By Carla Eboli, CMO
Facebook, Snapchat, Pinterest, YouTube and Twitter invested heavily in Cannes this year in a way never seen before. The social media giants took advantage of the carefully selected Cannes crowd (creatives and marketers, basically) and brought their best game to the table – or should I say, to the beach? – alluring thousands to their “Riviera lounges.” Aside from the great speakers (the same people speaking at the Palais des Festivals but now wearing sandals), the social media companies took advantage to launch new products, get close to their audience by giving attendees the opportunity to experience existing products, and shared with marketers some of their engagement numbers.
Here are the stand-out platforms and why your brand should be paying close attention to:
Lens from Pinterest
The new visual search tool – still in beta – is pretty simple: you see it, click it, find it and you can even buy it if you want. In more detailed words, Lens allows consumers to find products online based on what they are seeing in real life. Open your Pinterest app, snap a pic of a product (the pair of wedges your co-worker is wearing, for example), find them on Pinterest, same or similar and voilà. You can now buy them – but give her a heads up before you wear them to the office, c’mon. The tool also recognizes food so when you take a pic of your lunch, Pinterest will bring you similar recipes for you to recreate it at home.
Why it’s relevant
Pinterest now has the opportunity to map the “social media/online” consumer journey in detail, from discovering to buying, step-by-step. This is really valuable data. Brands will be able to tap into this knowledge offering people more targeted results, when they are more open to buy the item, and a faster shopping experience.
Pinterest is continually evolving the experience for its users and the latest Pinterest Lens takes the pinning and buying experience to a whole new level. Above is how I took a picture of some shoes, looked at Pinterest’s suggestions and arrived at a page where I could purchase a similar pair.
Face-to-Face and Oculus from Facebook
While Facebook named its 2017 Cannes lounge Face-to-Face, the social media giant highlighted its VR tool Oculus by letting people try its new feature, Spaces. Under the theme “Connected, we can create anything” Facebook also brought well-know marketers to talk about how their brands are using Facebook tools in order to grow their business.
Why it’s relevant
VR is making waves in some specific areas such as healthcare and wellness, delivering good brand engagement results and proving that the technology can be an important part of your communications mix. Predictions state that VR can become the “most social platform ever” but marketers are still cautious regarding its ROI.
Spectacles from Snapchat
This year the Ghostface Chillah was the light of the party. Literally. Snapchat brought to the festival a gigantic yellow sparkling Ferris wheel and placed it right outside the festival’s main building, the Palais. The attraction was open from noon to midnight for both delegates and general public. Right outside was the Spectacles vending machine – cool sunglasses that you can use to record 10 second “snaps” and post them right away on your Snapchat feed. According to Snapchat chief strategy officer Imran Khan, Snapchat ad structure is relatively new and the company is focusing on generating awareness and educating marketers and agencies regarding their products, creative possibilities and measurement system.
Why it’s relevant
Although the company openly explains its measurement system on its website, Snapchat is not very vocal regarding their clients results and case studies, nor their audience composition. Some brands, such as Adidas, swear by the app and the achieved ROI while others remain skeptical about Snapchat’s scale and the young age of its users.
In regards to Spectacles, I can see how influencers and vloggers can use them to create short video content featuring brands in a very organic way. Actually, I have some great ideas I can share in case you want to invite us for a brainstorm. Just send me an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also find me on Snapchat under my username ceboli or by using my snapcode: