BBDO partners with Mars to launch video crowdsourcing platform

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BBDO has created a global crowdsourcing platform to enable its clients to commission online video content, with Mars as its launch partner.

Flare Studio is an extension of BBDO’s content division Flare. Similar to crowdsourcing specialists eYeka and the You and Mr Jones-backed British service MoFilm, Flare Studio is the first such platform to be launched by a creative ad network.

The platform will offer marketers three levels of increasingly sophisticated service: Open Studio, Studio Plus and Studio Pro.

The offering launches in the UK at Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO this week and will be available globally in the coming months. 

Mars is the first brand to sign up but the service will be available to all BBDO clients.

Leonid Sudakov, global chief marketing officer at Mars Petcare, has led Mars’ involvement in the platform.

Sudakov said: "In the creative industry it’s evolve or die. We want to be able to face the changes together. Our idea is to build the creative community of the future. 

"We want to help those guys to be able to express their talent and move them up in the creative industry."

BBDO’s new crowdsourced platform will donate a proportion of its revenue to training its directors. To kick this off, Mars will fund two £25,000 scholarships to the National Film and Television School.

Flare Studio directors are divided into three tiers. Nick Price, head of content at AMV and founder of Flare, said the entry-level Open Studio is designed as a "democratic, bottom-up" platform allowing anybody to compete for work from BBDO clients.

Briefs that up-and-coming directors "can go out and film in a day or two" will be posted by brands, and marketers will choose the best films to use.

BBDO will select directors for Studio Plus based on their talent and previous work. Contributors will write synopses to brands’ briefs to enable marketers to choose who to commission. Treatments will be paid for.

Studio Pro will feature directors with a broadcast background as well as those signed to production companies. Studio Pro is suitable for campaigns with budgets of between £40,000 and £120,000. BBDO will not scrutinise how directors spent their budgets.

Price said production companies are receptive to the idea because it can be "tough to find enough work" for their less established directors. 

Great Guns and Unit9 have already signed up.

BBDO will work with clients on their Flare Studio briefs and it is understood that 40% of their budgets will be used to fund the service, which is comparable to similar platforms. 

Launched by AMV in 2014, Flare is now in 12 BBDO offices.

This article first appeared on campaignlive.co.uk.

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