Digital Case Study – KFC WOW@25 Augmented Reality Campaign

Objectives: To promote the newly launched KFC WOW Menu and emphasize its price point.

Campaign: KFC India WOW@25 Digital Campaign answered an oft-asked question: What KFC treats can you get with the money in your wallet? They used Augmented Reality on smartphones and on the web for the campaign. On scanning any currency note with the app or microsite, KFC WOW Menu delights, based on the money, appeared on the note itself. Users also played an entertaining quiz to win awesome prizes.


  • The app acquired 35,000 downloads while the site received 1.5 lac hits.
  • Fone Arena, The FWA, Daily App Review and Mid-Day spotlighted the campaign.
  • The app even stood No. 1 on the iTunes store’s What’s Hot section.

Case study video: KFC WOW@25 Campaign 


Mobile Messaging Apps to become Integrated Social Media Platforms

In 2014, social messaging players will be challenging the status quo of mobile social networking and media – creating a paradigm shift in social media interaction that will impact several OTT giants. Global mobile messaging apps (OTT) are changing the way the consumer interacts with social media – be it messaging, voice, games or utilities and widening the possibilities of the type of social services that can be accessed on mobile.

Mobile Messaging is the new craze in apps world

Global OTT Forecast

Global OTT Competitive Landscape

Global Mobile Voice Market 2012-2016

Global OTT Mobile Messaging Apps Market ShareCXO Quotes on OTT


Hundreds of millions of tech-savvy young people have instead turned to a wave of smartphone-based messaging apps that are now sweeping across North America, Asia and Europe. The hot apps include Kik and Whatsapp as well as Kakao Inc’s KakaoTalk, NHN Corp’s  LINE and Tencent Holdings Ltd’s  WeChat, which have blossomed in Asian markets.

Combining text messaging and social networking, the apps provide easy to use interface & interactive features for smartphone users to trade everything from brief texts to flirtatious pictures to YouTube clips – bypassing both the SMS plans offered by wireless carriers and established social networks originally designed as websites.

Facebook Inc, with 1 billion users, remains by far the world’s most popular website. However, across Silicon Valley, investors and industry insiders say there is a possibility that the messaging apps could threaten Facebook’s dominance over the next few years. The larger ones are even starting to emerge as full-blown “platforms” that can support third-party applications such as games.

WhatsApp and LINE and WeChat and KakaoTalk and Viber and so on, share images, group chat and video, not just text. This gives them an advantage over SMS, that is true, but increasingly, it gives them a foothold into the space previously owned by social networks. Looking at it from the consumers perspective, these OTT apps offer a place to share messages one to one, to group chat with friends, to share images, video and other media, to discover new games and other apps and to find out news and gossip – sounds more like social media to me. Compared to SMS, the end-user proposition is just totally different.

Top 3 reasons – Why Mobile Messaging Apps will take over Social Media

Teenagers are opting for messenger apps over Facebook

Asians in US are making mobile messaging apps popular

OTT apps have evolved as engaging content services platforms

OTT messaging apps are not cannibalizing SMS

MMF Stats Blog Fig 2

In several key mobile messaging markets, SMS and OTT messaging apps are working quite nicely alongside each other. Many media reports present a picture that OTT messaging apps are cannibalizing SMS use and that MNO’s are losing billions in SMS revenue. In fact, this is not completely true.

Some SMS markets have peaked and shifted into a decline phase, and growth in some others has levelled off, but many SMS markets are still enjoying solid growth.

The growth in use of OTT messaging apps is dependent on a number of factors: 3G penetration, smartphone ownership and price sensitivity. In markets where price sensitivity and economic pressure are forcing consumers to scrimp and save, OTT services are an appealing alternative to SMS. However, in markets where price sensitivity is less of an issue, such as in Japan and South Korea, we see SMS and OTT co-existing quite happily side-by-side. (Source: Portio Research)

OTT-compete-with-telco-for-control-not-profitsIn economic terms, telco connectivity complements OTT business. A complement is a product that is consumed together with another product. Demand for a product increases when the price of its complements decrease. For example, gas and cars are complements. Cheaper gas means people drive more, and car manufacturers see their business grow.

Similarly, the common interest of OTT players is to drive commoditization of the telco connectivity business. Affordable mobile broadband means that more smartphones are sold, more ads viewed, more software sold and more ecommerce sites visited.

The future is for the Integration

Phones were created as social tools. Smartphones are especially good at being social, integrating text, voice, video and images in an endless number of apps that can serve a user’s needs, and all without the need for a web-based social network.

Users are able to communicate with anybody in their address book anywhere in the world with almost any content mix at any time. This has been compelling to users and has driven the growth of apps like iMessage, WhatsApp, LINE, WeChat, KakaoTalk and some other smaller competitors.

Messaging-Apps-SMSFacebook has Messenger, Camera, Pages and its primary app with Home as an integration point. Google has Talk, Contacts, Mail, Plus, Hangouts perhaps with Now as a point of integration. Apple is a little behind but has iMessage, FaceTime, Photostream, Mail and Contacts. iOS itself may be the point of integration.

WhatsApp, LINE, KakaoTalk, WeChat and the others will need to move beyond the chat-centric user interface into a broader set of asynchronous messaging features, and a new set of social features, probably with Timeline support, in order to stay ahead of the curve.

WhatsApp and its clones can be thought of as mobile-first companies. Their apps sit on top of the smartphone, particularly the mobile address book, and just help a user chat to their friends, family or colleagues.  Their success is their simplicity and the singular purpose they have addressed.

If we look five years out, it is likely that the iOS and Android core will support a far more integrated set of messaging tools that cater for many of the needs we use single-use apps for today.

Message saving for private use, shared messaging to individuals or groups, media sharing, video and voice messaging (both synchronous and asynchronous), Timelines to look back and recall what we did in the past. These will all be features of the operating system.

In that sense the current product focus – decisions about what features to separate into single apps, and how to integrate those into a unified UI all represent the first moves in defining who wins.

Top 10 Mobile based Marketing Campaigns of 2013

Mobile advertising made substantial progresses in 2013 with new ad formats being introduced and mobile’s role emerging as an important part of a multichannel strategy. While researching, I came across several interesting campaigns that leveraged media bridging, augmented reality, mcommerce, social, mobile, display ads integration, geo location enablement etc. Here is my pick of top 10 mobile based campaigns which I feel used mobile as a platform in an innovative manner by leveraging these new age platforms, features and functionalities.

  1. Coca-Cola – Ahh Effect Campaign
  2. The Amazing Spiderman Web Shootout
  3. Frito Lay’s Cheetahpult
  4. Adidas Philippines mobile game campaign to promote Boost shoes
  5. Nike’s #MIPISTA campaign
  6. Track My Macca’s – McDonald’s
  7. Laplication – Regional Council of Lapland
  8. Campbell Soup Co. – Personalized ads to consumers based on past purchasing behavior
  9. Pinkberry leveraged mobile advertising to drive in-store product launch trial
  10. Kimberly-Clark’s Pull-Ups relies on augmented reality to encourage potty training

Case Study 1: Coca-Cola – Ahh Effect Campaign

Coca Cola Ahh Effect Mobile CampaignThe “Ahh Effect” campaign includes a set of 61 microsites that feature quick games and content, and is part of a multi-year marketing effort from Coca-Cola. Since the content is snackable and easy to engage with, mobile is one of the key ways that Coca-Cola is promoting the initiative and points to a greater need from CPG brands to develop mobile-specific content.

Each site features “a teen-worthy moment of randomness, creativity and delight that’s best experienced from teens’ favorite gadgets – their mobile devices.” Just in the past month, 20 more URLs have gone live. Some 4 million consumers have visited the 40 websites affiliated with the effort, staying for an average of 2-plus minutes each. About half the traffic has been organic, meaning the target — in this case, a teen — has shared the media with a friend.

Case Study 2: The Amazing Spiderman Web Shootout

Supporting the release of Sony’s new Spiderman movie, Spinnaker knew the target demographic had a high propensity for gaming so created an interactive in-banner game that functions in the YouTube masthead and can be connected with a user’s smartphone. After the Spiderman TV spot plays in the banner, a unique QR code appears which the visitor can scan with their smartphone. The user is then able to sync their mobile device to their screen and engage with the ‘Shoot ‘em up’ web-slinging game.

Case Study 3: Frito Lay’s Cheetahpult

After a 30 second video ad sets up the scenario, a call to action encourages the user to play the interactive game with a choice between mouse and mobile control. If users use their smartphone as the remote, a call-to-action prompts them to type a mobile Web site into their browser. Once the mobile site loads, the handset becomes a remote control for the game. Consumers then have to aim their mobile device at their desktop screen and aim Cheetos into the game character’s mouth by swiping their finger vertically across the screen.

Case Study 4: Adidas Philippines mobile game campaign to promote its new Boost shoes

Adidas PhilippinesAdidas launched a rich media campaign that let consumers play a mobile game that stimulates the different types of terrain and conditions that the shoe can hold up in. Consumers could place their fingers on the screen to run in a pair of the shoes. The ads were meant to show the different terrains and conditions that the shoe line could endure. Using the device’s built-in location, consumers could compare their scores against others that were nearby by plotting the scores on a map. Additionally, consumers could share their score over social media or replay the game again.


  • Average user time engagement with the ad: More than 60 seconds.
  • Click through rate (CTR): 1.27%
  • Daily click-through-rate: 2.02%
  • Average click-through-rate on iOS devices: 0.97%
  • Average click-through-rate on Android version: 1.64%
  • Total impressions generated: 1,220,346 impressions (672,054 coming from iOS devices and 548,292 coming from Android devices)
  • Total clicks: 15,478 clicks

Case Study 5: Nike’s #MIPISTA campaign

The #mipista campaign, launched by Nike Football Spain, enables street football players to request a pop-up pitch with their smartphones in six different neighbourhoods across the Spanish capital. After the order has been made, a team of specialists drives to the location with a laser system and a crane. The laser beams create an augmented football pitch where users can play a five-against-five match.

Case Study 6: Track My Macca’s – McDonald’s

TrackMyMacca’s taps into the McDonald’s supply chain, allowing users to track the actual ingredients that make up their meals. GPS detects the restaurant location while image recognition identifies the food about to be eaten. This information, coupled with date and time, allows the iPhone app to pull all the necessary supply data in real time. The detailed breakdown is then presented to the user through augmented reality as 3D animations.

Case Study 7: Laplication – Regional Council of Lapland

To encourage tourism to Lapland (the north of Finland), this app allowed users to transform their current location into the Land of the Midnight Sun. Once a potential tourist has the iPhone/iPad app installed, augmented reality alters surroundings into breathtaking 3D panoramas of Lappish natural phenomena, the Midnight Sun, and the Northern Lights. This well-developed AR experience takes aspiration to a whole new level by putting the Lapland experience quite literally at the user’s fingertips.

Case Study 8: Campbell Soup Co. – Personalized ads to consumers based on past purchasing behavior

Campbell SoupCampbell’s Pace brand used a new mobile advertising platform – BuyerVision – with Catalina Marketing to examine how brand advertising translates into in-store sales. The platform, which was developed with help from Nielsen and 4Info, includes 70 million households whose mobile devices have been identified, anonymized and tied to recent purchasing data. Connecting this information to a mobile device is accomplished using 4Info’s proprietary technology and algorithms that identify mobile devices across a variety of platforms and apps, anonymizing the information and tying this to profiles built over time based on location and ad requests. Ads from brand marketers such as Campbell’s are appearing in apps or on the mobile Web and are being delivered through mobile aggregators, networks as well as some specific premium inventory.

Case Study 9: Pinkberry leveraged mobile advertising to drive in-store product launch trial

Pinkberry Mobile CampaignFrozen yogurt chain Pinkberry launched a location-based ad campaign that served up mobile coupons to lure nearby consumers into stores in April. The ads ran within the Pandora iPhone app with creative that showed consumers how many miles away they were from a Pinkberry location.

When clicked on, a landing page presented an offer for $1 off of a greek yogurt product. The landing page also included directions and a click-to-call option. The coupon was redeemable by showing a screen grab of the ad at the point-of-sale. Consumers are more inclined to interact with the banner ad since it ties together an offer with a specific location.

Case Study 10: Kimberly-Clark’s Pull-Ups relies on augmented reality to encourage potty training

It leveraged augmented reality in a unique way this year with an app that helps moms potty train children. When consumers scan markers inside packages, Disney characters such as Mickey and Rapunzel come to life. In addition to using the app to scan boxes, kids can earn virtual rewards as they progress through the levels of potty training. Pull-Ups cited moms as one of the strongest mobile users, and the new marketing effort is a smart way for the brand to not only help moms, but also involve kids in the potty training experience.

The Big Question – Facebook video ads will make money or lose its users?

The next 3 months would decide how Facebook users respond to these ads…it is being largely speculated that after the growing adoption and eventually the shift to mobile messengers, these ads will provide another major reason for its users to reduce their time spent on Facebook. The other interesting opportunity lies for app developers to create “Block Facebook Videos Ads App”.

As of now the scenario is quite similar to the launch of a new feature in the market and as always its facing flake from the users as well as analysts. Here is a quick recap on how this works, what future these ads have and what different experts in the market are saying:

Closely following the way Vine shows its video on its mobile app, here’s how Facebook autoplay video ads will work: Instead of having to click or tap to play, videos will start playing as soon as they appear on your news feed screen — without sound. This is similar to how videos behave when shared by friends or verified Pages. If you don’t want to watch the video, Facebook said, simply scroll or swipe past it.

Video Ads Market - eMarketerWith video ads, Facebook is planning a new advertising product that it hopes will drive more views, likes, shares and comments for the people who pay its bills. In fact, the social media company said tests of “autoplay” videos have pushed a 10 percent-plus increase in all those sectors. Facebook is charging around $2 million per day for the ability to reach its 140 million U.S. users aged 18 to 54, according to media buyers. Some media buyers said they found the price surprisingly high. Media buyers said advertisers would be more interested in video ads if Facebook allowed them to better target specific sets of users. Facebook currently allows advertisers to target video ads by gender and age, but not by interests, as it does for traditional ads.

The number of video ads online more than doubled between October 2012 and October of this year, according to comScore and data provided by eMarketer suggests that engagement is significantly higher for in-stream video ads than other formats.

A report released by Morgan Stanley on Wednesday predicts that Facebook’s video advertisements will generate more than $1 billion in 2014 — a lofty total considering they don’t exist yet. This total would constitute 1% of all television ad spending in the United States. Morgan Stanley predicts Facebook’s video ads could generate as much as $6.5 billion by 2020.

The report, which was compiled by analysts Scott Devitt, Jordan Monahan and John Egbert, is based primarily on media reports from sources like Bloomberg and The Financial Times. It predicts that Facebook video ads will first roll out later this year (a view widely held among reporters covering Facebook) and remain a U.S.-only feature through much of 2014. Europe is expected to join in late 2014, Asia in 2015 and the rest of the world’s markets by the end of 2016.

Facebook Video Ads“Reports suggest that the ad unit will auto-play without sound; when a user switches on the sound, the video will play from the beginning,” the study reads. “If a user is not interested in watching the video, he/she simply scrolls past it. Ads will be limited to 15 seconds, with asking prices in the ‘low $20s’ on a CPM basis, according to agency sources.”

This would certainly be a mobile data headache, below are the pictures (courtesy of James Whatley) showing how to turn off mobile data use on iOS and Android.

Facebook Video Ads Block

KFC’s Innovation of the Year – KFC Go Cups


KFC is catering to our never-ending quest for convenience and has “officially upgraded snacking” with their new KFC Go Cups. KFC created the Go Cup — plastic take-out containers featuring a cup designed to fit snugly in most cup holders, allowing for easy in-car, on-the-go grubbing.

And to add on to this, guests will be able to customize their Go Cups with seasoned potato wedges alongside one of the five options: a piece of Original Recipe Boneless chicken, a Chicken Little sandwich, two Extra Crispy Tenders, three Hot Wings or four Original Recipe Bites. A divider found inside the Go Cup keeps the chicken separate from the wedges and the entire shebang will set you back $2.49.

KFC posted interesting infographic that describes the insight and concept behind this simple yet effective packaging.

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Digital Marketing Trend – Replacing Captcha with PlayCaptcha Brand Messages

Captcha is the security feature that requires web site visitors to rewrite distorted words to prove that they are human and not a computer bot. They are commonly found when buying tickets online or completing a sign-up form. According to research from Scientific American at least 300 million captchas are completed daily, “equating to 150,000 human hours wasted every day”.

The latest trend that is catching up is of brands replacing the Captcha with PlayCaptcha that offers an innovative alternative to traditional CAPTCHAs by providing a more enjoyable and fun user experience, and it is proving to be more engaging than standard digital advertising formats whilst not compromising this security measure or the amount of time it takes to complete..

Recently, several campaigns have been initiated by renowned brands to leverage this popular utility on the digital media. Heinz and Reckitt were among the first clients of the newly formed Future Ad Labs startup, which is seeking to engage online audiences with its new advertising format PlayCaptcha.

Heinz’s PlayCaptcha asked website visitors to pour a virtual bottle of salad cream onto a sandwich. Heinz PlayCaptchaA total of 91% of respondents found PlayCaptcha to be a better user experience than standard word-based Captchas, with 90% recalling the Heinz product following the completion of the task. And for Reckitt Benckiser, The Future Ad Labs developed a PlayCaptcha that persuades visitors to clean a virtual dirty penny by dragging it into a bowl of Reckitt’s Cillit Bang cleaning product. Future Ad Labs says, “For both Heinz and Cillit Bang, PlayCaptcha delivers engagement rates many times higher than traditional digital advertisement formats, while providing a better user experience for web page visitors.”

mastercard playcaptchaMasterCard is replacing the traditional Captcha with brand messages including “MasterCard Anywhere” on more than 6,000 sites including, while Unilever is pushing a “lasts just as long” message for its compressed Dove, Sure and Vaseline deodorant cans on websites owned by Bauer Media and AOL.

The brands are only required to pay for messages that have been read and typed correctly, with the Type-In technology provider Solve Media claiming engagement rates often exceed 40%. Unilever’s campaign has resulted in an awareness lift of 151% and a click-through rate of 3.62%, according to Solve Media.

The most recent being the Nestle owned chocolate bar “KitKat” with their campaign ‘PlayCaptcha’ – It asks users to open a virtual KitKat by swiping along the foil by using either their finger on a touch screen or a mouse on a PC. The campaign was created in partnership with KitKat’s ad agency JWT London and Future Ad Labs.

nestle playcaptcha 2


Early research between June and July 2013 conducted by Vizeum’s insights team in collaboration with Future Ad Labs and Heinz, indicate that by replacing the frustrating CAPTCHA user experience with something that visitors actually enjoy, results in a positive reaction to the brands featured in the PlayCaptcha.

  • 9 out of 10 respondents i.e. 91% found PlayCaptcha to be a better user experience than standard word-based CAPTCHAs,
  • A further 9 out of 10 users i.e. 90% recalling the Heinz product following the completion of the task.

Future Ad Labs —“For both Heinz and Cillit Bang, PlayCaptcha delivers engagement rates many times higher than traditional digital advertisement formats, while providing a better user experience for web page visitors.”

Click below to watch Howard Kingston, CEO & Founder, Future Ad Labs speaking about PlayCaptcha at SEEK

Indian Online Advertising Revenues Forecast 2014

According to IPG Mediabrands’ strategic global media unit Magna Global:

India advertising revenue by media category 2012-2013

  • The global ad revenue is expected to grow by 6.5 per cent in 2014, the Indian ad revenue should grow by 11.3 per cent in the coming year with the internet again leading the growth at 31.4%.
  • The growth in television ad spends will be 10.4% while that for newspapers will be 8.8%.
  • Magazine ad spend growth will be 2.3% while OOH will be 12.1% and radio at 11%.
  • The Indian advertising market is going to show further buoyancy in 2014 by growing 11.9 per cent. The reason: the investment climate is expected to warm up and demand from external economies backed by solid domestic consumption will boost the Indian economy.

“That level of economic activity is not particularly impressive by historical standards, but confidence indices keep improving and we believe advertising spending will reflect and amplify that economic trend,” – Venkatesh S, EVP, Director Intelligence, Magna Global, India.

According to the latest Ad Matrix report from ComScore:

More than 3900 advertisers ran online ad campaigns in September 2013.  On an average, this resulted in 395 ads viewed by each active internet user in India.

Top Online Display Advertisers In India By Industry: 30.2 billion online display ads were served in September alone. Retail, online media and computers remained the top category advertisers came from.

India Display Ad Landscape

Top Online Display Ads Publishers By Industry: Social media, portals and services together generated about 68% of the total online display ads impressions generated in India in September 2013.

Nearly 2 out of every 5 impressions were generated on social media networks alone.

Top Online Display Ads Category In India: Retail and Finance industries have contributed the maximum in online display ad market in India in the last few months.

Between June and September 2013, the Retail industry saw nearly 6% surge in number of total ad impressions by all advertisers from the industry, reaching 3.97 billion impressions in September.

However, the Finance industry in India has presented a better show in the last few months as the number of ad impressions increased nearly 30% during the time reached to 1.19 billion.

Ad Data Trends

Share of Impressions

Top Online Display Advertisers In India: A comparatively lesser known and free-to-use business model leapfrogged other online majors in India, including Flipkart, Amazon and Myntra, in number of Display Ad Impressions (DAI) and Display Ad Spending (DAS) by a distinct margin.

In September 2013, emerged as the top advertiser that marketed 1.38 billion impressions, followed by Amazon, Google and Jabong with 493 million, 431 million and 427 million impressions, respectively.

According to IBEF:

The Indian Advertising and Media & Entertainment industry is expected to grow 11.8 per cent to garner revenues worth Rs 91,700 crore (US$ 14.79 billion) in 2013, according to an industry report. Traditional media such as television, print and radio continue to dominate. However, other segments such as animation, visual effects, films and music are quickly gaining acceptance due to their content and the advantages of digitization.

Search advertising catered for about 38 per cent (Rs 850 crore [US$ 137.14 million]) of the total online advertising spend while display advertising formed a significant 29 per cent (Rs 662 crore [US$ 106.86 million]) by March 2013, according to the findings of ‘Digital Advertising in India’ report conducted by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) and IMRB International.

India-ad-revenue-forecastIndustry body NASSCOM in collaboration with AbsolutData Research and Analytics, has released a report: ‘Marketing Analytics – An opportunity for India to Lead’ which states that the Indian marketing analytics industry is expected to grow from its present value of US$ 200 million to US$ 1.2 billion in 2020, a CAGR of 25 per cent.

The report highlights that companies have begun to use marketing analytics insights more and more in order to gain competitive advantage in the market.