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Our new guest editor partnerships will feature viewpoints from key industry leaders. Here, our first-ever guest editor, Jon Stimmel, chief investment officer at UM, shares what’s top of mind for him and what he’s been reading on Think with Google.

As the Super Bowl rolls around each year, it signals the beginning of a new year for brands. The clock starts over, and in the momentum after the game, I find myself thinking about what opportunities are ahead for us and our clients. Top of mind for me is how brands will be required to rethink their media and creative strategies thanks to the growth of mobile and online video.

A big part of my job is looking ahead, especially in the digital realm―and Think With Google is one of my go-to resources. I’m pleased to be the first-ever guest editor and to share some of my own thoughts on what I’ve been reading.

On mobile micro-moments…

Why this matters: Micro-moments are opportunities to connect, and at UM, we’ve adopted moments-based planning as our approach to brand-building. I’ve been thinking about how mobile is a gateway to action and a personal device (sometimes wrought with emotion), which means that brands have to think carefully about the way they engage on mobile. It’s not about "being brought to you by [insert brand]," but about the brand being the hero by providing convenience, function, or entertainment.

On video storytelling...

Why this matters: Fundamental communication strategy is built on knowing who your consumer is and how they want to be engaged. But now there are more platforms and variations within each platform that require creative flexibility to understand what works for a particular audience. The complexity is enormous, but also a great opportunity. Now you can connect in more relevant ways and make an impression instead of just buy an audience. Powerful video advertising starts with a strategy that puts storytelling at the center and invites viewers to opt-in.

On video ad effectiveness and reach...

Why this matters: Delivering impressions that are in-view, on-target, and in an interactive environment is proven to help drive consideration. At UM, we are working with partners like YouTube to help define a video neutral approach that will fill in the gaps in our existing mix where we may be over-delivering frequency to some viewers, but missing other viewers altogether (like younger demographics who don’t watch linear TV). Ultimately our objective is to create incremental reach gain with more effective target CPMs.

On live TV events...

Why this matters: Where mobile and streaming have eroded traditional live TV viewing, they have bolstered big events by establishing real-time communities or "tribes" (as we like to call them) on places like YouTube. This article from last year is something I reviewed again as awards season approached this year. The key points remain true, no matter what kind of live event. The companion opportunities available online complement the TV-viewing experience, providing brands the chance to maximize value and engage audiences on a new level. Strategies that take into account what happens online before, during, and after a big TV event will drive better results for brands.

Thanks for reading. Hope this gets you thinking about the opportunities ahead for your brand. Best, Jon Stimmel

For more of Jon’s perspective, especially as it relates to the big game, check out "The Connection Bowl: Why the Big Game Needs a New Name."