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Dripvertising - Is this the future?

I was reading an article in NY Times on how Microsoft  launched Windows Vista last week. There is an interesting point in the article that reinforced my long-held belief that we are going to see seismic shifts in marketing communications and how consumers will consume communication - "Messages in Drips" as I have termed it. It's no more the blockbuster approach of the past! It's happening as we speak and is gaining ground rapidly.

Here's the point Brian Marr of Microsoft makes in the article that reaffirms my belief:

“We wanted something very special for this audience; something very low key,” ....“This is an audience that is very cautious about marketing.”

Take a closer look at this:"low key", "cautious about marketing". That's the biggest challenge for brands today! Marketing to the ever cautious consumer!

How has Microsoft approached this problem? They launched a site called clearification.com. According to NY Times:

The campaign offers a series of “webisodes,” or stories told in short video clips. Microsoft also sponsored a performance tour for Mr. Martin and his Comedy Central special....

News of the clearification.com site was released in e-mail messages to influential blogs like laughingsquid.com and on video sites like YouTube.com. The site also lets visitors sign up for an alert to notify them when the latest webisode is released.

It's interesting how messages are being released in "drips". This creates a high level of engagement and involvement plus don't forget the buzz it creates.

I believe "drip messages" can capture the imagination of consumers. There is a lot intrigue and expectations in this kind of story-telling for brands. It's pretty media neutral and does many things a 30-sec spot can never do - dialogue, converse, respond, interact and build an experience. This is the way marketing communications is headed in the future.It's not devices like TiVo any more that pose a challenge for marketers. Brands need to break the "cautious wall" consumers have built around themselves.

The article ends with this quote"...The idea is to deliver something with depth and substance.”. Never mind the jargon -"Dripvertising" but surely this approach makes a lot of sense to me.

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