How To Make Six Seconds Pay: The Big Impact Of The Small Video

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Eleanor Kahn – October 4, 2018 – Campaign — From the ‘big whack’ to the ‘nail tap’, via Hawaii and Japanese computer games – the discussion on how to make short-form video work and why it’s become a central part of many media strategies is vibrant and varied. We all need to pay attention. 

And this is why Campaign and Xaxis invited brands and agencies to a Marketing Masterclass about short-form video advertising with a panel of platform and agency experts. The jam-packed audience highlighted the importance of short-form video as an effective new medium, said Campaign’s global head of media, Gideon Spanier.

The media-owners on the panel revealed that they are starting to ramp up short-form video. Twitter’s head of video advertising solutions, Lucy O’Dwyer said that shorter, snackable content sees the “most efficiencies and effectiveness”.

David Shaw, Snap’s international lead – product marketing (EMEA, MENA, APAC), said the sweet spot for video advertising on Snapchat (which, unlike Twitter, has always had video at its heart) is even shorter than expected – between two and six seconds in length. 

Spotify’s head of programmatic, Zuzanna Broadbent, added that Spotify is predominantly (70%) an in-app mobile platform used by millennials – and this was “the perfect storm” to launch short-form video at the start of this year.

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So why short-form?
Ads that are six seconds lend themselves well to our changing, mobile, consumer habits said Spanier: “We are spending more time on our phones – by 2020 this will be on average three hours 39 minutes every day. Swipes, taps and scrolls fuel our need for instant gratification and shrink our attention spans. Millennials lead the charge.”

The average attention span of a human is eight seconds – one second shorter than that of a goldfish.

Spanier said that content sucks people in fast – but people ignore content faster. With only around 17% of ads watched beyond the first three seconds, creating mobile-first impact is a massive challenge.

So what is the best way to approach the format, strategically and creatively?

Brands must grab attention in the first few seconds to stop people scrolling past, hitting the brand message straight away, said Harry Harcus, UK and pan-regional managing director at Xaxis. He said that the completed views and cost-per-completed view really reveal whether brands have nailed the creative.

When Xaxis used short-form video as part of video game developer Capcom’s launch of Monster Hunter World across Twitter, Spotify and Global, they saw a huge uplift in the view through rate. The entire campaign was delivered to mobile and tablet devices and was seen in its entirety of six seconds by 57% of viewers, with nearly four out of five people watching beyond three seconds (the definition of a video view commonly used by Facebook).

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The challenge of creative
“The six-second video ad format is a hugely effective canvas if executed well, and it’s promising to see the wider advertising industry embrace this,” said Harcus. “It’s great to see more high-quality creative designed specifically for a six-second ad format, the likes of which we’ve already seen from BMW, Huawei, and Hawaiian Tropic.”

When compared against 30 second ads, 6 second ads delivered an 11% higher ad recall (Facebook, 2017).

Wavemaker’s digital partner, Diane Algar, worked on Hawaiian Tropic’s campaign to reposition the brand for a younger 18-to-24-year-old female audience. She said that the story they needed to tell meant they still needed the long-form content as well. Short-form acted as part of a holistic campaign approach.

“Creating personalised iterations of the ads – and targeting them depending on temperature, location and time of day – meant having short-form variants that complemented the long form,” she added. The results were impressive with 70% of viewers watching the short-form ad through to completion and 82% watching for at least three seconds.

Wavemaker’s content division, who created the work, received the brief along with the media team. “Everybody is in this together from the start and has an the same understanding of the client needs. It’s an internal end-to-end solution,” said Alagar

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Joel Livesey, director of partnerships EMEA at The Trade desk said that where a TV ad is the ‘big whack’, short-form is the ‘nail tap’ on top of it: “when short-form is used as part of a bigger campaign, a bigger picture, that is where we see most success,” he said. “It should be a key pillar of a wider strategy but not a complete strategy on its own.”

“Start working earlier on in the TVC process with agencies,” said O’Dwyer. Even now when we are well into the digital and mobile era, we are not really at a point where that is happening. “I urge every marketer and brand manager to think about the full journey from the creative perspective.”

She added that while many still have the assumption that short-form has to be a version of a TV ad cut down or repacked, in fact digital animations and gifs can also work well. “It’s not as costly as some might think. The flexibility that short form offers really adds to a campaign’s dynamic.”

Hear… and now
Using purposeful sound design is key, said Shaw. While you should focus on nailing the creative for sound off, the majority of Snap users use the platform with headphones on. Similarly, Spotify’s Broadbent said that a deeper, more personal and intimate experience can happen with headphones. “The way our platform renders ads for video and audio is an important consideration. If your phone is locked or not active, we will deem your eyes aren’t on-screen and we will serve an audio ad. If you are active on your phone we’ll serve a visual ad.”

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She added that short-form shouldn’t replace a standard product, it should complement it. She encouraged more direct and ongoing relationships with creatives, making them aware of all the assets available and carefully considering what role they want short-form to play in the ad stack: “Lean in and give it a go. It’s fun how fast things are moving in this area – test and learn. Get hands on.”

Alagar advised marketers to have case studies and example videos to show clients what good creative looks like as some are more embracing of digital than others. Being able to prove results on a granular level is valuable, said Shaw, encouraging marketers to shift internal perceptions if structures are not in place to support short-form. This might mean physically shifting the way teams work together so collaboration and communication between media and creative teams is easier.

“It’s only going to grow, so now is the time to take advantage,” he concluded.

Author: Eleanor Kahn for Campaign

GoPro’s Viral Plotagraphs Revealed by Troy Christopher Plota

June 19, 2018 – PRLog 

On Friday, June 15, GoPro published a mind blowing carousel of five animated GoPro action shots, that caught the “Likes” of nearly a quarter million Instagrammers within just 48 hours. Over 1.5 thousand amazed enthusiasts commented, asking how the effect was created and rapidly spread the news. The Featured Photographer in GoPro’s viral post is Troy Christopher Plota, who is also the creator of this never seen before effect. It is called a Plotagraph.

“Motion Art Has Really Blown Up This Year!”

Photographer: Troy Christopher Plota

Troy was excited to reveal the motion trick behind the featured Plotagraphs and pointed out why they have a viral effect. “The fast-moving action, sand, cloud, and water environments in GoPro photos are a perfect combination for Plotagraph Troy explained in GoPro’s Instagram feature. “The ease of shooting on GoPro consistently brings content to the next level and captures action like no other camera.” The Plotagraphs show a seamless, never ending flow of kicked up dirt, ocean waves, and a baffling animation of a Hero 6 shot. The hypnotizing Plotagraph effect is created with only one single, still Hero 6 shot, and not multiple photos as one would assume

Photographer: Troy Christopher Plota

Troy has always been on the forefront of Technology. “Motion Art has blown up this year. GoPro and their community have been there from the start, posting epic Plotagraphs and pushing content to the next level. It’s great to see talented creators like @snapair + @mitch_gilmore_ collaborating to push our apps to the next level.”

Photographer: Troy Christopher Plota

Yesterday, June 18th, the startup celebrated the one millionth download of their Desktop Pro software. Troy personally reached out to the unsuspecting artist with congratulations and an Annual Pro Membership giveaway. Within just one year, over 4 million creatives have joined the vibrant Motion Art community, using Plotaverse Apps for desktop and mobile. To find out more about how to animate still photos into engaging Plotagraphs, visit

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NASA’s Historic 1.5 Billion Parker Solar Probe Launch Plotagraphed

Rocket Launch and Space Photographer, Erik Kuna, captured the 43,000 mph departure of NASA’s Parker Solar Probe at 3:31 a.m. ET on Sunday, August 12. The record speed launch of the mammoth vehicle can be seen in a baffling close up shot, that appears to be moving like a live video in slow motion. As NASA’s $1.5 billion vessel shoots through space, it will reach a speed of 430,000 mph (692,000 kph), setting a new record for the fastest man-made object in history. However, this historic moment has not left Earth entirely, along with the Parker Solar Probe. Erik Kuna’s capture of world’s first ever mission to “touch the sun”, is brought to life thanks to the hypnotizing looping effect called “Plotagraph”.

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5 Reasons Why Plotaverse Beats Photoshop for Photo Animation

Meet Plotaverse, the world’s first photo animation app that can truly animate any single, still photo. As Shaq told CNBC: “Those other apps are loops for video. With Plotography I can take a picture of a beach and then make an ocean move.” The idea behind Plotaverse is that spending hours in Photoshop to create art, which then drowns in social media floods, is finally no longer a problem that artists are facing every day.

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