ADOTAS – It was the first thing you noticed walking into the ballroom of the Bowery Hotel, where Vibrant Media was hosting its awards gala — a giant screen featuring live footage from a make-shift studio (a video booth rather than a photo booth) set up in the adjoining room. Oh, but this was no ordinary shoot — the extremely hi-def camera filmed at 1,000 frames per second, so when the cameraman played back sections in ultra slo-mo, it made for quite spectacular clips.
Vibrant’s guests stopped dancing and stared all slack-jawed and googly-eyed as clips of attendees throwing glitter, shaking their hair (now I know how shampoo commercials are filmed), popping balloons and even play-punching (I think) each other with boxing gloves were instantly transformed into magical pieces of cinema via the old trick of slow motion (with hyper-modern amenities).
But words can only go so far in this case — I mean, if a picture is worth 1,000 words, then 30 seconds of video shot at 1,000 frames per second really requires 30 million words to describe. Fortunately, Vibrant put together a classy highlight reel, with musical accompaniment by Lou Reed (recorded long before he started working with aging metalheads). There’s even a contest (and Vibrant fan-builder) that goes with it — whoever gets the most likes from a video posted on Facebook and tagged @vibrant wins an iPad2.
With attendees returning for multiple screen tests, the video booth was certainly the highlight of the Vibrant Awards, but the company had more to offer party-goers. The elegant room — which played host to Paul McCartney’s wedding reception a few weekends before — was packed, forcing tardy guests like me stand outside and play a few rounds of Angry Birds before getting in. Across from the video booth, attendees lined up to either get their fortunes told — and they had a choice between a palm reader and tarot card dealer.
New CEO Cella Irvine’s jubilation at the party’s smashing success was only matched by her excitement concerning Vibrant’s future initiatives. Although it’s still mainly known for its in-text advertising, Vibrant has been making moves across channels, adding social toolbar services for both publishers and advertisers. Vibrant is leveraging its contextual platform further, growing its business in the “in-image” (overlays on new online image inventory) ad space and as well as making a name in the video advertising marketplace.
Oh, and yeah, there were awards: a panel of senior agency and brand executives along with more than 600 public votes from industry members judged Vibrant’s nominees on creative strategy, contextual relevance, end-user perspective and brand message communication. The winners were:
- Vodafone D2 GmbH/Media Team OMD – Global Silver Award
- Chrysler LLC/Universal McCann – Global Bronze Award
- Arm & Hammer/MAXUS – US Silver Award
- Sprint/Mindshare – US Bronze Award
- Unilever AXE/Mindshare – Industry’s Choice Award
Click here to see all the acknowledged campaigns.