2013 challenges: Peter Biggs

2013 challenges: Peter Biggs
SHARE
THIS


What best describes you?

Peter Biggs, chief executive at Clemenger BBDO Melbourne, shares the challenges facing the creative industry in 2013

2013 will be a year when the usual fog of war – for clients and agencies – will become more intense.
Why?

In the reception at Clemenger BBDO/Melbourne, we have a poster on the wall. It’s a quotation from the great broadcaster, Edward R Murrow, who was immortalised in George Clooney’s movie Good Night, And Good Luck: “Anyone who isn’t confused doesn’t really understand the situation.”

This seems to capture the reality of where clients and agencies find themselves in this shape-shifting, always-on world.

In the first decade of the 21st century, we have moved from a marketing environment focused on power (spend, weight and scale) to one focused on agility. The game is now not about share of share – but speed of share. The consumer now is the medium. Earned media – not owned media or bought media – is the pearl of great price.

With this in mind, all of us who lead organisations are being called upon to make the kind of lightning quick and seemingly contradictory decisions taken by Marshal Foch which won him and the Allies the pivotal Battle of the Marne in 1914 and saved Paris from the invading German army:

"My right is driven in. My centre is giving way. Impossible to manoeuvre. Situation excellent. I attack.”

The biggest challenge facing Clemenger BBDO/Melbourne in 2013 is to gear the agency, in terms of structure and culture, to not only respond to this new world – but to lead it.

We’ll have to do this running forward through dust and smoke. Even so, we can glimpse the faint shadows of what needs to drive us. And the largest and most distinct shadow is “digital”.

But what do we mean by “digital”? A large part of today’s fog of war is confusion within clients and agencies around defining digital. We all want it – and we all want to do it. But what is it? Come with me as I grope for an answer.

In order to thrive, brands need to create compelling experiences that are powered by, and made relevant through, social connections people value.

As brands seek to engage people rather than simply broadcast messages to them, digital is key. The opportunities it offers are significant but equally the challenges can be stifling, not least because the balance of power between brand and consumer has changed to the latter’s advantage.

At the heart of this new ecosystem of engagement is the need for marketers and their agencies to create strategies, customer journeys and experiences that are not just ‘liked’ but lead to genuine advocacy. This is the measure of success because nothing can compete with the persuasive power of individuals spreading brand information through their personal networks.

By advocacy, I mean going beyond an affinity with a brand to a more personal, intuitive connection with a product or service – a cause even – that you feel bonded to and passionate enough about to share with others. A brand has much more power and depth if people want to join it – rather than simply buy it. Let’s face it, a lot of the so-called doctrines of “top down” brand theory have been turned on their heads in recent years. To affect people’s behaviour we now need to understand diametrically opposite influences – mass and personal.

Broadly as a society, we are now being influenced by the wisdom of experts and the wisdom of crowds but on a more personal level, subjectively, the wisdom of friends will always be more relevant. This is the big opportunity for brands today – to work out how we improve the way we use social technologies to bring together the intelligence of people’s friends with their own beliefs. The big question, then, is this: How do we better use social networks, technologies and all the touch-points of interaction together to increase the flow of advocacy for a brand?

The brands that get this right will be judged as the ones that successfully create more valuable interactions, appealing to personal tastes and preferences. This is really all digital has to be. Simply, it needs to be useful in this context. Everything else is secondary. If you address anyone in this way, with their problems or by creating new opportunities to experience something, people will engage with the brand more.

But you cannot define a digital philosophy without also focusing on the role data plays. The key is using data to orchestrate and build engaging platforms. Think of it as the fuel that drives digital – and by this I mean it’s the behavioural proof of what people are doing in their day-to-day lives. And it’s digital’s ability to connect all the parts of our lives every second of the day, leaving a data trail from every interaction, that we can use to orchestrate and develop engagement platforms in our social and personal worlds. This is what is driving ideas. This is what is driving creativity.

But unless we have the knowledge that will enable us to make these connections, we cannot bring it all together – or integrate, if you will. These connections go to the heart of what it takes for a brand to be successful today – brands will only sell if they engage. And by “engage” we mean enter into a provocative, interesting and on-going relationship and interact in a way which makes the core brand idea even stronger and compelling for people. Ultimately, it’s about making brands more personal.

So the onus is on us – clients and agencies – to find compelling ways to earn people’s attention and, in turn, keep them engaged by giving them reasons to think more about a brand, why it’s useful and what more it can do for you.

That’s why, when it comes to digital, brand advocacy is everything. When we work from an understanding that digital is opening up ways for people to experience and express their feelings more intensely than any other medium before, the brands we own or steward will go from catch-up to leading.

So, in summary, I hope that 2013 will be a year of revelation for marketers, namely:

·         Digital is not about speed, price, being a channel or even technology. Its power lies in making things personal.

·         Advocacy isn’t a measure. It’s THE measure.

·         Digital is the spine that enables organisations to manage and nurture every interaction with their consumer, turning consumers from people who buy to people who advocate and join.

·         Digital provides the opportunity to link our storytelling to the data to create greater brand relevance and differentiation.

In 2013, we shall keep on learning that the old way of doing advertising won’t work anymore – because it has to exist in a culture of certainty and absolutes, where things are right or wrong. Today’s consumer-driven ideas culture is one of taking risks and learning from it, trying to disrupt and gaining insight from mistakes to feed into longer-term success.

2013 will be a fascinating year. Bring it on.

Please login with linkedin to comment

Latest News

APN Outdoor’s Jane King To Head Up Marketing At Rival VMO
  • Media

APN Outdoor’s Jane King To Head Up Marketing At Rival VMO

APN Outdoor’s senior marketing director, Jane King, has left the outdoor media giant to join rival Val Morgan Outdoor (VMO) as its head of marketing. King told B&T she will commence her new role at VMO in February, and is looking forward to working for the challenger brand. King began working at APN Outdoor in […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
QMS Media Expands Presence In Melbourne With New Digital Billboard ‘The G’
  • Advertising
  • Media

QMS Media Expands Presence In Melbourne With New Digital Billboard ‘The G’

Outdoor media company QMS Media has strengthened its digital outdoor presence in Victoria, unveiling an iconic digital billboard in the heart of Melbourne’s famous sporting precinct. The launch of ‘The G’ sees QMS’ landmark digital portfolio ‘bookending’ arguably one of the most iconic and in-demand digital outdoor locations in Australia – Richmond Station Bridge – […]

HSBC Sydney 7s Creates New Visual Identity For 2018 Via Digilante
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns
  • Marketing

HSBC Sydney 7s Creates New Visual Identity For 2018 Via Digilante

As part of the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series, the Sydney 7s event returns in January complete with a new brand identity, creative strategy and media campaign. With the 2017 Sydney 7s a sell-out event, the challenge for 2018 was to carry that momentum into the third year, defining Sydney’s place as the new ‘go-to’ […]

Bound Round Launches Family Travel Publication for Aussies
  • Media

Bound Round Launches Family Travel Publication for Aussies

Family travel platform Bound Round has announced the launch of its first e-magazine to Australian consumers. Travel Bound is a family-focused, digital quarterly publication available on all Virgin Australia flights through the carrier’s in-flight entertainment system, and is also available for consumer download via the Bound Round website. Bound Round founder and CEO Janeece Keller […]

SBS Unveils New Look, New App For SBS News
  • Media

SBS Unveils New Look, New App For SBS News

Do you like say "I only watch SBS" in an attempt to sound smarter than you are? Well, why not pretend to read this too?

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Ex-Samsung CMO Joins Amazon Australia As Marketing Director
  • Marketing

Ex-Samsung CMO Joins Amazon Australia As Marketing Director

Amazon Australia has appointed former Samsung Electronics chief marketing officer (CMO) Arno Lenior to lead its marketing division. Lenior worked as Samsung’s CMO for more than three years before departing in 2015. According to his LinkedIn profile, he has also held CEO roles at VR company Virtical and brand consultancy Blue Ocean Brands, and joined […]

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
News Corp Names Its Car Of The Year
  • Marketing

News Corp Names Its Car Of The Year

News announces its annual Car Of The Year and it's not what you'd expect. Well, we certainly didn't expect it anyway.

Aussie Tennis Open & Country Road Announce New Partnership
  • Marketing

Aussie Tennis Open & Country Road Announce New Partnership

The Australian Open has partnered with iconic Australian clothing and lifestyle brand Country Road to supply the uniforms for next year’s tournament. Confirmed today as the official fashion lifestyle Partner of Australian Open 2018, one of Australia’s most loved brands will be worn by thousands of tournament staff at Melbourne Park in January. On-court officials including the chair and […]

Andrew O’Keefe Quits His Weekend Sunrise Duties
  • Media

Andrew O’Keefe Quits His Weekend Sunrise Duties

After 12 years with Weekend Sunrise, Andrew O’Keefe has decided to step away from his hosting and reporting duties. O’Keefe will continue his full-time role as host of Seven’s quiz show The Chase Australia, as well as focus on other projects with the Network. “The ideal job is doing work you love with people you love,” O’Keefe […]

Study: Brand Loyalty Hinges On Customer Support Experiences
  • Marketing

Study: Brand Loyalty Hinges On Customer Support Experiences

Fast and effective support will be a competitive differentiator for companies looking to win over digitally transformed customers and employees, new research has revealed. According to a study by IDC and LogMeIn titled Support Services as a Competitive Differentiator, nearly 67 per cent of consumers said that customer satisfaction was more important than price when […]

OMA Appoints Red Ant Design To Build Industry’s First Automated Proposal Platform
  • Advertising
  • Media

OMA Appoints Red Ant Design To Build Industry’s First Automated Proposal Platform

The Outdoor Media Association (OMA) has announced the appointment of Red Ant Design to build the out-oh-home (OOH) industry’s first automated proposal platform (APP). After an extensive global search and industry consultation, the decision to build the system in-house with a local Australian company was made. The APP will be built in an agile process, […]

Nick Ballard, Managing Director
Australia & New Zealand, BlisMedia
  • Marketing
  • Technology

Blis Unveils New Consumer Behaviour Analytics Tool For Maketers

Location data technology company Blis has launched an analytics tool that allows marketers to analyse consumer behaviour – from audience profiling, to exposure, to attribution – by capturing and activating mobile movement data. Smart Trends offers robust in-store consumer behavioural insights and in-store comparison of multiple location types and brands, allowing marketers to break down demographic, […]

WiTH Collective Linked By Isobar Renames Colours Of The Great Barrier Reef As Part Of New Campaign
  • Campaigns
  • Marketing

WiTH Collective Linked By Isobar Renames Colours Of The Great Barrier Reef As Part Of New Campaign

The Great Barrier Reef is under threat, and WiTH Collective – part of Isobar Australia Group – has launched a social movement to protect it. The ‘Unite for the Reef’ campaign will put vivid pops of colour into millions of social media feeds as a global network of individuals united to pledge support for the future of the Great Barrier Reef.  Spearheaded […]

Imagination Unveils Creative For Sydney’s NYE 2017 Celebrations
  • Marketing

Imagination Unveils Creative For Sydney’s NYE 2017 Celebrations

The City of Sydney has unveiled the creative line-up for 2017 Sydney New Year’s Eve celebrations, including a new look and theme for Australia’s largest public event, conceived by experience agency Imagination. In its seventh year as the creative team behind the event, Imagination has set out to create a fresh, inspiring new theme and […]

Rogue Penis Radio Prank Goes Horribly Awry
  • Media

Rogue Penis Radio Prank Goes Horribly Awry

This radio prank has it all - a rogue willy, tears & humiliation. The only surprise is it doesn't have Kyle Sandilands.

by B&T Magazine

B&T Magazine
Stockland Invites Aussies To ‘Share Some Unexpected Joy’ This Christmas In New TVC Via Lavender
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns

Stockland Invites Aussies To ‘Share Some Unexpected Joy’ This Christmas In New TVC Via Lavender

Shopping Centre group Stockland has released an emotive campaign across its 40 national social and owned media channels via CX agency Lavender. The ‘Share Some Unexpected Joy’ campaign tells the story of Lucy, a thoughtful Australian girl who recognises that just like her and her mother, some of their neighbours will be spending Christmas alone this […]

QMS Switches On Digital Transaction Platform In NZ
  • Advertising
  • Media

QMS Switches On Digital Transaction Platform In NZ

In a New Zealand first for large format roadside digital, QMS Media is launching a digital transaction platform in conjunction with Rubicon Project and Digital Commons, who will represent the product in the market. Operating on a ‘guaranteed orders’ principle, advertisers will have the opportunity to buy QMS premium digital inventory nationwide via the Rubicon […]

Clemenger BBDO Melbourne’s SNICKERS ‘Hungerithm’ Goes Global
  • Advertising
  • Campaigns

Clemenger BBDO Melbourne’s SNICKERS ‘Hungerithm’ Goes Global

Following its huge success locally, Clemenger BBDO Melbourne’s ‘Hungerithm’ platform it conceptualised for SNICKERS is rolling out across US and European markets. The US has been the first region to roll out the platform through a nationwide partnership with 7-Eleven’s plus-9,000 stores. The launch of the Hungerithm in the US sees the platform pick up […]

Interbrand Australia Appoints whiteGREY’s Davy Rennie As CX Director
  • Marketing

Interbrand Australia Appoints whiteGREY’s Davy Rennie As CX Director

Brand consultancy Interbrand Australia has announced the appointment of Davy Rennie as its director of customer experience (CX). In this new role, Rennie will deliver solutions across Interbrand’s clients including Telstra, Event Hospitality and Entertainment, and The Star. Rennie joins Interbrand armed with more than 10 years’ experience across digital, innovation and customer strategies. With […]

News Corp Announces New Era For The Manly Daily
  • Media

News Corp Announces New Era For The Manly Daily

News Corp Australia has announced a bold new direction for one of its community brands, the Manly Daily. In January 2018, the Manly Daily will launch two hero print editions on Wednesdays and Saturdays, complemented by an enhanced online and mobile offering. The two unmissable print editions, each with a distinct unique personality and purpose, […]