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Over 30% of brands to focus on improving communications to women in 2018 suggests Pearlfinders research

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Pearlfinders has released its latest annual Global Index research and with national and international news agendas being heavily focused on diversity issues in 2017 the new report shows that 33% of brands in Europe are planning to increase their marketing to female audiences during 2018.

Research for the Global Index is conducted throughout the year and sees some 10,000 interviews with brand marketers conducted to measure trends and to reflect the purchasing intentions of the brand at the time of interview.

2017 started with the global Women’s March and concluded with Time magazine declaring the #MeToo Silence Breakers its ‘Person of the Year’ demonstrating a major global cultural shift, which it seems brands are taking seriously and are planning to back heavily with increased female orientated communications in 2018.

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What marketing services brands are expected to review in 2018

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Findings suggest that in 2018 brands are set to increase their spend on Content by five per cent, increase spend on digital marketing to females by 3.1 per cent and increase consumer PR spend to women by 2.2 per cent, with the greatest year on year increases expected to come in the fashion and travel sectors.

Speaking of the findings Richard Dodgson, founder and creative director at Timebased Events, said: “We’ve been inspired by movements like Sheryl Sandberg’s ‘Lean In’, Verizon’s ‘Inspire Her Mind’ and Puma’s ‘Do You’, with powerful women and meaningful messages at the centre.

“We work with brands that build events to contribute to the culture their audiences care about, and we’re expecting 2018 to be the year of women. In 2018 it will be more critical than ever for agencies and brands to understand how to trigger female emotions – and events will be at the very heart of delivering this.

“Access to positive associations with the worlds of fashion, design, music, film and celebrity culture will be needed by sectors like consumer electronics and sports like F1, who will be looking to prioritise the female audience.”

Other top line findings from the Global Index suggest the following:

• 14% of brands are planning to review their advertising AOR
• 26% increase in brands overhauling youth marketing
• 47% increase in brands targeting young HNWIs
• 76% of FMCG Food brands planning agency reviews in 2018 want to enhance their healthy credentials
• B2B marketing is getting sexier – even in the Industry & manufacturing sector 15% of all upcoming marketing projects are seeking an integrated creative agency
• 28% increase in the number of brands citing “authenticity” as a 2018 marcoms priority

Reflecting on the Index findings and how they will impact on the industry in 2018 Serge Vaezi, chief strategy and creative officer,UK& EMEA at Ogilvy PR, said: “2018 will see the on-going rise of brands that look at their marketing model as needing to add value in order to generate ‘news’. These brands understand the necessity to ‘talk less and do more’ in order to earn cultural relevance. Why?

“The proliferation of ad blocking technology is showing no slow down. We are seeing a swing back towards traditional, established news brands in a clear backlash to ‘fake news’. And more brands are behaving in a way that consumers, media and influencers find genuine, authentic and interesting.

“Consequently more clients are asking for strategies to make them culturally relevant. Big, channel agnostic ideas are fine, but the consumer is ever more demanding in their desire to know what’s in it for them."

Reinforcing this view Alex Charkham, strategy director at FUSE, added: “Technologies and innovations that can help create experiences will become more central to brands’ strategies and will also mean greater accountability and measurement for clients – better linking online and offline behaviours/ identities. VR and AR have already started to be more consistently employed by brands.

“The next step will be data and AI enabled frictionless personalised experiences, content distribution built increasingly around individual interests, technologies that allow audiences to become creators and tools that support better real-time data collation.

“There is a watch-out here though for brands; in such a fast-moving landscape it will become even more vital to maintain a clear purpose and identity in order to ensure that innovative activations contribute to brand goals, rather than becoming an end in themselves.”

The Pearlfinders Global Index can be accessed here.

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Manchester United unveils official global mobile app

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Manchester United has unveiled an official mobile app powered by its digital transformation partner, HCL.

The new app features exclusive content, including the United Now feed – which collates the latest news, polls, stats, videos and blogs about the club– and a live matchday experience, including line ups, up-to-the-second match updates, live blogging, player stats and score updates from rivals.

The app will also provide exclusive content and behind-the-scenes player access.

Manchester United’s group managing director, Richard Arnold said: “This app will allow our 659 million Manchester United followers to easily connect to the club they love, wherever they are in the world. Fans will now have the opportunity to follow all Manchester United matches through the app with up-to-the-second notifications and updates.

"The app was created by a dedicated project team from HCL Technologies and Manchester United, ensuring a truly collaborative approach to the project. The team not only built the new app and website, but also created an advanced underlying platform that will give the club the ability to adapt as new technologies emerge.”

HCL Technologies’ corporate vice president, Ashish Gupta said: “Our partnership with Manchester United has been one of continuous co-innovation. HCL’s digital experience platform has driven significant business transformation combining digital product strategy and technology innovation to deliver a compelling user experience. The Manchester United official app has received excellent reviews from a worldwide fan base with downloads in over 210 markets."

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The Drum presents: Tom Ollerton talks to Rachel Falconer, head of Goldsmiths Digital Studios

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Talking about the latest marketing technology in order to make sense of it for brands and agencies to apply it through his podcast 'Shiny New Object' is Tom Ollerton, AI consultant and the former innovation director at We Are Social. In this latest installment, Rachel Falconer, head of Goldsmiths Digital Studios offers her thoughts on the impact blockchain will have on the marketing industry.

Each episode of The Shiny New Object Podcast will be distributed in partnership with The Drum and can be followed by subscribing through the Apple podcast app (which also currently features the SheSays Says series) here on the website or follow The Drum's SoundCloud page.

Tom Ollerton is a consultant in the field of creative artificial intelligence. He helps brands use the speed and scale of AI to make their content and media budgets work harder. Tom runs a monthly meetup called ‘I’ll Be Back’ that studies the intersection of creativity, ads and AI. Each week he interviews an influential marketer about their favourite new marketing technology.

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Sony Pictures Network unveils a digital campaign for the 18th Asian Games

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Sony Pictures Networks (SPN) India has unveiled the #KoiKasarNahi (No stone will be left unturned) campaign for the 18th Asian Games to be held in Indonesia.

As part of the campaign, SPN will be hosting a ‘Fan Flame’ on its microsite . Inspired by the Asian Games torch that burns in the cauldron for the duration of the Games, the virtual Fan Flame will have message of support that will be passed on to the participating Indian athletes.

To feature on the virtual Fan Flame, fans will need to use hashtag #KoiKasaNahi on social media platforms. SPN will broadcast live more than 300+ hours of the Asian Games in both Hindi and English.

It will also have a live studio show with panelists like wrestler Jagdish Kaliraman, hockey champions Sandeep Singh, Viren Rasquinha, and Jagbir Singh, tennis players Somdev Devvarman and Gaurav Natekar, badminton player Aparna Popat, and expert columnists Ayaz Memon and Boria Majumdar.

Rajesh Kaul, president, Sports and Distribution Business, Sony Pictures Networks India said: “At Sony Pictures Networks India we have always promoted a multi-sport culture and it doesn't get bigger than the 18th Asian Games.

"As our athletes compete across 36 sports and against sportspeople from 45 countries, we will bring fans and viewers the ultimate experience to enjoy the Asian Games. As patriotic fans, it’s our utmost duty to give our unrelenting support to our athletes just as they will give on this stage.”

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