Born: United Kingdom
Worked in: London
In a media-fragmented world, gaining differentiation for a client drives the need for innovation — the glue that knits together the campaign elements so that the final outcome is greater than the sum of its parts. Innovation, however, isn’t necessarily just about finding completely new media channels; it may be about using existing ones to create compelling ways to reach another target. Context, relevancy and environment are key to ensuring that a message reaches the right audience, at the right time, and via the best media channel(s). Media solutions that take inspiration from the message create the best campaigns.
What is the biggest challenge you face in applying innovative thinking to international projects? When working in an international environment, there cannot be a “one size fits all” approach; a single audience definition can ultimately produce completely different media approaches. A combination of audience research, understanding and experience contribute to complex multi-country plans. Although they may adhere to the same strategy, one should not presuppose that the audience behaves in the same way across markets.
Describe an innovative idea or business solution of which you are most proud. Last year I led the team on the launch of the NXP brand (previously Philips Semiconductors). Our goal was to influence high-level decision-makers across Europe, North America and Asia. From the initial planning meeting until introduction, we had six weeks. Yet on the launch date, we had a ticker in New York’s Times Square announcing NXP, supported by a global business plan with all messages coordinated to appear in the same introductory week.
Any other interesting aspects to your international background? I have worked within an international environment for 12 years. No two days have ever been the same since I started, and I doubt they ever will! Planning and buying in an international arena has never been so demanding and complex, but it has also never been so exciting.