Ad Agencies Create Real-Time Content Labs And Other Digital-Focused Spaces

By Nicole Norfleet
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) Several advertising firms are stepping up their digital game by creating production studios in house to respond to events in real time and create content. For women in business with a focus on marketing this is a trend not to be ignored.  As one industry insider put it, “Because the world is 24/7. You don’t have two weeks to figure it out. You don’t have two days to figure it out. You might have hours to figure it out.”


The creatives at Periscope advertising agency wanted to leverage the offbeat persona of basketball star and Trolli candy rep James Harden, but it would be difficult and costly to get the man himself in a studio.

So they scheduled the next best thing, his beard, and utilized their in-house “content lab” to create a virtual news conference with the famed facial hair.

Periscope, like many other ad firms, has dedicated part of its office space to better adapt to the increasingly fast-paced, digital landscape brands need to navigate.

“Content labs” allow quick-turn videos, photos and other content that can be used on online and digital “newsrooms” for social media monitoring and planning that mimic what’s found in media organizations.

“I really think that the need is rooted in speed,” said Evan Carpenter, Periscope’s director of community. “Your window of opportunity to maintain relevance … is getting smaller and smaller.”

Periscope opened its content lab more than a year ago, partly out of a need for the firm to be able to react in real time on digital platforms, Carpenter said.

The lab is set up to operate as a mini-studio with a variety of cameras, multiple color backdrops and other equipment.
These labs can contribute to projects like the Harden “beard” news conference, which was broadcast on Trolli’s digital channels. Later, staff hosted a live Q-and-A with fans that took place on the messaging app Snapchat.

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