Leana Less, global VP, connections and media, Coca Cola is a judge on the inaugural Festival of Media North America Awards, but took time out to give her thoughts on the issues dominating the media landscape.
Transparency and brand safety have risen to the fore around the world in the industry during the last couple of years, but North America’s digital advertising practices have come under increasing pressure. How, if at all, has this affected the marketing campaigns and work that has been produced in the last 12 months in the region?
More than impacting campaigns, transparency has now become general knowledge throughout organisations and are no longer limited to debates amongst specialists. CEOs are discussing company digital marketing strategies and putting safeguards in place to increase transparency. This level of awareness is ultimately evolving the parameters of strategic partnerships between brands and digital partners.
What two or three trends are you seeing dominate the media landscape in North America?
Audience first to ensure relevance is evolving from simple tactics such as location based marketing to anticipation economy. Secondly ongoing focus (even panic) to progress from connected intelligence to competitive intelligence.
What does the industry need to do to ensure it continues to evolve with technology advancements, and most importantly consumers continually changing habits?
Expansion of roles are no longer sufficient. To be competitive in the information age agencies and marketeers have to radically redefine the talent capabilities required to ensure leading edge communication that builds, and/or unlocks value.
What will you be looking for when judging the Festival of Media North America Awards?
Stereotypically North America is known for superior technology solutions, but not as strong as European or Asian counterparts in innovation. I am looking forward to seeing technology and innovation come together.
What campaigns have impressed you over the last 12 months in the North American region?
Dominos – a seamless integration of marketing and commerce
What should the industry be prepared for over the next year?
Brands, companies, organisations are all questioning their operating models. Chief marketing officers are making way for chief growth officers and this is an opportunity for all marketing and communication specialists to get even closer to business strategy – rather than from the communications brief.