Mobile users 'open' to sponsored data

21 April 2014
SANTA CLARA, CA: The majority of American mobile subscribers, especially younger users, have concerns about exceeding their monthly data limits, but they would engage more often with content providers if they were offered sponsored data plans, a new study has revealed.

Based on a survey of 1,000 US smartphone and tablet owners aged 18 and over, which was conducted in January by Wakefield Research on behalf of Citrix, the IT networking provider, the report found 82% of respondents feared the impact of mobile apps on their monthly data quota and avoided using an app as a result.

Adults with children were more likely to exceed their monthly data limit, the report said, with 72% saying this happened to them compared to just 46% of childless adults, while 66% of iPhone subscribers expressed concern compared with 48% of Android smartphone users.

Just over two-thirds (67%) of those who watch at least one mobile video a month said they exceeded their data limit, but this fell to 36% for those who watch less than that, the study also noted.

However, US smart device users remain receptive to sponsored data plans and the majority said they would use more data if provided with the option. A full 78% of millennial respondents said they would be open to such plans compared to just over half (52%) of the baby boomer generation.

Sponsored data allows subscribers to check new apps and features without deducting from their monthly data limits and can also be used for promotions and customer loyalty initiatives.

In terms of content usage, the study found 39% of subscribers said they would access information about their bank accounts, 33% would watch educational videos, 28% said they would watch ads, 21% would use the data allowance to hold a teleconference while 18% would file an insurance claim.

These tasks were more likely to be carried out by adults with children – 77% of parents said they would do so if data usage was sponsored compared with 58% of non-parents.

"Sponsored data plans are likely to be a growing source of revenue for mobile operators," concluded Chris Koopmans, vp of service provider platforms at Citrix. "[They] are one way in which content providers can engage with their target audience."

Data sourced from Citrix; additional content by Warc staff


Curiosity drives India's youth

21 April 2014
MUMBAI: India's youth are hard working and inquisitive, regarding internet access as an opportunity to learn rather than shop, a new survey has found.

Music channel MTV spent six months questioning 11,000 respondents aged 13 to 25 in the AB socio-economic groups across 40 cities for its annual youth survey. When asked what the internet meant to them 32% cited learning, while 27% saw new opportunities and 23% said it gave them exposure to the world, as illustrated in an infographic on exchange4media.

At the other end of the scale, just 8% thought of online shopping, while a similar proportion mentioned pursuing a passion or hobby and making new connections and friends.

The words this age group felt defined them most included hard working (33%), open minded (26%), happy (25%) and confident (20%).

The survey suggested that easy access to the world and information via the internet, coupled with supportive parents, was a potent combination that had helped make this generation the happiest and most optimistic it had ever seen.

And money, while still important, played a much reduced role compared to three years ago; then, 85% regarded money as an indicator of success, but now just 54% held that view.

Similarly, 90% had seen money as a facilitator for bringing happiness but that proportion had fallen to 61%.

For Aditya Swamy, EVP and business head, MTV India, the major finding to emerge from the research was that "young people are using their curiosity to curate their lives".

"Brands are tapping into this curious generation and have realised that they cannot be passive any longer and need to make a stand to connect to the youth," he added, in remarks reported by Best Media Info.

Connection was another theme running through the report. For example, when asked to pick four things (from a 21-strong list) they spent their money on, 36% said mobile phone bills and 23% internet/surfing bills, putting these two in the top three spending options.

And regarding social media, the survey said that staying in touch with old friends was the primary reason for using these platforms (43%). Making new friends and meeting new people was no longer a major driver (4%).

Data sourced from exchange4media, Best Media Info; additional content by Warc staff


PC sales rebound in Western Europe

21 April 2014
LONDON: PC shipments in Western Europe posted 8.6% growth in the first quarter of 2014, setting the region apart from the rest of an EMEA market that recorded an overall decline of 1.1% compared to Q1 2013, the latest industry data has shown.

The rapid improvement in Western Europe was underpinned by strong demand from the commercial sector and signs of renewed economic confidence, reported the International Data Corporation (IDC).

It recorded a 15.1% increase in shipments to commercial customers and a more modest 2.1% rise in the consumer sector, which meant the consumer market returned positive results for the first time in nearly two years.

On top of the improved business outlook in the region, IDC also attributed demand to Microsoft's decision [on April 8] to end Windows XP support, which further stimulated renewals, while noting that desktop PC shipments grew by double digits.

"While consumers in Europe are still spending on tablets and smartphones, interest in desktop and portable PCs has increased again recently, as some end users start to purchase PCs again after years of delayed renewals," said Maciek Gornicki, a senior analyst at IDC.

By contrast, shipments fell in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and Middle East and Africa (MEA), which declined by 16.7% and 8.4% respectively, caused by a mixture of currency fluctuation, political unrest and ongoing economic uncertainty.

Even though the MEA's –8% decline compared poorly with Western Europe, IDC said its performance was better than expected, especially in the consumer sector.

Likewise, there was some good news for the CEE region – notably, positive results in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Romania, which went some way to mitigate a major slowdown in Kazakhstan, Russia and Ukraine.

Taking EMEA as a whole, total shipments reached 21.8m units over the quarter. Desktop PC shipments increased by 1.4% while those of portable PCs fell by 2.6%.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) maintained its lead after posting 16.4% year-on-year growth to 4.7m units to increase its market share to 21.6% while Lenovo recorded impressive growth of 33%.

This took the Chinese company's market share to 15.9%, or 3.45m units, and suggested Lenovo may be on course to fulfil its ambition, announced in September last year, to overtake HP in the European PC market by 2015. 

Dell recorded respectable growth of 9.6%, enabling it to overtake Acer to become the third largest vendor, while Taiwanese companies Acer and Asus made up the final two vendors among the top five.

Data sourced from IDC; additional content by Warc staff


Adtech faces one step back in China

21 April 2014
NEW YORK/BEIJING: Foreign adtech companies attempting to gain a foothold in the Chinese market may need to need to take a step backwards if they are to take advantage of the opportunities available leading industry figures have said.

Peter and Cain Wang, ceo and coo respectively of AdsMOGO, a major Chinese ad exchange, were responding to a question posed by Ad Exchanger, asking what challenges foreign entrants to China faced.

They highlighted the "dramatically different ecosystem", with familiar Western businesses such as Google, Yahoo, Facebook and YouTube being either absent or insignificant players. Their advice was to "identify and establish reliable local media inventory and data partnerships even before you enter the market".

Another major issue was the level of market and technology development, with China's mobile advertising and marketing tending to lag several years behind the US. That could mean, the Wangs said, "you may need to make changes to your products and policies – sometimes even step backwards – to seize the opportunities in China".

Xiaofeng Wang, an analyst at Forrester Research, concurred with the need to understand the local market. "Consumer behaviour, the media landscape and the advertising ecosystem are all very unique here", he stated, adding that this also explained why so few foreign companies had succeeded in the Chinese digital market.

More detail was supplied by Tom Simpson, CEO of mediaQuark, a Singapore-based real time intelligence business. He noted that major Chinese publishers often controlled inventory by using proprietary ad tech platforms, which he argued would help the programmatic premium market, but not the wider ad tech ecosystem or foreign entrants.

He also saw a "significant opportunity" as regards data, which was still hard to acquire. "Driving better understanding and transparency is absolutely essential for clients, agencies and publishers in China to fully realise the benefits offered by ad tech," he declared.

But Andy Fisher, chief analytics officer at US CRM business Merkle, which also has offices in Shanghai and Nanjing, cautioned against an Occidental approach, noting that few Chinese advertisers were asking for things like viewability verification.

"As US- and foreign-based companies move into China, they need to support Chinese ad buying models as well," he argued. "For example if you can't support cost-per-time buys, you will have a limited audience for your product."

Data sourced from Ad Exchanger; additional content by Warc staff


Aon revamps sports sponsorship

21 April 2014
CHICAGO: Aon, a company specialising in managing risk and talent, has developed its sponsorship tie-up with Manchester United Football Club from focusing on awareness to driving "understanding and preference".

The firm's logo has featured on Manchester United's famous red shirts since 2010, but will be replaced by that of Chevrolet later this year.

Patrick Pierce, Aon's director/global marketing and communications, told delegates at IEG's 2014 Sponsorship Conference that its website traffic jumped by 66% upon announcing its original tie-up with the football team.

"What we found, it was amazing … the performance of the club: it really drives traffic to our site," said Pierce. (For more, including how Aon is seeking to drive sales among other club sponsor, read Warc's exclusive report: Looking beyond the logo: Aon redefines its sponsorship of Manchester United.)

More importantly, awareness among business decision-makers – Aon's core target audience –also rose to over 50%.

However, Pierce suggested that this total was starting to reach a peak, meaning that a shift in emphasis promised to provide a stronger return on investment.

"We're not going to generate incremental awareness over the next seven years if they win a treble and all that stuff. We're probably going to still be in the mid-50s no matter what," said Pierce.

Drilling down into its data offered a guide as to how Aon's strategy could be evolved to beneficial effect, as the business leaders aware of its relationship with Manchester United tended to give it higher favourability scores.

"This is the halo effect," said Pierce. "This was kind of our big 'Aha' – awareness is great, but when they know about what we're doing, and they experience it, they become a lot more favourable."

As a result, Aon and Manchester United formulated "a solution, not just a sponsorship" as they revamped their affiliation.

While Aon's logo is no longer featured on Manchester United's kit, the firm's sponsorship of the club's training complex and other assets has been translated into opportunities to generate both content and revenue.

Data sourced from Warc


Social TV encourages CTR in Italy

21 April 2014
ROME: Although Italy lags behind the UK and Scandinavian countries in terms of smartphone user penetration, recent research suggests a significant proportion of Italians use their devices to visit social networks while watching TV and to view ads.

According to analysis from eMarketer, based on a study conducted by comScore MobiLens in March 2014, almost half (46.3%) of smartphone users in Italy who use their device for any TV-related activity also access social networks.

With smartphone penetration in Italy estimated to account for 41.8% of the population in 2014, or 25.8m people, this means that more than 12m users are likely to visit social networks while watching TV this year.

Furthermore, a high proportion then go on to click through to ads if prompted by a TV programme to visit social networks.

Under these circumstances, if prompted, more than half (54%) say they then click on an ad – an impressive click-through rate (CTR) because it equates to 6m people.

Other social networking activities performed by smartphone users in Italy include reading posts from organisations, brands or events, which 69.4% of those prompted by a TV programme to visit a social network take part in.

Over two-thirds (71.5%) say they follow a posted link to a website, 65.2% read posts from public figures and celebrities while almost exactly half (50.2%) receive coupons and discount offers.

Smartphone penetration is also forecast to rise in Italy, as in every other Western European country, over the next three years although Italy is still expected to remain below the regional average.

By 2017, eMarketer expects 57.8% of Italians to own at least one smartphone compared to a Western European average of 65.1%, which will include rates of 65.8% in the UK, 79.3% in the Netherlands and as much as 83.2% in Denmark.

Data sourced from eMarketer; additional content by Warc staff


Clients outgrow their agencies

18 April 2014
MIAMI: Agencies and clients frequently appear to be talking different languages, according to a new report that also reveals a major disconnect in their views on why their relationships come to an end.

The 2014 SoDA report, from the global society for digital marketing innovators, was based on a worldwide survey of 736 decision makers, evenly split between advertisers and digital agencies and representing an annual marketing spend of $25.4bn.

SoDA found that the number one reason for clients walking away was that they had outgrown their agency's ability to deliver against their needs (27%). Agencies, however, overwhelmingly pointed to new client management as the number one reason (39%).

Agency respondents ranked failure to deliver for clients' growing needs a distant fourth, a major discrepancy said SoDA. The specific service areas clients cited the most for termination was dissatisfaction with strategy (11%); again, few agencies (6%) viewed this as the root problem.

Despite that fact that more clients were bring their digital work in-house – 13% of the total – agencies generally thought advertisers lacked digital talent, with 50% or more highlighting gaps in paid, earned and owned-media strategy and execution as well as user experience and product innovation.

Chris Buettner, SoDA's executive director and managing editor of The SoDA Report, said the move in-house was not necessarily bad news for digital agencies. "The opportunity is in data, mobile and product innovation – areas of high demand," he said.

The report suggested that, while both sides agreed marketing creativity was most important, clients rated product and service innovation second, while agencies rated it fourth in importance. Agencies rated customer-centred marketing for clients third, while clients scored it fifth in terms of priority.

Over 60% of clients felt their digital agency was excellent or good at evaluating digital trends for practical use. But nearly one in three agency respondents (29%) did not offer any training on current or emerging trends and technologies, which the report described as a missed opportunity to increase revenue and for clients to capitalise on the changes.

For digital agencies to prosper, said Buettner, they would need to provide the "core value trinity" of creative marketing, innovation and expertise in emerging trends. That way, they could embed themselves in internal client teams while building stronger digital expertise across marketing and customer experience.

Data sourced from SoDA; additional content by Warc staff


Online IPL to attract advertisers

18 April 2014
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: The seventh IPL season is finally underway and even though it lacks the excitement of previous years, broadcasters and publishers are confident of gaining increased TV and online audiences with advertisers following.

"The uncertainty, late scheduling and the general elections have taken the buzz out this time," Hemant Dua, head of GMR Sports, which owns the Delhi Daredevils franchise, told the Economic Times.

He expected, however, that things would begin to pick up after the elections and when the tournament returned to India; the Daredevils' outdoor campaign had been delayed accordingly.

Meanwhile Times Internet and Star India, which share the internet and mobile broadcast rights, are hoping to pull in a significant online audience for the competition.

Satyan Gajwani, Times Internet CEO, told Livemint that over the past three years the IPL on Indiatimes had been the largest digital sports streaming event in the world.

"Last year, we reached 55m users and we expect that to grow this year," he said, with the launch of The fact that online viewers had not had to pay for access had helped drive these figures.

In addition, in Star India's first year of involvement it is breaking with its usual practice of charging a subscription fee for live content on and will show the IPL near-live with a five minute delay, a move which is expected to bring in 50m viewers to that site alone.

The numbers are likely to prove attractive to advertisers, with major brands like Hindustan Unilever and Amazon reported to have signed online sponsorship deals worth Rs.3-5 crore each.

Star India is also focusing on mobile content ahead of internet. "[I]n a country like India, which has a growing base of mobile users, it only makes sense to ensure that our product and design are fine-tuned to deliver a good viewer experience on that medium," explained Star India COO Sanjay Gupta.

While online viewership appears set to rise, Multi Screen Media, which owns the television broadcast rights to the tournament, expected this would supplement TV viewing rather than supplant it.

"At the end of the day, you really can't watch an entire match on a handset," said Rohit Gupta, president (network sales) at Multi Screen Media.

Data sourced from Economic Times, Livemint; additional content by Warc staff


Global brands trail online in China

18 April 2014
BEIJING: Retail sales in China are growing faster than the overall economy thanks in part to the rapid expansion of online shopping, an area where global brands need to adopt a more proactive approach according to a new report.

Latest data shows that the overall economy grew at 7.4% in the first quarter compared to a year earlier. This was the slowest rate since Q3 2012, but retail sales were up 12% in the same period, which a Ministry of Commerce spokesman attributed to a boom in online shopping, increased consumption in the catering sector, and purchases of electronic gadgets and travel packages.

But the 2014 Digital Playbook, a study from GroupM Interaction, warned that many international brands continued to take a cautious stance on Chinese e-tailing, preferring to await instructions from head offices in Europe or the US, markets that trailed China in the development of e-tailing, rather than taking the initiative themselves.

It noted that online sales were predicted to take 7.5% of the total retail market in 2015 and said that within a few years that figure could rise to 50%, Campaign Asia-Pacific reported. Brands should therefore be aiming to get at least 5% of their China sales online.

A combination of factors were driving some 60m new shoppers online every year. The retail sector was, said the study, "archaic and inefficient" in the major cities while it had not yet arrived at scale in lower tier cities. Physical shoppers also faced the problems of pollution, a lack of parking and long queues.

Online shopping, however, offered better prices, a greater selection and the facility to buy direct from brands and so avoid counterfeit goods.

"It suits the connected-ness and impatience of modern consumers who might discuss something at a dinner party and pull out their phones to buy it right there and then," said the report.

Data sourced from Xinhua, Campaign Asia-Pacific; additional content by Warc staff


Two in three Germans dual-screen

18 April 2014
HAMBURG: More than two thirds of German internet users engage in dual-screening while watching television with around one in ten being described as "insatiable" multiscreeners according to a new survey.

For its My Screens report, media agency Initiative surveyed 1,029 internet users aged 14 to 59 who possessed the facility to use other devices while watching television. It found that 68% typically had at least one additional screen in use, most often a laptop (42%) or smartphone (36%). Among the other options, desktop PCs (21%) were ahead of tablets (13%).

A small group, amounting to 8% of the total surveyed, were multiscreeners in a big way and classed as insatiable users. They tended to be younger (aged 20 to 39) and most (85%) spent at least one fifth of their television viewing time using other screens, with the smartphone the most important of these. Around one in four also used a third screen.

They were using these parallel screens in approximately equal parts for communication, information retrieval and entertainment. One in two were gathering information on TV content and one in three discussing and posting about it.

Around one third were also looking for information about products or offers seen on TV advertising and had bought a product on that basis.

The biggest group, making up 37% of the total surveyed, were described as "selective" users, who only picked up a second screen in certain circumstances, such as during advertisements or, for example, when watching less personally relevant programmes with their children.

Even then they were more likely to communicate with family and friends than to comment on TV content.

One third of respondents were "intuitive" users who were most likely to reach for the second screen during commercials and reality TV or talent shows. And one third of these said they spent over half their viewing time on other screens, mostly for communication and information gathering. This group rarely commented on TV content.

A final group of "objectors" made up 21% of the total and preferred to focus on one medium at a time. They were typically older, aged 40 to 59, and more sceptical.

Data sourced from Initiative; additional content by Warc staff


MilkPEP partners for better targeting

18 April 2014
CHICAGO: Working with partners that deliver highly-targeted impressions and assist with measurement has helped chocolate milk use sponsorship to become an authentic "recovery drink" for athletes.

The Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) – a trade body funded by more than 100 processors across America – is charged with boosting the number of people drinking milk in its various forms.

Julie Kadison, the organisation's chief executive, told delegates at IEG's Sponsorship 2014 conference that low-fat chocolate milk's positioning as a "recovery drink" was based on evidence from over 20 scientific studies.

In activating this idea, it forged alliances with numerous partners boasting impeccable credentials in the sporting world, including IRONMAN, USA Hockey, Lifetime Fitness, the Competitor Group and Esprit de She.

"When we advertise or we partner with those properties, we really get a very targeted reach to our audience," said Kadison. (For more, including how the "Refuel" campaign was brought to life via a tie-up with former NFL star Hines Ward, read Warc's exclusive report: How chocolate milk became a drink for athletes, not kids.)

Among the primary considerations for MilkPEP when identifying which operators to affiliate with is how each party can add value – beyond the simply financial – for the other.

For MilkPEP, according to Kadison, this process involves answering an important question: "How can our partners help us reach those folks and bring us more impressions that are truly targeted?"

This applies to anything from on-the-ground connections at the finish line to engaging the social media audience. "It's very important that these partners can bring us awareness of our message," she continued.

"We also utilise our partners to go out and do their own surveys to help us understand if we're really pinpointing the right people and getting the message across," said Kadison.

Having effectively moved into the competitive category of sports drinks, the Milk Processor Education Program finds itself up against many rivals with deep pockets – meaning there is a threat of being "blocked out".

"There are some brands which have broader reach [and] much bigger budgets than we have," Kadison told the IEG audience.

"One of the things that we do to try and avoid that is, once we find a partner who we think is going to bring a lot of value – and we can bring value to – we lock in to multi-year terms."

Data sourced from Warc


Google kills pub debate

18 April 2014
LONDON: More than half of UK adults trust Google more than their friends or partners when seeking the answer to a question, a development that has effectively killed the traditional pub debate, a new survey has said.

A study of 2,000 UK adults conducted by Search Laboratory, the SEM business, found that 60% would turn to the search engine first for an answer, with 30% choosing a partner and 10% someone or something else.

"Google is seen as a kind of oracle," Ian Harris, CEO and founder of Search Laboratory, explained to The Drum. "When you type in a question to a search engine you almost always take the first results as gospel so it's not surprising to see that we as a nation trust it more than our friends and family."

One consequence of this, he noted, had been the end of spirited discussions in the pub "as any argument is almost always ended by the phrase 'I've Googled it…'". He did not expect "I've Twittered it" to enter common usage any time soon.

Google was also likely to be the first choice for verifying breaking news, with around half of people turning there; in contrast, social media attracted only 11%.

The youngest age groups were significantly more reliant on Google, with 77% of 18-24 year olds citing it as their first port of call, compared to 50% of the over-55s. They also searched it more often, using it on average 3.3 times daily, as against the older group's 2.1 times.

Distinct regional differences were apparent, with Londoners searching the most frequently every day (3.48) and those from the East Midlands the least (2.03). Further, Scotland had the highest proportion of people searching on Google more than ten times a day (12%) while a third of those surveyed in Yorkshire said they did not use Google search at all on a daily basis.

Google's chief business officer recently observed a rise in mobile search queries. "People are more and more focused about what they look for in mobile devices," he said. "They are closer to intent. They are closer to transaction."

Advertisers were, he said, "just beginning to understand what it takes for the end user to come transact on their [mobile] website".

Data sourced from The Drum, Search Laboratory, Seeking Alpha; additional content by Warc staff


Global TV viewing habits change

17 April 2014
GLOBAL: Turkey, China and Russia are the countries at the forefront of the shift from viewing live TV to watching programming streamed from the internet and watching TV on a computer or laptop.

The findings emerged from a survey by Ipsos OTX, the innovation centre for the market research firm, which polled 15,551 adults in 20 countries. Globally, most people still watched live television (86%) but other modes were becoming increasingly popular.

Over one quarter (27%) watched via a computer while 16% streamed content from the internet to their TV set. The use of a DVR or other recording device was cited by 16% while watching on a mobile device was being done by 11%.

Streaming from the internet to TV was most popular among those in Turkey (44%), Russia (36%) and China (33%). This top group also included South Korea (25%), India (23%), Sweden (19%) and Great Britain (17%).

Ipsos further identified a "middle pack" consisting of Canada (17%), the US (17%), Brazil (15%), Mexico (13%), Spain (12%), Italy (11%) and Australia (10%). A bottom group of those least likely to stream content from the internet to TV comprised South Africa (9%), Argentina (9%), Poland (7%), Germany (5%), France (5%), and Japan (3%).

Watching TV on computer or laptop was chosen most often by those from China (52%), Russia (43%) and Turkey (42%). Joining them in the top group were India (40%), Sweden (35%), South Korea (31%) and Great Britain (29%).

A middle group included Poland (27%), South Africa (26%), Canada (26%), Germany (24%), Mexico (24%), Spain (23%) and Brazil (21%). Those from Argentina (20%), the United States (20%), Australia (19%), Italy (17%), Japan (14%) and France (12%) were least likely to watch TV on computer or laptop.

Turkey (20%) and China (25%) also featured strongly among countries most likely to watch TV programming on a mobile device, but South Korea (26%) led the way here. Russia (5%), in contrast, was near the bottom, along with Poland (5%), Germany (4%) and France (4%).

Alternative viewing modes available appealed more to the under 35s, with 35% watching on a laptop or computer (17% of 50-64 year olds), 20% streaming from the internet (11% of 50-64 year olds) and 15% watching on a mobile device (5% of 50-64 year olds).

Data sourced from Ipsos OTX; additional content by Warc staff


Luxury shoppers seek bargains

17 April 2014
NEW YORK: Shoppers for luxury products are increasingly cost-conscious and open to experiential marketing, according to two new surveys.

Researcher Unity Marketing polled 1,335 affluent American consumers (in the top 20% of households by income) on their attitudes towards luxury and found that 57% looked to shop during sales while 52% regularly comparison shopped.

"The old idea that 'if you have to ask the price, then you can't afford it' has been replaced by the wealthy being focused on price and getting the most bang for their buck and sometimes that means asking for a discount, looking to find the lowest price or making strategic brand substitutes to save money," Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing, told Luxury Daily.

She warned that heritage luxury brands – the likes of Louis Vuitton, Mercedes and Gucci – should not be complacent when considering who their competition was.

"Luxury consumers today have the widest possible range of brands to choose from and many, many times they find that a less exclusive brand offers superior value for the money," said Danziger.

This shift in attitude meant that the perception of what constituted a status symbol was also changing. In the automotive sector, for example, male buyers were becoming less concerned about a brand's price and more about what it said about them as individuals.

So a man might opt for a Mini Cooper rather than a Porsche, for example, because he thought it was a better fit with his personality. Mini Cooper's marketers have worked hard to position it as an "endearing cultural challenger", at one point even challenging Porsche to a race, a stunt that gained widespread press coverage and social media buzz.

Separately, a survey of luxury executives by Wealth-X, the ultra high net worth (UHNW) intelligence firm, found that 90% of respondents saw experiential marketing as crucial to their brand's ability to connect with clients.

Digital marketing was widely regarded as a vehicle for brand awareness, with 84% saying they used it to raise their brand's visibility, not to increase sales or the number of clients. And 16% did not use digital marketing at all.

Social media was not greatly used either, as 53% did not include this platform in any marketing strategy.

Data sourced from Luxury Daily, Wealth-X; additional content by Warc staff


Packaging sways Indian consumers

17 April 2014
MUMBAI: Indian consumers put packaging on a par with the brand when it comes to overall product satisfaction, according to a report which found that packaging is three times more important to consumer satisfaction in developing markets.

A total of 7,665 consumers in ten markets – Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK and the US – were surveyed for the Packaging Matters report from packaging business MeadWestvaco.

While 41% of consumers globally said that packaging was important to overall product satisfaction, that figure leapt to 71% among Indians, the highest of any nationality, the Business Standard reported.

Developed countries were not particularly bothered by this aspect, with Germany (26%), the UK (21%), the US (18%) and Japan (17%) all well below average.

Apart from China (38%) it was emerging nations which responded most to packaging, with India followed by Turkey (70%), Brazil (60%), Russia (43%) and South Africa (43%).

A total of six criteria were applied to achieve an overall product satisfaction rating, including considerations around quality, price, amount, brand, variety and packaging. For Indian consumers the brand itself (75%) was only slightly ahead of the packaging (71%), which had a significant impact on shopping behaviour both in-store and online, and for both for first-time and repeat purchases.

The report noted that around 65% of Indians had tried something new because the packaging had attracted their attention. More than half (55%) had purchased a product again for the same reason while a similar proportion (50%) had switched brands because of negative experiences with new packaging.

Packaging can also lead to more "stickiness" online, the Business Standard said. When shopping online 41% of Indians said that product packaging had led them to do more research on an item, while 39% had written a review than mentioned the packaging.

In addition to these actions, 40% had become brand fans on social networks and 36% had posted something about the product on social media.

Data sourced from Business Standard, MeadWestvaco; additional content by Warc staff


Goldman Sachs leverages social media

17 April 2014
NEW YORK: Major financial services brands could benefit from using social media as a channel to help explain their business and demonstrate the value they bring to the economy, a leading executive has argued.

Lisa Shalett, head of brand marketing and digital strategy at Goldman Sachs, suggested to a recent conference that financial companies could make greater use of this medium to enhance popular understanding of what is a "very complex" sector.

"I think Wall Street in general has to do a better job of showing why it matters, how relevant it is and how it is effective in a positive way to the economy and society," she said. (For more, including how Goldman Sachs has developed its approach to social, read Warc's exclusive report: How the financial crisis prompted Goldman Sachs to embrace social media.)

As a category which is heavily regulated, tapping social media has, quite reasonably, been an activity that many players have approached with considerable caution.

"In a world where communications have become so democratised with social media, you don't want social media conversations to be happening about you or your brand without you knowing or participating in it," said Shalett.

With public trust still fragile after the financial crisis, however, platforms like Twitter offer a forum for organisations to go beyond the headlines and distribute their own positive stories.

"That doesn't mean you can change that conversation," said Shalett, but you could build trust "which is important in any industry, and especially ours".

Although Goldman Sachs primarily serves institutional clients rather than consumers, this does not imply the views of the wider audience are unimportant.

"We certainly realise the importance of communicating, and being more transparent and contributing, hopefully, in a way that adds value," Shalett asserted.

Data sourced from Warc


UK marketing outlook brighter

17 April 2014
LONDON: The outlook for UK marketers is brighter than it has been for some time according to the latest quarterly IPA Bellwether Report which shows a significant upwards revision of marketing budgets in the first three months of the year.

The Institute of Practitioners in Advertising report, which features data drawn from a panel of around 300 UK marketing professionals, found a net balance of +24% of companies registering an increase in budgets during Q1 2014 (that figure being calculated by subtracting the percentage reporting a downward revision from the percentage reporting an upward revision).

This was a sharp rise on the previous quarter's figure of +11% and marked a sixth successive quarter of budgets being revised upwards. The IPA also noted that it was the largest single upwards revision in 14 years of data collection.

Report author Chris Williamson said the upbeat assessment painted "a remarkably buoyant picture" for the remainder of the year.

"Companies are ramping up their markets and advertising expenditure in the face of growing optimism about the economic outlook," he said. "As higher marketing spend is also usually accompanied by rising business investment and job creation, this augurs well for economic growth to top 3.0% this year."

The figures meant that marketing executives ended the 2013/14 financial year on a more positive note than they began it, with a net balance of +17.2% reporting increased budgets compared to the +13.5% anticipating this at the start of the year. This was the first time since 2006/07 that this had happened.

All categories had registered upwards revisions, with main media advertising being the primary beneficiary of the uplift, recording a series record net balance of +11.7%.

It also supplanted internet advertising as the best performer of all categories for the first time in just under three years and, said the report, indicated a growing confidence and willingness amongst marketing executives to commit to high profile campaigns.

Internet advertising had a net balance of +8.5% and within that search was on +13.9%.

For the rest, events recorded a net balance of +6.2%, sales promotions was on +3.4%, direct marketing +2.6%, PR +2.1% and market research +1.1%.

Data sourced from IPA; additional content by Warc staff


Brands tap Australian ideals

17 April 2014
SYDNEY: Brands could build consumer loyalty by aligning themselves with Australian ideals, in particular the notion that everyone is given a "fair go", a leading industry figure has maintained.

Addressing a French-Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry event, reported by B&T, brand strategist Neal Cotton, director at The Lab Strategy, argued that the country's egalitarianism was slipping away in an increasingly polarised society.

"The gap between rich and poor is getting greater" he said as he further observed "the idea of a two-speed economy and now the idea of two-speed cities".

But he saw a huge desire to recapture egalitarian ideals "and this is the opportunity for brands", he declared.

His comments built on a white paper from The Lab Strategy in which the notion of "eroding egalitarianism" was explored, whether that was the crippling cost of housing or the particular skillsets now needed to participate in the country's booming industries of mining and technology.

At a more prosaic level, sports fans were now cut off from players who were no longer local heroes but had become larger-than-life figures. "The corporatisation of local values has transformed what was once something very close to the community into something with broader cultural relevance but arguably less personal connection," the white paper said.

Cotton's "Australian Meaning Map" illustrated some of these points, with brands operating within a matrix that ranged from the conventional to the unconventional on one axis and from the denial or prevention of inferiority to the denial or prevention of superiority on the other.

Thus brands might, for example, tell a story of courage and struggle or utilise self-deprecating humour to appeal to the Australian tendency to side with the underdog.

Cotton cited Bega Cheese, which he works with, as a brand that was speaking to Australian ideals.

"It is the fourth biggest selling brand in supermarkets, and they are priced at a premium. They balance this superior stature with endearing stories of humility and hard work," he explained.

Bega's award-winning campaign let the farmers behind the product tell their own stories to the public and generated an emotional connection with consumers as well as achieving a 1:4 ROI.

Data sourced from B&T, The Lab Strategy; additional content by Warc staff


Car buyers just love driving

16 April 2014
NEW YORK: Aside from financial factors, a simple love of driving is the biggest trigger of automotive sales globally while utility and status also feature strongly according to new research.

The Nielsen Global Survey of Automotive Demand surveyed more than 30,000 online consumers in 60 countries and found that 84% of those planning to buy a new car sometime in the next two years cited love of driving as a motivation. Practical needs (63%) and the desire for a status symbol (62%) were other significant prompts.

While the love of driving did not vary greatly by region – from 86% in Asia-Pacific to 80% in North America – more significant differences emerged with respect to the other leading spurs to purchase.

Thus status was much a much more important factor in Asia Pacific, where it drove 75% of respondents, than in Europe, where only 42% thought this was an inspiration. Some 69% of would-be buyers in the Middle East/Africa were motivated by status, while those in North America (51%) and Latin America (49%) were rather less bothered with this.

Utilitarian needs also featured highly in Asia-Pacific (69%) but North American buyers were most exercised by these (71%). At the other end of the scale Latin American consumers were least concerned about utility (44%). Those in Europe and the Middle East/Africa scored the same (56%) on this sentiment.

Pat Gardiner, president of Nielsen Automotive, observed that automaker were well aware of the power of emotional connections for car buyers, "but the key is making sure these messages are clear and resonate through their campaigns to the right audience," he said.

So, for example, where consumers were driven by status, then sales efforts centred on the luxury car market should be a priority focus.

Nielsen's research also showed that nearly half (46%) of respondents found automotive advertising via websites was "very helpful" when considering the purchase of a new car, compared with 42% who said the same about advertising on TV, followed by 32% for magazines, 29% for newspapers, 21% for mobile and 20% for radio ads.

Brand websites were considered by far the most informative (65%), well ahead of professional product review websites (41%), other third-party informational sites (38%) and dealer websites (38%).

One-third (34%) of global respondents also said they found social media sites most helpful, while 23% preferred video sites with product demonstrations.

Data sourced from BusinessWire; additional content by Warc staff


Viewability metric raises questions

16 April 2014
LONDON: Marketers have responded to the release of new viewability standards for display advertising, designed to bring greater accountability to the format, from the UK's Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB).

The guidelines mirror those previously released in the US and require that "50% of pixels must be in the viewable portion of an internet browser for a minimum of one continuous second to qualify as a viewable display impression for a standard display ad". For Rising Star or large canvas ad formats, the proportion that must be visible falls to 30%.

Standards for video, mobile and tablet are expected to follow later this year and next.

Commenting on the standards, the IAB said it expected that "brand advertisers will enjoy greater accountability, whilst allowing publishers to maximise the value of their inventory".

"Some people are already trading on this already," Steve Chester, IAB's director of data and industry programmes, said, "but we are hoping to create a baseline standard, a currency for people who want to trade on it because at the moment people are working on completely different [impression models]."

But one senior digital marketer told Marketing Week that the guidelines were not very ambitious from an advertisers' perspective, adding that the 50% figure was likely to have been dictated by publishers, rather than being in the interest of brands.

And Marco Ricci, CEO of viewability verifiers AdLoox, argued on MediaTel that a viewablity standard "does little to improve the odds of a client's ad actually being seen, and does even less to effectively tackle the wider, more serious problems of fraud and campaign inefficiency".

Ricci said the focus on viewability missed the fact that many views were by robots and did not address the inefficiency of inappropriate placement.

Data sourced from IAB, Marketing Week, MediaTel; additional content by Warc staff


Marketers urged to learn programmatic

16 April 2014
BOCA RATON: Marketers must be "open to learning" about programmatic advertising given the scale of the opportunity – and change – it could bring to the sector, a leading executive has argued.

Jim Nail, a principal analyst at Forrester Research, told delegates at the Association of National Advertisers' (ANA) 2014 Media Leadership Conference that 23% of marketers understood and used programmatic.

Drawing on data from a joint Forrester/ANA survey involving over 150 industry insiders, Nail added that 10% are conversant with this area, but are yet to run related campaigns.

A further 29% were familiar with the term but possessed limited knowledge, and 12% had not heard of programmatic at all. (For more, including data about the main benefits of this approach, read Warc's exclusive report: Preparing for the programmatic future: Insights from the ANA and Forrester.)

The remaining 26% understood the concept but wished to learn more about it before applying the system to campaigns – and this group received particular praise from Nail.

"I want to compliment the honesty of people who said, 'I kind of understand it, but I really need to learn more.' That's the right attitude to have," he said.

Building on this theme, he cited an article on the Wall Street Journal's website looking at some of the research's topline findings, and which carried the headline "Most Marketers Don't Understand Automated Ad Buying."

Although this piece highlighted the fact that 67% of marketers were struggling to get to grips with this subject, Nail advised the Media Leadership Conference attendees to "ignore" any such negative coverage.

"This stuff is very new, and it's going to take a while to change the way we think about media to incorporate this approach," he said.

"So being open to learning, and knowing you need to learn, and going and pursuing that learning: I applaud you for that."

Data sourced from Warc


Digital no threat to Indian TV

16 April 2014
MUMBAI: Digital advertising is growing fast in India but print and television will continue to dominate adspend for some years to come a new study has said.

A media sector report from IIFL's Institutional Equities, reported on, outlined how digital advertising expenditure had been increasing more than three times as fast as the overall market over the past decade, at a 43% compound annual growth rate compared to 13%.

Digital's share of the total had risen from 1% to 7% during this period and was now valued at Rs 25bn.

The trend would continue, the report said, as the internet user base carried on expanding and more advertisers accepted the new platform.

But even with this stellar growth rate, the dominant position of traditional media such as print and television would not be challenged in the short term. Digital still had limited reach, while a lack of fresh and vernacular content were further limitations; for now its role would be to complement older media.

In the medium-to long-term, however, print was most at risk, especially that in English. The sector has already seen growth slow markedly in recent years, from 16% CAGR between 2003 and 2007 to just 4.5% CAGR in the past three years, as some big-spending sectors, including banking, financial services and insurance, telecoms, and consumer durables, cut their adspend.

The report authors argued that TV was a more resilient medium. It had large audiences and a diverse viewer profile and further benefited from being more suited to certain types of advertising such as new product launches or brand building, all of which would help it withstand the twin challenges of a slowing economy and a growing digital sector.

Television was heavily reliant on just three categories, however, with FMCG, consumer durables and automotive making up 65% of its advertising expenditure and as their spending slowed, so television ad spend growth was expected to soften to high single digits.

Data sourced from; additional content by Warc staff


BSkyB is top UK advertiser

16 April 2014
LONDON: Satellite broadcaster BSkyB was the UK's biggest advertiser in 2013, upping its expenditure 9.5% to £264m, according to new data which also revealed that total spending was down 2.35% year on year.

Figures from Nielsen Ad Dynamix, which monitors ad spending, showed that BSkyB was far ahead of the pack. In The Drum, Rob Tavendale, Nielsen media insights manager, said that it had faced increased competition in the telecoms sector, where Talk Talk had almost doubled its spending (+91%) to £92m, as it backed Talk Talk TV and its sponsorship of popular TV talent programme The X Factor.

But BT, probably BSkyB's fiercest rival, had reduced its total advertising expenditure by 17% to £150m, despite a major push behind the launch of its sports TV channels. And Virgin Media had cut back by a similar percentage to £88m.

FMCG giant Procter & Gamble took second spot with a spend of £177m (-9%), while its rival Unilever was in fourth place on £119m (-14%).

Supermarkets took a further three places in the top ten, led by Tesco on £116m (-1%), with Asda on £97m (-11%) and Wm Morrison on £81m (+6%). Marketing noted that Sainsbury, the last of the Big Four supermarkets, was in 17th place with spending marginally down to £60m.

Tenth spot went to furniture retailer DFS with a spend of £75m (-5%). Overall, just three advertisers in the top ten had increased spending during the year.

Internet giant Google also featured as major UK advertiser, upping expenditure by 50% to £45m as it promoted its Nexus 7 tablet and Chromecast dongle. Tavendale pointed to a marked rise in the advertising of smartphones and tablets during the year as Microsoft increased its spending by 50% and Sony Mobile by 108%.

Another sector to see a revival in spending was automotive where Renault led the way with a 67% increase to £27m.

Data sourced from The Drum, Marketing, Guardian; additional content by Warc staff


Australian marketers overlook data

16 April 2014
SYDNEY: Over one quarter of Australian chief marketing officers (CMOs) are failing to utilise big data or regard it as just a passing trend, according to new research.

A report from Torque Data and Sweeney Research in association with the Association for Data-driven Marketing & Advertising – The big and small of big data – was based on surveys and interviews with 75 senior marketers in Australia, 60% of whom which worked in organisations with more than 500 employees.

It found that just 10% were using data well, while 27% were doing nothing at all and 8% dismissed it as "the next big fad".

But some 78% of marketers thought big data was critical and having a strong strategy would define their business in the future. There was widespread expectation that related budgets would increase (82%) over the next two years while almost two thirds (63%) saw Big Data usage increasing "a fair amount or a lot" in the same period.

Nor was the use of Big Data restricted to larger companies. The report noted that smaller companies (those with fewer than 500 employees) had higher levels of usage (38% vs 30%) and greater success with their initiatives (79% vs 71%). This was frequently due to a combination of "simpler data systems, nimbler administration and a strong drive to establish competitive advantage".

Ad News also highlighted the finding that most marketers were currently using big data to get hindsight (33%) and insight (32%), but said the biggest value would come from foresight –21% of marketers were already using it for this – and real time analytics (11%).

Oliver Rees, Torque Data CEO, had harsh words for the local marketing community. "Too many Australian marketers are verging on complacency, feeling that since no one really knows what to do they can sit back and wait," he told CMO.

"The first these marketers will know of their competitors' capability is when it negatively impacts their own business performance, and by then they'll be well behind," he added.

But Erik Heller, Sweeney's managing director, was more forgiving of a profession he saw held back by resource constraints.

"They are happy to start small, test and learn and not worry too much about this like ROI at this stage," he remarked. "In true Australian spirit, they are simply 'giving big data a go'."

Data sourced from Torque Data, Ad News, CMO; additional content by Warc staff


'Fragile middle' threatens global brands

15 April 2014
LONDON: Some 2.8bn people around the world live on between $2 and $10 a day, forming a "fragile middle" that is always at risk of falling back into poverty, a new analysis has shown.

The Financial Times examined World Bank income data distribution from 122 developing countries and concluded that while millions had been lifted out of poverty since the 1970s, many still lived a precarious existence.

It noted that to qualify for the Asian Development Bank's definition of middle class one had to be earning more than $2 a day (adjusted for purchasing power) but that others favoured a higher figure of $10. Fully 40% of the world's population fell between these two amounts, making the "fragile middle" the world's "biggest income group".

Further, the FT observed that around one third of this number, or 952m people, were earning $2-$3 daily and were particularly vulnerable. World Bank data showed, for example, that in Indonesia more than half of those below the poverty line had been above it a year earlier.

Most businesses in that country were small or micro enterprises and while their owners might meet the definition of middle class they were effectively "subsistence entrepreneurs" vulnerable to the unexpected, according to Rasyad Parinduri, an economist at Nottingham Business School's campus in Malaysia.

Parinduri has carried out research showing that the death of a family member in the preceding five years had reduced their assets by an average of 30%.

While decades of growth have helped to create new markets and enthusiastic consumers, the FT said that "put in a global context, the number of solidly middle-class people remains small, while the fragile middle has grown exponentially".

Kaushik Basu, chief economist of the World Bank, said thought that this was "a very important moment in global economic history".

"But it is a very strange moment," he added, "because the biggest underlying challenges are not the most visible challenges."

Data sourced from Financial Times; additional content by Warc staff


McDonald's taps real-time marketing

15 April 2014
AUSTIN, TX: Many brands are failing to exploit the potential of real-time marketing as a customer service tool, a leading executive has argued.

"For us, real-time is about one-to-one interactions every day," Rick Wion, director/social media at quick-service restaurant chain McDonald's, said.

As a company boasting some 14,000 branches – almost 90% of which are independently-owned – across the US, and serving over 26m people a day, it was clear that engaging with them on the web would be vital.

That involves connecting both with "happy customers" and assisting those who "come in and are upset," according to Wion. "We need to speak to them, too," he said.

Adopting such an approach has significant benefits for brands, but is a subject often neglected by marketers keen to focus on the more glamorous tasks of generating impressions and viral buzz with their creative.

"What's lost in the real-time marketing discussion is the customer service stuff," Wion said. (For more, including how the company "plans for spontaneity", read Warc's exclusive report: How McDonald's takes part in real-time conversations.)

"When we got started on Twitter years ago, we were very particular in making sure that we had a customer-service team as part of our original launch team."

McDonald's currently has 2.3m followers on Twitter, and has used real-time marketing to communicate with them around major events like the 2014 Winter Olympics, of which it was an official sponsor.

However, it does not let such activities define its output; rather, they form part of a holistic approach of building its brand.

"We knew we would have things that people would complain about, and we wanted to make sure we were able to take care of those customers," said Wion.

Data sourced from Warc


Smart accessory market accelerates

15 April 2014
SINGAPORE: Sales of the smartwatch, the latest smart mobile device that was launched as recently as mid-2013, are expected to take off once the designs improve their features and applications, a new report has predicted.

In its first assessment of the nascent smartwatch market in Singapore, research firm GfK reported that nearly 1,400 were sold in the first two months of 2014 at a value of about US$345,000.

Manufacturers chose the island-nation as one of the first markets in Asia to launch initial models because of its status as a "modern and developed country", GfK said, while reporting that there are currently six brands available to Singaporeans.

It noted that these models cost between US$100 to more than US$300 and that the more high-end versions accounted for about 90% of all sales in January.

While stating that the smartwatch market is still in its infancy, Gerard Tan, account director for digital world at GfK Asia, said he expected improvements in technology will boost adoption rates as happened with smartphones, tablets and phablets.

With the recent launch of the android platform for smartwatches, he expected a lot more brands to "jump on the bandwagon" while improved features and sophisticated applications would mean "it will not be long before the market experiences a surge in take up rate".

The report comes as new research from International Data Corporation (IDC) confirmed the worldwide wearable computing market is growing strongly.

IDC said the wearable computing market will increase to 19.2m units in 2014 – driven primarily by complex accessories such as the Fitbit device, Nike+ FuelBand and Jawbone's UP bracelet – taking shipments to nearly 112m in 2018.

Sales of smart accessories – such as the Pebble smartwatch, Samsung Galaxy Gear and the Sony smartwatch – are also expected to rise, overtaking complex accessory shipments in four years' time.

Smart wearables, such as Google Glass, are also expected to increase shipments over the next few years, but IDC predicted it would take longer than for the other devices.

Data sourced from GfK, IDC; additional content by Warc staff


OOH consumers are more attentive

15 April 2014
LONDON: British out-of-home consumers have a significantly higher level of alertness than those in-home, according to new research.

An experiment conducted by consumer insight company COG Research and Dr Amanda Ellison, a doctor of psychology at Durham University, involved assessing 140 continuous hours of monitored skin conductance readings from 20 subjects who also wore eye tracking glasses throughout their day.

Matching the skin conductance highs and lows to actions and places in their daily lives, COG and Dr Ellison were able to demonstrate that people out of home showed a 33% heightened alertness compared to those in home.

Observing that heightened alertness can lead to higher absorption and recall of advertising images, Mike Baker, CEO of the Outdoor Media Centre, a trade body, said advertisers could profit from the research which had put a figure to what one might intuitively have expected.

"Contextual planning is a real benefit of the outdoor medium, and now we know that our audience is one third more attentive," he stated, adding that advertisers could target consumers at different points in their day.

Outdoor advertising company JCDecaux has already gone down this road, combining its digital billboards with social media to reach rail commuters and enabling brands to run consumer-generated content nationally and in real time on station screens.

This sort of approach illustrates another aspect of the sector, as a rush of novel formats and creative thinking has "turned outdoor media on its head", according to Marketing Week.

It noted that the OOH industry was, for example, making increasing use of experiential activity, from Innocent smoothies' samplings under outdoor posters to Land Rover's "sound showers" where pressing an accelerator pedal under an airport billboard resulted in a giant roar.

A separate study from COG Research and OnDevice Research, surveyed 3,563 people via their mobiles at different times of day to measure their mood. This found that a consistently higher percentage of those out of home claimed to be feeling energetic and active, and indeed took action at a higher rate for outdoor ads compared to other media.

Some 23% searched for more information on a mobile device after seeing a recent outdoor ad, compared to 16% for other media.

Data sourced from Outdoor Media Centre, Marketing Week; additional content by Warc staff


Brands react to 'Digital Darwinism'

15 April 2014
SAN MATEO, CA: Companies and brands are entering an era of digital transformation that will make them more human by integrating and improving the customer experience, a new study has said.

The Altimeter Group's Digital Transformation report was based on in-depth interviews with 20 digital strategists and executives at organisations undergoing digital transformation efforts. It concluded that social, mobile, real-time, and other disruptive technologies were aligning in such a way that bigger changes than initially anticipated were now needed.

Digital transformation, it argued, was not just about bolting on various new technologies as they came along in order to solve problems, but was rather about changing entire organisations from the inside out to meet customer expectations that have been totally reshaped by social and mobile.

Nor was it simply an end goal. Digital transformation is a continuous journey, said Altimeter, describing it as "the result of learning more about the relationship between technology and customer behaviour to earn relevance among them".

But internal company structures tended to operate in such a way as to make the development of a seamless customer journey even more difficult than it already was.

As one interviewee who worked for a large pharma company explained: "Business units concentrate on their own priorities when they don't have a holistic view of enterprise goals. Unfortunately, when individual agendas conflict with the company agenda, theirs wins out every time."

Altimeter further observed that the expertise required to lead successful digital engagements was often distributed across the organisation. Mobile, for example, was "strewn across multiple teams and not centralised to produce an integrated approach or experience".

The existence of multiple customer touchpoints also made it difficult to allocate resources effectively. "To earn executive support requires someone to make the business case for funding," said the report. "But, information to make the business case to map the journey is often elusive."

What was need more than anything was a champion who was able to think about the entire digital customer journey and educate executives on what needed to be done and why.

Data sourced from Altimeter; additional content by Warc staff


India gets serious about football

15 April 2014
NEW DELHI: As the India Premier League cricket tournament prepares to start its seventh season, the India Super League (ISL) football competition is getting ready to begin its first with the announcement of eight franchises.

The winning ISL franchises were backed by a mix of businesses and Bollywood celebrities, similar to that seen in the IPL, the Times of India reported. A twist arrived however, in the involvement of two former India cricket captains, as Sachin Tendulkar will co-own the Kochi team, and Surav Ganguly is part of a consortium behind the Kolkata side.

The other six cities with participating teams are Bangalore, Delhi, Goa, Guwahati, Mumbai and Pune.

The internationalisation of the tournament – expected to be graced by global stars past their playing prime such as Thierry Henry and Hernan Crespo – was given a further fillip with the presence of Spanish club Atletico Madrid in the Kolkata consortium.

The football competition follows the model of the IPL and is organised by IMG Reliance, a joint venture between sports management group IMG and the Reliance Industries conglomerate, and broadcaster Star India.

The winning franchises bid some $200m, and while this amount was around one quarter of that bid for the very first IPL franchises, IMG chairman Mike Dolan was bullish about the future.

"We'd expect the value of our original eight franchises to grow from $200m to well over $400m in a few years' time, so with a bigger format with twice as many teams, that would suggest a value for football in India in the region of $1bn," he told the Financial Times.

That optimism is backed up by a recent report from marketing consultancy GroupM ESP and sports news provider SportzPower which said that advertising spend on non-cricket sports would grow at 20-25% a year over the next three years.

In addition to its involvement in football, where it also has a partnership with the governing body, the All India Football Federation, IMG Reliance has signed a 30-year partnership with the Basketball Federation of India to develop basketball at every stage - from grassroots to a professional league. Dolan expected that a major new basketball event would be launched during 2015.

Data sourced from Times of India, Financial Times; additional content by Warc staff


Doritos wins Warc Social Strategy Prize

14 April 2014
LONDON: A Facebook-led campaign developed by AMVBBDO for Doritos has been named the world's best social strategy, as it took the Grand Prix at the inaugural Warc Prize for Social Strategy.

Authored by Tom White, the paper described how snack food brand Doritos had sent a Mariachi band around the UK playing 1980s hits to liven up parties. The strategy opened up a new audience to the brand, without alienating its core youth market.

In addition to the $5,000 Grand Prix, the Mariachi paper also picked up a $1,000 Special Award for best use of analytics. And a separate paper from AMVBBDO, on the '#Youdrive' campaign for Mercedes-Benz, won a Special Award for best channel strategy.

As well as the two campaigns from AMVBBDO, four other papers won cash prizes: the Evian 'Baby&Me' campaign from BETC Paris won a $1,000 Special Award for the best long-term idea; Mizuno Running's US campaign 'The Mezamashii Run Project' won the $1,000 Special Award for the best social business idea; and the $1,000 Special Award for the best low-budget entry was split between a New Zealand animal-rights campaign for Paw Justice, and an anti-smoking effort from Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.

In addition, a total of five Gold Medals, four Silver and eight Bronze were awarded by a panel of senior advertisers and agency-side strategy experts.

The panel was led by Prize Chairman Pete Blackshaw, Global Head of Digital and Social Media at Nestlé, who declared himself "really impressed with both the quantity and the quality of entries".

"The winner really stood out because it was fundamentally social by design and was well executed," he said. "It struck a good balance between appealing to parents and to teenage boys."

Blackshaw was further encouraged by the efforts to show the business impact of social strategy. "As an industry we have a lot more to learn in this area," he noted. "All of us in our companies are still trying to figure out norms and benchmarks in terms of what drives impact."

Further details on the Prize, including the full list of winners and interviews with some of the judges, can be found at

Data sourced from Warc


Retailers must improve e-commerce

14 April 2014
BOSTON: Retailers should update their strategies to accommodate the expectations and preferences of US millennial consumers or risk missing out on the opportunities presented by the growing e-commerce market, a new report has warned.

In a joint survey of more than 1,000 US retailers and millennial shoppers (defined as consumers aged 18 to 29), technology specialists Merchant Warehouse and RetailPro International found that 49% of retailers have not yet established an e-commerce presence.

Even though e-commerce sales are expected to grow to $440bn by 2017, it emerged that almost one-third (31.2%) don't have an e-commerce presence at all while only 7.5% are in the process of building one. The remaining 11.8% are researching the possibility.

The report, an infographic entitled "Buyer Knows Best: Retailers, Millennials and Omni-Channel Shopping", found that US millennials have purchasing power worth $200bn a year and that 40% of men and 33% of women of that generation "would buy everything online if they could".

Yet despite their inclination towards online shopping, the study found that US millennials are still buying mostly in physical stores, but they like to use their mobile devices while in-store to access information, discounts and reviews.

Nearly 85% researched products before purchasing, but far fewer (53%) found their shopping experience at their favourite retailers to be "seamless" – and 78% of those who did not find the process seamless said retailers' websites failed to deliver.

As well as recommending that retailers improve their websites, the report highlighted the potential worth of coupons and discounts.

It found that 75% of consumers said they would switch to brands that delivered real-time discounts and promotions to their mobile devices while shopping, yet only about a quarter (27.3%) of retailers offered mobile coupons to their shoppers.

Furthermore, 84% of consumers said they were more likely to visit websites of retailers with loyalty programmes, yet only 8.4% of retailers offered integrated loyalty programmes that covered all channels.

In a final, and dramatic, warning to retailers about the technical aptitude and purchasing power of the millennial generation, the report stated: "Bring your business into the future, or you may get lost in the past".

Data sourced from Merchant Warehouse, RetailPro International; additional content by Warc staff


Content marketing budgets increase

14 April 2014
LONDON: Senior marketers regard content marketing as the single most important channel across the marketing mix and just over half intend to increase their spend on the format in 2014, a new survey for the content industry body has suggested.

According to the Content Marketing Association, those using content marketing spend 19% of their budgets on it, more than the 15% recorded for events, 14% for TV, 11% for online marketing and 10% for print. Other channels mentioned in the survey included direct marketing (9%), outdoor (7%), social (6%) and radio (6%).

Among those who don't use any form of content marketing, 25% used direct marketing, followed by 18% each for both TV and print.

Conducted by TMS in the last quarter of 2013, the survey covered 130 marketing practitioners and almost two-thirds (65%) of those questioned were at managerial or director level in a wide range of sectors, including retail, auto and financial services.

It found that 51% planned to increase their spending on content marketing in 2014, whether their overall marketing budgets increased or not, and a full 85% were "aware" of the channel.

Respondents said they found content marketing to be especially effective for long-term customer engagement and brand-building, but were undecided about how effective it was for customer acquisition.

They said the top three challenges facing content marketing were proving its effectiveness internally, securing enough budget allocation and creating quality content.

The last factor caused the report to observe that this could provide an opportunity for specialist agencies that offer top-quality editorial skills – a view shared by Sharon Flaherty, head of content and PR at, the price comparison website.

"The current risk is that marketing departments do not have the right skills to practice content marketing properly," she said. "Those with backgrounds in journalism are a must-have asset for brands engaging in content."

Clare Hill, managing director at CMA, added: "For those using content marketing, it is the single most important channel across the full marketing mix and equates to 20% of their total budgets. As with any successful content, quality is essential."

Data sourced from CMA; additional content by Warc staff


Visa expects returns from wearable tech

14 April 2014
AUSTIN, TX: Wearable tech holds significant promise for Visa as a channel both for marketing and making payments, according to a leading marketer at the financial services provider.

Shiv Singh, Visa's svp/global brand and marketing transformation, argued the rise of wearables – epitomised by Google Glass and a new breed of smart watches – could yield huge opportunities in the not too distant future.

More specifically, he suggested the idea of people wearing connected technology wherever they go fits neatly with the role currently fulfilled by its own cards, which are a constant presence in a consumer's wallet or purse.

"We have the good fortune of being with you practically every day of the year, probably all your life," he said. (For more, including how Visa used Google Glass in a Winter Olympics marketing campaign, read Warc's exclusive report: Singh leads Visa towards a wearable-tech revolution.)

"So when you think about wearable technology in this context, the opportunities are mind-blowing."

This notion also plays into Visa's tagline, "Everywhere you want to be", which was introduced earlier this year and reflects its ambition to deliver universal access to secure and convenient digital payments.

"As a big global brand that has high recognition and high brand recall, we are always looking for ways for a deeper, more trusted and more emotional relationship with consumers," Singh said.

"What matters for us is creating a relationship … where, as a brand, we are doing something unique that adds value and that makes people want to be there."

As near-field communication, beacons and similar technologies grow in the retail space, companies like Visa may well have opportunities to revolutionise the payment process.

Forecasts from Juniper Research, the market intelligence and consulting firm, predicted that expenditure on smart wearable devices should reach $19bn by 2018, measured against a projected $1.4bn in 2014.

The firm also believes shipments of these gadgets – including smart watches and glasses – could approach 130m units worldwide in four years' time, roughly ten times the total logged in 2013.

Data sourced from Warc/SXSW


Australians stick with traditional TV

14 April 2014
SYDNEY: Although Australians have increased their adoption of new technologies, they continue to spend the overwhelming majority of their time using traditional TV sets to consume TV and video content, the latest audience data has shown.

Australians are also watching more conventional TV than they did a year ago, consuming an average of 92 hours and 39 minutes each month in the fourth quarter of 2013, an increase of 1 hour and 34 minutes since the same period in 2012, the Q4 2013 Australian Multi-Screen Report stated.

Jointly compiled by measurement companies OzTAM, Nielsen and Regional TAM, the report found that, by comparison, Australians spent 5 hours and 52 minutes a month watching video on the internet, 1 hour and 56 minutes watching online video on a mobile phone and 1 hour and 47 minutes watching online video on a tablet.

While this represented year-on-year growth of 36 minutes for viewing video on a mobile phone and 57 minutes for consumption via a tablet, both devices lagged behind the rise of more than 90 minutes per month recorded for broadcast TV viewing over the same period.

The report said this indicated that Australians of all ages are using these additional screens to complement, rather than replace, the time they spend watching traditional TV.

"Even with extensive new screen and platform options, Australians are viewing as much broadcast television as they have in years," observed Doug Peiffer, CEO of OzTAM.

Even though 92.7% of all broadcast TV is live, the report did note a modest increase of 7.3% for Playback content (TV content that is recorded and played back within seven days), which accounted for 6 hours and 47 minutes a month in Q4 2013.

Despite the ongoing popularity of conventional TV for Australians, the report confirmed this hadn't halted their rapid adoption of new devices.

Up to 40% of Australian homes now have at least one tablet, up from 27% in Q4 2012, 23% of homes have an internet-capable TV, up from 20% the year before, and 53% of homes now have a PVR (personal video recorder).

Furthermore, over two-thirds (68%) of Australians aged 16 and above now own a smartphone, up from 59% in Q4 2012, while 91% of homes have converted every working TV set in the home to digital terrestrial television (DTT).

Data sourced from OzTAM, Nielsen, Regional TAM; additional content by Warc staff


Asian digital banking set to grow

14 April 2014
HONG KONG: Banking brands need to prepare for a surge in demand for digital products and services among consumers in Asia, according to a report.

McKinsey, the management consultancy, predicted in a study that the number of digital banking customers in the region should reach 1.7bn by the end of the decade, the Wall Street Journal reported.

China is likely to be a major driver of this trend, as 900m people in the country are expected to leverage these tools by 2020, compared with 380m in 2012.

In the last three years, mobile and internet banking has seen growth of 35%, according to McKinsey. Branch visits, by contrast, have declined by 27% during this period.

Kenny Lam, a partner at McKinsey in Hong Kong, warned financial services providers in Asia are currently trailing their peers when it comes to developing appropriate offerings for consumers.

"Asian banks still lag behind their counterparts in the rest of the world when it comes to digital banking services," he said.

For a few of the "leading" banks assessed by McKinsey, almost 20% of core product purchases take place online, he added in comments reported by Global Times.

Moreover, approximately 25% of pre-purchase decision-making and 40% of the services provided post-purchase are now attributable to digital channels.

Where financial institutions are able to find the right mix, net profits could rise by between 35% and 45% Lam continued.

"There's enormous upside opportunity for banks that can figure it out, as well as considerable risks for those that don't. It's not a matter of whether Asian banks should go digital, but when," he said.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal, Global Times; additional content by Warc staff


US digital adspend passes TV

11 April 2014
NEW YORK: US digital advertising revenues rose 17% in 2013 to exceed broadcast television advertising for the first time, according to new figures from the Interactive Advertising Bureau.

The trade body said that internet ad revenues of $42.8 billion were just ahead of broadcast TV on $40.1 billion, with the highest growth rate once again coming from mobile.

"The news that interactive has outperformed broadcast television should come as no surprise," said Randall Rothenberg, President and CEO, IAB. "It speaks to the power that digital screens have in reaching and engaging audiences," he added.

For the third year in a row, mobile achieved triple-digit growth year-over-year, rising 110% in 2013 to reach $7.1 billion. Mobile accounted for 17% of 2013 revenues, compared to 9% in in 2012.

Rothenberg said the "staggering growth of mobile" reflected the way smaller digital screens now played an integral role in consumers' daily lives. He also noted their "critical importance to cross-screen experiences".

Display-related advertising revenues had increased 7% to $12.8 billion, a figure which represented 30% of the year's revenues. And within that category, banner ads were the major format, accounting for 19% of all digital advertising but growing slowly at just 2.8%.

Digital video had grown more than twice as fast as display overall, at 19%, to a total of $2.8 billion; as a result, it also increased its share to become the fourth largest format, directly behind mobile.

Search remained the largest revenue-earning format, accounting for 43% of the total and bringing in $18.4 billion in 2013. This was a 9% rise on the previous year.

Retail advertisers continued to represent the largest category of internet ad spending, responsible for 21% in 2013, followed at some distance by financial services (13%) and automotive (12%).

"Our survey confirms that we are fully in transition to the post-desktop era," said David Silverman, Partner at PwC US, which prepared the figures.

He contrasted the triple-digit rate of mobile's growth with the mere 8% increase for traditional computer screens. "This is simply a reflection of the change in how and where consumers are viewing their information—on the go!" he stated.

Data sourced from IAB; additional content by Warc staff


Warc to unveil 18 Social Prize winners

11 April 2014
LONDON: The winners of the inaugural Warc Prize for Social Strategy will be announced today in London, with 18 papers from 12 different markets picking up awards.

The Prize set out to find the best example of a marketing strategy that drives conversation, sharing, participation or advocacy. Entries were asked to show how their strategies had delivered credible business results.

Some 37 cases, from a total of 130 entries, were shortlisted, reflecting a wide mix of social and 'earned media' marketing ideas from around the world. Of these, 18 will win Gold, Silver or Bronze awards, and six will win a share of the $10,000 prize fund.

"I was really impressed with both the quantity and the quality of entries," said Prize Chairman Pete Blackshaw, Global Head of Digital and Social Media at Nestlé.

He added that the Prize had left him "really encouraged" about the efforts to show the business impact of social strategy and he hoped to take advantage of what he had learned "from the origination of the core idea and the insight all the way to the social strategy and ultimately to... business results".

Fellow judge Molly Flatt, from word-of-mouth agency 1000heads, echoed those sentiments. "People were able to focus on what their strategy was doing rather than other aspects that had driven results in the campaign," she said.

She distinguished between social strategy and social media. Social media was simply a tool, she argued, while she was seeking to reward strategies that were "inherently conversational, about relationships, about encouraging deep emotion and deep behaviours".

Michelle Klein, vp of content, digital and communications at Smirnoff, singled out those cases "clearly pointing out the unique benefit that social had on the overall business impact", and welcomed a distinct shift away from simply counting impressions, clicks and likes.

She saw clients and agencies alike "embracing a changing tide of media" so that social was becoming "much more part of our vernacular and planning process than it was a few years ago".

The winners will be announced at an event at the London offices of Deloitte.

Data sourced from Warc


Asian marketers lack digital skills

11 April 2014
SINGAPORE: Just one third of marketers in the Asia-Pacific region feel completely confident in delivering digital marketing activity but four in five are very motivated to learn more, according to a new study.

The Knowledge Engineers, a digital marketing training business, surveyed more than 1,000 agency, media and client-side executives in Asia-Pacific as part of a global report, Digital Knowledge Survey 2014, into marketers' confidence levels across the digital spectrum.

It found that Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong were the countries in the region with the highest confidence levels, but it also highlighted a lack of client understanding and a shortage of talent as major problems to be tackled.

A digital and integrated strategy was widely regarded as the most important skill for the future of an organisation, cited by 35%, far ahead of other options such as content strategy (9%) and measurement/analytics (9%).

However, just under half of respondents in the region (47%) felt "OK" about digital and said they needed more guidance, while 20% were "not very confident" at all.

"Many marketers have not had experience working directly on projects which focus deeply on these areas, so may often feel in the dark about how exactly to go about planning and implementing work in these channels," Josie Brown, director of digital with JWT APAC, explained to Campaign Asia-Pacific.

That lack of direct experience was compounded by a lack of training, which in turn was partly dictated by skewed media spending, as digital typically accounted for only 1% or 2%. "With budgets not equating to time spent on digital media, there has been a lack of investment in training and a lack of time for strategic planning," observed Keith Timmi, chairman of digital marketing agency VML Qais.

Nor was it always possible to simply buy in the necessary skills, as agencies were up against the attractions of employers like Google and Facebook, which, Timmi noted, offered "staff perks such as free food from Michelin-starred chefs, concierge services and 20% time for personal projects".

Marketers felt more confident in some areas, particularly digital strategy (42%) and display advertising (40%), while e-CRM (20%) and search (27%) emerged as the weakest.

Some 37% also cited a lack of client understanding as a barrier to digital excellence, compared to a figure of 32% globally.

Data sourced from Campaign Asia-Pacific; additional content by Warc staff


Kimberly-Clark insists on owning data

11 April 2014
BOCA RATON, FL: Kimberly-Clark, the personal care group, believes brands should "own" certain core elements of the programmatic advertising process if they are to derive the maximum benefits from this activity.

Mark Kaline, the firm's global director/media, licensing and consumer services, discussed this issue while speaking at the Association of National Advertisers' 2014 Media Leadership Conference.

"One of our priorities – and there's no simpler way to say this – is that owning the data is very important," he said. (For more, including the main benefits of programmatic for brands, read Warc's exclusive report: Why (and how) programmatic works at Kimberly-Clark.)

The primary advantage of such a model for the company, he continued, is that it is not reduced to simply watching ads appear, but can draw on the resultant information to, for example, tweak campaigns and messages.

"We're able to see our clients not just run [ads], but actually learn as they go," said Kaline. "You can see the cost-per-action dropping as the buy runs."

But the "KC-owned solution" to programmatic buying extends beyond the hard numbers to various other, more technical, pieces of the puzzle.

"We own the relationship with the demand-side platform, we own the data and we see everything. It's fully transparent," Kaline said.

As such, while Kimberly-Clark works on its programmatic efforts with media agency Mindshare, it retains control of several essential aspects of the process.

Given the anticipated growth in the programmatic space over the coming years, it is likely many other brand owners will soon by grappling with the same issues.

According to Magna Global, the media unit of Interpublic Group, the market for the programmatic buying of display ads attained a value of $7.5bn in America last year, some 62% of the worldwide total.

The dollar figure is set to reach $17.5bn in the US by 2017, approximately 53% of revenues globally, as other nations – most of which are currently less mature in this area – begin to witness rapid growth.

Data sourced from Warc


UK consumers sceptical about advertising

11 April 2014
LONDON: UK consumers are among the most sceptical in the world when it comes to brand advertising, with fewer than two in ten believing what companies tell them, a new study has found.

The Global RepTrak 100 study by the Reputation Institute surveyed 55,000 consumers across 15 markets to measure corporate reputation among the public. Globally, 25% of consumers indicated they felt they could trust what companies said in their advertising; the remainder were classified as neutral, disbelieving or unsure.

At 15.4%, UK consumers were in the bottom four, just above France, Germany and Japan, Marketing Week reported.

According to Kasper Ulf Nielsen, executive partner at the Reputation Institute, those companies that had successfully built trust had avoided a simple emphasis on "pushing product" and had instead sought to engage with customers on social media and to co-create campaigns with them.

He warned that, at the very least, companies "need to get their good stories out there as a buffer to the negative claims", since the mix of social media and critical consumers could be "toxic".

The top five brands with the best reputation globally were Walt Disney, Google, BMW, Rolex and Sony. In Europe, Sony came out on top, followed by Samsung, BMW and Volkswagen.

But not one company appeared in the top ten across all the markets surveyed, which points to the difficulties brands face in exporting reputation internationally. "There is a major opportunity to drive growth if [a brand] can get this right," said the report.

Writing in the latest issue of Market Leader, Paul Kemp-Robertson, cofounder of marketing agency Contagious Communications, said consumers trusted their peers and brands more than governments or regulators, making brand reputation even more important.

He suggested that brands could act to fill spaces left by governments, citing the example of Coca-Cola's Ekocenters - a kind of community hub. Developments such as this would certainly meet Nielsen's requirement for a "good story".

Kemp-Robertson also said brands would benefit from contextual integration, which recognises the different roles each individual plays in different parts of their life, while technology enabled brands to focus on experience and service in new ways, including through 'living services' which learn and adapt to customer needs.

Data sourced from Marketing Week, Market Leader; additional content by Warc staff


IPL franchises struggle for sponsors

11 April 2014
MUMBAI: Broadcasters in both India and the United Arab Emirates are confident of gaining large audiences and advertising revenues from the India Premier League but many of the teams themselves are finding sponsorship difficult.

With the first game taking place in Sharjah next week, the Hindustan Times reported a "frenetic" search for sponsors, with some franchises having around one quarter of the number of last year.

Atul Srivastav, partner at Gaames Unlimited, which manages sponsorship and endorsement opportunities for leading cricketers, noted a couple of reasons for the current situation.

"Since the first leg of the tournament is being held in the UAE, sponsors are a bit worried as it is going to affect their marketing activation and promotional activities, which are localised in nature," he pointed out.

"Secondly, the turbulent phase IPL is passing through owing to recent controversies, the sponsors are wary of putting money on an investment where returns look dodgy," he added.

One such example was Panasonic, the consumer electronics brand, which last year took a space on the shirts of the Delhi Daredevils team – franchisees sell space on players' shirts, caps and helmets – but is not doing so this time around.

"The mass interest in IPL has gone down considerably every year, resulting in lowering of the return on investment," said Manish Sharma, Panasonic MD. "As a result, we are likely to spend less on IPL this year."

But Srivastav remained confident agreements would be reached. "IPL is still prime property; it will not go unsold," he said. "I see a lot of last-minute deals getting finalised with lot of small brands in the cell phone and real estate sectors at a lesser price."

Meanwhile the advertising industry in the United Arab Emirates is preparing for a mini-boom as the first 20 games of the tournament take place in the country, Gulf News reported.

"IPL is a big-ticket event and many will want to ride the wave," said Amit Raj, general manager at media agency BPG Maxus. He had already seen some big investments from clients in banking, real estate and male grooming products.

The IPL's main sponsor, soft drinks giant Pepsi, has developed a campaign offering internships to younger cricket fans with some having the opportunity to attend games in the UAE and create content to link fans and celebrities.

Data sourced from Hindustan Times, Gulf News, Economic Times; additional content by Warc staff