Digital Journeys II: Plan for the Moment

Blog | 16 Jul, 2014

Twitter is a real-time platform that captures what people think as it's happening. Bruce Daisley, Director at Twitter, focuses on how advertisers can use this for their advantage.

Morning everyone. So what we're going to do this morning is just give you a perspective on how we're seeing people using social platforms, just the applications for them, and just the consequences about that, so how marketers are taking advantage of those things. So I'm going to talk for about 20 minutes giving you a perspective.

I guess one of the things really that happens with a platform like Twitter is that it's a place, 400 million tweets every day; it's a place where people share their opinions. And what we're increasingly finding is that sharing of opinions is a very potent place to take advantage of that expressed intent and turn that really into a marketing opportunity for brands.

So I'm going to really give some rules about real time marketing. I thought I'd just start off reminding you how people use the platform. I think one of the things that we're really strongly aware of is that when things happen in the real world they happen on Twitter, so we often see a reflection of what people are talking about. You might have seen, last Saturday, not this Saturday but the Saturday before ITV showed a remarkable show. Did anyone see this? This was an audience with Les Dawson; kind of an extraordinary revival of Les Dawson. The idea, the way they billed it was a hologram of Les Dawson comes back and does an audience. It basically looked like a bad early version of Grand Theft Auto Les Dawson, so vaguely shambling through some gags. But here's a tweet. Seems to me that if you can have An Audience with Les Dawson; there's no reason why you can't have the trial of Jimmy Saville.' It's just an interesting perspective of how people like sharing, like discussing what they see on the TV. And we see that all the time.

So what we see, Twitter really effectively is a series of captions and links. Probably my favourite tweeter over the last six months has been this guy, and fortunately now he's back down to earth, but Chris Hadfield was the Canadian astronaut on the International Space Station who tweeted thousands of photographs of him circling the Earth. But I think he claims to have taken 50,000 photographs in five months on the International Space Station. And he tweeted, one of the many things he tweeted, really an illustration of how a platform like Twitter very strongly works and supports other platforms. He tweeted out a YouTube clip that you might have seen; I don't know if anyone saw this. I'll show you 30 seconds of this; it's just a beautiful YouTube clip of capturing his journey during those six months.

I think that day it was the most watched clip on YouTube, and here's just an example of how breaking stories break down into little atoms; you get amazing connections. Here's a tweet from David Bowie, to him saying 'Hello Spaceboy...', and just linking to it.

We saw for that about a quarter of a million tweets in the first couple of hours. So just an illustration really, that when you break content down to these tiny little fragments there's the ability for people to pass them on and to share them really quickly.

Let me show you an illustration of how that works. So this next clip really just shows you how quickly that explosion of interest can take place. So another reference to ITV, but this is a clip from Ant and Dec, It's about six weeks old. It just shows you that when something happens on TV, the way we connect the second screen in our hands is often a good place to capture some of the sparks that are generated by that. So what I'm going to show you here is a clip of Ant and Dec on Saturday night takeaway. I've overlaid tweets from viewers.

There you go. So again, another reflection of when things happen on the real world, social media catches the sparks from it. So I guess that's the opportunity that presents itself for marketers. When we see big waves like that sweep across, there's an opportunity for brands to take advantage of them and to get involved.

So I guess some numbers to give it context, we have 10 million users in the U.K. Probably the thing really to understand about a platform like Twitter is that 80% of those users in the U.K. also access Twitter on their phone. So it's principally a mobile platform, a growth, very strongly links to the growth of the smartphones. And consequently people tend to use a platform like Twitter as the world in their pocket. So one thing to observe is 40% of people on Twitter never tweet, they just read the news. It's something we often chat to CEOs and senior people who maybe aren't the most natural users of the platform. We say actually the way that our founder, Jack Dougherty, describes Twitter; he says it's personalized news feed.

So back to Matt's analogies about how the future has brought itself to bear. I guess this is just the way for the news to reach you, and for your own personalised news feed in your pocket.

So here's how we describe it; as a result Twitter really isn't a social network in the purest sense. It's more interest in the network. Anyone in the room who uses this platform probably follows musicians. Half of all people on Twitter follow musicians, or follow their local football team, or follow the restaurants near and dear to them. So consequently, it tends to replace your connection with the things that interest you rather than the people that you know the most.

So here's what I'm going to do; I'm going to talk about the opportunities this interest network presents for real time marketing. The reason why this is so particularly potent is that what we see time and time again is that there's a sweet spot for marketing; there's an opportunity for marketers to reach people, and to amplify the effectiveness of their message by getting the message at the right time.

So I'll show you another illustration really here of real time impact. This is from the budget.

Rt. Hon. Ed Miliband: Mr. Deputy Speaker, the Chancellor joined Twitter. He could have got it all into a 140 characters, Growth [sounds like 6:57] down, borrowing up, families hit, and millionaires laughing all the way to the bank. Hash tag downgraded chancellor. Mr. Deputy Speaker, more of the same is not the answer to the problems of the last three years.

Bruce: Those real time moments have a massive impact. So let me start showing you some examples, an event like the Grand National. The Grand National by no means the biggest sporting event in the U.K., but it had 350,000 tweets during the Grand National. And firstly, one thing that we often remind people is that a lack of tweets isn't necessarily a lack of attention. We often talk about patterns that TV shows create, and one of the patterns that we often observe is that drama, tension is often accompanied by a very low volume of tweets. What we tend to see with drama, for example, is that drama is book ended; people before A Game of Thrones, they tweet after A Game of Thrones. They tend not to tweet while they're watching it.

See if you can see the impact of that; let me show you the closing stages of Grand National. So, big volume of tweets, massive number of people tweeting, but you can see here that actually the attention is focused on the first screen until the moment of conclusion.

Bruce: There you go. It's not say people aren't concentrating because of the volume of tweets; quite the inverse. So here's how brands could take advantage of that. So here's Kenco.'Did your horse not come good in the Grand National? Sounds like Timeforamilicano. Re-tweet for few tins. It got 500 re-tweets. So just by placing themselves in the moment they take advantage of that. We see loads of tweets from users as well. There's one from the Queen.

So what we tend to see is that when you place a message at a sweet spot of time the impact is enhanced. So let's look through; I've got five rules to take advantage of these things.

Firstly, plan for every day marketing moments. So, an illustration here; this is a campaign that Iron Man, the Iron Man franchise took advantage of recently. One thing they used is one of our new tools; one of the new tools that we've created, until now the only way to target ads on Twitter used to be based on people's interests and preferences. So it might be you say, 'I want to reach Financial Times readers; I want to reach people who are interested in fishing.' We chose those interest segments as a way to do it. Now we've just added the ability, almost like AdWords, to pick search, to pick keywords. And so, what you can do in that instance, and what Iron Man did here is that they achieved a ten times the increase in the effectiveness of that campaign by looking for people who were tweeting about other superhero franchises. They were looking for people who were tweeting about Wolverine, about the Avengers, about the first Iron Man, and they dropped this tweet in their timeline as a result of that. So, self selecting, effectively reaching people who are interested. There was a tenfold increase, ten times increase in the impact of that.

Another illustration of that, this is just something for Morrison's. Morrison's is the sponsor of Britain's Got Talent, and so consequently each week anyone who's tweeting using the hash tag BGT, there were 800,000 tweets using Britain's Got Talent this weekend. Anyone who tweeted on that would get a message back in their timeline. A massive opportunity wasted though, isn't it? Britain's Got Talent were tweeting all the way through. I said to them when they contacted me on Saturday night, they should have mentioned they sell eggs cheaper than anyone else. Anyone who watched the show, eggs featured quite prominently. Eggs were trending worldwide. Massive wasted opportunity for a real time interaction.

The second one, create a winning content calendar. What we tend to find is that the ability to build a campaign with spikes to it, with particular peaks on it is a massive advantage. And that might be focusing on big obvious times like back to school, or the Easter, Mother's Day. Here's a campaign that Doritos did, and they ran this around bank holidays.

So the interesting thing for us is that Doritos have been pretty generous in saying, the only media they use for their most recent burst across the bank holidays were TV and Twitter. And they created a series of Vine adds. They said the reach they achieved on Twitter was comparable to what they did on TV. Because they created little tiny fragments of content that were very sharable. So here's one thing they did; they used, as Matt mentioned, one of our six-second videos. This is Vine, and they created a series of name that tune clips. See if you can get this one. There you go. That's Bjork. And they said they created those clips; effectively people passed around and shared.

Another example is how French Connection have used Vine. They've used it; the fashion industry is really taken to Vine.

If you can imagine it, it takes the most popular content on social networks, so Facebook and Twitter, the most popular content is photographs.

If you're only going to do one thing in the social environment photographs should be it. What it does is it takes that and just adds a degree of life to it. So here's the one that French Connection did; they just showcased their range of new clothes with a simple Vine. Very simple, very quick, quite quirky; just a great way to showcase the colours and the range of clothes that they're showing for the season.

The next one; is planning for the best scenarios. So we all want to plan and prepare, take advantage of the things that go well for us. Here's the way that Burberry do it; Burberry are formidable on all social media. And what they aim to do here is reward people who interact with their activity. So when they do the tweet walk, and they do activity that runs across pretty much all social media, anyone who interacts with them, anyone who tweets about them, the last time around they sent these tweets. They sent what appears to be a hand inscribed message to them. So it's got this woman's Twitter handle inscribed there, and they sent that out to everyone who tweeted about them. So the great reward effectively you've got a lot of people who are being brand ambassadors for you, and you give something that appears to be just beautifully created, just a great way to reward them for their best moment.

Here's another example of that. So here's what we've recently created. It's called Twitter Amplify. It effectively tries to turn people who are watching forms of content into advocates for that content. So this chap here tweeted something I find about as intelligible as a barcode, but it's something to do with basketball. 'That FGCU alley-oop was just ridiculous.' But here's what he gets on his stream as a result. He gets a tweet back. An amazing alley-oop. He gets that back and it's an immediately he gets the opportunity to re-tweet that.

In fact we've just set something up now so certain tweets you get you can set your pocket to buzz when they arrive. So he can set himself to follow that March Madness Twitter handle. Every time there's a replay he can see that in his pocket. So a great way to either send it to him when he's mentioned it, or actually just allow him to get all the best content. And this is something we've been working on with TV networks. We approached about five or six TV networks in the U.S. We went live with 22, so it's something that we're hoping to bring to the U.K. pretty soon. It's just a great way to turn those real time moments effectively into opportunities for advertisers. So all of these have been running with sponsor credits on them.

Now I'm going to mention how to plan for the worst. What tends to happen in social media and bad situations is people really only plan for the worst when they're staring down the barrel of something going wrong, and what you tend to find is that the brands who prepare in advance are the ones who can exploit the moment. Here's one example; some of you may have seen this Channel 4 program earlier this year, Dogging Tails.

I had the misfortune of having to explain to a group of Italians what Dogging was. These are people who nurse a drink for five hours. The idea of intersection of British culture and Italian culture is pretty hard. The way I described it was, it's like the way that British people seize the day in National Parks with other people's wives. I don't know if that's accurate. But one of the things that happens during Dogging Tails is a massive volume of tweets. It was massive volume of conversation tweet by someone from The Wanted there. Other things that happened in the show, so firstly I should say that everyone in the show wore these animal masks, to try and preserve some sense of anonymity. But one of the things that happened in the show was that a well known brand got a pretty prominent mention, and I guess every marketing director of SFCG products wants a good pack shot at the end of their ad. Well, they got one. They got a very good pack shot.

Let's take you to Les's home, somewhere in Northern England where Les and his wife are preparing for a night out Dogging.

Les: ... black one Can't beat it. Brilliant.

Bruce: So firstly, here's a tweet Alan Carr Lynx spends millions in advertising, and this happens.

There were very good actually. During the show they tweeted out, we've always told you the incredible effective links. But probably the tweet that they sent the following morning trumped that.

Crisis meeting all morning thanks to Les in Dogging Tales last night... we concluded there is no crisis.

Firstly, it's exactly what anyone who's connected with the Lynx advertising would expect them to do. So you know, albeit that this comesfrom Unilever, they actually responded in a human tone, and effectively turned something which was actually injurious to their reputation into a very strong thing in their favour. It's also good, the power of the Internet to come up with things is incredibly strong. They go, there's a  dogging edition of Lynx that someone created.

A final one, is a reminder that speech can be a key differentiator. We worked with a comedian who's fantastic on Twitter, a guy called David Schneider. He presented at an event for us a couple of weeks ago. He said, 'The secret with a gag on Twitter is knowing that sometimes you can dispatch the joke before everyone's ready for it.' So as soon as you think of it, it might be that no one else has noticed this new story. And he said 'The secret is finding exactly the right moment to release the gag, knowing that you can ride the wave.' He said, 'The impact when you ride the wave is so substantial there's a buzz to it'. And I think that's definitely true for marketing as well. There are big opportunities to take advantage of topicality, to make yourself seem incredibly relevant.

So here's an example here. When we saw Sir Alex Ferguson retire about three weeks ago, we saw 1.4 million tweets in an hour; a vast volume of discussion around that. Way bigger than some of the other big news stories of this year. And in fact, Manchester United chose Twitter as the place that they announced that. So I guess previously they might have released it to the press; here they decided to cut out the middle man and they tweeted it out on Twitter.

And so, consequently massive news story trended; not only was Sir Alex Ferguson trending and thank you Sir Alex trending, Fergie was trending. There was a vast number of trending topics; none of those took advantage of that. In the honour of Sir Alex Ferguson, we are proud to introduce NandosFergieTime - all of our Manchester Nando's will be open five minutes later tonight.

17,000 re-tweets there means that that will reach an audience of 5, 6, 7 million people. It will extend right across the platform. But I think, you know, just an illustration of some brands are ready to exploit those things, they also converted their website so their website also had Nando's Fergie time on it. Just those little Easter Eggs of reward that really allow the brand to project its personality.

I was also particularly pleased, the highlight of any good thinking person's week is clearly listening to the charts and so then I really came to see that having seen Fergie trended all week that the youths of the United Kingdom took to the charts and Black Eyed Peas' greatest song, 'Where is the Love' re-charted at number 40 that week, which I thought was a nice coincidence.

So I guess broadly I've given you five rules that we see here. What we really see is that marketing and the opportunity to exploit moments have a real strong synergy. The ability to give your campaigns a lift by picking the right moment for them is incredibly strong. So that might be if you wanted to retail something related to mobile phones, all the discussion about the new Apple operating system this week means there's a lot of tweets related to that. People slagging off Apple, people saluting Apple, gives big opportunities to market to those people.

Or a big discussion this week of an Xbox Playstation. They present opportunities for brands to take advantage of those discussions. Use that intent to drop messages to people related to that. Every tweet creates a moment. Every campaign has moments to it. What you've seen, I think, I illustrated about three or four TV shows, every TV show has moments to them where brands can really take advantage of the discussion taking place, and see if they can place themselves in that discussion. And every event creates a moment.

As I mentioned before when things happen in the real world they tend to happen on Twitter as well. So what we've really strongly advised is that the brands who exploit this the best are the brands who plan in advance to market in the moment.

Thank you very much.

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