By Ian Wheal, head of global strategy, Adstream

From the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep, our everyday lives are becoming ever-more digitalised through items such as digital alarm clocks, DAB radios, tablet computers, online banking, social media and Smart TV’s. The analogue world in which we used to live continues to fade away…

It may, therefore, come as a surprise that, in some cases, the global distribution of advertising assets by brands and their creative agencies still happens by issuing tapes via couriers in vans and planes. The reason being is that, until recently, many organisations in certain countries have lacked the bandwidth to receive or support large digital files.

The hand delivery of assets is not only slow and costly, but also presents major security risks. In the past, there have been incidences of tapes going missing or being held up in customs for days on end, and content not reaching its intended destination within the allotted timeframe. Therefore, finding a solution that provides greater control and visibility of all assets has become a key priority for many brands and agencies managing the distribution process.

Thankfully, with more countries now benefitting from faster internet speeds, there is an opportunity for brands and their agencies to streamline and safeguard the distribution of their digital assets. With the right software and support comes the chance to really push the boundaries and venture into unchartered territory.

Every agency strives to stay ahead of the curve, yet it can prove difficult to be truly pioneering when working with clients that have strict guidelines and little room for creativity. With this in mind, stepping up to the plate when approached with what genuinely is an extraordinary project should be an opportunity that solution providers bite their client’s hand off for. A good example of this is when The Walt Disney Company tasked its creative agency with an out of the ordinary request, and Adstream was only too keen to get involved.

As most industry professionals can vouch, a three minute commercial is relatively simple to create and distribute. However, to live produce film, post-produce and deliver to the TV station to be aired on the same day is a different matter.

The project in question was called ‘The Ultimate Sports Day’ and was filmed on Monday 14th July 2014 at The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park with Mo Farah. Adverts were broadcast in the lead up to the event asking people to tune in to watch an extra special advert at a specific time as well as the project being promoted across social media.

Taking on a project, which involved brands to the scale of Weetabix/Disney meant everything had to be on-point, timed and delivered seamlessly and without error: something that traditional methods of digital asset delivery would not have been able to provide as seamlessly.
The standard express turn-around for a regular 30 second commercial is around two hours, so to receive, ingest and deliver a three minute commercial in under an hour is almost unheard of.

Thanks to the advent of digital distribution, Adstream was able to complete the task at hand and get the advert to Disney before the allotted TV screening time.

Through the use of digital asset distribution facilities, brands and partner agencies can upload all of their assets into a single, secure project environment. Accessible from anywhere in the world, at any time, across multiple browsers and devices; clients, customers and partnering agencies can all access their digital assets at any given time.

Through effective, fast and controlled delivery of the advertising content, clients and agencies can achieve significant collaboration, costs savings and security benefits. Not to mention a fast turnaround required for dealing with the world’s fastest long distance runner.