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Storytelling in seconds can lead to consumer behavioural change: Facebook’s Sandeep Bhushan

Speaking at Thumbstoppers Summit hosted by Facebook, Bhushan discusses how brands can impact users’ experiences in a few seconds and lead to a behavioural shift in consumption

With an increase in mobile penetration and brands jumping onto every single medium to engage with customers, mobile video advertising is considered to be the next wave. With attention span on the decline and video formats changing, brands now have to be dynamic and fast in communicating their messages.

Mobile videos or videos irrespective of the format have an immense influence on consumers — whether it is for community engagement, to infiltrate into pop culture or changing their consumption behaviour.

Storytelling in context of advertising, movie, or music has now become an experience that is helping brands to get to the consumers. Facebook with its 270 million user base in India is letting people share their moments, whether it is about floods or any happy occasion and evolving cultures.

For Facebook, Thumbstoppers is said to be the most effective way of storytelling for mobile video advertising. In partnership with the advertising industry, it is helping both large and small businesses to reach their consumers and drive the desired business results.

Speaking at the Thumbstoppers Summit hosted by Facebook, Sandeep Bhushan, Director and Head of India GMS, Facebook, said that this new format of storytelling in a few seconds has led to a change in terms of expression of users, which is now being democratised and changing the consumption pattern.

“It is not for the editor of the paper to decide whether your letter should go out or not. It is the user’s voice that sets the agenda. With consumption happening at a 51% faster rate and consumers grabbing the message much faster than before, we are now responsible for the changing behaviour. There had been a behavioural shift in users, the way they are scrolling through stories and making choices of what they want to see,” said Bhushan.

Bhushan said with this comes the responsibility or the challenge for businesses to engage users in a few seconds. With Thumbstoppers platform, any brand or social objective can be fulfilled he said.

Speaking on ‘Brands in Culture: Thumbstop to future proof creativity’, Sandeep Kohli, Executive Director of Personal Care, Unilever, explained how in just a few seconds, video storytelling can lead to a change in behaviour and leave an impact on consumers. And to study it, he shared how Unilever has been going out to villages to see how people are consuming media and a culture change happening at the forefront of mobile and media.

“We found out that now people want to be the part of the movements that make a difference, and they want to be limitless. This is coming alive in so much of saliency, which is a big culture shift. And for brands to be part of this change is an opportunity.”

Thumbstoppers in collaboration with the Mobile Marketing Association presented a white paper for brands, which tells the five creative best practices to be precise and apt in storytelling. In the shortest duration, with visuals, right messaging, sound and making the first frame of video count, the branding can be upfront. Bhushan said that 56% of the brand’s sales lift could be attributed to the quality of the creative, which could make or break the campaign.

“Now because consumers are working on our platforms in multiple ways, brands have the opportunity to drive communication aligned with that. Brands today are inserting themselves into stories while having a moment with consumers without just being a poster or a board. It is actually the shared responsibility that we have as a platform, advertising fraternity and the brands,” he said.

Kavita Nair, Chief Digital Transformation Officer, Vodafone, explained how mobile as a medium has helped brands increase their footprints, with a lot more experimentation.

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