Selling a product is one thing. Selling an idea is quite another. How do you make an idea so real that potential customers can fully appreciate it?
Google solves this problem by enlisting Pomegranate to create "mocks," for their clients, meticulously designed snapshots of their proposed media buy.
"Our mocks are an exploratory approach designed to get the conversation started between Google's clients and the respective Google sales team," says Pomegranate CEO Grant Powell.
Mocks let a client see exactly how their ads will appear during the buy. Pomegranate designers take existing ads (or create new ones) and place them on sample pages of sites in the buy, for example nytimes.com or fandango. Different versions show clients how various-sized ads will look in different locations on the site.
A Pomegranate specialty is the YouTube brand channel mock, since so many top brands use the video sharing site to market their latest campaign, contest or product launch. To date Pomegranate has supplied Google with over 1000 of these mocks to present to various brands.
The creation of a YouTube brand channel mock begins with Google submitting a creative brief to Pomegranate's intranet system. Pomegranate designers then decide how to best achieve Google's and the client's goals. "Every brand has an idea of how to market their product," says Pomegranate creative producer Ean Mering. "So we begin every YouTube project using their objectives as a foundation for Google's pitch."
Most clients hope a YouTube brand channel will start a conversation with their audience and get them to talk openly and honestly about their products. "There's a lot of pressure for these mocks to communicate correctly," says Mering. "We approach it as something that will have to endure the scrutiny of the general public. We try to use the best techniques to accomplish the goals, and compare them with the clients' websites, micro-sites and ads to make sure that our creative is in line with their current branding."
Google provides invaluable input, since they thoroughly analyze the effectiveness of all parts of their campaigns, identifying approaches that perform poorly and those that have tracked successfully. "We have to make sure these mocks are of the highest quality to represent Google and support their clients," says Powell, "who are some of the largest companies in the world."
While the creation of over a thousand mock concepts takes a lot of work, the results are impressive. Pomegranate mocks that evolved into live YouTube destinations include the official channels for rock band U2, IT powerhouse Hewlett-Packard (hp) and the Indian Premier League, a globally popular cricket competition that began March 12 (check out www.youtube.com/ipl).
And why does Google use Pomegranate? "We have some of the best talent in the business," says CEO Powell. "No other agency is able to match our timetable. We're aggressive and have dedicated digital painters and UI designers constantly working and reworking the approach of these mocks to equip Google with the most visually compelling and intellectually rich presentations, giving them an edge over their competitors."