4A’s CreateTech 2015 in New York City is hosting more than 270 registered guests to hear from futurists, agency and media leaders, marketers and academics as they discuss the game-changing tech trends. The big stories on Day Two shared similar themes. 

Here’s a Recap of Four Things You Missed:

VR: BEYOND THE HEADSET, Nick Parish, Contagious; Mike Rubenstein, Hill Holliday; Jamie Pallot, Emblematic Group; Mike Woods, White Rabbit VR

Nick Parish and Jamie Pallot, 4A's Createtech 2015

Nick Parish and Jamie Pallot, 4A's Createtech 2015

Key Takeaway: Virtual reality sounds sexy—and has endless creative applications. But convincing marketers to invest in virtual experience is still a challenge. “It’s not going to replace anything, at least not in the near term,” says Rubenstein. But it’s a sexy enough medium that the boldest clients will want to experiment with VR, many through events.

Why It’s Important: VR has the potential to create powerful engagement. But what will it take to make VR experiences scalable and cost-effective enough for clients to get on board? 

How It Can Help Your Business: In-store events. Clients most willing to invest in this experience must have a high risk tolerance because VR is such an evolving medium. Marketers must be willing to use real audio and sensory experiences drawn from authentic experiences. 

WHY eSPORTS? rEvXP's Hector Rodriguez (H3CZ) and Dan Ciccone

Hector Rodriguez with Dan Ciccone (back) at 4A's CreateTech 2015

Hector Rodriguez with Dan Ciccone (back) at 4A's CreateTech 2015

Key Takeaway: Gaming and eSports aren’t the same. Advertisers can harness the huge audience of eSports fans/participants.

Why It’s Important: There are currently anywhere from 180-230 million people making up the audience of eSports enthusiasts. It’s a phenomenon that’s being recognized by traditional media. And fans are just as rabid as they are about mainstream sports like football or hockey. eSports are not “about being online,” said Ciccone. “They’re about being connected.”   

How It Can Help Your Business: Low cost of entry. Ciccone compared it to NASCAR in its early days. Advertisers can create their own rules. Focus on audience, not the game. It's a good way to explore an emerging market, but clients need to be ready to get out of their comfort zone. Must be willing to participate in the eSports, not just sponsor them.


NOW IS WHAT'S NEXT, Elise Birkhofer and Mike Glaser, Google Art Copy & Code

Elise Birkhofer at 4A's Createtech 2015

Elise Birkhofer at 4A's Createtech 2015

Key Takeaway: “We live in a world of abundance and infinite choices,” said Glaser. Relevance and leveraging real-time experience are invaluable in attracting and retaining clients. 

Why It’s Important: Customers make a conscious choice to spend time with your brand, and they will become immersed in it if you can create a real-time experience with them.

How It Can Help Your Business: An example is how Google created ads during the Oscars just seconds after the winners were announced. The more customers believe that your brand is there with them in real time, the more it will be viewed as a fun or necessary complement to their lives. 

PLANNING FOR TECHNOLOGY IN ITS INFANCY, Matt Powell, KBS; Pete Jones, Framestore’s Virtual Reality Studio; Paul Munkholm, Kettle; Shareen Pathak, Digiday (moderator)

Shareen Pathak at 4A's CreateTech 2015

Shareen Pathak at 4A's CreateTech 2015

Key Takeaway: It’s not about the technology. It’s about the experience. Don’t try to re-appropriate the same idea or technology for your brand if you don’t understand the technology. Design to the human problem.

Why It’s Important: A perfect product has to satisfy the brand, the technology and the product. Look at the entire environment and see how everything works together, and design with limitations in mind.

How It Can Help Your Business: Consumers will flock to any new technical experience if it solves a human problem. Clients must be willing to take risks and get something into the market. Once it’s out there, they need to be prepared to iterate.




All photos Jennifer L. Gonzeles, j.l.gonzeles@gmail.com, jenniferlgonzeles.com