News / Science & Technology

Facebook Challenges TV for Brand Dollars

FILE - Facebook logo on a computer screen is seen through glasses.
FILE - Facebook logo on a computer screen is seen through glasses.
Lacking the millions of dollars it costs to broadcast a Super Bowl ad, Britain's Newcastle Brown Ale gate-crashed the biggest advertising event in the United States by creating an archetypal big budget campaign that it never intended to run on television.
The Heineken-owned brand's beer commercials, which poked fun at the marketing tactics of rivals advertising in the American football championship game, ran on Facebook and Google's YouTube instead.
The stunt was a success, generating a similar level of online response as some brands that bought Super Bowl air time.
Brand director Quinn Kilbury said consumers had grown tired of big-budget advertising cliches, such as dramatic voice overs. “They love the fact Newcastle says it as it is,” he said.
One video shows Hollywood actress Anna Kendrick talking about how she had been dumped by Newcastle Brown Ale because they were too cheap to pay for the ad.
The average cost of a 30-second spot in the Super Bowl - which this year was the most-watched U.S. television program in history with more than 111 million viewers - was around $4 million. Newcastle said its campaign cost “a fraction” of a Super Bowl ad, without specifying a number.
The Kendrick video attracted 63,336 shares across Facebook, Twitter and blogs, of which 56,116 came from Facebook alone, according to marketing technology company Unruly.
That would put it 19th in the ranking of online responses to Super Bowl ads, in front of Dannon Oikos Greek Yogurt but a long way behind first-ranked Budweiser, which was shared more than 1.9 million times, Unruly said.
Newcastle's campaign is held up by Facebook as an example of how the social network can help advertisers by getting hard-to-reach young consumers to engage with, share and talk about the brand.
It is a message Facebook has taken to marketers at the Cannes Lions international advertising festival this week.
The social network will work with agencies and marketing departments to create campaigns that engaged users in different ways than television, said Mark D'Arcy, Facebook's Director of Global Creative Solutions.
“People have absolute freedom of movement across screens,” he said. “So the thought that we are living in the 1990s and we have the ability to command and control somebody's attention span on any platform is crazy,” he said.
Sales of Newcastle Brown Ale in the United States overtook its home British market around two years ago, the company said. The brand appeals to young U.S. city dwellers looking for an alternative to the big-name beers.
The spoof Super Bowl campaign was the latest in a series of online ads that “tell it like it is”.
Aiming high
Brand advertising, which builds awareness of a product or service's name, has largely been confined to television, said Ian Maude from Enders Analysis.
“Television is the still the king of brand advertising,” he said. “TV advertising is very robust. But younger audiences, aged 16-24 are shifting to digital devices, dominated by Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.”
He said Facebook was pitching itself as a brand medium alongside television.
“In terms of the scale of the audience, they don't compare themselves to other digital media, they compare themselves to TV,” he said. “They are gunning for brand advertising.”
Facebook is looking to brand advertising to grow its sales, eMarketer analyst Debra Aho Williamson said. The tech and media analyst group forecasts Facebook's advertising revenue will rise from $6.99 billion in 2013 to $10.75 billion this year, $14.01 billion in 2015 and $16.96 billion in 2016.
Kilbury said Newcastle's success was down to the creativity of the campaign, devised by its agency Droga5, which in turn was honed by Facebook's improved analytical tools.
“A year and a half ago it was difficult to get a readout in real time of how your posts were performing, but Facebook can legitimately tell us an hour after it posts, what's working here, who we are reaching, and who it is reaching the best,” he said.
For Newcastle, another advantage of using Facebook was the ability to test and tweak ads, nearly in real time.
Changing the placing of the product shot, the number of words in the ad, or the opening image on a video affected the number of clicks an ad received or the number of times it was shared, Kilbury said.
“It's not so much the creative as the way you package the creative,” he said.
But Facebook does not want to upset users. It is offering 15-second ads to play with the sound muted in newsfeeds in Britain, Brazil and five other countries.
D'Arcy said people were foremost looking for relevance when consuming content on Facebook, and advertisers needed to work with this to build a brand on digital media.
“We have an ingrained sense of entitlement in the marketing industry that we have a right (to advertise),” he said.
The targeted approach, and the requirement to make ads fit with content, can be a disadvantage for marketers, looking for the big splash to millions of people at the same time, something that event television still provides.
“Big brands always look for big, splashy eye catching images that create an emotional pull,” said eMarketers's Aho Williamson.
“On Facebook you can do so much targeting, it becomes a challenge for advertisers who are used to thinking in broad strokes.”

You May Like

Video Russia’s Syrian Escalation Tests Obama’s Crisis Response

Critics once again question whether president has been slow to act on Syrian conflict, thus creating opening for powers like Russia More

Ancient African DNA Shows Mass Migration Back Into Africa

First genetic analysis of ancient human remains in Africa suggests massive migration from north around time of Egyptian empire More

NASA: Pluto Has Blue Sky

New photos also reveal the presence of water ice More

This forum has been closed.
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugeesi
Henry Ridgwell
October 08, 2015 8:02 PM
Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

Video Nano-tech Filter Cleans Dirty Water

Access to clean water is a problem for hundreds of millions of people around the world. Now, a scientist and chemical engineer in Tanzania (in East Africa) is working to change that by creating an innovative water filter that makes dirty water safe. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.

Video Demand Rising for Organic Produce in Cambodia

In Cambodia, where rice has long been the main cash crop, farmers are being encouraged to turn to vegetables to satisfy the growing demand for locally produced organic farm products. Daniel de Carteret has more from Phnom Penh.

Video Botanists Grow Furniture, with Pruning Shears

For something a bit out of the ordinary to furnish your home, why not consider wooden chairs, crafted by nature, with a little help from some British botanists with an eye for design. VOA’s Jessica Berman reports.

VOA Blogs