The second day of Advertising Week New York 2019 coincided with the United Nations General Assembly in the Big Apple – and laid out a multi-faceted agenda for brands around the world to consider.

As a brief guide to some of the important themes that emerged on the event’s second day, WARC’s reporters identified various pieces of insight and inspiration that were delivered from the stage by senior marketers and thought leaders:

The business case for inclusive brands
“If you’re in a low-growth business right now, inclusion and diversity is your way to connect with an audience that’s been unreached, and that has not been engaged with. And they’re begging for you to engage with them” – Fiona Carter, chief brand officer at telecoms firm AT&T, discusses the financial benefits that result from building inclusive brands.

Sports networks failing the equality test
“Only 4% of sports promotion across all sports networks goes to women’s sports. Can you believe that?” – Stephanie McMahon, chief brand officer at wrestling property WWE, highlights a clear roadblock to the growth of female sports.

Left to right: Stephanie McMahon (WWE) and Fiona Carter (AT&T)

Consumers driving the purpose transformation
“We’ve seen in the data that the number of consumers that area actively considering … values when making a purchase has increased over time. It hit a tipping point in 2017, when 52% of consumers were actively considering these things in the US. And that has continued to trend upwards” – Anjali Lai, senior analyst at research firm Forrester, points to the growing weight that consumers put on brand values.

Don’t neglect the fundamentals
“We have a lot of research that we put out and say, ‘If I told you eBay has donated $1 billion to charity, would that change the way in which you shop or your behavior?’ And their answer is, ‘Sure, but you have to do these other several things in order for me to make that call’” – Suzy Deering, CMO of ecommerce marketplace eBay, issues a reminder that business fundamentals still matter to consumers.

Left to right: Suzy Deering (eBay) and Anjali Lai (Forrester)

Think audience-first
“We think about the audiences first: 'How can we create content regardless of where it lives?' And then we find the right type of platforms” – Allyson Witherspoon, vp/marketing communications and media at automaker Nissan North America, suggests that media strategies should start with the consumer, not the channel.

Innovate for consumers – not for the sake of it
“There’s a gap between marketing innovations and what the audience actually wants … Are you building your marketing campaigns to affect consumers or to win innovation rewards?” – Ashish Patel, chief insights officer at media holding company Group Nine Media, questions the motivations behind some marketing innovation.

Dress to impress (creative and tech experts)
“When I showed up for work at Goldman Sachs, I wore a suit and tie. But I knew if we wanted to attract creative people – especially creative/tech people – they weren’t going to wear suits and ties” – Dustin Cohn, head/brand and marketing of Goldman Sachs Consumer Investment Management Division, on the sartorial challenges of launching the consumer-facing Marcus By Goldman Sachs division.

Find a place in the connected home
“There is a lot of emphasis on: How do we take the 200 million devices we have in US households and build a platform around them? For instance, how do we take the 25 million washing machines and provide a detergent feed” – David VanderWaal, svp/marketing in North America for electronics manufacturer LG, considers the possibilities of the connected home.

Work with complementary partners
“We need to do more with less, so we’re partnering with like-minded partners” – Christina Ferzli, director/global corporate affairs at juice brand Ocean Spray, highlights the power of joining forces with like-minded organizations.

Be brave – or risk being ignored
“The worst thing that can happen is nothing. But nothing is what happens with most marketing campaigns” – Fernando Machado, global CMO at restaurant chain Burger King, gives his fellow marketers a compelling reason to be courageous with their work.

Clockwise: Christina Ferzli (Ocean Spray), David VanderWaal (LG), Fernando Machado (Burger King)

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