“Google Glass is definitely overhyped” – Q&A with Ben Scott-Robinson, creative director, SapientNitro

Ben Scott-Robinson

The Drum catches up with Ben Scott-Robinson, creative director at SapientNitro, head of mobile at Ordnance Survey, and one of the judges at this year’s MOMAs (Marketing on Mobile Awards), to get his views on Google Glass (“less exciting than the hype”), his advice for marketers judging how much to spend on mobile, and what he’s most excited about in the world of mobile in 2014.

What was your favourite mobile campaign or event in mobile last year?

eBay's Mobile Shoppable Panto by the most creative man in mobile – Jack Mullock at Fetch.

What is the most exciting event in mobile that you expect from 2014?

Showrooming using 3D printing and drones. Seriously though – a proper, clever, soft data-driven location-based advertising space. It is edging ever closer to being worthwhile, and I expect someone next year to finally crack it. It would be nice if it wasn't Google for once.

Google Glass – is it overhyped or worth the excitement? Why?

It's worth the excitement as a concept, and I suspect that it may do well, if only amongst agency types. The actual experience is less exciting than the hype would have you think, but it is a good first go. It is definitely overhyped though.

According to the IAB – media agencies are diverting on average 15 per cent of digital spend towards mobile – how do you see that trend developing over the coming months?

Hopefully it means that people will start creating properly good mobile media formats!

Mobile is still a problem for many marketers when it comes to judging how much to spend – is there any advice you would offer to them in determining how important it is for their marketing communications to run across mobile devices?

It is a problem because the big thinking about formats and mechanisms isn't even close to be finished yet, and it is a big leap for most marketers to think of both the mechanism and the campaign. This is why so many campaigns try and bodge together an existing format with some remnant of the ATL campaign. But the opportunities are so great that it has be a part of most campaigns. My advice is to be realistic about what would work for them personally, if they were the customers. Great campaigns have to be emotionally engaging – even more so on such a personal and intimate device. If the marketers and agency don't believe in it, then why should the punters?

What mobile devices do you own?

Nokia Lumia, iPhone 5, iPad, Motorola 8800 (the very first one), Nokia 3320 (you know, the one everyone had in 2000), a RAZR, a watch phone and a whole heap more. I inherited the phone museum from We Love Mobile...

If you could or planned to upgrade or change – which ones would you choose?

The new Lumia. Awesome hardware, the best OS (at the moment). If not that, then the LG Flex 2. One step closer to smart paper.

Scott-Robinson is joined on the MOMAs judging panel by Charlie Hunter-Schyff of Telefónica Digital, Havas Worldwide London CEO Russ Lidstone, Indy Saha of Google Creative Lab and M&C Saatchi Mobile's James Hilton, to name just a few.

The MOMAs, which rewards effective mobile marketing campaigns and strategies, is now open for entry with a deadline of 28 February. All information on Awards registration and entry can be found on the MOMAs website.

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