To some, it may have gone under the radar a little, but Google operates an in-house team dedicated to working with ad agencies and brands.

“Zoo is Google’s creative think tank for brands and agencies,” explains Zoo’s global chief creative officer Lars Bastholm, in this video interview with Beet.TV. “We help brands and agencies think more about how you can use Googles tools, platforms and services in more creative ways.”

So what does Zoo do, and what makes for great creativity these days? For one, it’s still a right-brain activity, and still an exercise in exploration, Bastholm reckons.

“We don’t talk about numbers in the creative process – math is not my strength,” he tells us.

“As a creative, every time someone gives you a new toy to play with, you’re thrilled. You take it apart and build something with it. If you’re not inherently curious, you’re probably in the wrong line of work.”

The latest toys in that line-up are virtual reality and augmented reality. Google has rudimentary Google Cardboard but also the next-generation Daydream VR standard and Tiltbrush, the immersive world in which people can paint inside a virtual environment with neon colors.

So what does it all ad up to for marketers who want “in” but aren’t sure what the opportunity is?

“It reminds me a little bit about what the web was like back in ’95, ’96 – we all knew it was going to be huge; we didn’t know how big,” Bastholm says. “Virtual and augmented reality is at that same stage.”

Hi message to brands who are yet to find their way in the new world: “Keep exploring – it’s so easy to test, keep iterating, never rest on your laurels.”



This video is part of Beet.TV’s coverage of the IAB MIXX Conference, 2016, presented by The TradeDesk. Please find additional videos from the Conference here.