SA firm in Kenya launches its first AI-only campaign for Nokia

Mobiclicks and WPP-Scangroup have launched their advertising campaign that is built entirely on Artificial Intelligence. This has resulted in the first Kenyan AI-only campaign.

Using the Mirrors AI platform, the newly-launched Nokia 2.3 handset was front and centre on YouTube; the technology seamlessly detected relevant objects, emotions, activities and logos in videos and used them as triggers to serve highly-contextual ads on the platform without any human input whatsoever,” says Allen Kambuni from Mobiclicks Kenya.

Kambuni is East Africa regional lead for the pan-African adtech firm and a recent recipient of the Innovator Technology Award at the 21st Century Icon Awards. WPP-Scangroup is a subsidiary of WPP, listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange, and is the largest marketing and communication group operating a multi-agency model in sub-Saharan Africa.

August 2019 saw the launch of the first Mobiclicks representation outside of the South African cities of Johannesburg and Cape Town. “At launch, we set out to do things that had never been done before in digital advertising,” says Kambuni.

“This latest campaign with a true global leader in innovation was an opportunity to cut through the clutter with AI that works. The client was thrilled and this campaign proved that brands would be well-served to move their TV spend to YouTube,” he adds.

Some of the moments targeted by Mobiclicks’ AI to help showcase the new Nokia handset’s attributes included moments in videos like first dates, eating out, safaris and a new baby. The appearance of these moments on YouTube videos then triggered the advertising tagline ‘Never Miss a Shot’.

“The results were staggering; our Nokia campaign posted a 46.4% view-through rate on Nokia’s video ads against the YouTube benchmark of 15%,” Kambuni says.

According to Wairimu Nduhiu, digital media director of WPP Scangroup, “This campaign far exceeded our expectations. By connecting with consumers based on their passion points, we were able to strike a meaningful chord with them, while immersing them in the world of the Nokia 2.3.”

“We firmly believe that successful digital marketing campaigns must achieve balance between soul and science and that is what we were able to achieve with this campaign,” adds Nduhiu.

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