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Screen overload, digital body language & emotional search

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Global Perspectives returns with the latest innovations and insights from the world of marketing, including: how to find what you want via 'emotional search', the rise in demand for audio information and a powerful anti-FGM campaign from Egypt.
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Global Perspectives brings you the latest thought-provoking ideas, real-life case studies and smartest tips to help you become a better marketer. Starting with…

International Campaign Highlight 

Country: Egypt

Campaign: “Mutilated Words”

Creative agency Impact BBDO were tasked with creating a poster campaign to raise awareness of the harm caused by female genital mutilation (FGM). It’s a shocking subject requiring a powerful and persuasive address.

The resulting poster campaign was entitled Mutilated Words and targeted hospitals and conferences across Egypt. It utilised Arabic calligraphy with words mutilated and stitched back together, working as a metaphor for the practice. The chosen material was flesh-like in texture and colour.

The campaign wasn’t just a grim reminder of the reality of FGM, instead it offered positive calls-to-action. Words such as inhuman become human, pains become dreams, and accept becomes condemn.

The campaign launched on International Day of Zero Tolerance and included:

• 240 posters
• 300 conference program inserts
• 72 medical booklet inserts


• 1000% increase in awareness about the harmful practice of FGM
• 450% increase in inquiries and web traffic for campaign group 28 Too Many

Key takeaways for marketers:

• The power of print cannot be ignored. Yes, it can be costly, but when targeted at the right audience (in this case the medical profession and hospital visitors) the results can be impressive.
• Marketing really can matter. Sometimes in thinking about the bottom line – or our own productivity targets – we can overlook the importance of what we do. What is it about the product or service that really matters?What does it mean for customers? How does it help them? Answers to these questions can inspire new marketing campaigns and more powerful ways of addressing the target audience.

Read more about this campaign. 

An emotion-based movie recommendation platform?

Will this work?

A new film recommendation platform has been built on the premise that the recommendation engine just isn’t quite a match for the video store guy of old. FEELM is a ‘discovery tool’ which helps you find films based on your mood – not just a genre or your recent viewing habits.

It’s essentially a platform (available as a web and mobile app) in which users select their mood and are provided with an appropriate choice of films. They can then easily find film reviews, plot summaries, links to trailers and direct links to where they can watch the film (across all the major platforms).

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For all its big claims, it’s hard to see it beating the one-to-one interaction with a knowledgeable film buff – but perhaps it will be the best digital alternative.

Takeaway for marketers:

• It’s classic case of noticing a problem and building a solution. Whether you’re an entrepreneurial-spirited marketer or just someone who wants to make a difference within your company – do you have any daily/weekly hassles that could do with a solution? You’re probably not the only one suffering with the problem – if so, what can you do about it?
• The idea of emotion-driven search is an interesting one. Are there any other use cases?

Read more about Feelm.

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Get me away from the screen! Podcasts and audio books surge in popularity

listen audio marketingAn interesting article on explores the upsurge in people downloading podcasts and audio books. Quite simply – and understandably – people are screen fatigued and are using other means of accessing information (and likely entertainment) which doesn’t require locking eyes to a screen.

This trend for audio information and entertainment has apparently accelerated during the pandemic as people spend more time on screens and suffer increasing eye strain as a result. One survey by Johnson & Johnson found that more than one-third of respondents believe their vision has deteriorated since the start of the pandemic.

The launch of new audio services is evidence of its growing popularity. Amazon Prime Music has reported a 2.5x in listenership growth since its launch in April.

The possibilities in audio media do not end with podcasts and audio books. The recent surge in audio social platforms or audio rooms like Clubhouse, Spotify Greenroom and Twitter Spaces proves how this medium is subject to further innovation.

Key takeaways for marketers:

• On a personal level, if you’re suffering eye strain, try audio platforms for consuming news and information. Bonus tip: if you’ve been suffering eye strain cup your hands over closed eyes, relax your eyes for 20 seconds or more and then release. Your eyes should now feel a little better!
• Consider offering an audio service to your customers and prospects. Could you offer a podcast? Audio insights via email? Customer assistance by audio means?

Read more about audio’s growth here.

Do you need to work on your digital body language?

emoji body languageThe American Marketing Association has been exploring the importance of “digital body language”. Communicating social signals face-to-face is easy (for most people) – tone of voice, body language and facial expressions all communicate a huge amount of information. Words are just one part of the mix. But when you’re relying on the written word alone, you must work harder to accurately convey how you’re feeling to the recipient.

It’s easy to come across as abrupt and unfeeling – or even annoyed – if you just convey unfurnished information without throwing in an appropriate social signal.

A survey of almost 2,000 office workers, found that over 70% experienced some form of unclear communication from their colleagues. Apparently, the average employee wastes four hours per week on poor or confusing digital communications.

Key takeaways for marketers:

• Make sure you’re accurately representing how you feel in written communications – consider using emojis as quick means of relaying you’re feelings.
• Consider the means of communication – would a phone call or face-to-face meeting be more appropriate?
• Choosing the right medium and accurately conveying how you feel will likely save unneeded back-and-forths and increase your productivity as a result.

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Mel Dixon
Author: Mel Dixon
Editor at Global Marketing Alliance

Editor and freelance writer wading his way through the world of data. One step at a time. Interested in data driven marketing insights supported by... data.

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