YouTube Reportedly Paying Podcasters To Film Their Shows

YouTube is offering podcasters up to $300,000 to film their podcast shows, according to Bloomberg and as reported by The Verge.

Host to several popular podcasts itself, like the H3 Podcast and Full Send Podcast, YouTube is offering individual podcast shows $50,000 and podcast networks up to $300,000 to potentially fund video episodes and other video-based content.

YouTube has been leaning into its podcast business for a while now. From 2018 to 2019, popular YouTubers like Emma Chamberlain and Logan Paul launched podcasts, some of which the creators turned into video versions on their dedicated channels.

In September 2021, YouTube hired Kai Chuk as director of podcasting and next-gen media partnerships. Around the same time, YouTube launched its own podcast called The Upload: The Rise of the Creator Economy,” to spotlight creators and behind-the-scenes moments of their thriving businesses.

Shortly after, it started letting all Canadian users listen to audio without having the app open, a feature only YouTube Premium subscribers could access previously.

Couple these efforts with the growing popularity of music video streaming on YouTube. As of November 2020, YouTube’s global head of music Lyor Cohen said that more than 2 billion people visit YouTube each month to experience music and that YouTube Music has more than 70 million official tracks — more than any other music service.

According to a study from Futuri Media and the University of Florida, YouTube is ahead of major podcast players in certain markets, with 43 percent of monthly podcast listeners saying they went to YouTube for podcasts from 2018 to 2019, ahead of both Apple (34 percent) and Spotify (23 percent). 

As podcast usage in the US grows, YouTube could be looking to capture more of this audio-only audience in a new way. In 2021, eMarketer predicted 40 percent of US internet users would listen to a podcast at least once per month. And last year, for the first time, more than half of all digital audio listeners in the US would become podcast listeners, the firm forecasted.

How Top Brands Are Winning At TikTok

In December 2021, TikTok surpassed Snapchat and Twitter in global user numbers, making it the world’s third-largest social network. The app is on track to count 775 million monthly users in 2022. As TikTok continues its swift ascension, marketers and brands still have a lot to learn about what does and doesn’t work as they test the waters and tweak their strategies to reach its young user base.

For its latest report, InVideo analyzed more than 300 brands and 650 videos to compile the best practices TikTok marketers should follow this year. Ahead see which of the most valuable brands had a presence on the app, their posting cadence, the style, tone, and metrics of their best performing videos, as well as findings on how Amazon and Samsung are getting it right.

First, here are some key TikTok stats to keep in mind in 2022:

  • Half of the top brands have no TikTok presence, including Google, Facebook, YouTube and Ikea. Some of them do have official TikTok accounts but haven’t posted any content yet.
  • The best-performing TikTok brands post 3.52 times per week on average.
  • A 1 percent increase in followers corresponds to a 0.65 percent increase in average views per post.
  • 80 percent of the top videos had music, with upbeat songs being the most popular music choice by far.
  • Tech, food and gaming brands have the highest average views per video.
  • Among the brands studied, So Satisfying, Samsung, TikTok, Chevrolet and Flighthouse were the five most popular brands in terms of average views per video.
  • Five of the top 10 videos were created by TikTok itself.
  • 90 percent of the videos studied had product placement, while 30 percent included humor.
  • About 25 percent of the videos featured a celebrity or an influencer.
  • Videos promoting brand events drew nearly 20 million views, while those featuring some form of sexuality or animals generated over 10 million views.
  • Creative videos with animations and graphics overlays regularly draw over 11 million views per post.
  • Video descriptions were 87 characters long on average, despite TikTok’s 150 character limit.
  • Video descriptions had 3.26 hashtags on average.
  • 87.3 percent of the videos had at least one hashtag.
  • Every 100 views generate 12 engagements on average, with engagements defined as the sum of likes, comments and shares.

TikTok Brand Strategy

Of the 317 brands that InVideo analyzed, roughly half of top brands lack a presence on TikTok. This is surprising given an early presence on the platform may coincide with a substantial advantage for brands willing to take the time to produce engaging content.

TikTok Posting Strategy

TikTok’s algorithm rewards frequent and consistent posts as the best brands—those with 10,000 or more average views per post—post an average of three videos per week. InVideo reminds marketers that more isn’t always better. 

Five posts per week will rarely make much of a difference, though there are exceptions. Amazon Prime Video, for example, posts more than 40 times per week and draws an average of 1.32 million views per post and has accumulated a total of 2.2 billion views. Netflix, on the other hand, only posts 8.5 times per week with a total of 419 million views. Brands can gain a significant advantage by posting more frequently and more consistently than their competitors while staying up-to-date with video trends.

TikTok Marketing Strategy

The larger your follower count, the more likely your videos are to be liked, shared and commented on. Therefore growing your fan base on TikTok should be one of the top priorities of your channel.

InVideo found that a 1 percent increase in followers corresponds to a .65 percent increase in average views per post. The key takeaway here is that paid campaigns and giveaways that are effective in attracting followers will boost your content’s reach.

Tech, Food And Gaming Brands Are Most Popular

Yes, the industry within which you operate can have an effect on the average number of views your videos receive, but there are factors beyond this to consider. InVideo computed the average number of views each brand received on their videos and found that tech & IT, food & beverages, gaming, media, sport and nonprofits were the most popular types of brands on the platform. Cosmetics came in last of those studied, with less than 500,000 average views per video while tech & IT drew more than 2.3 million views per post.

Nevertheless, TikTok rewards creativity far more than it does anything else. Some of the most popular brands on TikTok include So Satisfying, Samsung, TikTok, Chevrolet, Flighthouse and Victoria’s Secret. If you’re looking for a brand to emulate to gain as much traction as possible, study @TikTok’s videos—whose top five most-viewed videos are among the top 10 most-viewed on the platform overall.

Music Makes The Video

Of the roughly 650 videos studied, close to 80 percent included music, with upbeat music being the most popular choice by a longshot. Be sure to add music to all of your videos and more often than not use upbeat and trending songs. Take a look at the @AldrichLandscape TikTok channel for an idea of how seemingly mundane tasks like mowing a lawn can earn 20,000 views with the right song and for an example of how a small business can make it big on the platform.

Recipe For Creating The Best Post

There’s no magic formula for getting it right on TikTok but there are some metrics to take into consideration when planning your strategy and videos, including the type of content, the mood your video evokes and video design style, to name a few.

According to InVideo’s data, brands that advertise on TikTok include one or more products in their videos 90 percent of the time. Other than products, these videos include an influencer, a celebrity, dancing, a tutorial or a conversation. About 25 percent of videos feature an influencer or celebrity with an endorsement or collaboration. 

Surprisingly, less than 4 percent of videos included a call to action – something you may want to consider adding to the end of your video  (even if you have to mask it in a tutorial) in order to gain followers, expand reach or drive traffic to your other social channels. Or you can choose to capitalize on the entertainment/information you’ve provided to viewers by asking them directly to do something that returns that value to your business, such as to like and follow.

Brand events generated the most views, followed by sexuality, animals, tutorials and celebrities, in that order, found the study. Conversations and listicles generated the least number of views of the categories studied. 

InVideo’s suggestion here is to diversify the substance of videos by showcasing your employees and putting a face to your company—something that may generate more traction considering that these videos had, on average, more than 9 million views. Don’t shy away from publicizing your upcoming events or products on the platform, because according to the research, viewers love watching these kinds of posts. 

One of the goals of a TikTok marketing strategy is to have your audience associate your brand with positive emotions and to encourage them to do something, e.g., buy, follow, participate, etc. In this context, music can help a brand elicit a specific mood needed for its video. Just be sure to evoke a mood that matches your product and brand identity.

Of those studied, 30 percent of videos tried to be funny, over 15 percent tried to be suspenseful, and over 10 percent tried to be adventurous. In total, those that included humor generated the most views (over 8 million on average), followed by relaxing videos, adventurous videos and suspenseful videos (in that order).

The final element InVideo studied is visual design. The company studied some of the basic types of design styles used on TikTok and how well they do in practice. It found that on-screen text was used more than half of the time, followed far behind by animation, emojis and graphic overlay.

On-screen text was the most-used style given it’s an effective way to add important information like side notes, commentary, context, a call to action or a promotion code.

Top Trends Of 2022

Another way to win at TikTok is to stay up to date with trends going viral on the platform. Some popular challenges at the moment include the Vogue challenge, picture trend, album cover challenge, turning your DMs into quotes, and the “What I mean when I say I’m from” trend.

Using Creativity To Support A Nation With Fabio Baracho And Alex Gershberg

Our guests for this episode are Fabio Baracho, vice president of marketing, and Alejandro “Alex” Gershberg, marketing director at Grupo Modelo, part of Anheuser-Busch InBev, the largest brewery in Mexico.

In this episode, Fabio, Alex, and I discuss Grupo Modelo’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Mexico. A huge part of this response was envisioning “The Match of the Ages” which occurred when the world felt most isolated and cultural gatherings came to a halt.

Soccer is a Mexican cultural icon. Despite any division the country faces, soccer is the great unifier. But during the pandemic, all games were canceled for more than 60 days. As a way to reunite the country and give back to the people, Grupo Modelo created a brand new 90-minute soccer game from scratch with the country’s two biggest rivals using 70 years’ worth of historical footage.

The game, which aired at zero cost on all major networks, became the highest earned media in the history of the brand. The initiative, El Classico de la Historia, became the first Mexican brand to win a Titanium Lion in the history of the Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity for Corona brand.

Listen to the full conversation as they discuss the process behind creating the soccer game and how they used the talent and creativity of their employees to help a nation.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How data can personalize creativity
  • When creativity can support a nation
  • Why you should reimagine entertainment

Key Highlights

  • [02:02] How Alex ended up in marketing
  • [03:44] Fabio’s path to marketing
  • [05:44] The role of VP of Marketing
  • [07:02] The role of Marketing Director
  • [08:22] Connecting creativity and data
  • [10:54] The essence of Grupo Modelo
  • [13:29] How Grupo Model supported Mexicans during the pandemic
  • [19:33] Envisioning the “Match of the Ages”
  • [22:54] Building the equivalent of a virtual Super Bowl
  • [29:33] Bringing brands together to support a nation
  • [36:01] Creating a sense of pride for the Mexican people
  • [40:31] An experience that makes Fabio who he is today
  • [42:24] An experience that makes Alex who he is today
  • [44:52] A topic marketers should be learning more about
  • [49:31] The threats and opportunities facing marketers

Resources Mentioned:

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Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Game Industry Insights That Matter To Marketers

Video games transcend race, gender, age and political affiliation—something we’re more aware of now than ever before. The COVID-19 pandemic enticed individuals from all walks of life into the world of gaming as a form of comfort, stress relief and joy, creating a world they might not have experienced since childhood. 

Now, there are roughly 227 million American video game players with an ever-increasing portion of them turning to gaming for connection. More than 75 percent of gamers play video games with others at least once per week whereas last year that figure was closer to 66 percent. Additionally, 74 percent of parents actually play games with their children at least once per week, up from 55 percent in 2020.

The Entertainment Software Association’s (ESA) 2021 Essential Facts About the Video Game Industry includes insights about the playing habits and attitudes of 4,000 American gamers ages 18 and over based on a survey it conducted in February 2021. Here are the report’s key takeaways.

Video Game Player Community

Sixty-seven percent of Americans over the age of 18 and 76 percent under 18 play video games. The average age for a gamer is 31 years old as 80 percent of players are over 18. Here’s a more detailed breakdown:

  • 20 percent under 18
  • 38 percent between 18 and 34
  • 14 percent between 35 and 44
  • 12 percent between 45 and 54
  • Nine percent between 55 and 64
  • Seven percent 65 and up

Across all players and ages, 55 percent are male and 45 percent are female. As for ethnicity, 73 percent are white, 9 percent are Hispanic, 8 percent are black and six percent are Asian or Pacific Islander. These stats aren’t completely out of line with the overall demographic of the US. Of those the ESA surveyed, 87 percent agree that gamers are a diverse group of people.

Video Games And COVID

Video games provided Americans with a welcome respite from the struggles brought on by COVID-19. Here are some statistics the ESA found in the intersection between video games and the pandemic:

  • 55 percent of players played more during the pandemic
  • 90 percent reported being likely to continue playing after social distancing is no longer required
  • 55 percent reported video games having provided them with stress relief during the pandemic
  • 48 percent reported video games having provided them with a distraction during the pandemic
  • 71 percent of parents said that video games have provided them with a “much-needed” break from their child
  • 66 percent of parents agreed that video games made the transition to distance learning easier
  • 70 percent of parents reported allowing their children to do more when it comes to video games during the pandemic
  • 59 percent of parents said their child used education games—especially math—during the pandemic with 63 percent of them labeling those games very or extremely effective

Benefits Of Play

Americans weren’t only using video games to reduce stress during the pandemic, but also turned to them as a way to connect and be entertained. Of the reasons studied, unwinding, relaxing and decompressing was the one option cited most frequently (66 percent); followed by filling time while taking a break, waiting or commuting (52 percent); to escape and be highly entertained (51 percent) and to spend time alone (48 percent).

Eighty-nine percent of respondents said that video games have the ability to bring together people from different walks of life—whether that be culture, race, age, political affiliation or physical abilities. Additionally, the same percentage of people stated that video games create accessible experiences for people with different abilities.

Overall, the study points to the contention that video gameplay has a positive impact on gamers’ lives:

  • 90 percent of players experience joy through video games
  • 87 percent of players experience mental stimulation through video games
  • 87 percent of players experience stress-relief through video games
  • 81 percent of players develop teamwork and collaboration skills through video games

Seventy-seven percent of gamers play with others online or in-person at least once per week – up from 65 percent in 2020. On average, players spend 7.5 hours per week playing online and 4.5 hours per week playing in-person with others. Of those that share in the game-playing experience, 53 percent play with friends, 31 percent with partners, 31 percent with other family members, 23 percent with a team or “online-only” friends and 6 percent with parents.

One of the main benefits of video gameplay is its ability to introduce us to new friendships or relationships, as 78 percent of survey respondents reported. Fifty-four percent of gamers have actually met people they wouldn’t have otherwise met as 42 percent have made a good friend, spouse or significant other through video games. Additionally, 53 percent said that video games have helped them stay connected to friends and family.

Player Habits And Preferences

  • Devices used for video gameplay:
    • 57 percent smartphone
    • 46 percent game console
    • 42 percent PC
  • Hours spent playing per week:
    • 29 percent 1-3 hours
    • 77 percent 3+ hours
    • 51 percent 7+ hours
  • Most popular genres played regularly:
    • 63 percent casual (e.g., Tetris, Solitaire)
    • 39 percent action (e.g., GTA, Super Mario Odyssey)
    • 39 percent shooter (e.g., COD, Fortnite)
    • 37 percent racing (e.g., Need for Speed, Forza)
    • 33 percent family (e.g., Super Mario Party, Just Dance)
    • 31 percent adventure (e.g., Uncharted, Resident Evil)

Parents, Families And Video Games

For the majority of American families, video games are a family affair. Parents employ a combination of household rules, parental controls and ratings to determine the right balance for their children. Among parents with children who play regularly, 86 percent are aware of the ESRB (Entertainment Software Rating Board) ratings, 76 percent use them regularly and 82 percent use parental control settings on at least one of their child’s gaming devices. 

Most parents have household rules for video games:

  • 90 percent require their children to ask for permission before making any purchase with real money within a game
  • 83 percent require their children to ask for permission before playing
  • 78 percent have screen time rules relating either to time of day or duration of play
  • 77 percent require their children to ask for permission before communicating with others online

As much as 74 percent of parents play games with their children at least weekly in 2021 – up from 55 percent in 2020. Of the reasons cited for playing with their children, the top three were for fun (57 percent), to socialize (54 percent) and to spend time together (53 percent). 

Video games provide families with more than just fun; Americans believe that they can be educational (80 percent), improve cognitive skills (75 percent), improve creative skills (68 percent) and teach children how to win and lose in a healthy way (53 percent).

Profiles Of Players

Men and women between ages 18 and 34 play video games to escape and to be entertained (56 percent) as more women than men report playing for the purpose of unwinding. The majority of this demographic play on console (58 percent), with others (89 percent) and play for more than 3 hours per week (80 percent). Additionally, 53 percent play casual games, 53 percent play shooter games and 51 percent play action games.

Men and women between ages 35 and 44 most commonly play with their children (56 percent) and friends (45 percent). The majority of this demographic play on their smartphones (64 percent), with others (81 percent) and play for more than 3 hours per week (76 percent). Additionally, 66 percent play casual games, 48 percent play racing games and 47 percent play action games.

On average, men between ages 45 and 54 spend over 10 hours per week playing with others or online while women in this age group spend over 11 hours per week doing so. 

The majority of this demographic play on their smartphones (59 percent), with others (68 percent) and play for more than 3 hours per week (75 percent). Additionally, 72 percent play casual games, 36 percent play arcade games like Pac-Man and Pinball FX3 and 31 percent play action games.

Netflix Promotes Marian Lee To Chief Marketing Officer After Bozoma Saint John Exits

This week in leadership updates, Marian Lee is promoted to Netflix chief marketing officer after Bozoma Saint John steps down, Visa names Frank Cooper III its new global chief marketing officer, AMC appoints Eliot Hamlisch executive vice president and chief marketing officer, and more.

Netflix Names Marian Lee Chief Marketing Officer After Bozoma Saint John Exits

After less than two years as Netflix’s chief marketing officer, Bozoma Saint John is stepping down.

The streaming giant has promoted Marian Lee, current Netflix vice president of marketing in the US and Canada, to fill the role.

Prior to Netflix, Lee was at Spotify for eight years and also held marketing roles at J. Crew and Condé Nast.

Visa Taps Frank Cooper III As Global Chief Marketing Officer

Frank Cooper III has been named Visa’s new global chief marketing officer, reports Wall Street Journal.

Cooper joins Visa from BlackRock where he was a senior managing director and global chief marketing officer. He replaces former Visa chief marketing officer Lynne Biggar who stepped down last month.

Before BlackRock, Cooper was BuzzFeed’s chief marketing and creative officer as well as chief marketing officer of global consumer engagement for PepsiCo’s global beverage group.

AMC Hires Eliot Hamlisch As Executive Vice President And Chief Marketing Officer

After an extensive national search, AMC has tapped Eliot Hamlisch as executive vice president and chief marketing officer, according to Deadline.

With previous roles at American Express, Deloitte and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Hamlisch brings more than 15 years of marketing experience to AMC.

Most recently, Hamlisch served as executive vice president of loyalty and revenue optimization for Wyndham Hotels & Resorts.

Blue Apron Appoints Amit Shah To Board Of Directors

Amit Shah, former president and chief marketing officer of, has been named to Blue Apron’s board of directors.

Before joining, Shah held a variety of strategy, growth and product roles after beginning his career at McKinsey & Company. He has served on the Mobile Marketing Association’s North America Board of Directors and Executive Committee since 2013 and has provided leadership counsel to tech companies through the Google Retail Advisory Committee and Twilio Customer Advisory Panel.

In 2019, the Consumer Goods Institute awarded Shah “CMO of the Year” in the US.

Pandora’s Chief Marketing Officer Carla Liuni Steps Down

Carla Liuni has left her post as chief marketing officer of Pandora, the Copenhagen-based jewelry company, after two years in the role.

Pandora chief executive officer Alexander Lacik will absorb the jeweler’s marketing executive position.

Blurred Lines At MWC 2022: Augmented Reality In Everyday Life

Augmented reality has the ability to compile tons of data from digital devices and transform it into experiences people can view and interact with in the physical world. So far, the method has helped brands deepen experiences for sports fans, bring dance challenges to life and allow shoppers to try on makeup with their phones.

Already broad, the applications for AR are quickly expanding. At MWC Barcelona’s panel entitled “Blurred Lines: Augmented Reality in Everyday Life,” leaders from Avegant, Holo-Light, VMware and more discussed how AR can be used to improve safety, increase efficiency and deliver real business results.

Right now, most AR uses cases that operate via a network have to be done in a certain place and require a huge network infrastructure. Virtual reality and AR startup Holo-Light is working on overcoming this to increase the tech’s mobility and performance so that AR can be used anywhere, according to Holo-Light GmbH head of technology Philipp Landgraf. 

In December, Holo-Light announced it was building XRnow, the first immersive streaming platform designed for mass adoption of AR and VR applications on mobile devices. Like Netflix for AR and VR, the platform utilizes the power of the cloud to enable high-performance processing, on-demand access and global availability of AR and VR experiences.

The platform will allow companies to scale AR and VR use cases and showcase services and products in new ways. The example Landgraf gave is selling a car. Auto companies won’t always have all their models available in inventory but as AR becomes more developed, ray tracing—an intuitive image generation method—and algorithms can be used to create photo-realistic films showcasing a breadth of car models.

BMW already leverages Holo-Light’s AR engineering software 3S Pro to speed up design processes—from individual vehicle sections through complex production stages—by as much as 12 months. The regular computing power of mobile AR devices wouldn’t be able to power this use case because the individual parts of a car are detailed, complex and large in file size. But with the integration of Holo-Light’s in-house products AR3S and ISAR SDK (Interactive Streaming for Augmented Reality), BMW can visualize its 3D CAD (computer-aided design) models in very high quality and without any data preparation.

British telecom company BT has also has been participating in a few mixed reality projects lately, according to the company’s principal manager of mobile and 5G research team, Maria Cuevos. In February, it helped debut The Green Planet AR Experience, created by Factory 42 with BBC Studios. Upon entry, guests are given a mobile phone that helps immersive them in six plant worlds powered by BT’s mobile network EE 5G. David Attenborough, who’s in 3D hologram form, guides them through the journey.

“The biggest learning for us is to put [AR] in the hands of the people and see how they use it and how they experience the whole thing,” said Cuevos.

Just like smartphones and watches, AR devices will go through several iterations. Chief executive and founder Edward Tang’s startup Avegant creates display engines, or tiny projectors, for AR glasses that will power the next generation of these consumer glasses, he said. 

To increase consumer adoption of AR wearables, Tang emphasized the importance of sizing down AR glasses and getting them to feel exactly like everyday eyewear. Avegant’s current projector, he added, is smaller than the width of a pencil which enables the company to produce stylish and functional glasses while adding intelligence into the displays.

“The interest level and investments that we’re seeing from all the major consumer players is an order of magnitude above what we’ve seen even just a couple [of] years ago. We’re seeing a lot more momentum and the technologies are getting to a point where we can really check a lot of the boxes it’s going to take to make successful consumer products,” said Tang.

He believes the work being done with Meta Oculus, Android’s ARCore and iOS’ ARKit development kits, as well as the sensor tech being used in smartphones, are all a precursor for what’s to come on wearable type devices.

Looking ahead, Tang said it’s important industry players don’t try cramming a phone or computer experience into a pair of AR glasses. Instead, they should consider the uses cases for the glasses’ sensors and contextual information. Some of the uses he envisions for AR glasses include drawing a line on the ground while giving someone directions, leaving a restaurant review while looking at the restaurant and the glasses knowing its wearer wants to buy a product just by looking at it. 

From VMware, product line marketing manager Jessie Stoks said the biggest application for VR head-mounted wearables the company is seeing is for front-line workers including shift-based and service workers. Headsets deliver content hands-free in real-time to the worker, which is especially helpful for those in hazardous environments where quick access to a mobile device isn’t feasible, she said.

AR and VR headsets are also providing uninterrupted concentration to assembly line workers who may have a workstation but experience a lot of back and forth between the computer and whatever they’re working on. The result is greater productivity and less room for error, noted Stoks. These headsets are also streamlining remote training and collaboration as it’s easier to have the same view as the worker rather than guide them through emails or fly them out for training.

Trend Set: Long-Form Video, 2022 Culture Rising Report

Ayzenberg Junior Strategist Ashley Otah recounts this week’s trends.

Culture Rising: 2022 Trends Report

The future is bright. Connection, culture, and creativity are standouts from the Culture Rising: 2022 Trends Report. As the world looks on, grappling with the past, understanding the present, and generating the future is top of mind. Connections look exceedingly different as people reimagine what love looks like. Whether it is a virtual community, in-person interaction, and everything in between, the world is looking to build relationships flexibly but meaningfully. Whether it is creator culture, work culture, or the intercultural backgrounds many come from, the world is colliding in ways it never has before. Thinking globally and making tremendous strides locally is reshaping what culture means across the board. Lastly, creativity is bursting at the seams in every avenue of life. Through sounds, visuals, audio, and other outlets, creativity through collaboration is becoming a norm that connects people in and beyond the mobile-first world. The changes in culture are a look into what is next for everyone’s lives.

Hair Rollers

The hottest in hair care. For years, items like the $550 Dyson Airwrap, Drybar Blow-Dryer brush, and even one-step hairdryers and volumizers have crept up on the scene and become front runners in hair routines. Airwraps and the like have been on wishlists for many and are often sold out. Most recently, however, consumers are going back to the basics. Turning to tried and true ways through devices like curling and Flexi rods have given others without the opportunity to pounce on high-priced items to get the voluminous looks they have been looking for. Although staples in specific communities, the seen-on-social to added to cart and purchased pathway continues to broaden globally. The ability to showcase value-add, especially on platforms with short-form content, is helping brands carve out new spaces for themselves.


As the Super Bowl and Olympics round out, game-changing insights have arisen. Broadcast TV continues to be the top outlet for the Super bowl, and streaming has become the top dog for the Olympics. The juxtaposition highlights the shifting desires and consumption habits of viewers. In a fragmented media landscape, it has become clear one medium is not enough; reaching second-screening audiences is paramount.

Subscription Services

Taco time. Taco’s Lover’s Pass, expanded nationally in January, has resulted in a 20% increase in Taco Bell’s rewards membership. The program can be accessed through the brand’s app and is a subscription-based model. The rise of subscription services is not new but has become an essential strategy for food companies across the country. Rerouting consumers to in-app experiences and providing incentives bolsters brand affinity and adds a digital spin to loyalty programs that feel native to newer audiences.

Long-form Video Content

The long haul. Long-form content has been labeled a thing of the past, but brands like TikTok have it in their sights. Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts have given users new ways to create and cash out in a short time, but mixed-model positions itself as the future. For years, brands have navigated the video formats and adjusted to consumer viewing habits. Most recently, TikTok is diving into extended video length to increase market share and rival platforms like YouTube with its longer videos and scale of viewership. As brands adapt, capturing consumers’ attention in a fast-paced environment will be an ever-evolving feat.

MWC 2022: Maximizing The Social And Economic Impact Of Mobile Connectivity

Despite the progress made in mobile connectivity, the pandemic widened the digital divide between the haves and have-nots. Today 450 million people, or 6 percent of the world’s population, don’t have a way of connecting to a mobile device, an issue commonly referred to as the coverage gap. And about 3 billion people do have access to mobile broadband networks yet still aren’t connected, a phenomenon known as the usage gap. Closing this usage gap will be key to achieving digital inclusion. 

During a panel on day one of MWC Barcelona, leaders from UNDP, Orange, GMSA and EY explored the current state of digital inclusion and why C-suite buy-in, the development of standard industry metrics and a multi-stakeholder approach are all needed to bridge the digital divide and accelerate the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as established by the United National General Assembly in 2015.

The mobile industry has long been recognized as a key enabler of social and economic improvement. Network coverage globally was expanded to more than a billion additional people between 2015 and 2019, as noted by the panel’s moderator Adrian Baschnonga, lead analyst for global telecommunications at EY. In addition, the mobile industry has achieved half of its potential contribution across 17 SDGs, up from 33 percent in 2015.

Yet connectivity and the availability of infrastructure alone don’t guarantee device and service affordability, digital literacy and technology skills, all of which can help increase levels of digital inclusion. With so many basic services necessary for everyday living available online like public transformation, health and education, it’s becoming as vital to be digitally literate as it is to know how to read and write, according to Antoine de Clerck, Orange societal responsibility animation director of CSR.

“Promoting more digital is simply a question of sustainability. We cannot be sustainable in the long term if half of the world’s population is excluded from using these basic services. It’s in our core business to make sure we operate in an inclusive way,” said de Clerck.

In Europe, a 24 percent usage gap exists, which means people who are connected and who might even use a smartphone still aren’t using digital services such as looking for a job online or buying a train ticket online, said de Clerck.

One way Orange is bringing affordable devices and skills to people is through the opening of digital centers in every country in which it operates. De Clerck notes that many of its employees volunteer at these centers to provide skills to vulnerable people which provides a lot of value to Orange employees.

At the start of the pandemic, about 3.7 billion people, or 45 percent of the global population, were unconnected in the world, ITU data shows. In the last couple of years, that figure dropped by another 800 million people. While that signals progress, 2.9 billion people, or a third of the world’s population, remain without access to the internet. Reasons for this include a lack of broadband coverage or other barriers such as a lack of awareness of the internet and its benefits, lack of perceived relevance and safety and security concerns.

Robert Opp, UNDP chief digital officer, said he and his team have started to think beyond matters of connectivity and infrastructure to look at the digital divide in a more holistic way.

“If we’re going to achieve the SDGs and get back on track to the SDGs—because they all took a hit as a result of COVID—we’re going to need to bridge the digital divide. It needs to be a holistic, multi-sectorial approach. It needs to be one that has people at the center,” Opp said.

During the course of just one year, UNDP assisted 82 countries to adopt over 580 digital solutions in response to the pandemic. Recently it released a new, three-pronged digital strategy that aims to help countries reap the benefits of digital technology.

As GSMA has observed, environmental, social and governance (ESG) is becoming a criterion at the heart of decision-making for investors, said Alix Jagueneau, GSMA head of external affairs and industry purpose.

“I don’t think the investor communities fully understand what’s critical to this industry, so there’s probably a lot of education and awareness-raising to be done . . . Metrics are only a means to an end, it’s not just for reporting purposes. The more we can start talking about that and engage in those discussions, the more it’s going to lead to a change,” said Jagueneau.

The World Economic Forum’s call for companies to disclose metrics beyond financial performance in its book Stakeholder Capitalism offers the mobile industry guidance on how to begin implementing its own measurement tools.  

Jagueneau added that GSMA has started to work with a group of operators with a focus on three areas: digital inclusion, e-waste to decarbonize the industry and digital human rights to ensure privacy, freedom of expression and child online safety.

What digital inclusion still lacks are standardized metrics. Opp said UNDP has started collecting best practices and examples of what is and isn’t working around how businesses can put SDG-related impact at the core of their strategy in ESG.

De Clerck echoed that sentiment, noting that the usage gap can’t be addressed by a single company. In the same way companies have used climate change as a north star metric, he calls on mobile operators to unify their work to create a standard metric for measuring digital inclusion.

In addition to engaging resources to quantify digital inclusion efforts, getting buy-in from the C-suite to make ESG a core business strategy will be critical for maximizing the social and economic impact of mobile connectivity, said Jagueneau.

The 7 Global Marketing Trends You Need To Know With Deloitte’s Jennifer Veenstra

Jennifer Veenstra is the Executive Leader of the Deloitte Global CMO Program.

In this episode, Jennifer and I discuss the Global CMO program, what it includes, as well as the other types of programs Deloitte offers to up-and-coming chief marketing officers. As a part of her role, Jennifer helped conduct Deloitte’s 2022 Global Marketing Trends Report where they discovered seven key trends marketers should pay attention to going into the new year. During the conversation, Jennifer helps describe their findings and how each of the seven trends can impact marketers’ strategies today.

Later in the episode, Jennifer and I dig deep into three of them: building the intelligent creative engine, designing a human-first data experience, and elevating the hybrid experience. Listen to the full episode to learn why they are so important.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • What global marketing trends you should pay attention to
  • Balancing human-first with data mining
  • Creating a cohesive customer experience

Key Highlights

  • [01:40] Jennifer was a professional shredder
  • [02:54] Jennifer’s path to Deloitte
  • [04:20] What is Deloitte’s CMO program
  • [06:12] Seven global marketing trends to watch
  • [10:34] Building the intelligent creative engine
  • [15:32] Designing a human-first data experience
  • [20:00] Elevating the hybrid experience
  • [22:22] Comparing experiences across industries
  • [24:28] An experience that defines Jennifer
  • [26:31] Jennifer’s advice to her younger self
  • [27:05] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [28:09] The brands and causes Jennifer follows
  • [29:12] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned:

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Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart:

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

MWC 2022: The Connectivity Challenges Of Building The Metaverse

Meta (formerly Facebook) has invested billions in connectivity worldwide over the last decade and recently announced that its subsea cable investments in Europe and APAC could potentially contribute to over half a trillion USD in additional gross domestic product by 2025.

Now the company is tackling the connectivity challenges in reimagining network infrastructure to support the metaverse, Meta vice president Dan Rabinovitsj said in a blog. Delivering virtual experiences in the metaverse will require innovations in fields like hybrid local and remote real-time rendering, video compression, edge computing, cross-layer visibility, spectrum advocacy, network optimizations, improved latency between devices and within radio access networks (RANs) and more.

Meta plans to build several prototypes of the metaverse to fully understand how to blend virtual content with people’s physical worlds. In the meantime, it’s looking for collaborators to help fully realize its metaverse vision. Rabinovitsj writes:

“Over the next decade, we hope the metaverse will reach a billion people around the world, host hundreds of billions of dollars of digital commerce, and support millions of jobs for creators and developers. This opportunity calls for vast enhancements in capacity and fundamental shifts in how networks are architected and deployed, as well as industry-wide collaboration—from tech companies to mobile operators, service providers, policymakers, and more—to prepare for the metaverse.”

First up, Rabinovitsj explains how Meta has to reduce latency so that complex graphical scenes in the metaverse don’t take hours to download over current networks. To meet the tight latency constraints, the company sees remote rendering over edge cloud, or some form of hybrid between local and remote rendering, playing a greater role in the near future.

 “Enabling remote rendering will require both fixed and mobile networks to be rearchitected to create compute resources at a continuum of distances to end-users,” said Rabinovitsj.

Another challenge that lies ahead is providing consistent quality immersive experiences. A head-mounted display sitting close to the eyes will require retina-grade resolutions of much larger magnitude than a standard smartphone screen. To solve this issue, innovations across the hardware and software stack “as well as revolutionary improvements in network throughput,” will be needed, according to Rabinovitsj.

At Mobile World Congress (MWC) Barcelona, Meta said it plans to collaborate with the Telecom Infra Project (TIP) and partners to define the performance requirements for delivering great end-user experiences in the metaverse.

Meta is working with Telefónica to create a Metaverse Innovation Hub in Madrid where local startups and developers can access a “groundbreaking 5G laboratory.” There they’ll be able to utilize a metaverse end-to-end testbed on Meta and Telefónica’s network infrastructure and equipment, plus benefit from Telefónica’s open innovation ecosystem and Meta’s engineering resources.

Also at MWC, HTC chairwoman Cher Wang unveiled what a day in the life of the company’s metaverse world Viveverse—which will utilize HTC’s Vive virtual reality (VR) headsets—would look like. Viveverse, she said, would be a safe and secure space where kids and adults alike could customize, collaborate and have fun doing things like work out at the gym and go to virtual concerts.

In addition, HTC Vive debuted Vive Guardian, a new privacy and safety feature that lets parents limit access to apps and purchases while in-headset.