Procter & Gamble's chief brand officer has urged brands to mark a turning point in the rise of digital media to demand advertising that's transparent, more personal – and a force for global social change.
In a keynote speech at the dmexco 2017 conference in Cologne, Marc Pritchard said it was clear that as consumers' attention spans shrink and their focus on brands intensifies, brands need to stop wasting money on advertising that doesn't reach people or simply annoys them.
Instead, they should "accelerate the next transformation of brand building"; they should work more efficiently to communicate with consumers in personalised and relevant ways – and use their influence to improve consumer experiences and people's lives.
"The fact is: if we all raise the bar and transform ourselves, we can accelerate market growth, and that lifts all boats. All of us, especially consumers, will benefit," he said.
Pritchard argued that the industry is at a crossroads, at the end of the "first wave of transformation" into a digital media world, and at the starting line for the next brand-building innovation. This year, digital adspend has overtaken investment in television globally, he noted, meaning that the marketer's dream of mass, one-to-one communications is now within reach. But there are significant "growing pains" that are only part-way solved.