The AANA’s follow up to PwC's UK study on digital advertising transparency finds, despite years of lamentation and regulatory bandwidth, brands and agencies are passing the buck while walled gardens, reticent adtech providers, leaky verification programmes and a patchwork of data make following the money from advertiser to eyeball an auditor's nightmare. Perhaps the ACCC will step in to save the day, eventually. But brands can’t complain if they don’t act.
Facebook's news and broader content cull has some brands pulling spend, and others in fear of a public backlash. Both brands and publishers are now weighing up diversification strategies to channels they can control; email, newsletters and owned websites are the early winners. Meanwhile, agency bosses and public affairs veterans believe Facebook has made a strategic blunder that will backfire globally.
Tom Noble joined Jeep in February 2020. He already had a massive job on his hands reversing Jeep's brand implosion. Within weeks Covid crashed the car market to a 30-year low. He stuck with Cummins&Partners to begin a total brand rebuild and continue a 10-year relationship. It seems to be paying off. Sean Cummins, meanwhile, says the agency has no plans to get into bed with a network. But he is eyeing new partners to crack China.
As CHEP boss Chris Howatson makes a break for independence, 2021 is shaping up to be the year indie agencies whet post-Covid corporate appetite for change, agility and fresh ideas – and step into markets traditionally the preserve of holding companies and their networks. Leaders and founders at Akcelo, Akkomplice Group, Bastion Collective, Bear Meets Eagle on Fire, Cummins & Partners, CX Lavender, Hardhat, Hatched Media, iNC Digital Media, Magnum and Co., RyanCap, Ryval Media, Shadowboxer, Special Group, The Hallway, The Royals, Thinkerbell and This Is Flow welcome Howatson and co to the fray - and an increasingly competitive environment where the old rules are being remade.
Former Visit Victoria and Visa marketer Nicki Kenyon and ex-Edelman Global Strategy Partner Michele O’Neill are the first two senior executives to join Nine’s new Powered Enterprise division. Announced at this year’s upfronts, Nine is plotting a similar path to tech players such as Google and Facebook, speaking directly to clients and attempting to land bigger ideas with the c-suite at major blue chip brands. But the network insists it is not trying to usurp agencies.
With a 400-store network, spanning Australia, NZ and Thailand, The Coffee Club was one week out from launching its biggest brand refresh to date, with 12 months of media spend committed. Then Covid hit, putting franchisees' livelihoods on the line. Marketing lead Megan Magill was faced with a choice of either re-shooting a campaign two years in the making, or hold out for normality to return. The result saw the brand shift itself into a “support service” business before finally launching the new platform earlier this month. Here's how she did it.
Venessa Hunt says brands and agencies have made a big mistake in going too narrow and chasing the cheapest digital prices, hollowing out purchase funnels and inviting fraudsters to cream off a sizeable chunk of their budgets. "If half your spend is only seen by a robot, you've got problems," says the outgoing GroupM Chief Digital Officer. Now Hunt is on a mission to turn the tide, leading the Premium Content Alliance's digital division and convincing marketers that they can build brands through digital channels - if they can stop kidding themselves that paying peanuts begets anything but monkeys.
Nine's Head of Sales - Sport, Matt Granger, says there will be "absolutely no ads" on Stan Sport. But making back $100m from the rugby alone would take a fair while with subscription revenues and integration is technically not advertising. Which is good news for brands concerned about losing cord cutters.
Fraudsters always follow the money – and connected TV ad revenues are rocketing. To fully scale, CTV advertising will ultimately need to go heavier into programmatic, and into the open exchanges, says the US-based IAB Tech Labs. But the IAB here, and Australian publishers and buyers argue the premium end of town is safe from the yield-eroding and fraud-enabling nature of open exchanges. More AVOD players entering this market, however, could still change the game.
Former Red Rooster CEO, Nick Keenan is back in media as Starcom CEO and is using the lessons learned from five years client-side to realign the agency with brand and business needs. The mantra is ‘People Powered Growth’ and he’s moving to de-silo departments, upskill staff and stop wasting marketers’ time.