B&T is thrilled to have Fairfax Media as principal sponsor for the annual B&T Awards. Here, we have a chat with the media giant’s CMO, Michael Laxton (main photo), on the sponsorship, its move to melbourne, and the ever-changing role of the modern-day CMO…
You can still grab tickets to the B&T Awards, In Melbourne, on the 1st of December here.
We’re thrilled to have you on board as principal sponsor, what’s the main reason you elected to get involved in such an emphatic way?
The Age has been informing and entertaining Melbournians since 1854 and the B&T Awards is the perfect way for us to celebrate our great city, our media and agency relationships in Victoria, and 2017’s best and brightest in advertising and marketing.
B&T also has such a strong brand heritage – reporting within the industry since the 60s – and therefore it’s a perfect partnership for The Age as we celebrate over 160 years in this market.
The B&T Awards gives unprecedented access to Australia’s advertising, marketing and media communities, what’s the three key points you’d like to make to them?
2017 has really shown how important trust is, whether that’s the news you read, the environments you advertise in, or the metrics by which you measure effectiveness. And whether it’s customer-centricity, big data, personalisation or any of the other big themes dominating the marketing discourse this year, your audience needs to trust you and your brand for commercial success. So for me it’s understanding your brand values, understanding what your customer values, and ensuring how you advertise speaks to both.
Data was front and centre of many presentations this year. How can data really drive the creative process these days?
Data has become such a melting pot of potential for marketers over the past five years. Gone are the days when you were simply mining databases and building out email lists. Today’s marketer has almost become a technologist, with DMPs, augmentation, micro-targeting and automation moving the audience conversation from the complicated to the complex. There have never been more opportunities to really understand your audience and create great customer experiences, and with this can come really relevant, meaningful, powerful creative.
What makes Melbourne perfect for the B&T Awards?
The awards season can sometimes seem a little too Sydney-centric, and we can’t wait to bring the industry together in a uniquely Melbourne way. This year we launched our ‘Melbourne.Always’ campaign, where we highlighted the city’s biggest moments over the past 160 years and how The Age has been there with its readers and subscribers throughout Melbourne’s evolution as a city. We’ll be bringing a little bit of this civic pride to the night itself!