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The Rise of Short-Form Videos: How to Leverage Platforms like TikTok & Instagram Reels

By Marketing, V-Blog

In recent years, short-form videos have taken the digital world by storm, revolutionising the way we consume and engage with content. Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels have become immensely popular, attracting millions of users who crave bite-sized, entertaining videos. As masters in video marketing, we’re about to explore the rise of short-form videos and uncover some strategies to leverage these platforms for maximum reach and engagement.

Short-form videos offer a unique opportunity to captivate audiences with concise and visually appealing content. Their quick and engaging nature makes them ideal for capturing attention in such a fast-paced digital landscape, enabling businesses to effectively convey their brand message and connect with a younger, highly active audience.

To succeed in this realm of short-form videos, it’s essential to embrace creativity and authenticity. These platforms encourage users to showcase their unique personalities and talents, providing an opportunity for businesses to exhibit their brand’s human side. By creating original and relatable content, brands can establish an emotional connection with their target audience, fostering brand loyalty and trust.

While TikTok and Instagram Reels share similarities, it’s important to tailor content to each platform’s specific audience and format. TikTok thrives on trending challenges, viral dances, and comedic sketches, while Instagram Reels caters more to polished and visually stunning content. By understanding the nuances of each platform, businesses can create content that resonates with their target audience and maximises engagement.

Hashtags and trends play a crucial role in increasing the visibility of short-form videos. By utilising popular hashtags related to your industry or current trends, you can boost the discoverability of your content and attract a wider audience. It’s important to research and stay updated on trending topics and incorporate them into your videos to ride the wave of viral content.

It’s a no-brainer that influencer marketing has become an integral part of short-form video strategies. Collaborating with influencers who have a significant following on TikTok or Instagram Reels can exponentially increase your brand’s reach and exposure. Partnering with influencers who align with your own brand values and target audience can help you tap into their established fanbase and create engaging content that resonates with their followers.

To continually improve your short-form video strategy, it’s crucial to analyze metrics and iterate based on the data. Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels provide valuable insights into video views, likes, comments, and shares. By monitoring these metrics, businesses can identify what content resonates the most with their audience and refine their approach to drive better results.

Not sure how to leverage the power of short-form videos?
Contact us at [email protected]  and let us guide you to viral success!

Sustainability: Empower Your Brand, Empower the Planet

By Marketing, V-Blog

In such a fast-paced, environmentally conscious world, sustainability has emerged as a crucial consideration for businesses across various industries. As consumers continue to prioritise ethical and eco-friendly practices, highlighting sustainability in marketing campaigns has become crucial.

One exemplary brand that seamlessly integrates sustainability into its marketing strategy and brand values is Dilmah: a renowned tea company with a deep commitment to social and environmental responsibility that our team had the pleasure to work with.

Portraying a purposeful brand image isn’t just about promoting products or services; it’s about embracing values that resonate with consumers. By embracing sustainability, companies like Dilmah communicate their values and engage consumers who share similar concerns, namely social well-being and the environment.

All of the content calendars that we created for Dilmah’s local social media pages highlight the brand’s commitment to sustainability. From the tea gardens to their production process, the company is big on ethical sourcing, fair trade, and eco-friendly practices. Even their packaging is sustainable – and our team made sure to demonstrate that to help Dilmah effectively communicate its dedication to sustainability, and how it encourages consumers to make conscious choices.

In order to effectively integrate sustainability into your marketing strategy, you must educate and empower consumers. Dilmah achieves this by showing consumers its efforts to preserve biodiversity, conserve natural resources, and support local communities. Through informative content, social media engagement, and collaborations with environmental organisations, Dilmah empowers consumers to make informed decisions that contribute to a greener future.

In a digital world consumed by marketing messages, there is nothing like authenticity. By integrating sustainability into marketing campaigns, brands like Dilmah create genuine connections with consumers, which helps to build trust and loyalty among one’s target audience.

Highlighting sustainability values is a great way to differentiate your brand in a competitive marketplace. Consumers feel better about making purchases from brands that demonstrate a genuine concern for the planet and society. This is exactly how we made Dilmah stand out from other brands, which enabled them to attract a dedicated customer base which over time fosters long-term relationships built on shared values.

Sustainability in marketing aligns with the triple bottom line approach, which focuses on the economic, environmental, and social impacts of business practices. By highlighting sustainable values, companies like Dilmah exemplify this approach, proving that profitability can coexist with environmental responsibility and social welfare. This holistic approach strengthens their brand reputation and fosters a positive impact on the world.

As sustainability continues to gain traction in society, integrating it into marketing campaigns is no longer an option but a necessity. Dilmah’s exemplary efforts serve as an inspiration for other businesses aiming to prioritise sustainability in their marketing strategies, further linking them to the #SustainableGastronomyDay (18 June) – which celebrates and promotes the importance of sustainable food practices and their impact.

Rising Above The Crowd In Today’s Competitive Market

By Marketing, V-Blog

In today’s fiercely competitive landscape, standing out with your marketing is not just a choice—it’s an imperative. It holds the key to establishing a distinctive brand identity, amplifying visibility, captivating attention, fostering brand equity, attracting the ideal audience, and remaining relevant amidst the ever-evolving consumer preferences. 

To position your brand for long-term success and exponential growth, a multifaceted approach is indispensable. By strategically blending creativity, innovation, audience-centricity, and data-driven insights, you can unlock the true potential of your marketing efforts and propel your brand to new heights

Effective differentiation sparks curiosity, builds trust, and compels consumers to choose your brand over competitors. It’s the secret ingredient that fuels recognition, fuels customer loyalty, and drives your brand towards long-term growth. It’s the art of carving a distinct identity that sets you apart from the crowd.   

Through carefully crafted messaging, innovative campaigns, and unique value propositions, you can create a powerful narrative that resonates with consumers. By highlighting your brand’s own authentic story, exceptional qualities, and unparalleled offerings, you establish an emotional connection that goes beyond transactional relationships. 

To forge an unbreakable bond with your audience, you must delve deep into the intricate fabric of their desires, aspirations, and pain points. By unravelling these insights, you can unlock the key to creating strategies that resonate with your audience on a more profound level. With empathy as your compass, you can craft personalised experiences that speak directly to their hearts, making them feel seen, understood, and valued. 

Never be afraid to think outside the box to generate fresh ideas and innovative approaches. Dare to defy the status quo and venture into uncharted territories of imagination. With creative and impactful marketing campaigns, you can capture attention, evoke emotions, and leave a lasting impression, ascending your brand to new heights.

Optimising your online presence is essential in this day and age. By embracing your social media platforms and online presence, you unlock a multitude of benefits. Expand your visibility to a broader audience, fortify brand credibility, foster unwavering customer loyalty, and unlock the power of measurable results and data-driven decision-making.

Create a consistent and unified brand identity across all touchpoints: harmonising messaging, visuals, and the overall brand experience to align with your core values and captivate your target audience. This deliberate consistency cultivates deep brand recall and ensures customer loyalty.

Stay updated with the latest marketing trends, strategies, and technologies with thorough research. Propel your growth by investing in professional development, immersing yourself in industry conferences, fostering valuable connections, and nurturing a culture of relentless learning within your team. Embrace the transformative power of knowledge and seize every opportunity to elevate your marketing endeavours.

Refine and optimise your marketing campaigns by regularly analysing key performance indicators (KPIs) and using data-driven insights. Continuously adapt to changing market dynamics and refine your strategies to ensure maximum impact.

With the right formula, your brand will shine brightly, captivate audiences, and thrive in the dynamic landscape of modern marketing.  

Not sure how to get started? Contact us on [email protected] 

Jingles All the Way!

By V-Blog


Jingles are the super-sweet musical icing laid on top of video commercials, with insanely catchy tunes that will remain glued to your brain indefinitely. Jingles can be a very powerful tool for advertisers, but, as any Spider Man worth his salt will tell you, with great power comes great responsibility.  Jingles can be both shoe-tapping fun, or hair-tugging horror.. Ever the optimists, we’ve decided to list our top 5 favourites. Plug in your headphones, and unplug your snobbery. Let’s get this jingle party started!

Our Top 5 Favourites:

Pepsi – Pepsi Generation by Michael Jackson

Possibly the most 80s Jingle of all time, this is the King of Pop’s reworking of his classic dance-floor hit ‘Billy Jean’, fitting in references to ‘The Pepsi Generation’ slogan. Including this may be a little cheat, given the tune wasn’t original, but to hell with it! It’s a song  that has so much beat, it’ll boost your energy more than any soft drink.

Crocker Bank – We’ve Only Just Begun

We’re all familiar with the classic song ‘We’ve only Just Begun’ by The Carpenters…. you’re not? Ask your mum… Anyway, despite being one of the band’s most famous hits, it was originally a jingle for Crocker Bank, written by Roger Nicholas and legendary 70s songwriter Paul Williams. It’s a touching heart-felt number, that could only be improved with the added Carpenter magic.

Chili’s – Baby Back Ribs

This jingle may not be that familiar to Maltese ears, but every American is knows this soulful hit, written for ‘Chili’s’, a franchise steakhouse. It sounds pretty different to anything else out there. Guy Bommarito, the creative director responsible for the original ad, hated jingles. Never-the-less, Chilli’s insisted on one being created. So embarrassed by the brief, Guy didn’t even bring the assignment to his creative department, and came up with it himself. It seems to have worked. The song has become iconic, and is continually referenced in pop culture, including Scrubs, Austin Powers and The Office.

Intel –  Nobody Else Quite Like You

A delightful slice of whimsy from Indie musician Rob Cantor (the man behind musical phenomenon ‘Shia Labeouf Live’). In this jingle, Cantor incorporates a wealth of references to Youtube oddities, in order to describe just how unique everyone truly is. We discover at the end that its a promotion for Intel’s True Key face recognition software. It’s a great example of how a creative songwriter can think outside the box when it comes to writing songs about objectively boring things.


Algida – Spread the Joy

Ok, we’re a little biased… Local band The Busker performed this for our very own commercial (watch it here). But its place on this list is truly deserved. The song captures the joy of summer: beaches, pretty girls, and, yes, ice-cream. It’s a song so catchy that, a year on, we’re still humming it.


And The Worst:

Easthills – Back to School

Where to start with Shopping Mall Easthill’s infamous jingle? It boasts the quality of a drunken karaoke on a flip-phone. The singing is off-key, the tunes all over the place and the less said about the lyrics the better. But we’ve got to admit, its ramshackle nature gives it a charm all of its own.  It’s so loveably terrible that the cast even got invited onto the Ellen show, to reprise their so-bad-it’s-good masterpiece. All together now: BOOTS-AND-PANTS-AND-BOOTS-AND-PANTS…




By Covid-19, Marketing, V-Blog

When countries (and then continents) began to fall victim to COVID-19, advertisers around the world began to sweat. Quarantine means people staying home, which means businesses closing, which means less money to spend on advertising. Whenever there’s a recession, advertising always gets a hard knock.

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Interactive Ads: The Future Of Videos?

By V-Blog

If you have a Netflix account or are interested in high-concept films, you have probably heard about Black Mirror’s interactive film ‘Bandersnatch’. This is a psychological thriller in which you make choices along the way, and control the direction of the story. Whether this is a novelty or the future of film is up for speculation. If it’s a gimmick, however, it’s an incredibly engaging one and has led to watercooler conversations across the world.

But can this interactivity be applied to video commercials?

Well, it already has. In 2011, online streaming service Hulu introduced the ‘Ad Swap’ function. This allows the viewer to choose which advert to sit through, by giving them two or three others to pick from. This sounds like a pretty good idea, truth be told: a teenager, for instance, may be more interested in a gadget commercial than one for life insurance.

However, in practice, this didn’t work out as well as hoped. In their article ‘Commercials by Multiple Choice’, The New York Times reported that one of the problems connected with the Ad Swap option was that by the time users would select a different ad, they’d have already seen a lot of the default one. Hulu then tried delaying the start of the default ad to give users a chance to choose. This, however, proved frustrating, as the delay prolonged the ad break.

Still, this option doesn’t make the adverts, in and of themselves, interactive.

As shown in the video above, Mercedes tried something far closer to the ‘Choose-your-own-adventure’ nature of Bandersnatch. Back in 2012, they launched a campaign entitled #YOUDRIVE. This was something of an event, advertised much like a blockbuster with its own trailer and poster. The story depicted a suave musician and his female driver racing through a city to get to a secret gig, while authorities are in hot pursuit. It was divided into three parts, 60 seconds each, shown in the ad breaks of the X Factor UK. At the end of each part, the audience were given a choice of commands that they needed to tweet (for instance, #HIDE or #EVADE). The command with the majority of tweets dictated the next part.  The combination of storytelling and audience interaction was a hit: the campaign hashtag appeared 103 million times on Twitter and 30 Million times of Facebook.

BMW is another car company that embraced audience interactivity.  However, they used a different method: 360° video. The viewer is in control of the angle he or she views, but there’s also a game to play: the ad asks you to keep your eyes on the car that model Gigi Hadid is driving, a tricky task given she’s surrounded by four identical ones. A simple challenge like this keeps viewers engaged till the end and makes them need watch the commercial again and again.

Coca-Cola similarly pushed the envelope when it came to interactive ads: they created the first ever ‘drinkable advertisement’, done in collaboration with Shazam. The app detected the sound of a Coke pouring on TV, and a graphic of a filling Coke glass appeared on their smartphone screen. Viewers were then gifted with a voucher for free Coke Zero.

The increasing sophistication of online technology has opened up new storytelling doors for commercials. Interactivity is a new tool, one that is still being played and experimented with. You can decide to steer clear of this innovation or embrace it and see where it leads.

The choice is yours.

If you want to create your very own interactive video for your brand, drop us a line!


Bruce Micallef Eynaud


By V-Blog

Following our trip to the dystopian world of Apple’s 1984 commercial, where next? An idyllic hilltop in Italy, of course. Bring your hiking boots and a bottle of Coke, because we’re revisiting Coca Cola’s iconic ‘Hilltop’ advert.

Our millennial readers may be unfamiliar with this 1971 commercial, but older generations may still remember it and have the insanely catchy song I’d Like to Buy the World a Coke stuck in their heads. The advert features a group of diverse young hippies, from all over the world, singing along to the tune, while holding bottles of… well, you know what. At the end of the ad, over a helicopter shot of the entire crowd, text scrolls, telling us:

“On a hilltop in Italy, we assembled young people from all over the world… to bring you this message from Coca-Cola Bottlers all over the world. It’s the real thing.”

The catchiness of the song and the heart-warming ‘world peace’ message of the concept, made the advert tremendously popular, so much so that it is now regarded as the most popular commercial ever made. It’s so iconic that Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner decided to use it to close his hit series, suggesting that anti-hero Don Draper got the idea for it while on retreat.

In fact, Hilltop’s real Don Draper was Bill Backer, Creative Director at McCann Erikson. Ironically, the idea for such a popular video came about thanks to one of the least popular things: travel delays.  

The date is the 18th of January, 1971. Backer is on a flight to London, when a thick fog covering the capital forces the plane to land in Shannon, Ireland, grounding them till the next day.  While most would grumble and glare angrily at their watches, Backer noticed a group of fellow passengers doing something different. Sitting in the airport café, he saw his fellow passengers laughing off their misfortune, enjoying a conversation, and drinking coke. At that moment, Backer saw Coca-Cola from a different perspective. Rather than a simple thirst-quencher, Backer realized that Coke is used around the world as a way of getting people together.

“I began to see the familiar words, ‘Let’s have a Coke’, as more than an invitation to pause for refreshment”, says Backer. “They were actually a subtle way of saying, ‘Let’s keep each other company for a little while’. And I knew they were being said all over the world as I sat there in Ireland. So that was the basic idea: to see Coke not as it was originally designed to be – a liquid refresher – but as a tiny bit of commonality between all peoples, a universally liked formula that would help to keep them company for a few minutes.”

Finally arriving in London, Backer teamed up with songwriters Bill Davis, Roger Cook, and Roger Greenway. After Backer pitched his idea of ‘buying the world a coke’, Davis was at first sceptical. He admitted that “If I could do something for everybody in the world, it would not be to buy them a Coke.” Backer asked him what he would do, to which Davis responded that he would buy them a home and fill it with love. This became the basis of the song’s opening lyrics. British song-writing duo Cook and Greenway already had the perfect melody for it, by reworking a previous song of theirs called Mum, True Love and Apple Pie. Cook recalls that the four of them thrashed out jingles for “about 3, or 4 hours, and we had the song written”. The jingle went on to be smash hit in the UK and the USA.

The advert proved to be the perfect antidote for the neuroses at the time. In an interview with AdWeek, Pete Favat (Chief Creative Officer at Californian Marketing Agency Deustch) claimed this was key to its appeal.  “It was a terrible time in culture. It was extremely negative. There was violence everywhere. And then this piece of film comes on TV. And basically, it was a bunch of kids singing on a hilltop about sharing a Coke.” In fact, Favat claims that this is the most powerful commercial created. “I haven’t seen anything that even comes close to that.”

The advert is without a doubt a product of its time. It was created close to the height of the hippie movement in 1969 (as the kids’ clothes seem to show). It’s somewhat ironic that the advert uses a crowd of hippies, a culture based on rejected consumerism, to sing about the most consumerist product of the 20th Century. Never-the-less, its sentiments about harmony fit perfectly with the ethos of the movement.

Watching the advert today, it’s clear that, while its inherent charm is evergreen, it’s admittedly dated. It’s easy to imagine that the ‘apple trees and honey bees’ lyrics that those hippies sing would be winced at by today’s more cynical hipsters. However, this commercial has undoubtedly been hugely inspirational to future advertisers. Hilltop proved the power of marketing to youths. It was also a very progressive commercial for its time, showing a very diverse mix of races. Watching contemporary commercials aimed at millennials, it easy to see Hilltop’s influence, with their inclusive casts and social messages.

The Hilltop commercial is a perfect time capsule of a video. One that shows a more innocent generation, that dreamed of a utopia that never really came. While the singing hippies didn’t exactly inspire world peace, they did sell a lot of Coke. And in the world of advertising, isn’t that enough?

by Bruce Micallef Eynaud