Creating Cultural Contagion: "Why Now" & "How"

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The Contagion Cookbook is a framework (co-authored by Marcus Collins & Chaucer Barnes) that satisfies the conditions necessary for creating cultural contagion. This is not about going "viral," though it is a welcomed side-effect. Instead, the Cookbook is singularly focused on stimulating cultural wake. The principles of the framework enable marketers to permeate a population's consciousness and drive behavioral adoption by leveraging fundamentals of human behavior and brand behavior.

Collins + Barnes
©PoxPlus 2014

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Creating Cultural Contagion: "Why Now" & "How"

  1. CREATING CULTURAL CONTAGION: THE “WHY NOW” & THE “HOW” MARCH 27, 2014
  2. Changes Misdirect Solutions
  3. ACT I CHANGES
  4. “Admit that the waters Around you have grown And accept it that soon You'll be drenched to the bone”
  5. There was a time when brands thought creative agencies were the authority on idea generation
  6. The best mass storytellers
  7. The most effective attention-grabbers
  8. BUT EVERMORE, BRANDS ARE STARTING TO DOUBT THAT...
  9. Because new players are controlling how content is delivered
  10. Because new players are shaping how everything is evaluated
  11. Because new players are changing the way content is created
  12. This state of uncertainty and instability is only a matter of perspective
  13. We’ve seen this play out in music as well, when labels were making HUGE investments in the creation of content
  14. Long hours in big studios
  15. The hottest producers
  16. The best engineers
  17. Best directors
  18. Big budget promotions
  19. All in the hopes of people consuming content...
  20. Things were going really, really well...
  21. The industry was on rails, until things changed
  22. 1. Ubiquity of technology
  23. 2. Access to tools
  24. 3. Rapidly decreasing learning curve
  25. 4. Removal of arbitrage
  26. 5. Content parity
  27. 6. Distributors as the arbiter of value
  28. 7. Vehicles that enabled the by-pass of the traditional system
  29. All of which established new players to lead the new world order in music content
  30. As a result: ‣ Soulja Boy makes hay ‣ Justin Bieber emerges ‣ Frank Ocean breaks away ‣ Vevo is forged ‣ Beats is established
  31. Advertising is at the same point of inflection
  32. 1. Ubiquity of technology
  33. 2. Access to tools
  34. 3. Rapidly decreasing learning curve
  35. 4. Content parity
  36. 5. Removal of arbitrage
  37. 6. Distributors as the arbiter of value
  38. 7. Vehicles that enabled the by-pass of the traditional system
  39. All of which is giving rise to new models of production, distribution, and procurement
  40. As a result: ‣ OMD launches Final Front ‣ VICE Acquires Carrot; Droga 5 + WME ‣ Poptent has a Budweiser spot in the World Series ‣ Complex powers pepsi.com @ 30x content pieces/wk
  41. Inevitably altering the economic landscape of our industry as creative product becomes more and more democratized... ! and commoditized
  42. Publishers can create faster, cheaper, and more frequently
  43. With a built-in, established audience for content distribution
  44. Meanwhile, platforms are telling brands to invest heavily in content production
  45. Because “you, brand, have a content manufacturing problem on your hands”
  46. So get a publisher to help produce content for you
  47. And use our targeting tools to get the right message to the right audience
  48. While all that is happening, this is also taking place...
  49. And this...
  50. And this...
  51. And this...
  52. While the old guard carries-on with the false perception of control
  53. They commission it
  54. They conquest it
  55. Which only exposes the fact that they are simply the middleman
  56. With content creation and “ideas” in abundant supply, the command for historical premiums just don’t make economic sense
  57. And before long, brands will start asking questions like...
  58. Is this one really “better” than that one?
  59. Why would I limit my supply line artificially?
  60. Why am I spending so much money?
  61. And agencies will be stunned once brands start reevaluating scopes and FTE’s, accordingly
  62. New seating charts at “family dinner”
  63. ACT II THE MISDIRECT
  64. But while everyone’s talking content…
  65. Clients actually want ‘action’
  66. As marketers, that’s really what we want also, right?
  67. So much so that behavioral norms are established
  68. Like Corona with a lime
  69. Or propose with a diamond
  70. The focus then is to satisfy the conditions that catalyze cultural contagion
  71. ACT III THE SOLUTION
  72. “MEME”
  73. “OUT THERE”
  74. “EVERYBODY”
  75. “BUZZ”
  76. “TRENDING”
  77. “EARNED”
  78. “VIRAL”
  79. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  80. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  81. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  82. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  83. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  84. IN JUST OVER 2 WEEKS. Source: Youtube Insights 2013
  85. HOW???
  86. THE VIRAL ACCELERATION OF “THE HARLEM SHAKE” EXPOSEDPOPULATION JAN. 30TH College student creates a video FEB. 2ND A few kids recreate it in Australia & Orlando FEB. 3RD Thanks to the Super Bowl, the marketing community gets thirsty for the next big thing in social media FEB. 7 TH Maker Studio sees opportunity, creates a version, and promotes it across their Youtube channels and Twitter FEB. 8 TH EDM blogger, @EDMsnob, sees the video, notices the song, and tweets it with an @mention to Baauer Baauer, Diplo, and the Mad Decent label tweets and promotes the video FEB. 10TH Buzzfeed and College Humor sees the video picking up so they create and promote their own FEB. 13TH Brands create and share their own versions Mass adoption ensues
  87. ONE MIGHT ARGUE THIS WAS LIKE “CATCHING LIGHTENING IN A BOTTLE” WHERE DIFFERENT PARTIES TOOK ADVANTAGE OF A SERENDIPITOUS OPPORTUNITY
  88. WHAT IF I TOLD YOU THERE WAS A WAY TO PLAN FOR THIS
  89. Instead of throwing spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks
  90. BACK TO THE HARLEM SHAKE…
  91. 5 CONDITIONS CRITICAL TO THE GROUNDSWELL OF THE HARLEM SHAKE AND SEEN IN MOST PHENOMENA THAT CATCH ON IN CULTURE THE IDEA THEMATIC ITERATION PUBLIC PROGRESS BARAPPROPRIATE “MESSENGER” FERTILE CONDITIONS
  92. WE’VE SEEN THIS DYNAMIC HAPPEN IN NATURE AS WELL WHEN WE CONSIDER CONTAGION THROUGH THE EYES OF AN EPIDEMIOLOGIST THE ACTUAL VIRUS THE PERFECT CARRIER STRAND MUTATION CONTROLLED AIRSPACE TOGETHER, THESE CONDITIONS CREATE THE PERFECT RECIPE FOR CONTAGION THE RIGHT SEASON
  93. THE SAME GOES FOR A SOCIAL EPIDEMIC WHERE IDEAS, BEHAVIORS, MESSAGES, AND PRODUCTS DIFFUSE THROUGH A POPULATION TOGETHER, THESE CONDITIONS CREATE THE PERFECT RECIPE FOR CULTURAL CONTAGION CONTENT THE IDEA CREDENCE APPROPRIATE “MESSENGER” COVERS THEMATIC ITERATION CO-INCENTIVES FERTILE CONDITIONS PERCEIVED UBIQUITY CONCURRENCE
  94. THE CONTAGION COOKBOOK COLLECTIVELY, THESE PRINCIPLES ARE REFERRED TO AS CONTENT THE IDEA CREDENCE APPROPRIATE “MESSENGER” COVERS THEMATIC ITERATIONS CO-INCENTIVES FERTILE CONDITIONS CONCURRENCE PERCEIVED UBIQUITY
  95. This was a discovery, not an invention
  96. INVITED TO PARTICIPATEAUDIENCE AT THE CENTER TRUE TO BRAND SOURCE THEY TRUST PERSONALLY INVESTED SOCIALLY INCLUDED CULTURALLY LICENSED ENABLES DIVERSITY PERCEIVED UBIQUITYSETS THE TABLE COVERS CONCURRENCE THE CONTAGION COOKBOOK: CONTENT CREDENCE CO-INCENTIVES
  97. Let’s unpack this
  98. CONTENT: Objects designed to inspire action.
  99. THESE “OBJECTS” AMOUNT TO MORE THAN JUST ART + COPY BRAND COMMUNICATION IS MUCH MORE THAN MESSAGING
  100. THESE “OBJECTS” SHOULD BE BUILT TO SHARE LEVERAGING BEHAVIORAL SCIENCE TO PIN POINT CONSISTENT FACTORS OF CONTAGIOUS CONTENT 1. Generates social currency: we share things that make us look good ! 2. Evokes emotion: “this is unbelievable, you have to see this!” ! 3. Provides utility: practical value that taps into our intrinsic need to help other people ! 4. Tells a story: facts we forget, stories we retain and retell
  101. CONTENT CREATION CONTENT AUDIENCE AT THE CENTER TRUE TO BRAND CONTENT CREDENCE COVERS CO-INCENTIVES CONCURRENCE BLENDTEC: WILL IT BLEND?
  102. CREDENCE: Transferable cultural authority and/or trust.
  103. Online banner ads 33% Online video ads 36% Ads on social networks 36% Ads served in search engine results 40% TV program product placements 40% Before Movie ! Ads ! 41% Radio ! Ads! 42% Newspaper Ads 46% Billboards & outdoor Ads 47% TV Ads 47% Magazine Ads 47% Branded websites 58%Editorial Content 58% Consumer opinions posted online 70% Recommendations from people I know 92% Display ads on mobile devices 33% Emails I signed up for 50% Brand Sponsorships 47% Source: Neilsen: Consumer Trust in Online, Social and Mobile Advertising Grows - htt;p://ctap.it/peerinfluencer4 TRUST ISN’T GIVEN TO JUST ANYONE, OF COURSE WE ARE ESPECIALLY INCREDULOUS WHEN IT COMES TO MARKETING
  104. CULTURAL AUTHORITY CAN BE TRANSFERRED FROM SOURCE TO RECIPIENT SOURCES ARE AWARDED AUTHORITY CONDITIONALLY, WHEN: 1. Impartiality: apparent absence of bias ! 2. Expertise: acknowledged mastery of subject matter ! 3. Proximity: accountability via persistent relationships
  105. ESTABLISHING CREDENCE CREDENCE SOURCE THEY TRUST CULTURALLY LICENSED CONTENT CREDENCE COVERS CO-INCENTIVES CONCURRENCE THE JCER: THE GREAT SCHLEP
  106. Covers: The repeated expression of an idea through derivative works.
  107. WE KNOW THIS INTUITIVELY, THE NOTION OF DERIVATIVE WORKS ESPECIALLY AS IT PERTAINS TO MUSIC COVERS
  108. INVESTMENT IN CREATIVE DIVERSITY IS WELL SPENT AND THERE’S A LOT OF WAYS TO DO THIS 1. You create many: broad creative diversity made by the brand/agency ! 2. You commission many: invite partners to iterate upon your idea ! 3. You inspire many: relinquish for public participation
  109. ENABLING COVERS COVERS INVITED TO PARTICIPATE ENABLES DIVERSITY CONTENT CREDENCE COVERS CO-INCENTIVES CONCURRENCE FACEBOOK: PERSONALIZED ANNIVERSARY VIDEOS
  110. CO-INCENTIVES: The environmental dynamics which can’t be controlled but can be exploited.
  111. VESTED INTERESTS ARE EVERYWHERE AND WHEN LEVERAGED PROPERLY, CREATES A WINNING PROPOSITION FOR ALL PARTICIPATING PARTIES
  112. THIS IS MORE THAN ESTABLISHING STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIPS ALL OF WHICH CREATE EXCITING OPPORTUNITIES IN CREATIVE DEAL-CRAFT PRODUCTION DISTRIBUTION WILD CARD
  113. IDENTIFYING CO-INCENTIVES CO-INCENTIVES PERSONALLY INVESTED SETS THE TABLE NETFLIX + DAVID FINCHER + BEAU WILLIMON: HOUSE OF CARDS CONTENT CREDENCE COVERS CO-INCENTIVES CONCURRENCE
  114. CONCURRENCE: The apparent ubiquity of an idea.
  115. CREATE THE SENSE THAT “EVERYONE IS TALKING ABOUT IT” THOSE WHO KNOW WILL FEEL “IN THE KNOW” AND THOSE WHO DON’T WILL WANT TO KNOW “TWERKING” “THE RED WEDDING” “THURSDAY NIGHT SCANDAL”
  116. TO ACHIEVE THIS, THERE ARE 3 KEY ELEMENTS TO CONSIDER ALL OF WHICH ARE CRITICAL FOR ESTABLISHING AN ENVIRONMENT THAT FOSTERS CONCURRENCE 1. All ubiquity is feigned: there’s no such thing as “everybody” ! 2. The greeks knew best: create theater in the round ! 3. Concurrence is the principal: reach is the interest
  117. CASTING FOR CONCURRENCE CONCURRENCE SOCIALLY INCLUDED PERCEIVED UBIQUITY CONTENT CREDENCE COVERS CO-INCENTIVES CONCURRENCE MOVEMBER FOUNDATION: GROW A STACHE
  118. INVITED TO PARTICIPATEAUDIENCE AT THE CENTER TRUE TO BRAND SOURCE THEY TRUST PERSONALLY INVESTED SOCIALLY INCLUDED CULTURALLY LICENSED ENABLES DIVERSITY PERCEIVED UBIQUITYSETS THE TABLE COVERS CONCURRENCE THE CONTAGION COOKBOOK: CONTENT CREDENCE CO-INCENTIVES
  119. THANKS! Marcus Collins @MarcToTheC

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