Analytics – Oh look at the numbers! PT2 Artefacts.

Artefact 1 – Short Video (MediaCityUK TimeLapse) 

So far the video has 1591 views, 122 likes and 7 comments and is on 16 playlists within YouTube.

My aim for this video (after looking at other similar videos) was to gain more than 300 views in a week.  I set up a targeted promotion schedule on Twitter and Facebook using the free version of Buffer. I targeted the tweets at local businesses in the area and production companies. This resulted in over 50 likes and 20 retweets and mentions over the week on twitter.

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As you can see from the data above taken straight from YouTube, my views were in my targeted area and effective tagging ensured my video appeared in the suggested video section of YouTube – thus gaining more views.

I believe if I kept pushing the video or/and had not made a point of it being for a university master’s degree then it would have gained even more views.

 

Artefact 2 – Remix (John Lewis Advert)

So far the video has 10,876 views which is crazy and has had more views than my other two artefacts combined. I think this is to do with both the content of the video and the time I released it. As mentioned in the blogpost  about the artefact I have exceeded the video length of a minute by quite some way, however this was important to the context of the video to be kept as close to the original as possible.

 

I released the video at 8pm only 12 hours after the original advert was released, I had a very sharp curve after about a week and the video currently features on 171 playlists in youtube and has been shared on all major social networks. As the video it was based on lost momentum over the next two weeks the views on my video also dried up. I feel that if the advert had been better or more in line with what the public were expecting than I would have had more views as a result.  Below is a breakdown by age group of the people who have watched this video.  I was surprised to see such an even male/female split as I was expecting more women to have watched the video comparatively.

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Artefact 3 – SuperCut (Leonard Cohen)

So far the video has 65 views and 5 likes, this is by far the least views any of my videos have got on this module, a large part of this is down to the fact I didn’t promote this video on any social media and left it to do its own thing.

This artefact was also longer than a minute as it had to be the length of the original song: YouTube analytics state that I had 80% of watchers stay until the last 20 seconds of the video.  I don’t think people would have clicked to watch the video if it had been less than a minute because they would know the length of the original song.

I think I was a little late to make this video as he died on the Friday and I didn’t make the video until the Sunday. It was also highlighted to me that I missed an important tag ‘tribute’ off the YouTube tags section, which means I will have missed out on some traffic.

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From the data taken directly from YouTube analytics above you can see this artefact has had a wide and diverse range of views, this has probably come from people organically searching for a video similar to mine and it either coming up in the search results or as a suggested video.

 

Sounds Right – a look at Sound Trademarking & Branding

Sound affects us more than we know, it’s an often forgotten medium but sound can make or break a product or production – by having a sound that is displeasing or by not having the sound we expect, it can (and does) turn us away from a product. Sounds can stir up great emotions and feelings very quickly without having to stop the original function of the product, and advertisers are more aware of this than ever.

A sound trademark is a trademark where sound is used to perform the trademark function of uniquely identifying the commercial origin of products or services, much like a visual logo it has to be instantly recognisable and attributed to that one brand. Historically it has been difficult to get a sound trademarked, but this has started to change over the last 10 years as more companies are using sound to get across their messages.  Just like a visual logo, the most essential qualities of a sound logo are uniqueness, memorability, and relevancy to the brand promise.

Some widely known trademarked sounds include:

  • 20th Century Fox Fanfare (composed by Alfred Newman)
  • Audi sound logo
  • BMW sound logos – the first one with a “double gong” and the second one that is the current sound currently used.
  • ITV News at Ten “The bongs”
  • NBC chimes
  • Duracell’s 3-note “coppertop” logo
  • Fourscore, the four note audio ident used by Channel Four
  • “Intel inside” musical jingle (composed by Walter Werzowa)
  • Macintosh startup chime
  • McDonald’s Corporation’s 5-note “i’m lovin’ it” jingle
  • Nissan sound logos – there were three sounds
  • Nokia tune
  • PlayStation robot sound (“play-sta-tion”)
  • Samsung ringtone
  • Sony ding
  • T-Mobile sound logo (composed by Lance Massey)
  • THX’s Deep Note
  • Xbox 360 startup sound/swoosh, created by Audiobrain

The NBC chimes are arguably the most famous sound in American broadcasting, originating in the 1920s, the three key sequential notes are familiar to generations of radio listeners and television watchers. Many companies have tried to trademark sounds but only around 100 have ended up being accepted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office — and NBC’s iconic chimes were the first.

Sound branding

It gives a brand an additional way to break through audiences’ shortened attention spans. Sound branding (also known as audio branding, music branding, sonic branding, acoustic branding) can tell you whether the brand is romantic and sensual, family-friendly and everyday, indulgent and luxurious all without ever hearing words or seeing a picture. This is crucial for brands as the rise in two screen viewing means that the audience hasn’t always got its eyes on your adverts but they are likely to still be listening.

The sound logo (or audio mnemonic) is one of the tools of sound branding, along with the jingle, brand music, and brand theme. A sound logo (or audio logo or sonic logo) is a short distinctive melody or other sequence of sound, mostly positioned at the beginning or ending of a commercial. It can be seen as the acoustic equivalent of a visual logo. Often a combination of both types of logo is used to enforce the recognition of a brand. An example is the T-Mobile logo and ring tone composed by Lance Massey, or the Intel logo composed by Walter Werzowa.

The PlayStation start up sound is something really special to me, it’s an instant warm fuzzy feeling at the PS1 sound – it catapults me back to my pre-teens, but I love the audio resonance of the PS3 sound: it’s organic and rounded and swells like a tide, it sounds less electronic than its predecessors showing that machines are now more advanced than ever before.

The sound logo leads to learning effects on consumer’s perception of a certain product. A melody is the most memorable sequence of sound, since, when a melody starts, the human brain automatically expects the ending.

Radio and television stations create their own audio identities using melodic themes to strengthen their brand. Notable examples include the short variations of the BBC Radio 2 or Classic FM jingles. In recent years, television station idents have also introduced their own audio identities to strengthen their brand recognitions, most notably Channel 4 who have theirs trademarked.

The video below is a great short romp around some really recognisable sound logos (most of which are trademarked) and why they are the way they are featuring two sonic branding experts explain the thinking behind some of the world’s most recognizable sounds, Andrew Stafford and Steve Milton.

 

OkGo – Experimental Video Rock Stars

An American rock band originally from Chicago, OK Go is composed of Damian Kulash, Tim Nordwind, Dan Konopka and Andy Ross. The band is known for its often quirky and elaborate one-take music videos. They had mild to middling success until they started making more interesting/experimental music videos.

OK Go has become famous for their creative and often low-budget music videos, most of which have been promoted through YouTube. Many of these have become viral videos including the 2006 video for “Here It Goes Again”which won a Grammy Award for Best Music Video in 2007. The band performed a complex routine with the aid of motorized treadmills, and has received over 50 million views on YouTube four years later.

 

 

The band’s video for Needing/Getting, released February 5, 2012 in partnership with Chevrolet, debuted during Super Bowl XLVI and has over 32 million views on YouTube.  Many of the videos also use long or single-shot takes, which Salons Matt Zoller Seitz claims “restore[s] a sense of wonder to the musical number by letting the performers’ humanity shine through and allowing them to do their thing with a minimum of filmmaking interference“.The success of OK Go’s music first won the band the 14th Annual Webby Special Achievement Award for Film and Video Artist of the Year.The video for “This Too Shall Pass” was named both “Video of the Year” and “Best Rock Video” at the 3rd annual UK Music Video Awards.”This Too Shall Pass” won the LA Film Fest’s Audience Award for Best Music Video,UK MVA Awards – Music Video of the Year Winner 2010, among others.

The band has worked with directors including Francis Lawrence, Olivier Gondry, Brian L. Perkins, Scott Keiner, and Todd Sullivan. The videos have been screened and displayed at museums, art galleries, and film festivals around the world including the Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of the Moving Image, the Edinburgh International Film Festival, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Los Angeles Film Festival, and the Saatchi & Saatchi New Director’s Showcase.

 

 

The video for “I Wont Let You Down” is objectively the first to feature the use of a UAV drone to film a whole music video. There are many other examples of OK Go pushing the boundaries between music video and experimental art (stop motion toast being particularly memorable), companies give large sponsorship to them for features in their videos or for them to be in a stylized ad campaign. Their blend of inoffensive middle of the road indie music is greatly uplifted in the public domain by viral videos which are in themselves a very clever marketing tool. I think it’s fair to say no one would remember OK Go if they hadn’t got on their treadmills back in 2006 and their subsequently more interesting (and expensive) videos that have followed.

 

 

Their most recent video focuses on the super slow-mo trend that is both a hit on YouTube and with the general consumer as more and more devices can record at higher frame rates. A large amount of planning and calculations has evidently gone in to this video to get the sound and visual synchronization. What’s perhaps most impressive is how well they managed to sync up the song with the incredibly fast “events,” of which there are exactly 318. So how did they do it?

“We used very precise digital triggers to set off several hundred events in extremely quick succession. The triggers were synchronized to high speed robotic arms which whipped the cameras along the path of the action,” Kulash explains on the band’s official website.  “Though the routine was planned as a single event, currently no camera control systems exist which could move fast enough (or for many sections, change direction fast enough) to capture a movement this long and complex with a single camera, so the video you see connects seven camera movements.”

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This spreadsheet consists of  dozens of connected worksheets feeding off of a master sheet 25 columns wide and nearly 400 rows long. In Kulash’s words, it “calculates the exact timing of each event from a variety of data that related the events to one another and to the time scale in which they were being shot.”

On top of this intricate web of events, many were shot at different speeds. Each section was shot at a constant rate, but between the events they toggled from one speed to another.

Kulash breaks it down further: “When the guitars explode, we are 200x slower than reality (6,000 frames per second), but Tim and Andy’s short bursts of lip sync (Tim twice and Andy once) are only 3x slower than real life (90 frames per second). The watermelons are around 150x, and the spray paint cans are a little over 60x.”

 

Pop Culture Megamixes – Artefact 3

I love supercuts (a.k.a pop culture megamixes).  They are great ways to ingest large amounts of data in a short space of time. Like, seriously, I think they can be beautiful.

A supercut is a compilation of short video clips of the same type of action, and the purpose is usually to create a comic effect. The word was apparently coined by Andy Baio, in a blog entry in April 2008. He defined it there as a “genre of video meme, where some obsessive-compulsive superfan collects every phrase/action/cliche from an episode (or entire series) of their favorite show/film/game into a single massive video montage.”

Supercuts have transcended; in the last 10 years they can come out of the dank belly of the internet and meme culture and are now recognised as a media format of their own.

But why do we love supercuts so much? I think there are a couple of reasons for this, for one it buys in to our love of lists (and we all know the internet loves lists – here’s looking at you BuzzFeed) secondly it allows us to relive the best bits of something again without having to watch the whole product from start to finish. Wanna see a selection of all the best cuts in Strangers Things? There is a supercut for that; wanna see a selection of the best examples of the Heroes Journey? There is a supercut for that; wanna see Tom Cruise run from every film he has ever been in – guess what? There is a super cut for that too!

Looking at supercuts in more detail has spurred me on to make my own supercuts, not just as my 3rd artefact but as a thing that I do beyond this module. So to that end- below is my first SuperCut Showdown dedicated to the late and great Leonard Cohen.

Interesting side note, Ian saw my video and that spurred him on to make his Remix Artefact.

Since making the supercut above I have made another based on the Oxford Dictionaries Word Of the Year list.