Tag Archives: Texas Rangers

A Word About Content

Dave Matthews Band Out-of-Home

Is there more noise out there than quality content? Or is it just harder and harder to find the quality content, given all the creators and channels to consume it on? These are more rhetorical than not, especially since these questions have surfaced in different forms over the past few years. But each day, it becomes easier and easier for anyone to create good content and distribute it across many different channels. (What was once intended for Twitter can now be seen on a billboard in the middle of Times Square.) And with that, it becomes harder and harder to focus on and find the quality content. That is, the content that I want, need, and like.

As one of my colleagues recently said to me, we don’t need more platforms to consume and share content on, we need 1 tool to shut out all the noise. So, there you go, inventors – an identified and growing need.

When I think of content – either producing it or consuming it – it’s not about the type of content that is most important to me. Meaning, just because it’s video content (dynamic, moving, all that), does not mean that I will consume it. In fact, that’s really the least important factor. It takes much more than that to make me stop, consume and ultimately, interact with it. Here’s what’s important to me, in order:

What is it about? The subject matter is the key. If it’s about Dave Matthews Band, I’ll consume it. If it’s about baseball, I won’t. However, if it’s about the Texas Rangers, I will. It’s important to understand the generality and specificity of your audience/community when planning content.

Who is producing it? Where is it coming from? Take the examples above – if Dave Matthews Band is producing the content, I want to see it. It’s about them, by them. If my wife forwards me a piece of DMB content, I want to see it. It’s about them, by them, yes, but in this case, passed on to me by someone that I trust, especially about “quality” content pertaining to DMB. If someone close to me – be it friends or family – sends me something or posts something, I want to make sure that I consume it. If it’s someone who I think is credible on any particular subject, I’ll consume it. Otherwise, it’s harder and harder for me to even give it a chance.

What type of content is it? I think too much emphasis is put on type of content above all. Not that great looking content isn’t compelling enough to get me to consume it, but it’s certainly much harder if it’s not something I care about – and even more, am passionate about – or it’s not coming from someone I trust.

Maybe the type of content is enough to get my attention, especially when I’m out in the real world. But if it stands any chance of getting me to actually spend time with it, much less do something with it, it takes much more than that.

So, whether your making content for a website or a OOH digital sign, what drives your content creation? The answer could be the difference between noise and consumption. Maybe even action.

Image credit: dailydooh.com

Turning Awareness into Engagement through Stickybits

(Full Disclosure – I am a part of the Chevrolet Texas team who executed the following work.)

A couple of weeks ago, I shared a model that illustrates the different components of what I believe to be the “new” OOH.  The “new” OOH is less about awareness and more about engagement, specifically on the places and things around us.  Technology has reached a point where it can enable anything to become a “screen,” so while I agree that general awareness is still a critical component in any brand’s marketing mix, I think that brands have an opportunity to use those screens to engage consumers, to drive them deeper into a brand experience.

This past week, we had another opportunity to make one of those “things” around us interactive – a car.  We’ve done this before for the same client (Chevy) at SXSW.  Only then, we placed QR codes on the cars so attendees could learn more about the cars just by scanning the code.  This time, we’ve placed a Stickybit on one of the cars.

Stickybit on car

We’re caught up in the World Series here in Dallas.  It’s heightened because the Cowboys are a lost cause and the Rangers have been so bad for such a long time.  So, the fan fare down here is through the roof.  The Rangers have this inside thing about claws and antlers, so during the Yankees series, we created an “Antler Yourself” site where users could upload a photo and customize it with the antlers of their choice, then send it to all of their friends on social channels.

Chevy Antler Yourself

When the Rangers reached the series, we had an opportunity to extend it in a couple of places and one of the most intriguing was through the use of one of the cars in the fleet.  But instead of just advertising the URL on the car, we knew we could extend the experience even more through a technology like Stickybits.

Quick 101 on Stickybits – it’s a bar code-scanning technology that allows people to attach “bits” (content) to any bar code through scanning it on a mobile phone.  You just need the app and a bar code.  And for those items, like cars, that don’t have bar codes on them, Stickybits provides bar codes that you can put on anything you want.

By attaching the Stickybit to the car, not only are we able to allow people to upload their “Antler” photos directly to the bar code, we’re able to turn the car into a much larger virtual scrapbook.  People can send Good Luck messages to the Rangers via written word, or they can attach a video or a piece of audio, they can even attach different kinds of pictures (which we’ve seen, primarily with tailgating photos).  As of right now, there are 38 bits attached to the code, which means there are 38 different pieces of content that people can experience.  This is much more engaging than just placing the URL on the side of the car, which only serves the purpose of driving awareness.

Technology is giving brands the opportunity to do much more in any channel than they’ve ever been able to do.  We’re seeing this specifically in “Out of Home,” in large part due to the capabilities of mobile phones and all of the different apps that people have created.  We can now place a code on the side of a car and allow consumers to engage with the brand and each other.

So, while it may only be 38 pieces of content, and the content centers around the Rangers and not Chevrolet, it’s still incredibly valuable to the Chevy brand.  They’re bringing this experience to consumers, specifically fans of the Rangers around the most important time in the franchise’s history, that is not only unique, but engaging.

The next time you’re faced with doing something to create awareness, regardless of the “channel” you’re going to use, ask yourself if there’s a way you can turn it into an engagement?  Chances are, you can.

Antler Yourself Stickybit