ACE comes together to tackle online piracy

The Alliance for Creativity and Entertainment (ACE) has outlined an initiative to try and tackle online piracy.

Members of ACE include Sony Pictures Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox, Amazon, MGM, SKY and BBC Worldwide.

The creative sector in the US alone contributes over $1 trillion to the economy, and shows no sign of slowing down anytime soon, with consumers now able to pick from over 480 online services.

However, online content means piracy is rampant, with an estimated 5.4 billion illegal downloads of films and TV shows in 2016.

Piracy not only prevents profits from reaching the creators, but can also leave malware on machines used by downloaders.

The new initiative by ACE will see them work with law enforcement agencies while conducting research, file civil litigation and work with national content organisations.

Martin Freeman, general counsel at BBC Worldwide said: “The ACE initiative is hugely important at a time when content consumption habits are rapidly shifting and methods of piracy are becoming more and more sophisticated.”

Walt Disney Company senior executive vice president, general counsel and secretary, Alan Braverman, said: “ACE will help protect the viability of the creative community and ensure audiences continue to enjoy the high-quality content they have come to expect. It enhances our collective efforts to fight online piracy by disrupting the criminal enterprises that profit from the theft of copyrighted content, while promoting the legal market for that content, and ultimately gives consumers greater confidence that their viewing choices are not supporting unlawful activities.”

Print & Digital Innovations Summit

Meet leading print & marketing solution providers in London this November

As a senior print and marketing professional, you are invited to attend the Print & Digital Innovations Summit, which is taking place on November 23rd 2017 at the Intercontinental London – The O2.

The event is a unique opportunity for you to meet with print solution providers who will help you grow your business and trim your budgets.

You’ll be matched for a series of face-to-face meetings only with companies who fit your requirements, so absolutely no time is wasted.

Among the suppliers attending the Print & Digital Innovations Summit are:

Belmont Press (Print Solutions)
Brightsource (Marketing Services)
Latcham Direct (Digital Print & Direct Mail)
Mosaic (Print Management Services)
PSL (Print Management Services)
Three Five Four (Design & Print Services)

For further information on this year’s Summit, Kerry Naumburger on 01992 374099 or email

Cooksongold and BMC partner to drive precious metals 3D printing

Italian jewellery manufacturer BMC has teamed up with the UK’s biggest jewellery-making supplier Cooksongold to offer a 3D precious metal printing service.

Leading the way in Italy’s 3D printed precious metal sector, BMC’s adoption of the ‘Precious M 080’ will enhance its Specialised Services and Products operation, by offering a complete 3D precious metal service.

The Precious M 080 system – the first Direct Precious Metal 3D Printing system designed exclusively for the jewellery, watch and precious metals industries – is jointly optimised by Cooksongold and EOS (Electro Optical Systems). The system expands upon the technology created by EOS to provide jewellery makers with the power and freedom to create complex jewellery in a matter of hours.

“We are always looking to incorporate the latest technology and production possibilities; Direct Precious Metal 3D printing with the M 080 system provides us with another tool and production method which will ensure we can continue to push the boundaries of jewel and watch creation,” commented Carlo Massavelli, CEO and chairman at BMC.

Cooksongold MD Martin Bach, added: “We are delighted to be working with BMC for the development of precious metal 3D printing to fully exploit its capabilities and production application in the high end jewellery supply chain.”


SNP won the marketing election

Email service provider Mailjet has analysed the recent general election campaign and found that if results were based on direct marketing performance alone, the Scottish National Party (SNP) would walk away with a clear victory, ahead of Labour in second place and the Conservatives in third place.

Communications sent out by the major political parties were analysed over a four-week period by marketing experts at Mailjet, who then scored emails on seven separate performance indicators including design, personalisation, cross-channel marketing, automation and creativity of content.

With a total of 29 points up for grabs, the research shows all parties are failing to make use of email communications as effectively as they could to reach voters. In fact, the Conservative Party only sent two emails throughout the four week test period, achieving just 10.5 points, compared to the other parties sending seven on average.

Analysis showed that camping leaders failed to make use of personalisation techniques, with the only details required to sign-up for each party’s emails being name, email address and postcode.

All parties bar Conservatives address emails by individual name, with the Conservatives sending emails as a collective group.

Josie Scotchmer, UK marketing manager at Mailjet, commented:  “The generic mass messages being shared by parties in this snap election show no evidence of audience segmentation to increase the relevance of emails to their recipients. The only use of personalisation was using the first name to address readers; parties fail to take advantage of huge opportunities to resonate with voters based on their location and demographic data.”

When it comes to subject lines the Green Party took the lead, with 2.67 points out of 5, with Labour just ahead of the Conservative party with 2.55 points against the Tories’ 2.5 points.

The experts look at the optimum length, word inclusion, whether subject lines are personal and include a call to action, and whether they’re creative. For example, the Green Party shared an email titled ‘OK I admit it. I’m lonely’ where Caroline Lucas calls on the party’s supporters to elect another MP alongside her.

The Labour party’s email subject lines also include snappy statements such as ‘Dodged questions’, ‘Last chance’ and ‘We will be outspent’ to drive open rates and action from the recipient.

In contrast, the SNP won the majority of their points on core content and call to action, scoring 3.0 out of 5 and 3.27 out of 5 respectively. The party’s emails include video content as well as strong calls to action, asking its subscriber base to volunteer and donate highlighted with the design of buttons. Labour also scored well here, sharing their manifesto amidst the news it had been leaked, and offering branded Labour campaign bags for the supporters quickest to donate.

Two other areas of email marketing the political parties are not utilising at the moment are automation and cross-channel marketing inclusion. For example, social media buttons, redirecting to app or website content were only used by the Scottish National Party and Green Party. The Green Party are also the only candidates showing signs of using automation techniques, but even this was minimal.

Scotchmer concluded: “In failing to adopt automation throughout their election campaigns, these political parties have missed a huge trick. Automation can greatly affect relationships with supporters as they now expect engagement from organisations that is tailored to their interests and delivered in real-time. In addition, it’s not expensive to deliver campaigns in this way; the market for this technology is now competitive and it’s increasingly possible to invest in automation at every level.”

New GDPR legislation creates confusion within the marketing and advertising sector

A survey conducted by YouGov on behalf of law firm Irwin Mitchel has revealed serious confusion regarding General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation within the marketing and advertising sector, less than a year before it comes into force.

GDPR is a regulation by which the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission intend to strengthen and unify data protection for anybody living within the EU.

Companies not upholding legislation could face fines of 20 million euros, or 4% of a company’s global revenue.

The survey of 187 marketing and advertising companies found that 70% of those polled admitted that they wouldn’t be certain of their ability to detect a data breach, while just 37% said they would be equipped to deal with a data breach within the required three day timescale.

Only 34% of advertising firms polled said that they were aware of the GDPR directive. 17% said that they would be forced out of business if they were subject to a fine.

“These results are concerning because with next May’s deadline fast-approaching and with so much at stake, our study reveals there’s a very real possibility that a large number of marketing and advertising firms will not be compliant in time,” Joanne Bone, partner and data protection expert at Irwin Mitchell told The Drum.

“Contrary to popular belief personal data is not just consumer information. It is hard to think of a business today that does not use personal data. Whether you have employee data, customer data or supplier data – if the data relates to an individual you will be caught by the new data protection laws.”

GUEST BLOG: Russell Pierpoint: Time to cash in on VR?

By Russell Pierpoint, managing director at Evolved Media Solutions

Virtual Reality (VR) is increasingly seen as the next technology disrupter in the retail world. It has the potential to completely revolutionise the sector, with the creation of unique virtual environments for each brand allowing for tailored shopping experiences.  However, although it has been trialed by some big companies, such as Samsung/AT&T and North Face, it has yet to create the hoped-for revolution.

There are many reasons why retailers remain hesitant to incorporate VR into their business model. Many find the complexity and speed of change in VR technology a challenge, combined with issues such as where VR fits into an organisation (Merchandising? Marketing? Design?). Furthermore, until retailers start experimenting with VR, it is difficult to ascertain effective content, appropriate tools, ROI and how VR processes should be integrated into workflows.  However, if brands wait for all the answers, they risk losing out to more enterprising retailers.

The case for VR in retail is compelling and is growing as consumers become increasingly knowledgeable about the supporting technology – with the launch of PlayStation VR at Christmas introducing more people than ever to the concept.  However, overall numbers are still relatively low. As a result, in 2017 retailers are more likely to create VR initiatives in-store via kiosks as a means to create a more immersive and personalised experience for customers as they physically shop, rather than for interaction at home.

This customised shopping experience is a great place to begin experimenting with the world of VR, offering retailers the opportunity to transform how people shop. After all, as more spend moves online, the role for retail outlets as a showroom and form of retail theatre is growing. If a consumer leaves the comfort of their own sofa, they want it to be worthwhile. VR can turn shopping into an exciting, engaging and memorable event – especially for big ticket items such as cars where VR allows customers to ‘try before they buy’ in a virtual world, or for more ‘visual’ retail sectors such as fashion or interiors. Imagine being able to choose the fabric, colour and design of your sofa by transporting it from the shop to your sitting room with the touch of a button. Or, enjoying a front row seat at the fashion show of your favourite clothes shop.

VR technology is continually improving, with the announcement of wireless connectors already this year, meaning less cables and more freedom of movement. In addition, there will be better hand control devices for more accurate movement tracking and device control.  As a result, retailers will be able to make the simulated world even more immersive for their customers.

However, VR should not just be seen as an exciting theatrical experience. It also has the potential to transform the effectiveness of customer research, allowing shops the opportunity to realistically test ideas and make mistakes in a virtual world. This is not only efficient and cost-effective for companies but it will also produce a better end result for the consumer. There is no doubt that virtual reality is changing the face of retail and, over the next year, the significant role it will play in the future success of the industry will become increasingly evident.

UK marketers feel added Brexit pressure

A study by media intelligence agency Meltwater has revealed that nearly three quarters of UK marketers feel they are under additional pressure since the Brexit vote.

Over 250 senior-level marketers were polled, with 72% saying that they now felt they were under additional pressure to gauge external factors which could potentially harm their business post Brexit.

56% said that they felt the extra pressure came from general uncertainty, 52% said budget restraints and 36% cited the prospect of planning campaigns in other markets.

Half of those polled admitted that “things sometimes get missed” and admitted that they took an ad-hoc approach to measurement.

39% admitted that they were unsure which media and sentiment measurement tools/solutions would be best for their business, as the choice was overwhelming.

Only 27% of those marketers polled said that they had absolute faith in their current methods of measuring external insight.

Gregg Hollister, area director at Meltwater, said: “At a time when the political climate is so uncertain, marketers clearly feel more under pressure than ever to keep a tight handle on any external factors which could impact their business.

“At any given time, developments in the news agenda or across social media, could present threats or opportunities to the marketing community, so it’s paramount they remain consistently immersed in their macro environment, and particularly their competitive landscape.”

Last remaining places for the eTailing Summit – Book today!

All of our original 60 delegate invitations for the eTailing Summit have now been confirmed, but don’t fret – We’ve managed to secure an additional 10 places. But be quick!

It all takes place on July 11th 2017 at the Hilton London Canary Wharf – REGISTER HERE FOR FREE.

You’ll be in the company of an A-Z of blue chip eCommerce companies heading to the event, which has been designed to help you source new suppliers, learn via our insightful seminars and network with other senior peers from across the UK. Companies represented include:

Accessorize AllSaints Amanda Wakeley Anthropologie Antler Celtic Football Club Charlotte Tilbury Dixons Carphone Drake’s Duke & Dexter Feelunique Fortnum & Mason Great Little Trading Co Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity HarrodsHobbycraft Holiday Taxis Horizon Discovery Hotel Chocolat huggle IKEA Karen Millen Kimberly Clark Little Black Dress Lombok Lyle & Scott Molton Brown Monocle Magazine Monsoon National Football Museum National Trust New Era Cap Olivia Burton Origins Perry Ellis Pizza Hut Rigby & Peller River Island Royal Caribbean International Samsung Signature Gifts Signet SkandiumSkinnydip London Tateossian Tchibo Coffee International Tech21 The Health Lottery The Snugg Thomas Cook TOWER London TransPennine Express Travis Perkins Turnbull & Asser Virgin Trains East Coast Westland Horticulture Wickes and Xercise4Less.

Need more convincing? Here’s what our former delegates have said about the event…

“It was an excellent way to discover some top notch suppliers. I made some very useful contacts and am highly likely to go on and do business with them. The seminars were informative and useful. Thank you very much” – Oliver Bonas

 “Very good event, promoting constructive conversations with relevant vendors” – Finery London

“The event was a perfect networking opportunity, not only with potential partners, but also with my peers – totally recommend this. The ‘speed dating’ meeting format was an excellent optimisation of time!” – Abbott

“I always find events with this format really useful, and contrary to belief, not at all pushy or salesy. The eTailing summit is no different, useful, great location and really well organised” – Safestore

To find out how you can join them, contact Katie Bullot on 01992 374049 or email

‘Trainspotting’ guide to Edinburgh created by Sony and 8MS

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment has created The Alternative Guide to Edinburgh, ahead of the digital download of T2 Trainspotting.

Working with digital and content marketing company 8 Million Stories, The Alternative Guide to Edinburgh site takes users through key locations from the film, adapted to each of the key characters, including Renton, Begbie, Sick Boy and Spud.

The guide also contains bonus material and exclusive content, such as never-seen-before clips from the film and interviews with cast members.

“When it came to launching T2 Trainspotting, 8 Million Stories was the perfect fit,” said Neil Rodwell, Head of Product Marketing at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

“We’d been admirers of 8MS and its work with brands in the entertainment industry, and were excited to see what it could do for us – and weren’t disappointed. The T2 Trainspotting Alternative Guide to Edinburgh perfectly encapsulates the humour and mood of the film, and celebrates the legacy of Trainspotting.”

Robin Richmond, Managing Director at 8MS, said: “T2 Trainspotting has such a unique style of dark humour and a melancholic tone that fans are passionate about, and we were determined to convey the essence of the film within this project. Both the Trainspotting films are very close to our hearts and The Alternative Guide to Edinburgh was such a fun project for the team to be part of.”

To view the guide, click here

Trolls force Walkers Crisps to axe social media campaign

A social media campaign by Walkers Crisps has been axed after being hijacked by trolls.

The #WalkersWave campaign encouraged consumers to tweet in a selfie picture to be in with a chance of winning UEFA Champion’s League final tickets, after which a video is created automatically on the Walkers Twitter feed showing Gary Lineker holding up the picture, while the individual does a Mexican wave.

However, instead of uploading selfies, people have been sending in pictures of notorious serial killers and sex offenders. Walkers have since deleted all videos and issued a statement which read: “We recognise people were offended by irresponsible and offensive posts by individuals, and we apologise. We are equally upset and have shut down all activity.”

In an interview with Marketing Week, Jo Allison, consumer behavioural analyst at Canvas8, said she thought that there wouldn’t be any long-term damage to the brand regarding the offensive videos.

“Many people actually enjoy it when brands make mistakes and there is certainly a lot of buzz online right now revelling in the failing of Walkers to see this coming,” commented Allison.

“It’s certainly highly embarrassing for those behind the campaign but it would be foolish to think this will do any long-term brand damage. The absurdity lies in the naivety of the brand and not any malicious intent from Walkers. Most people will recognise that.”