#MonacoMF10 “Sky Writing” Building brands in a mobilied world

Cathy Davies – VP, Brand & Communications Global Marketing, Sony Ericsson
Babs Rangaiah – VP, Global Communications Planning, Unilever
Greg Stuart – Global CEO, Mobile Marketing Association
Moderator: Michael Kassan – Chairman & CEO, Media Link

Babs: It’s the very early stages of mobile. Launched as an original iAd sponsor. Created a great app for Ax. Most guys use the phone as their alarm clock and so created an app that let’s the young boys get woken up by a sexy voice. It had millions of downloads in both India and Japan. iAd was an expensive proposition, but they felt that Apple really understood the smart phone and they could really help with design.

Michael: Cathy do you look at Mobile as interrupting or enriching.

Cathy: People do sleep with their phone within an arms reach. It is an enriching experience as people have a very different relationship with their mobile phone. Her mobile agency told her that “Mobile was like teenage sex. A lot of people are talking about it, few are doing it & fewer are doing it well.”

Babs: We’re not doing enough in mobile to measure everything. There are 4 – 5 billion phones out there but only a hand full have mobile internet. Unilever ran a print ad that was missing a piece and you SMSed a short code and got the rest of the ad unit. SMS is something almost everyone can use. The creativity with mobile can come from technology itself. There is an ice cream business – that if you smile at the app and it has smile recognition – the app will give you a coupon for free ice cream. You can’t just translate other media into mobile – it has to be native to the app. The right model will come based on consumer usage. We will look back 10-15 years from now and see how rudimentary everything is.

Cathy: Mobile has the ability to create impact over reach. It’s difficult to work with all the stake holders to make it work – but access needs to come for measurement.

Michael: Cathy you said no brand is an island anymore. Your a brand and a manufacturer. How do you wear the two hats?

Cathy: We have a great opportunity to enrich the consumer experience in the handset. As a mobile provider we want to stitch together all the applications and allow people to take their whole life with them in their mobile. Our challenge is to be the glue or remote control in the consumers life.

Greg: Digital media creates friction. There are horror stories about the fact that agencies can buy 100 Million dollars worth of TV with 1 person but 100k of digital takes 10 people. (AMEN)

Michael: What’s the role of the agencies?

Greg: Just like internet – mobile is not a medium, it is an amalgamation of mediums.

Babs: There are a lot of specialty agencies popping up and they make sense. The creative agencies are needed for creative – they are all willing to do it, but it’s an issue of business models, focus areas and talent. If you want to be innovative in the beginning you have to have Specialty Agencies to make it work. They are working with Joule (go Ben) and they are rock stars!! Some creative agencies have really upped their game. Talent, collaboration, focus and business model are key.

Cathy: We all understand how consumers will consume media in a “stacking” way. When you go out to a specialist – you can use your paid media be an amplifier. She is focusing on Paid/Owned/Earned – Paid media is for amplification.

Babs: In the end, you have to go back to your core agencies.

Audience Questions: (ME) Agencies are only as innovative as their clients are brave! How do we push clients to not leave great ideas on the cutting room floor?

Babs: Marketers are still not all there and a lot are falling back on standard things that are comfortable. Part of it is the idea of living the space. Getting all of the executive leadership to go to Silicon Vally and get immersed in the media. There’s a handful of people at brands and agencies that are leading – trying to institutionalized that across large companies are hard, but great opportunities. They are building media labs in all of their offices around the world so that people can go into a room with the latest technology and no firewalls so people can really live the medium.

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Filed under Conferences, Industry, Mobile

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