LOS ANGELES: Marketers seeking to create truly innovative programs for their brands may need to enhance their skills in the area of "commercial creativity", a leading executive from Mondelez International has argued.

Laura Henderson, Global Head of Content and Media Monetization at Mondelez, discussed this subject at the 2016 Brand Summit held by Advertising Age.

More specifically, she cited an initiative by Stride, the gum brand, which saw skydiver Luke Aikins jump out of a plane without a parachute from 25,000 feet – an effort captured in a 60-minute show aired on Fox.

Given the considerable risks involved in this exercise for Aikins and Mondelez alike, Henderson reported that her team had to ensure the firm's senior leadership and legal division were full partners in the process from a very early stage.

"It was a really interesting exercise in what I'm calling 'commercial creativity', which I think is a new skillset for marketers," she said. (For more details, read Warc's exclusive report:Mondelez's Stride Gum turns marketing into profit center.)

Drilling down into this idea, Henderson suggested that brand custodians eager to push the envelope and fully catch consumer attention must become experts at securing buy in from essential partners across their organisations.

"In this new world, not only do we need to be more creative in terms of what we do, but also in how to do it and how we get there," she said.

The Stride program, by way of example, required a broad spectrum of expertise to make sure an extremely complex concept came together both behind the camera and in front of it.

"You can't bluff it. You can't just do it on your own. You need the support of the entire organisation. And so what we did is engage people really, really early," Henderson said.

And alongside necessary prerequisites such as insuring the jump, Mondelez also prepared a detailed crisis-communications plan covering every potential scenario that might unfold.

"It was an amazingly thought out plan," Henderson said. "That plan never got opened, thank God."

Data sourced from Warc