Podcast Transcript – Marketing Leaders from Global Brands Speak Their Mind

Tune in to Time for A Reset

Narrator – 00:00:01:

Welcome to Time For A Reset, the marketing podcast, where we sit down with top marketing leaders representing the biggest and most beloved brands. From understanding shifting consumer behavior to recognizing the increasing importance of marketing in driving business growth. Our podcast delves deep into the strategies and insights that are shaping the future of marketing. In this special episode, we look at what different senior marketers wish to reset in marketing from the dynamic intersection of purpose and profit to the transformative power of marketing in today’s digital landscape. This episode blends the art of brand purpose with the science of business-centric strategies. We’ll dissect the complexities of marketing jargon, advocate for simplicity, and discuss the evolving role of marketing in fostering customer well-being and long-lasting relationships. Join us as we address the creative reset needed to enhance the storytelling, the saturation of media in consumer spaces and the critical need for accurate cross-channel measurement. Stay tuned for an insightful episode that promises to reshape your vision of the future of marketing. Let’s get started. Aparna Sundaresh is a senior member of the supervisory board at Enviu and Global Chief Marketing officer at De’Longhi Group.

Paul Frampton – 00:01:23:

Okay, so a part of the place we always start on the podcast is just imagine you’ve got a big red reset button in front of you and you could change anything in the marketing industry, what would it be?

Aparna Sundaresh – 00:01:34:

Yeah, it’s such a great question. I wish I had that button in front of me now. But if I did, I’d certainly reset this building tension between purpose and profit. I’ve always believed in kind of an and-and world. Very often we dissect different drivers, whether it’s, we often go, you either have functional communication or emotional, or you say you either focus on the purpose of a brand or profit. But I think it’s, you really have magic and long-term success and a more relevant role for the brand to play in people’s lives when the two come together. So when you have that very clear purpose, that very clear North Star kind of driving the brand, and that has to stay both timeless and timely, right? So the purpose, the North Star tends to be timeless. It’s something that can go on for decades or centuries, even at times with powerful brands. But you want to keep it timely over time. You want to keep it relevant to the times. You want to listen to popular culture. You want to listen to people and their kind of desires and worries and keep that relevant. And at the same time, keep a very sharp eye on what drives commercial value, right? And if you were to look at both as two circles in a Venn diagram, I think the consumer sits at the heart of both.

Narrator – 00:02:51:

Next, we chat with Francisco Bram, the VP of Marketing and Customer Insights at Albertsons Companies.

Paul Frampton – 00:02:58:

So where we always start, Francisco, is to understand if you had a big red button with reset on it in front of you, what you would like to change in the marketing industry.

Francisco Bram – 00:03:06:

I think marketing was created as a function to drive sales, drive top of funnel leads or drive customer interest and ultimately convert those interests into actual revenue. But I believe more and more marketing should play a role in leading the discussion internally around prioritizing customer well-being. I think more and more customers are offered a variety of different products and it’s easy for them to switch between brands. And so marketing plays a huge role in driving a purpose-driven program that connects with customers at an emotional, physical and even social level. So I think marketing should transition very clearly internally from just a purely revenue driving contributor to a force for good, enriching the lives of customers and building long-lasting meaningful relationships.

Narrator – 00:03:54:

Now let’s meet Jason Carter. Jason is the Global Transformation Director at Reckitt, a global and legacy CPG brand.

Paul Frampton – 00:04:02:

If you had a big red button in front of you, you could hit reset on something in the industry, what would that be?

Jason Carter – 00:04:07:

There’s so many things, Paul. It’s not really fair as it can be one. But aside from my career, I’d like to do things quicker and faster and make decisions quicker. But the programmatic landscape I would have reset, I think that got off to a bad footing, something which was such a big game changer for the industry. I think it got clogged up with all the kind of transparency and bad practices and money leaking out of the system. That’s quite an obvious one. But I think the one that I would land on would be around the kind of creative media dynamics. So a lot of my life was spent on the media side. If I’m honest, I’m probably a bit of a frustrated creative, but I fell into media for whatever reason. And if you think about the history of my career, I’ve been in the industry for 30 years. Back in the day when I started, there was two channels, really. There may be a bit of radio, but TV and press were the dominant ones. And back then, I worked for publicists for an agency called Zenith, which you probably know well. They were the first media independent. So before that, media agencies were the media team within a creative department. I remember those conversations. Can you send your Tommy Time buyer down to one of our meetings? We need to talk about spots and where they go. It was that kind of conversation. And Zenith broke away and created the mold, which became the blueprint for the larger groups. That model still exists. And I think there’s lots of positives. The industry really grew up really professional, the use of data and measurement and that kind of practice of how to deploy channels and channels together as effectively as you can become a real science. But I think if I was going to reset one thing, that red button that you described, Paul, would be to pull things back together a bit more now. And it wouldn’t be the same as before. It’s almost like back to the future, but done differently, where media has a seat at the table in the right way that creative can learn from media and media can learn from creative. I think there’s a huge opportunity to do that, but I don’t think it’s easy. But I think it’s what clients expect and what probably drives the best performance.

Narrator – 00:05:52:

Now let’s hear from Amy Weisenbach, Senior Vice President and Head of Marketing for The New York Times.

Paul Frampton – 00:05:59:

So the first place that we always start is just to get a sense of if you could change something in the industry, given the world is constantly changing around us, what would that thing be that you’d change? And then how does that relate to your job within The New York Times?

Amy Weisenbach – 00:06:13:

Yeah, I mean, I think we all know that it’s a really dynamic time in business right now. There’s a lot of uncertainty. And I think every industry is facing a lot of headwinds. And that, of course, means a lot of change for organizations. I believe marketing can play a really big role in helping companies navigate that change in the evolution of their business strategy. And especially when it comes to translating that to the consumer experience. So I guess the thing I’d like to see change is have marketing have more of a seat at the table in helping to translate those changes to dynamic and compelling consumer experiences. We’re definitely at the beginning of an exciting new chapter at The New York Times. The Times has been around a long time, over 170 years. And for most of that time, we’ve been chiefly a news brand. And while we’re very much still a news brand, over the last few years, we’ve acquired a handful of other content verticals. And we’ve built some things because we want to better serve the wide range of interests and passions of our readers. So that’s meant incubating our cooking product, New York Times games. We acquired Wordle, which is part of games. And also Wirecutter and The Athletic. Fun fact, Wordle was the most searched term last year on Google. Could talk about Wordle all day, but. Also, last year, we announced a new vision for The Times. We call it our Essential Subscription Strategy. And in it, we really put a stake in the ground that we want to become the essential subscription for curious English-speaking people around the world who want to understand and engage with the world. So while news is always going to be at the core of what we do, our new strategy is about building a daily habit around the full breadth of the offering. And that’s meant a pretty big reset for our marketing, where we previously would have said that our job was to get more people to pay for news. We’re now focused on getting people to believe that all of our quality journalism is worth paying for and attract many more subscribers.

Narrator – 00:08:13:

Coming up next is Lars Silberbauer. He’s the Chief Marketing Officer over at HMD Global, the engine behind Nokia Phones.

Paul Frampton – 00:08:21:

Whenever we talk to senior marketers, they usually have a bugbear around something that they would change across the whole of marketing as a discipline if they could. So maybe we’ll start there if you don’t mind.

Lars Silberbauer – 00:08:31:

So if there’s one thing that I would love to put a reset on or start from scratch again, I think it’s just the definition of the CMO role and how that’s connected to product and product development. I think that’s a crucial element. And I think we’re right now in a journey in many companies where the CMO role is stepping into product a lot more than we’ve seen previously. At least that is how I feel in my role right now. I’m also head of product design. And I think the design story, the product story needs to be much more integrated in the marketing storyline that has been previously, at least in traditional company structure.

Narrator – 00:09:06:

Now it’s time to say hello to Jasmine Dawson. Jasmine is the Vice President of Digital at BBC Studios. Let’s hear her marketing reset wish.

Paul Frampton – 00:09:15:

So Jasmine, where we always start, if you were to hit reset on anything within the industry, what would it be?

Jasmine Dawson – 00:09:21:

It’s a great question and something that, you know, you look at what could you do given the sort of competitive nature and where we find ourselves economically. If I could do one thing, it would be really focused around the medium hierarchy. I think there’s a huge amount of competitiveness in the market and, you know, that can always sort of help growth and innovation and that can really drive that. But sometimes it can be a distraction. And what we really try to do is not focus on sort of the end goal being sort of TV or the end goal being sort of the next most innovative social platform, but really think about what stories do we want to tell and to which audience and how are we going to tell the story on this platform? So that is sort of at the heart of what we do is figuring out the stories that we want to tell with our fab IP and making sure that we’re being relevant on the platforms.

Narrator – 00:10:11:

Now let’s hear from Jordan Liebman, Vice President of Global Demand, Gen and Brand Marketing for BlueJeans by Verizon.

Paul Frampton – 00:10:18:

So Jordan, what do you want to set reset on?

Jordan Liebman – 00:10:21:

I think it’s how companies in B2B industries value brand marketing. I think that when it comes to brand marketing in the B2B space, results might be harder to quantify when compared with those marketing efforts that emphasize product performance. But underestimating the value of brand marketing is a major, a massive mistake that B2B brands can make. Rather, brand marketing, it not only improves the brand, but other components as well, such as the return on marketing investment on performance marketing, net promoter score, customer advocacy, even employee satisfaction. There was this study that I think the Boston Consulting Group did a couple of years ago. One of the things that they found in that study. B2B brand marketing was that nearly one quarter. B2B brands devote less than 20% of their marketing budget to brand. 20%. That’s such a missed opportunity. Companies that are more mature in terms of brand marketing are going to generate a higher return on investment on those efforts. But moreover, strong brand marketing capabilities actually reinforce brand performance marketing, which leads to better engagement overall. So I think the bottom line, when you asked me what I want to hit reset on, the bottom line is that B2B companies that under invest in brand marketing are literally selling themselves short. And I think that we need to go ahead and shift our perspective in terms of how and where we are investing in order to drive overall better performance of their business. And that starts with brand.

Narrator – 00:11:59:

Next, we have Seb Bardin with his marketing reset wish. Seb is the in-store experience marketing lead at Coca-Cola.

Paul Frampton – 00:12:07:

So we always start with the same question. If there was a big red button on the middle of the table that you could hit reset on something in the marketing discipline or the industry, what would that be?

Seb Bardin – 00:12:17:

For me, again, I guess it’s based on experience. And my first two years at Unilever, I’ve been working in an amazing team made of ex-consultancy. And it was always about building new businesses. So even if you’re responsible for website.com, responsible for data capture, it was always about business. For me, the reset bit that I will be clicking on, the mindset, resetting the mindset that we as marketers, as digital marketers, it’s about building business and what can we bring to the business. So again, there’s a lot of things going into this type of mindset. So of course, there is this appetite to be curious, to always learn, curious about the data that we see, always questioning things. But also there’s an element around people as well, trustworthiness and delegate to people that you trust, to a wider team, but also bring automation when it’s needed. And the last bit about this mindset for me is about, you know, be excited about the job that you’re doing. So for me, as you summarized it a bit, what I’ve been doing so far, my passion is digital on my work life, private life. So yeah, it’s just bringing this passion to do on a daily basis.

Narrator – 00:13:28:

We’re now joined by Jesh Sukhwani, who is the Global In-House Media and COE Director at Lenovo.

Paul Frampton – 00:13:35:

So our only question is always, if you were to hit reset on anything in digital marketing, what would it be?

Jesh Sukhwani – 00:13:40:

I would say if I have a great big red reset button, I would like to have had diversity, inclusion and ethnicity involved at the grassroots levels a lot earlier on than what we have today. From Lenovo’s perspective, our vision is to deliver smarter technology for all, which means access to technology to be able to transform and improve lives, quality of lives for those across the globe. This requires a lot of diversity within marketing itself. And when we speak about diversity, equity and inclusion, these are values which are embedded across our full marketing organization from which we work from. From the planning of media to considering where our investments are going, to how teams are built, working with our partners, integrated within our teams and our contracts that we have. It all includes, leads to an all of inclusive environment in which we work with our partners. And I would have loved to have seen that a lot more integrated, at the grassroots levels as I said, than what we have today.

Narrator – 00:14:38:

Let’s say hi to Caroline Harrison. Caroline is the Director and Head of Marketing at HSBC UK. Let’s hear her marketing reset wish.

Paul Frampton – 00:14:46:

So I’m delighted to have you here. So Caroline, the first thing we always ask our guests to share is, if you had a big red button on the table which you could hit reset as something in marketing, what would it be?

Caroline Harrison – 00:14:58:

I think the first thing that I’d want to do is just all the marketing lingo. I mean, I’ve always done marketing. It’s all I know. I’ve done it for years and years. I’ve worked for banks for 15, 20 years, I suppose. So there’s lingo with banking, but lingo with marketing. We’ve got so many acronyms that I don’t think it necessarily does us any favors. I feel for people because I think it’s hard enough when you start a new job, but learning all of that and you just do it. And my husband teases me for it, using any of those words mercilessly and says, you do realize normal people don’t say that kind of stuff. But I think any job you do, it comes with a bit of a lingo, but it has to be the lingo. It’s the CPAs, the DMPs, the CDPs, all of that stuff. And in the conversation, sometimes I feel like there’s always somebody that’s sitting there thinking, what on earth are they talking about? And actually, if we just stripped it back and made it much simpler and easier, I think it would make our jobs easier so we could get on with the good stuff. And I think it would probably make us speak in more business and commercial speak rather than marketing speak. And I think that is due as more favors as well in bigger organizations. I think marketing sometimes could be seen as a cost rather than as an asset or a revenue driver.

Narrator – 00:16:03:

Up next, we have Nic Travis. Nic is the head of digital marketing at Lloyds Banking Group.

Paul Frampton – 00:16:09:

So you know where we start. If you had a big red button in front of you that you could smash reset on in the marketing industry, what would you change?

Nic Travis – 00:16:18:

I don’t think it’s come as any surprise to you, Paul. Measurement is my kind of bug. A combination between measurement and kind of creative, certainly in the digital space, I think creative needs to kind of reset. Although there’s progress been made over the last few years on that front. But measurement is an inflection point in my mind in that we’ve come from the cookie-based solutions. And I’ve been in this game long enough to remember when they actually worked. You only had kind of Google ads and affiliates. So it was surprisingly accurate and everyone was accessing it from a desktop. But as we entered into a kind of multi-device world and a privacy centric and apps and web and all manner of other devices, the truth is that there are more holes in people’s measurement than most people choose to recognize or have been kind of advised. And I think that’s a big problem.

Narrator – 00:17:10:

Next, we hear from Aidaly Sosa, the head of marketing US at Tony’s Chocolonely.

Paul Frampton – 00:17:17:

Ideally, we always start in the same place, which is to frame up what the thing that you would most like to reset in the marketing industry. So we’ll start there if you don’t mind.

Aidaly Sosa – 00:17:26:

Yeah, the thing I would like to reset. I would say it’s the abundance of media buy and spaces where media buy is conducted right now that is coming towards you as a consumer. So I’m taking my marketing professional hat off and just looking at it from a consumer lens and just the amount of advertising coming your way at every corner on every platform.

Narrator – 00:17:53:

We round up this episode by hearing from Ben Carter, the Global Chief Customer and Marketing Officer at carwow, a leading retail platform for changing cars.

Paul Frampton – 00:18:03:

So Ben, we always start in the same place. What is it in marketing that you want to hit reset on?

Ben Carter – 00:18:08:

Thanks, Nick. Yeah, I would love to reset on cross-channel measurement and obviously including TV with that because the fact there isn’t a unified way of understanding performance across broadcast and even across the digital ecosystems, for example, Meta or Google or Apple is absolutely a major inhibitor to marketing investment. And particularly for me working for a scale up, obviously every pound literally counts and not being able to have that cross view is really challenging.

Paul Frampton – 00:18:37:

Yeah. I mean, so how does that actually manifest itself day-to-day in terms of your marketing decisions and how you’re dealing with your various teams across the board?

Ben Carter – 00:18:46:

I think, look, businesses are getting much, much better at being data-driven. But the way we try and think about measurement is that we obviously have a more traditional attribution, so a linear attribution, sort of a 28-day last click. But the problem with a 28-day last click is it doesn’t necessarily factor in the impact of middle, top, and funnel channels, and obviously does not consider the impact of linear broadcast or other above-the-line channels as well. So to try and address those, we also run how-did-you-hear-about-us surveys, where we ask our customers, obviously, how they heard about us. And we also do incremental up-list studies across as many channels as possible to, again, better understand that sort of full funnel effect. Where we want to get to, but obviously the scale-up is challenging. In previous worlds, I’ve had sort of fully-fledged econometrics models. Where we want to get to is have more of a medium-mixed model, so we can start to really get that 360 view. But obviously, with any econometrics or medium-mixed model, they’re only as good as the data you put in. And particularly, more recently, when you’ve had macro events like COVID, which for the car industry meant a complete and utter shortage of new cars for nearly 18 months post-COVID, it’s really, really hard then to be able to base any sort of marketing investment decisions off macro events like that. So that’s how we think about measurement. We think of it as a triangle. We don’t have all the answers, but it certainly gives us a very good sense of how our marketing is performing, which obviously, when you’re in a scale-up, the focus is not only just on growing, but growing sustainably and ultimately becoming profitable. And we are very close to doing that, which is really exciting. That wraps up this special episode of Time for a Reset, the marketing podcast with global leaders. We hope you enjoyed it and gained valuable marketing insights. Do like, share, and subscribe to this podcast, and we would love to hear from you in the comments section.

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