Brands must reflect a strong vision, exhibit their values and have a distinct personality, writes Alan Siegel, who offers 10 tips for marketers such as the authentic communication of a brand's conscience and being nimble enough to respond immediately to criticism. Ultimately, "all organizations with a distinctive voice have a visionary leader who is unwilling to compromise the brand's core values," he writes.
Instagram has unveiled its long-form video app and hub, IGTV, which lets creators post videos up to 60 minutes long in vertical, full-screen view. The move challenges both YouTube and Snapchat, writes Sahil Patel, and if the company gets the revenue model right, with the platform's "1 billion monthly users now, Instagram and IGTV will be hard to ignore," Patel writes.
The California Academy of Sciences has created five Snapchat lenses that showcase the institution's planetarium show, "Expedition Reef." "After some experimentation, we quickly found that the joy of holding a virtual nudibranch in the palm of your hand, or seeing a green sea turtle swim around you, made these lenses irresistibly fun to use," said animator Ken Ackerman.
Facebook Messenger has added video ads in users' inboxes, which, when scrolled over, play automatically. The app's 1.3 billion monthly active users aren't allowed to opt out of the ads being served to them, but users can hide the ads via an icon.
Advertisers will be able to experiment with and test their ads on YouTube using a new AdWords tool from Google. The Video Experiments tool will allow real-time trials and offer results in as little as three days, while another tool will facilitate audience segmentation and measure retention.
Ad-blocking, blockchain-enabled browser Brave is trialing an ad format that rewards consumers for viewing them, with Dow Jones Media Group signed on as a testing partner. The trial employs the company's micropayments offer, Basic Attention Token, and "[w]hen the Brave ad system becomes widely available, users will receive 70% of the gross ad revenue, while preserving their privacy," Brave said in a statement.
Oracle is adding voice interfaces to all its apps and bringing all its software-, platform- and infrastructure-as-a-services under one data center umbrella. "This consolidation of all three categories of cloud services ... into a single standard data center, allows us to share assets while giving significant economies of scale," Chief Technical Officer Larry Ellison said in a Q4 earnings call.
Facebook is trialing subscription-based Groups, where users pay between $4.99 and $29.99 each month to access exclusive content from those administrating the accounts. Select Groups involved in the testing include Cooking On A Budget: Recipes & Meal Planning and Sarah Mueller's Declutter My Home Group.
LG's "Nano Cell Super Challenge" and "Innovation Story" remain in the top two places on Acuity's viral video chart with a combined tally of more than 50 million views. Apple's "Unlock" rounds out the top three with just over 18 million views.
A new automatic content recognition feature in Viant's TV platform delivers relevant marketing to mobile devices based on what the user is watching on TV. ACR, which draws on data from third-party software, is already incorporated into TV sets from two major manufacturers.