry. The masterminds behind the soulful video? Two students, Daniel Titz and Dorian Lebherz, from the Film Academy of Baden-Württemberg in Germany. They may not be the old wolfs in the ad business, but they sure know that emotional storytelling is the ingredient that will get you through the door. It is exciting to witness young and creative individuals perfect just the right storytelling techniques, and setting a high standard for the industry’s veterans. A couple of years ago Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey also attempted to combine beautiful scenery with the theme of loss and death. Although the ad was produced by a professional agency, it hasn’t really managed to become a viral sensation. Dear Brother indulges in an emotional storytelling …

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Vine & Snapchat: Two video marketing platforms you shouldn’t miss!

By 2019 80% of the content we will consume online will be video content. Meanwhile, our usage of the internet is shifting (or has already shifted) from desktop to mobile. These two facts don’t just correlate coincidentally. Mobile phones have become better in processing a lot of data at a time. Their screens have become equal to most of the desktop screens. And data plans have become affordable for everybody. But most importantly, mobile phones are also cameras. While carrying a smartphone with you, you are instantly able to capture your dog, yourself or the beautiful scenery around you. But, as good as a mobile video may be, it is worth nothing if it can’t be seen. Consequently, platforms have arisen that make it possible to share videos with your friends and that attract big communities of viewers. Two of these platforms aggregated enough users to be really interesting for marketing. Of course, it is video marketing we are talking about – as these platforms are video platforms: Vine and Snapchat. Vine – Are six …

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The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists – Fatal Extraction: Australian Mining in Africa

Australian-listed mining companies choose to do their business in Africa for its low social and environmental regulations. Local laws are weak, while penalties for wrongdoing practically don’t exist. However, Australian publicly traded companies are not only linked with corruption, tax avoidance, environmental destruction, but also with serious human rights violations and more than 300 deaths. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) (with support from the Center for Public Integrity and the Pulitzer Center) has collected thousands of corporate documents, including legal complaints, contracts, confidential company emails, community petitions and more to create Fatal Extraction: Australian Mining in Africa, a multimedia storytelling project with horrifying personal stories at its focus. The project is using stunning videos, real audio recordings, maps and traditional text pieces. The format is divided into six greater parts that each expose the detrimental impact of Australian mining companies in 33 African countries. We have witnessed similar social projects (such as the NPR’s A Girl Can Dream) that submerge viewers and readers through strong multimedia content. But Fatal Extraction creates an eye-opening and immersive …

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Extra Gum – The Story of Sarah & Juan

Wise men say, only fools rush in. Or so tells us Elvis Presley’s famous “Can’t Help Falling In Love”, which plays a key role in Extra Gum’s latest brand ad. “The Story of Sarah & Juan” is a love story unwrapping in front of the viewers’ eyes: the first look, the first kiss, first celebrations and fights, and lastly, a much-anticipated and intimate proposal. In the center of this emotional story is Extra chewing gum, redefining the classical ‘Romeo and Juliet’ theme to today’s romance among millennials. Released only a couple of weeks ago, the video generated 74 million views in its first week alone. So how is it different from all the other romantic brand videos? Actually, Extra executes a rather simple style of storytelling. But what really catches our attention is the heartwarming love song and the lack of dialogue, proving that sound is pivotal for emotional stories in video content marketing. The video also advocates diversity (hence, the male protagonist is not John but Juan), and scores big in the category of …

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Discworld: The Ankh-Morpork Map app

A digital storytelling app pays tribute to the true art of storytelling. This app was recommended to me by a colleague who is an ultimate Terry Pratchett fan. Her eyes lit up, and she couldn’t wait to give me ‘an inside tour’. I was persuaded by her enthusiasm and thus gave it a shot. For those of you not yet familiar with Sir Terence David John “Terry” Pratchett’s work, he was a popular fantasy novel author who is best known for his Discworld series (over 40 novels) that have captivated millions around the world. The app was developed by Agant and publisher Transworld. Although it came out in 2013, it will most likely again be picked up by fans as the final (yes, the last) Discworld book just hit the bookstores. Discworld: The Ankh-Morpork Map app is a recreation of Pratchett’s famous city, only in a digital form. What strikes me first are the ravishingly detailed interactive hand-drawn maps of Ankh-Morpork and the major characters, such as Fred Colon, as well as the little animated citizens that swarm through …

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How To Master Marketing With Company Apps. A Checklist Loaded With Inspiring Examples.

Even though smartphones and tablets are no news to the world, digital transformation is still a buzzword and mostly one of the biggest challenges for companies. While most companies continually relaunch their websites a few times, they do not take up the challenge to use apps as a new marketing channel. As a marketing manager who works for an IT service provider, I encounter hundreds of app ideas on a daily basis. But when I look at Apple App Store or Google Play to check out how companies use apps to promote their brands and products, I am astounded by how few apps are available and that just a handful of brands manage to create a great user experience. The key ingredients for a great marketing app The basics alone could fill an entire book. I’m sure you also hear about it every other day. So you know that you need SMART goals for your marketing campaign, as well as a target group and a content plan. All the basic marketing concepts apply to mobile …

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IKEA – 2016 Catalog App

The leading Swedish home furniture retailer IKEA has just dropped its long-awaited 2016 catalog. It’s more than 300 pages long, it’s heavy and, as always, it’s full of great and affordable furnishing ideas. But it’s the IKEA 2016 catalog app that we’re more excited about. The very first thing that strikes the eye when you open the new catalog in the IKEA app is the superb high-quality appearance. The pictures look sharper than on paper, and that’s an achievement. When customers opt out for the digital version of a well-known product, they expect the same or even greater quality of pictures. After all, it is the first attribute that leaves the strongest impression. IKEA’s quality is great, so we swipe the page. And this is where the app outshines all the previous IKEA apps – it’s a true celebration of clickable interactive content and emotional storytelling. The app is equipped with six orange buttons that each uncover a different and innovative way to explore IKEA’s newest products. IKEA fans will not be surprised to discover the virtual …

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NPR – A Girl Can Dream

NPR’s staggering drive for a good story is applauding. Apart from producing daily news and cultural programming, NPR has been submerging into the deep waters of storytelling, appropriately celebrating unique and powerful content and individual lives. Its highly successful StoryCorps podcast focuses on giving everyone a chance to share his or her story. The presented stories are often very moving, which at the end of the broadcast transcend our culture’s bewildered sense of humanity. A Girl Can Dream is a poignant and interactive story on children’s education in Afghanistan. It is unusual for girls to even go to school, but those who do dream big and do not shy away from their opinions. Reporter Rebecca Hersher and photographer David Gilkey visit Tanweer School, founded by a former used car salesman in a neighbourhood, which did not have a public school. The story starts off with an honest and heart-warming video of Afghan teens bravely opening up about their ambitions and dreams. It proceeds to a photostory, laying out startling facts and accounts, portraying ambitious young faces. …

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Huffington Post – The Myth of the Ethical Shopper

Ethical shopping has been a widely discussed topic lately – most of us could easily name these “bad” brands that employ children in sweatshops. We engage in various social actions against it, protests, boycotts, campaigns, etc. However, what we have not thought about much is the fact that simple solutions won’t arise just by boycotting sweatshops. Huffington Post’s Highline presents a longform feature The Myth of the Ethical Shopper about the unethical games fashion brands play and the no-rules approaches they use. This immersive read is accompanied with moving illustrations, which also contribute to the intensity of the topic. You won’t find interactivity here, but the content should be an eye-opener.