Facebook's Creative Shop leader on global and regional balance

The Brazil native has managed to use lessons learned from around the globe to steer the in-house hub.

It has been a little over a year since Rapha Vasconcellos has shaken things up as global head of Facebook’s in-house hub known as Creative Shop, and he doesn’t plan to slow down in 2020. 

Vasconcellos has big plans for Facebook’s Creative Shop, with gaming and AR at the top of his to-do list, and an aura of experimentation permeating everything the team does. 

"We have this concept of intentional experimentation. We try to solve problems for the advertisers in ways that are new, and we may not necessarily know what will happen but the journey itself will bring new learnings," he said. 

He has been with Creative Shop for a number of years in varying positions, including head of Latin America, and Asia, and he plans on taking the lessons he’s learned from his stints around the world to his now global role. 

"I’m trying to help every region develop the best work out there," he told Campaign. 

"From my time in Asia, I learned that the continent is not a single region, but really different regions stitched together. Japan for example is a very visual society so Instagram is huger there, while messaging over WhatsApp is huge in Thailand. It’s not like South America which is much more similar from country to country," he said. 

But while campaigns obviously need to be localized for each specific region, Vasconcellos also sees the value in supporting global work as well. 

"We’re launching a Global Clients team, which is looking beyond regions, and focusing more on supporting a few brands across the world."

In addition to that, Vasconcellos plans on focus on gaming as well in the coming year. 

"Next year we’re probably going to spend more time on gaming. Gaming is huge for Facebook’s business and is a completely different creative space, where a lot of things happen in-house with a lot of technology. You’re really close to the product and you're selling something you can influence with your ideas," he said. 

And he plans on bringing that to the global stage. 

"We have gaming teams across the world, but I’m trying to bring them together, so that will be big for us from a business perspective," Vasconcellos added. 

"I’m interested not just in gaming but AR as well. We’re seeing AR being adopted by people everywhere, mainly on Instagram for us. A lot of creators are looking at the platform as a way to express ideas and I think that will keep growing next year," he said. 

One prime example was the creation of an entire music video using only Instagram stories and filters earlier this year. 

Mark Ronson’s "Pieces Of Us" Feat. King Princess was the first-ever Interactive Instagram story music video, which allowed users to insert themselves in the video with a filter custom made for the project. 

"When you add interactivity to stories that becomes a canvas and become more interactive. We’re just exploring that as a canvas for us," Vasconcellos said. 

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