P&G seeks outside help in video cost cutting drive


Procter & Gamble has embarked on a large scale talent-scouting mission to reduce its video ad production costs, even placing an ad on the NASA website to seeking fresh ideas.


The post on the NASA site explains that P&G is seeking "a new way to produce moving images for TV commercials and digital video that meets the demand of more flexible content".

The ad, which appeared on the sitelast week, asked that it is specifically looking to start a project that "produces more content at a cost that is significantly lower than today's average" TV commercial in the US while still meeting its brands' production-quality standards.

The was issued through P&G's "Connect & Develop" program to gather industry ideas.

The post states that the TV commercial production process at P&G has been "essentially the same for the past 50 years" from storyboard to agencies hiring directors, using pre-specified production companies and getting final copy approved by the brand.

Increased competition and ad space sparks need for production efficiency

The FMCG giant noted that with the rise of YouTube and Facebook videos, as well as the large take up of mobile video, brands have increasing need for video content that's not produced specifically for TV, while demands for higher return on investment have grown.

"Furthermore," the post says, "our competitors are finding ways to dramatically reduce the costs of TV commercial and digital video production." Production has become a less capital-intense industry," the post says, creating opportunities for new, potentially lower-cost players.

Talking specific numbers, P&G cited recent American Association of Advertising Agencies survey showing the average costs of video production.

The firm said wants to get costs "significantly lower" than the current average of $273,000 for beauty and $364,000 for household products".

In the post, P&G admitted that while certain tools and skills, such as a camera and an operator "can't be changed," the post seeks ideas for "new operational structures and/or use of new industries for this innovation project." Oct. 13 is the deadline for idea submissions.

It also outlined several points for a success criteria:

Success Criteria:

1. Costs to produce the work will be substantially less than current costs

2. Range of visual quality needs can be met. We want to engage consumers in a meaningful
way using the right quality for the brand and the specific job. This can range from a Vine video to a Super Bowl commercial.

3. Sustainable for the suppliers (i.e. the business model generates enough profit for them and attracts other clients)

4. Production is more flexible to meet needs of a portfolio of brands and initiatives or can be done in new, technologically-advanced ways to meet the future needs for customized content for programmatics

5. Can be scaled to:

1. other regions
2. any production of visual images (moving and still)

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