How Machine Learning & Human Smarts Can Cut Your Marketing Costs

How Machine Learning & Human Smarts Can Cut Your Marketing Costs

In his latest post for B&TCollaboro CEO Warwick Boulter (pictured below) says another upside to all this new tech available to marketers is it ability to save you time and money…

You may have noticed that we talk about metadata, collation, content tagging and machine learning – a lot. They’re pretty dry topics. But they’re important, because if you can find your marketing assets quickly and easily, then you can avoid costly production repetition, you can empower your creative partners to actually be creative and you can get your campaigns to market far more efficiently.


Let’s put some metrics around NOT being able to find things: In 2012 McKinsey reported that employees spent 1.8hrs per day – over 20 per cent of the working work – on searching for files. An earlier IDC report placed this figure even higher at 30 per cent. In IDC’s words “the knowledge worker spends about 2.5 hours per day, or roughly 30% of the workday, searching for information”.

Conservatively, that’s one headcount in five, completely wasted.

Now, add in the cost of re-making things you can’t find. Then add in the opportunity cost of missed market opportunity while you remake things. Now add in the cost of this issue manifesting across multiple agency partners, who also have no ability to share assets easily… Suddenly, the real costs of not being able to find marketing assets jump.

Properly solving digital asset management (DAM), and engaging your creative partners in the process and outcomes of a DAM solution, can deliver huge efficiencies to your business and help cut down considerably on future marketing costs – ideally funnelling that wasted 20 per cent or so of your marketing budget back into market-focused outcomes.

There are three core aspects of digital asset management required for success: engagement, process and software – each have about a 30% weighting to deliver success. 

Any DAM software worth its salt will use a relatively intuitive metadata system to ensure uploaded files can be quickly found by users. To be high-functioning, the system should use a combination of machine learned insights and human smarts to tag, not just the image or video file, but the individual components within the file. The system should recognise what’s actually important to your business, not just deliver generic tags. And it should encompass details on capture, usage, production and copyright. 

This makes the content ‘intelligent’. And that’s where things get really exciting.

Using a combination of machine learning and human smarts, an intelligent content engine (ICE) analyses and understands objects, people, text and scenes within imagery and video, to add multiple layers of searchable metadata. 

These searchable layers can be broken down into nine layers.

Metadata layer 1: File information

This is the basic information auto-generated by operating systems. Things like creation date, file type, file size, file name, and a few other parameters. Basic stuff, but handy nonetheless.

Metadata layer 2: Embedded capture information
When cameras (and phones) capture images and video, they also store some relevant metadata. Things like camera type, frame size, frame rate, technical capture information, and crucially, GPS location information are details included in an ICE. 

Metadata layer 3: Audio transcription

Searchable transcripts of all spoken words in any video. This is especially powerful for interviews and longer form content. Being able to search not only video content but words on a cloud-based platform can deliver both marketing efficiencies and analytical insights from the content itself.

Metadata layer 4: Copyright and usage information

A set of information detailing the copyright holder, licensing agreement detail, usage contracting for talent, music, video operator, photographer, contact information – all the things that allow businesses to utilise their multimedia assets easily and with clarity.

Metadata layer 5: Bespoke customer-centric keywords

A bespoke thesaurus of keywords that reflect a brand’s specific characteristics. These are specific and detailed – often product or infrastructure terms that are critically important and often used internally within your business. For some of our clients, ‘hamburger’ is far too generic to be useful. We need more details like ‘beef patty’ or ‘low-fat’ or ‘Australian produce’.

Metadata layer 6: Basic object recognition
Broad keywords that are populated as searchable metadata under an automated AI framework are included in an ICE. Basic visual elements and objects, include, for example ‘plane’, ‘car’, ‘dog’, ‘man’, ‘day’, ‘night’, ‘water’, ‘park’. 

Metadata layer 7: Facial recognition
Facial recognition can empower a customer to teach the algorithm important faces that can be tagged automatically – with applications from sport to C-suite and politics.

Metadata layer 8: Production information

Taking information from the call-sheets, job sheets, project management platforms, agency production reports, and any other campaign information, an ICE can include details on personnel involved in the production or creation, such as the producer, director, ad agency, product, campaign, job number.

Metadata layer 9: Character recognition

Recognition of words that appear as visuals on-screen – this is very powerful. It allows, for example, a sporting team to immediately identify images or video where sponsor branding appears, providing immediate proof points for activation.

These insights – many of them driven by machine learning and at the cutting edge of technology – allow creative assets to be easily surfaced within a library that is growing exponentially, and is being created across multiple partners or locations.

The wider implications of these technologies on managing digital creative assets easy to find and use not only adds value to marketing, but immunises against employee and agency changes, and prepares for a future of highly automated, highly individualised, content driven marketing at scale.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Collaboro Warwick Boulter

Latest News

Archibald Williams Wins NBA Digital, Activation & Fan Engagement Accounts For APAC
  • Media

Archibald Williams Wins NBA Digital, Activation & Fan Engagement Accounts For APAC

Independent brand and digital agency, Archibald Williams (AW) has been appointed to lead the NBA account across the APAC region. The NBA is one of the most prestigious sporting leagues in the world and basketball is one of the fastest-growing sports in Australia. Effective immediately, AW said it was “excited” to work across all digital, […]

QMS Champions Creativity As First Most Contagious APAC 2023 Sponsor
  • Advertising

QMS Champions Creativity As First Most Contagious APAC 2023 Sponsor

Leading digital outdoor company QMS has announced it is the first-ever inaugural partner for Most Contagious APAC, the landmark London event by creative and strategic intelligence company Contagious, which will be showcased in Australia on Tuesday, 12 December in Sydney and Wednesday, 13 December in Melbourne. Most Contagious is an event that delivers key advertising […]

OMG’s Annalect First To Get Meta’s Advanced Analytics
  • Technology

OMG’s Annalect First To Get Meta’s Advanced Analytics

Omnicom’s data and analytics division Annalect has partnered with Meta, giving it access to Advanced Analytics (AA) – one of Meta’s privacy-focused measurement solutions – to provide Omnicom’s clients with future-proof, next-level measurement. Omnicom is the first holding company to have access to AA. AA allows advertisers to combine their first-party data with Meta’s ads […]

AKQA Launches Eco-Conscious AI DIY Assistant Encouraging People To Gift More Sustainably
  • Technology

AKQA Launches Eco-Conscious AI DIY Assistant Encouraging People To Gift More Sustainably

WPP’s AKQA has launched, an environmentally conscious AI-powered DIY assistant, affectionately known as Fixie, for a one-stop solution for all things repair. hosts an array of guides and inspiration to empower people to prolong the lives of their belongings or purchase pre-owned items that need a little love and care. Fixie can: Help […]

Marc Collister: AI & Automation Set To Revolutionise Creativity In 2024
  • Opinion

Marc Collister: AI & Automation Set To Revolutionise Creativity In 2024

Marc Collister (pictured) of P2 Content Creators spills the beans on his 2024 predictions drawing from two decades of experience in the advertising, film and television industry. I’m certain it will come as no surprise that in 2024, we can expect our industry to move at breakneck speed again. With even more rapid shifts in […]


by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Zeno Group Australia Bolsters Client Offerings With An Expanded Creative Services Portfolio & New Senior Leader
  • Marketing

Zeno Group Australia Bolsters Client Offerings With An Expanded Creative Services Portfolio & New Senior Leader

Zeno Australia has announced expanded creative design capabilities and the appointment of Jim Michell (lead image) to its senior leadership team. The new moves support strong growth in the region. Zeno Australia’s clients, including Abano Healthcare, Motorola and Yorkshire Tea, can now tap into a suite of creative design services to augment the agency’s work […]

Assembled Media Inks TikTok Creator Campaign for BIC
  • Campaigns

Assembled Media Inks TikTok Creator Campaign for BIC

Assembled Media, is drawing upon the creative power of TikTok Creator Marketplace to help generate unique, impactful content for iconic stationery brand, BIC. The social activation campaign titled ‘A Pen for Every Side of You’ promotes the flexibility of BIC’s 4 Colours pen and is active nationwide on the BIC Stationery TikTok account. The campaign […]

Big data and analytics visualization technology with scientist analyzing information structure on screen with machine learning to extract predictions for business, finance, internet of things
  • Media

IAB Launches Fourth Module In Its Marketing Measurement Innovation Series

IAB Australia has launched ‘Evolution in Market Mix Modelling’, the fourth module in its Marketing Measurement Innovation Series, which has been developed by IAB Australia’s Ad Effectiveness Council. The module explores what is driving the increased use of MMM and how the technique is evolving with advances in computing power and machine learning to provide […]

Aerial view of a coal fired power station with large cooling towers emitting co2 into the atmosphere. With its lights already turned on the power station is illuminated in moody twilight.
  • Media

Scope3 Expands Carbon Measurement Capabilities To Include DOOH Advertising

Scope3, the collaborative sustainability platform leading the decarbonisation of media and advertising,  announced the addition of digital out-of-home (DOOH) to its emissions measurement. With DOOH ad spending predicted to grow from $17B in 2023 to nearly $24B by 2028, measuring this channel brings us one step closer to understanding the total impact of digital advertising […]

January 14, 2023 - New York, New York, USA: 2023 NRF Big Show press conference with Composition 2024 NRF Singapore.    Photo by Ian Wagreich / © Ian Wagreich Photography
  • Marketing

Now Open For Registration – NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific

NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific, is now open for online registrations for the main conference. Jointly organized by the National Retail Federation and Comexposium, Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific will take place from 11 – 13 June, 2024 at the Sands Expo and Convention Centre in Singapore and is expected to draw thousands […]