Video Essentials

Be a Real-Time Marketer and Join the Conversation, Says Digitas

Get your brand in the conversation, and hurry!

This week was newfront week in New York City, where digital video companies like AOL and Yahoo present their best new shows to advertisers. The Digitas NewFront — the original newfront conference — was again the heart of the week. While other companies presented strong new content, Digitas offered lessons for doing more with that content. Tell stories and make them sharable, presenters urged. Learn to harness those stories.

We spoke with Jordan Bitterman, Digitas’s senior vice president for North America, and asked him to explain the conference’s theme: Your brand is alive. It means being a real-time marketer.

DigitasNewFront2013“It’s important for marketers to really be listening if not in real-time, certainly very soon after,” Bitterman said. “We have a phrase we use called ‘relevance has a deadline,’ and what’s interesting today to consumers is gone tomorrow. So, if you’re going to insert yourself into the conversation, if you’re going to create content that users want to participate with, it’s got to happen now.”

For marketers looking to do more with online video, whether that means creating video or sponsoring branded entertainment, Bitterman said that food, fashion, sports (not just league sports, but also adrenaline sports), and how-to were all excellent categories for reaching the consumer.

Usually, the Digitas NewFront is stuffed with celebrities pitching projects and giving first-hand lessons. This year the conference stuck with executives and technology leaders. Here’s why:

“This year has all been about the context,” Bitterman explained. “For five years, we’ve put on an event that’s been about the content. As the industry has picked up the newfront, it’s become a big industry event. For Digitas, we really felt we had to pivot a bit and for us this year it’s about the context around the content.”

For more from Jordan Bitterman, including how marketers can improve their results with online video, watch the full interview below.


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