Creative Accelerator: Facebook Helps Brands, Agencies Take Aim at High-Growth Countries

By David Cohen Comment

FacebookCreativeAcceleratorNestleEverydayFacebook has been working to connect people in high-growth countries such as India, Indonesia, South Africa, Kenya and Turkey to the Internet via its Internet.org initiative, and now, the social network has turned its attention to helping advertisers reach those users.

The social network Monday introduced Creative Accelerator, a program under which its Facebook Creative Shop will work with brand and agency partners in the countries mentioned above to establish best practices for campaigns tailored to Facebook users in each country and the devices most commonly used in those nations, mainly mobile phones.

Facebook offered details on some early efforts by the Creative Accelerator program in a Facebook for Business post:

  • Coca-Cola, Kenya: Coca-Cola wanted to spread a message of happiness to people across Kenya. Facebook partnered with Coca-Cola Kenya’s creative agency, McCann in South Africa, to create a campaign across all device and connection types in the country. As people uploaded their own #Kenyanhappiness stories, Coca-Cola spread those messages of positivity around the world.

FacebookCreativeAcceleratorCocaCola

  • Durex, Indonesia: Durex wanted to reach people on the go and express the message that condoms can make “love pleasurable.” We partnered with Durex’s creative agency in Indonesia, Upnormal Pingfans, to ensure that people accessing Facebook through feature phones and low-end smartphones would be able to seamlessly view the content on their devices. Different copy went out to males and females to take into account the cultural norms associated with condoms and sex in Indonesia.

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  • Nestlé Everyday, India: Nestlé Everyday (pictured atop the post) wanted to reach people in both the metro and rural areas in India. We worked with the brand and its agencies, Publicis Delhi and Media Alliance, to develop creative based on peoples’ bandwidth strengths and device types. People accessing Facebook with lower bandwidths on feature phones and low-end smartphones received still images from Nestlé Everyday. People with stronger bandwidth connections and more sophisticated devices received videos in News Feed.

The social network also provided the following takeaways for brands and agencies seeking to tap high-growth markets:

  • Build for everyone: It’s important to create campaigns that account for the wide array of devices and mobile connections that people in high-growth countries use to access services like Facebook. If you’re only building content that looks great on iPhones or high-end Android devices, you’re excluding a huge portion of potential audience.
  • Tailor content to different experiences: Just because you’re building for everyone doesn’t mean that one size fits all. Facebook looks different on a feature phone than it does on a smartphone. The creative specs for feature phones and older smartphones differ from newer devices. Campaigns that deliver the right creative for the right device will feel more relevant.
  • Use the same devices as your audience: If you’re building content that’s supposed to work well on feature phones with 2G connections, there’s no better way to test the experience than to use feature phones with 2G connections yourself. Empathy and attention to detail can go a long way toward improving the overall quality of a campaign.
  • Respect peoples’ bandwidth: Bandwidth targeting on Facebook gives advertisers the ability to send ads based on the quality of a person’s network connection. Brands are now able to develop and send rich media ads, such as videos, to people on faster connections and more relevant pieces of content, such as still images, for those accessing Facebook on weaker connections.

Facebook Creative Shop creative strategist Fergus O’Hare said in an email introducing Creative Accelerator:

I’ve been overwhelmed by the sheer appetite coming from the creative community, who are passionate about being part of something that could revolutionize the way we market in a region.

Creative Accelerator program manager Melissa Oppenheim added:

Facebook’s Creative Accelerator is a program designed to help brands unlock the power of personal storytelling in high-growth countries. We are rolling up our sleeves to co-create with our partners. There is no better way to learn than by building together.

The ability to tell a powerful story can connect people despite geographic, linguistic, technological and even cultural boundaries.

And Facebook Creative Shop chief creative officer Mark D’Arcy said:

The biggest learning for me — and this is overwhelmingly true — is that technical limitation is not a limitation of cultural sophistication. And that creativity is not limited by the bandwidth or by any one phone a person owns.

Readers: What are your initial impressions of Facebook’s Creative Accelerator program?

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