American Marketer


Bridge data deluge to gain consumer trust: MediaCom exec

May 9, 2012


NEW YORK - Targeted marketing via measurable channels should be used to reach consumers who are lacking in overall brand trust, according to a speaker at the 2012 Fashion & Retail Market Report: What’s Working Now and Why conference.

Marketing budgets are highest in the United States and consumer spending is on the rise, but brands should recognize the decline in consumer trust that most likely is a result of anger towards the economy. The MediaCom executive said that marketers should be cautiously optimistic about the future and it is important to use measurable channels to reach consumers to avoid data overload.

“If you think about consumers as a whole within the U.S., we have been very lucky compared to our European counterparts in terms of the frustrations," said Chris Pyne, chief strategy officer of MediaCom, New York.

“The consumers you have to persuade to buy your product are angry,” he said. “Anger is turning into lack of trust.”

MediaCom is an international media planning and buying company.

The 2012 Fashion & Retail Market Report was presented by The Woolmark Company and Women’s Wear Daily. Women’s Wear Daily is published by Fairchild Fashion Media, a unit of magazine publisher Conde Nast.

Be accountable
Marketing accountability has never been more important. Even in successful companies, employees do not feel prepared, per Mr. Pyne.

Meanwhile, marketing budgets across all business are highest in North America and continue to be on the up and up, according to the April 2012 Warc Global Marketing Index.

Also, consumer spending and optimism is increasing, but by the middle of this year if unemployment goes to 10 percent, this could go back down, per Mr. Pyne.

Brands need to address the downward trend in consumer trust.

For example, consumers who say they like or love Rolex decreased from 35 percent in 2010 to 24 percent in 2011, per a Mindreader 2011 study.

Automakers, in particular, are spending more money in marketing.

Furthermore, automotive sales have rebounded and expected to grow in the remainder of 2012.

Mr. Pyne at the Fashion & Retail Market Report

In addition, ad spending is rallying except for consumer packaged goods impacted by high commodity costs.

Automaker ad spending is essentially back to where it was in 2008 at more than $15 billion. However, retail ad spending has increased since 2009.

There is pressure on marketing organizations to ensure that investments in all channels are more measurable, accountable and transparent, per Mr. Pyne.

“Remain cautiously optimistic," Mr. Pyne said. “Because of commodity costs continuing to increase, executives are starting to feel squeezed in the workroom.”

Goodbye new media
There is no new media anymore, per Mr. Pyne. In fact, today’s definition for new media is irrelevant.

There were 55 million tablets sold in the U.S. in the past year, which shows that what used to be cutting edge is no longer.

Real-time communication is happening at dramatic speeds.

In fact, the average person is changing their media channel 27 times per hour, according to a Time Warner study. This could be between a television set or a computer and a mobile device.

The data deluge is beginning and with new digital channels comes an abundance of data sources that marketers need to translate into usable metrics, per MediaCom.

Marketers must build a campaign that provides real-time communication and focus on measurable channels.

“Overload in data is a huge issue across the board,” he said.

“It is incredibly difficult to think of when a company was only using television advertising,” Mr. Pyne said. “It is now the question of how do we fit in the real-time lives of our consumers.”

Final Take
Tricia Carr, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York