DDB’s Azher Ahmed is a part of the creative team working for brands like State Farm Insurance (consumers might recall the “discount doublecheck”) and he is at SXSW talking with clients about digital strategies.
Also, DDB parent company Omnicom Group, which is merging with Publicis Groupe, just signed a deal worth $40 million to market brands on Instagram. Who better than Ahmed to discuss the potential for such emerging marketing platforms? He helps run McDonald’s Instagram account, and is experimenting with different ways to engage users there.
It’s all about “participatory content,” he said. One example he shared was when a user posted pictures of model cars built out of McDonald’s food containers.
“The social media team picked that up and turned it into an Instagram video where it was a stop-motion car that was moving,” Ahmed said. “That demonstrates a couple of things. A: That we’re paying attention to what’s happening out there and people are obviously passionate about our products. B: We’re willing to take it and remix it, which is very much a part of Internet culture. And C: We’re putting it out there in a form that it wasn’t originally video, but now it is, and it’s actually traveling much farther than some of our other content that we might have felt was a little more brandy.
“So I love it.”
Below, Ahmed discusses via Instagram what criteria he uses to determine whether a platform is worth pursuing as a marketer, and what type of content plays well in those new spaces.