– Show people and their emotions – encourages Christian Graf-Simpson who was responsible for the development of the Red Bulletin's iPad-App – And if you can't do it, maybe you should change the subject?
You have worked on the Red Bulletin iPad app in Red Bull Media House for the past seven years. On Red Bulletin website there are words saying „magazine with adrenaline”. I started to think what does it mean, how you can put Red Bull lifestyle and philosophy into digital magazine?
Chirstian Graf-Simpson: Video – that’s the clue. Moving Images are a very good way to emotionalize users. Red Bull Media House is collecting media, picures and videos, from every event Red Bull starts and therefore has lots of content to use as footage for the app.
Only videos can give you those real emotions?
CGS: Not only, but it is a really good way to tell stories with an emotional experience. It should be professional video.
How would you describe an app that engages people? What does it mean?
CGS: It’s an app that people are waiting for the next issue to come. If you can deliver such interesting content in a way that people are emotionaly, positively touched with the content then I’m very sure that they will come back to you and they will be engaged users.
And how you can create this touch with users?
CGS: If you give emotionalising experience to the user. From one side it can come from the content, like we said from videos or something like this and from the other side – from the user interface you can create user experience from, so that you are getting interaction with the user and give him positive experiences with the things you can do in your app.
Where can marketers find inspirations and clues to create digital content?
CGS: They have to know their target and look if they have something that is interesting for the audience. This is something that you can measure really good and as we heard before from Clemens Koob at the conference, measuring is something that is not done often enough, just about one third of the content marketers are measuring what they are doing. So this is something that you can do: how much content are users interested and in which kind of content? Which kind of assets are the users interested in? Is it to have an app that is more dedicated to readers or more dedicated to people who like to flip photos or watching videos? Find this out and you can create products that fits best to your target.
Red Bull creates interesting content for young, active people, fond of adventure, but what about a bank for example. If they want to create digital content and videos, is it possible to create a video for a bank that engages? Where should those marketers look for some clue about what to prepare?
CGS: Show people and their emotions – that would be my recommendation.
Conected with banking?
CGS: Sure, conected with banking! There are many advertisings out there that do this in a really good way and this can be done with every product. If you can’t show, for example as a bank, that you can make people happy with your product so you have to ask yourself a question: can I make people happy with my product? And if not maybe you should change the subject. I’m sure that every bank thinks that it has good products that can bring benefits to the customers that buy and use these products and this is definitely something they can show.
Do you see something specific in the future of digital magazines? What would be on the top in the next year in digital magazines and content?
CGS: On the top will be the magazines that can make it possible to be not only on just one device, like an iPad/tablet. So on top will be the publishers that can engage the user and deliver content to the user on every thinkable device, so not only on tablets and PC’s but for sure on phones. And next big thing will be internet of things and wearables to combine all these things together.
Do you think now there is some real problem with content on mobile phones?
CGS: When we are talking about magazine-like approach, yes. Many publishers have only iPad editions and only a few of them have phone editions. Ind if they finally have phone editions, they mostly don’t bring out the best experiences for the users because on phone you need some kind of „reading mode“. For example not all are using push notifications and the lot of all the other possibilities. There is so much that can be done to follow the path to success than actually is happening out there in the publishing world. There are so many ways and ideas.
Do you have to create different content for the phone and for the iPad?
CGS: In magazine text and reading is a big point. You have to think about storytelling in different ways on mobile devices. As an average magazine in A4 may fit more or less seamlessly to an ipad from the layout perspective, a phone is for sure too small. So you have to create the same content in an adapted way, tell your stories differently and think about of providing a special reader mode will be important.
Users are usually in other contexts when using a tablet or a phone. Therefore they will have other priorities in their interests in this situations. For example when you look at a hotel website from your PC you will most likely gather information about the rooms and the services offered, but when coming back later with you r mobile phone you will most likely be more interested to find the way to the hotel. So the same content has to be prioritized, edited and designed in a different way.
Since 2008 he was with the Red Bull Media House, responsible for the development of the Red Bulletin’s iPad-App, which was launched in 2011. He has more than 20 years experience in publishing and digital publishing business
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