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Locaria new Performance Production paper examines how the world is changing for content production and how clients need to keep up with it.
Use it or lose it
“The message from consumers around the world is clear: provide us with content and experiences that are as creative and high quality as you provide English-speaking markets, or lose our business”
In their paper, Locaria presents a new way of approaching global content scaling, Performance Production.
It is built upon the learnings gained from the international digital marketing expansion seen during the last decade and fused with a multilingual and multicultural workflow from localisation practice.
The paper discusses the ongoing demand for content and how consumer expectations have heightened alongside it. This can be challenging for brands.
Locaria has addressed this problem by breaking down traditional siloes, embracing data, bringing all parties into a seamless tech-led workflow, and focusing on talent.
The impact of COVID-19 and the centrality of tailored content
In the last decade, the rise of the internet has broken down many barriers to entry into international markets. From online advertising facilitating awareness to cross-border payment technology and web-enabled services, brands are able to access and service customers in multiple markets more easily.
Looking forward, COVID-19 has driven previously hard to engage consumers to access many more online products and services, as McKinsey’s recent research shows. As brands learn more about this new cohort of digital consumers, and design experiences to meet their needs, the demand for tailored content will continue to increase.
A clear example of this is the increase in demand for online healthcare and education services, as remote consultations and lessons have been used to control the spread of the virus.
In terms of advertising, digital media consumption has surpassed traditional media consumption and shows no signs of slowing. This has added opportunity as well as challenges to brands.
As barriers to cross-border commerce have declined, consumers all over the world have greater access to global brands. They have become increasingly accustomed to cross- border payments, taxes and duties, shipping etc. and in many locations have become aware that western brands are keen for a share of their wallet.
Nowhere else is this more keenly seen than in China, where competition is fierce and a wrong step by even the most established brand, such as Dolce & Gabbana, can result in a boycott.
In addition, local challenger brands have also moved online and upped their game, creating propositions and messages that are highly tailored to local norms and nuances, with the benefit of their deep understanding of the audience and platforms. This has led to an increasingly competitive local landscape, where it is no longer enough to be a respected global brand.
Consumers are demanding tailored experiences, preferably localised in a fluent and impactful way, that understand how they wish to consume products and services in their market.
The message from consumers around the world is clear: provide us with content and experiences that are as creative and high quality as you provide English-speaking markets, or lose our business.
Locaria, emphasises the importance of providing all markets with an equally tailored message, and how this ultimately drives acquisition, conversion and retention.
According to Locaria, “You can have it all’!
As soon as clients began to see impact in overseas markets and trust the process, they wanted more.
While hugely exciting for all involved, those in charge of delivering the content began to sweat a little. Favourite project management tropes like “the iron triangle of speed, quality and cost” started to be mentioned and costs started rising, challenging client budgets.
Enter tech. Working with clients, Locaria has built out innovative processes leveraging tech solutions from the language and digital sectors to be able to pump out a myriad of ads at speed, without sacrificing quality or blowing the budget.
By layering all these innovations with a proprietary cloud-based content intelligence platform, Locate, they are able to bring together all participants in the briefing, creation, adaptation, QA and activation processes together in a seamless workflow.
Improvements in visual and audio production technology in recent years have already challenged previous models and allowed many one-man-band new entrants into the production industry. New business models have been tried and tested, where brands have tried to short- cut workflows and work directly with individual content creators. For example, Netflix launched its Hermes portal to work directly with individual dubbing and subtitling resources.
The COVID-19 pandemic has further expedited the boom in home studios. It is now possible to create great content without travelling to studios, with just a relatively small investment in technology and soundproofing. This is particularly the case for marketing content which is often short-form and increasingly consumed by a mobile device, where the audiovisual experience of the consumer is already limited by the screen and speakers on their device.
In addition, some marketers have seized on the opportunity to increase the authenticity of their content by leveraging “homemade” content. This has ranged from Domino’s hiring ads, filmed with real staff via zoom, to Eva Longoria dying her hair and filming it with her smartphone at home for L’Oréal.
In addition, user-generated content (UGC) is now a key part of marketing strategy, for brands such as Apple, Go-Pro, Coca-Cola and H&M, as recent studies have shown that 90% of users trust UGC to support their purchase decisions. Apple’s #shotoniphone campaign is a great example of a truly global, cross- channel campaign, where UGC was leveraged to demonstrate the quality of its products.
While advances in technology have facilitated many innovations in production workflow and allowed advertisers an increasingly large pool of human talent to draw upon, expert technical resources are still required to fully activate the campaigns at scale. UGC ads have particularly captured the mood of the pandemic and increased the brand’s authenticity with consumers, but also required skilled production expertise before being of suitable quality to go into activation.
The market for talent is catching up with the need for new resources, but in many cases, agencies still need to provide a degree of training to develop combined skill sets. It takes an open-minded approach to recruitment, training and performance management to develop the right combination of skills and be able to guarantee quality outputs.
And of course, once the talent pool has been developed, retaining them and the knowledge they have gained is extremely important to maintain brand intimacy and consistency. Netflix quickly realised onboarding and managing so many individual vendors was an industry they didn’t want to keep in-house.
From a performance marketing perspective, the careful acquisition and management of appropriately skilled talent to produce ad content at speed and at quality has been a key tool when scaling globally. Bringing together previously siloed marketing and copywriting/ localisation skill sets has enabled dramatic improvements in both efficiency and efficacy. This has required an understanding of what skills are needed and how you nurture them for clients.
It is key to bring all talent into the team with the right attitude and skills, so Locaria have worked with performance-focused values for their sourcing processes. They also have extensive training, client feedback and network benefits to ensure strong relationships for client partners.
As Locaria sees it, “humans are still at the centre of content production and our most valuable resource, so it’s key we treat them well”.
As global content production needs to increase, along with expansion into new markets and new channels, a range of solutions is available to support brands and ensure performance.
Locaria offers an end-to-end suite of services that extend from research and insights, through production and adaptation, into activation and optimisation. Performance Production brings learnings from the exponential growth in digital performance media to the wider content production space, ensuring quality, speed, scale and effectiveness.
You can download the report HERE.