Guest Column: Igniting the next level of creative thought

Interactive technology can ignite the next level of brand experiences, enabling consumers to also co-create their own brand memory, says Anup Tapadia, Founder, TouchMagix Media

e4m by Anup Tapadia
Updated: Nov 11, 2013 8:57 AM
Guest Column: Igniting the next level of creative thought

Imagine creating an experience which is co-created by the consumer! One which can be created in a space the consumer is comfortable with. A memory the consumer will never forget, leading to a strong emotional bond between the brand and its audience. This is the next level of communication where consumers do not merely listen to your brand, but live it.

Impactful campaigns are one where the audience plays a vital role in the way engagement happens. Coca Cola has been instrumental in building great campaigns through collaborative engagement. Coke Studio is a great example of how a brand co-creates value with the community to such an extent that Coke Studio itself is a recognised brand property. Utlising the full extent of available technology to enable unforgettable engagements and conversations is an integral part of bringing a campaign to life. The recent India-Pakistan campaign by Coca Cola, where citizens of the two countries could virtually interact with each other, has left a lasting impression on the brand’s audiences.

Interactive technology can lead to collaborative engagement as consumers play a role in the entire experience. The experience can then be easily extended to social media platforms on a real time basis for an intensified impact. Technology can help integrate these mediums to create an extensive brand experience. The recent Snickers campaign used motion and gesture technology to gamify its message of ‘Going Veg’. The campaign involved the audience completing a puzzle challenge where they could pick up and place puzzle pieces with motion and gesture in order to complete the Snickers Challenge. Once the puzzle was complete, the message read loud and clear: ‘Snickers is Going Veg’; a technology-enabled experience created by the audience. The campaign further increased its impact when the scores of each participant were posted on their Facebook page. Interactive technology can add a different level of integration through seamlessly connecting the offline activity to online platforms.

More than ever, now it is crucial to meet consumers wherever they are online or offline. The advances in interactive technology can help create immersive experiences onto any space. Through a projection set-up, a brand can transform any surface from a wall or floor into an interactive environment which can bring a campaign to life. An interactive experience can elevate a good brand thought into an unforgettable brand experience. Axe recently left audiences astounded where interactions involved interacting with their angels by embracing and even kissing them. This is truly living a brand thought.

Innovative brand experiences, when successful in catching consumer’s attention, help capture a larger brand space in their minds. The use of interactive technology through touch, motion, or gesture can enable a higher level of engagement, and therefore, creating a resounding impression on the minds of the consumer. Brands across the world have been using aspects of interactive technology due to its intuitive nature. In India, although there is some awareness of this technology’s existence, there are misconceptions such as lack of scalability, high costs, and hurdles of integration. The reality is however quite the opposite and most importantly, this technology is available right here in India.

Brands across the world have moved from an era of merely a big idea to an idea which can provide a sustainable impact across a range of platforms. Sustaining the impact across mediums and scaling the experience have become important for brands which aim to maximize the impact of their marketing budgets. Technology can help broaden the scope and reach of a brand idea; further due to the agility and flexibility of such technology, one can seamlessly integrate the creative idea into an interactive experience with a quick turn-around time. There is a belief that using interactive solutions will require a longer lead time, but due to the development of templates of interactive content, solutions can be delivered even within tight time constraints.  

And this is just the tip of the iceberg. In the future, technological advances will propel the next level of augmented reality where the audience can not only interact with the illusion, but have the illusion interact back with them. In the past, National Geographic Channel attempted such an interaction successfully where people could interact with wild animals and even dinasours on a live screen. Now, imagine the illusions interacting back with the audiences based on the interactions. This is the next level of engagment which is not too far away from becoming the next innovation in brand communication.

It is time to clear any doubts which exist around the utilization of interactive technology. There is cutting edge, cost effective, and scalable touch, motion, and gesture solutions available in India, and these solutions can help us create ideas that lead to the next level of brand engagement. The possibilities of ideas using this solution are truly endless and only bound by the imagination of creative minds. Technology and creative teams can finally move from different corners of the office to turn impossible ideas of yesterday to today’s ideas of impact!

The author is Founder of TouchMagix Media.

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