Brands Are Having Trouble Navigating Socio-Political Situations According To Survey

A new poll from Axios Harris which surveys over 33,000 Americans nationally about the 100 most visible companies in the country is showing that brands are having some trouble navigating an increasingly complex socio-political landscape.

The companies are ranked by survey responders across seven different dimensions like trust, ethics, growth, service, etc. That then creates an aggregate score that provides insight on how consumers view the company’s reputation. 

Overall, grocery chain brands a faring well this year, with Trader Joe’s ranked #1, HEB Grocery at #2 and Wegmans sitting at #5, dominating the top 10. Previously, Patagonia held onto their position at #1, but has fallen to #3.

This year, hardware technology companies like Samsung, Sony, IBM and Microsoft are seeing dramatic jumps in their rankings from the previous year, with high scores in growth and vision dimensions. 

But it hasn’t been positive for all and there are some clear indicators that brands are facing some difficulties when it comes to navigating a fraught political environment.

For example, Disney has fallen hard from 37th just a year ago to now 65th place, which is likely from the company’s decision to speak out on Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill. For McDonald’s, a delay in pulling its business out of Russia likely affected the company’s reputation negatively this year among survey respondents. 

This is all likely because 31% of respondents say that companies should prioritize the views of customers moreso than its shareholders (16%). According to Axios, companies that had clear partisan affiliations were ranked as having higher trust and responsibility scores than those that did not last year.

Ad Revenues Will Grow By 9% In 2022 To $816 Billion

Global advertising growth in 2022 will reach 9.2 percent, or $816 billion—lower than the previously forecast 12 percent, revealed Magna, citing an economic slowdown and growing restrictions to data-driven targeting of digital ads.

“Magna was always expecting the global advertising market to slow down significantly in 2022 following the unprecedented levels of growth observed in 2021 (global +23 percent, US +26 percent) caused by a once-in-a-lifetime “planetary alignment” of factors: the V-shaped economic recovery and the marketing consequences of post-COVID lifestyles,” said the firm’s June 2022 forecast.

Nevertheless, a 9 percent increase this year would remain above pre-COVID growth rates—the average increase between 2015 and 2019 was 7 percent.

Magna anticipates North America to grow the most at 11 percent to a new high of $326 billion—40 percent of the global advertising market. This growth is marginally less than Magna’s prior forecasts for this year of 12.6 percent in March and 11.5 percent in December. Magna decreased its growth forecasts for Q2 to Q4 2022 as a result of the economic slowdown, though this has been somewhat offset by the market’s unexpectedly strong performance in Q1 where it grew by 14 percent and by the greater forecast for political spending of 51 percent. 

Cross-platform video advertising will grow by 8 percent to reach $89 billion while national linear TV’s decrease of 4 percent will be offset by the growth of long-form advertising-based video on demand (22 percent) and short-form pure players (19 percent) in addition to local TV’s record political spend. At the same time, cross-platform audio advertising—including broadcast radio, audio streaming and podcasting—will rise by 5.7 percent to $16.8 billion as cross-platform publishing ad sales fall by 3 percent to $16.2 billion.

One year ahead of previous expectations, out-of-home sales will grow beyond its 2019 pre-COVID high to $8.5 billion. Direct mail will also benefit from political campaigns and revenues will increase by 2.6 percent to reach $17.6 billion.

Following the decrease from Q3 2021 (44 percent year-over-year) to Q4 2021 (19 percent), pure play digital media advertising sales—i.e., search and social media—increased by 16 percent YOY to $42.5 billion in Q1 2022. Social media sales, on the other hand, curbed to an 8 percent increase in Q1 compared to its 38 percent growth in 2021—due primarily to Apple’s updated privacy restrictions. 

Search advertising remained high in the quarter at 24 percent as interest from advertisers shifts from social media to search in light of Apple’s changes. Still, in 2022, pure play digital advertising sales will grow by 14 percent to $195 billion. Search will lead performance at 18 percent to reach $116.7 billion. 

Social media will grow to $67 billion at an 11 percent increase—a downgrade from Magna’s previously forecast 18 percent. Magna cites client saturation, audience saturation and targeting restrictions but the 2022 acceleration is to be expected after social media advertising experienced a 36 percent increase in 2021.

Most industry verticals are expected to stabilize or increase ad spend this year, according to Magna. Travel, entertainment, betting and technology are expected to grow the most while automotive, consumer packaged goods (CPG) and fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) budgets may be under pressure due to supply chain and cost issues. 

The economic slowdown will start affecting ad markets in Q2 and Q3 and Magna forecasts lower growth over the Q2 to Q4 2022 period, as well as throughout 2023. 

The Power Of The Open Internet With The Trade Desk’s Ian Colley

Ian Colley has worn many hats, from working as a chicken processor in his college days to his current role as CMO at The Trade Desk. He joins the show to share what he’s learned about marketing, communications, and data-driven advertising from the variety of roles he’s played.

In this episode, Ian and I discuss the open internet and how it allows you to manage your campaign spend more precisely, reach your entire audience, and make data-driven decisions. 

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • How to manage your campaign spend more precisely
  • Why connected television needs to be a part of your advertising strategy
  • The importance of data-driven decisions in advertising 

Key Highlights 

  • [02:00] Ian’s career path, from a large corporation to a startup
  • [04:30] Crossover between communications and marketing
  • [08:30] The power of the open internet
  • [10:30] Reaching your entire market with connected television
  • [13:30] How The Trade Desk helps modern marketers
  • [15:30] The transformation of journalism
  • [17:00] An experience that defines Ian
  • [18:45] Ian’s advice for his younger self
  • [19:30] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [21:30] Brands Ian is fascinated by
  • [23:00] The biggest opportunity and threat for marketers today 

Resources Mentioned: 

Follow the podcast: 

Connect with the Guest: 

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart: 

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

Hooters Names New CMO; Ulta CMO Shelley Haus Passes Away

Marketers are making moves this week as we see new CMOs take on posts at Hooters and Zaxby’s, while Ulta says goodbye to Shelley Haus, who passed away this week at the age of 49.

Hooters Promotes Bruce Skala On As CMO

After 9 years with HOA Brands, operator of the Hooters chain of restaurants, the company is promoting Bruce Skala to the post of CMO, where Skala will oversee global marketing campaigns, as well as driving national campaigns, according to a press release.

Most recently, Skala held the position of VP of Marketing, but has had several roles at the company during his tenure, leading successful partnerships and collaborations with celebrities. 

“I am honored to be named Chief Marketing Officer and to further my stewardship of HOA Brands alongside a phenomenal team,” Skala said in the press release. “I am proud of what Hooters has accomplished in bolstering its standing as a prominent brand, and I’m eager to continue building on that success.”

Ulta CMO Shelley Haus Passes Away From Cancer

Ulta is mourning the passing of Shelley Haus, who at the age of 49, passed away from cancer this week. Haus had been CMO of the cosmetics store brand since 2019 and with the company since 2017.

In a post on LinkedIn, Ulta is celebrating her life as an “innovative marketer, creative storyteller and people-first leader.”

“The Ulta Beauty family is heartbroken by the loss of our colleague and friend. We’re forever grateful for the time we had with Shelley and the gifts she shared with us. She was one of a kind, made us better, and filled our world with so much love.”

Chicken Finger Chain Zaxby’s Coaxes Patrick Schwing From Arby’s

Zaxby’s, a chicken finger chain with over 900 locations across 18 different states, is naming Patrick Schwing as CMO. The past year has seen Zaxby’s completely reshape their executive team and bringing aboard fast-food veteran Schwing is another feather in their cap. Schwing previously held the CMO post at Arby’s for 2 years, and prior to that had various roles at Procter and Gamble where he spent over 16 years.

“As Zaxby’s focuses on brand and culinary differentiation, we are excited to add Patrick to our world-class executive team,” CEO Bernard Acoca said in a statement.

Trend Set: Week Of June 6th

Ayzenberg Junior Strategist Ashley Otah recounts the past week’s most significant trends.

The Stranger Things Experience

The right side up. Netflix and Fever opened The Stranger Things Experience in New York and San Francisco, with eyes set on London next. The immersive showcase allows superfans and fans to enter a world dear to their hearts. After the long-awaited fourth season release, people were buzzing to talk about and dive deeper into the unknown. The fan-favorite hour-long performance underscores how participatory experiences directly engage consumers. As the world continues to reemerge, these experiences maintain a huge hold as people desire human connection and interaction. Curating timely immersive experiences garners brand awareness and affinity in a way that is often overlooked.

Snapchat Mindfulness Lens

Mindfulness matters. Snapchat entered the mindfulness augmented reality space with more accessible lenses alongside Modem and its research and development. The lens helps Snapchatters practice breathing exercises that are much needed. As more than half of the world uses social networks and more time is spent on the internet, curbing unhealthy habits and replacing them with useful tools and necessary breaks can cultivate a more meaningful and mindful social manner. Significant strides are being made to create accessible features and mediums across the board. First, however, brands must recognize and understand the difference between performance and true advocacy and implementation.

Instagram Pin Feature

Take it from the top. Instagram announces you can now pin three reels or posts to the top of user profiles. Like TikTok, this allows users to gain traction on trending posts, inform page viewers about content, and display their best work. Twitter has another feature that will enable users to pin top tweets to feeds. While some wage it’s a carbon copy of the TikTok feature to compete with the booming app, others assume it’s a sign of the times in a heavily curated landscape. Brands can use this feature across all platforms to bring an edge over the competition.

OOH Up 40.5% In Q1 2022—Largest Quarterly Increase In Medium’s History

According to the Out of Home Advertising Association of America’s (OAAA) latest figures, out of home (OOH) advertising revenue jumped 40.5 percent in Q1 2022 compared to the previous year, accounting for $1.8 billion. That marks the largest quarterly increase in the medium’s history.

These first-quarter figures show that OOH is already outpacing the same period in 2019 and that it’s on track to reach or exceed pre-pandemic spending in 2022, according to Anna Bager, president and chief executive of OAAA.

The digital OOH format led total OOH growth with a 57 percent increase over Q1 2021. The billboard category increased double digits while the transit, street furniture and place-based categories all grew triple digits, signaling a strong COVID recovery.  

Led by financial and media and advertising, eight of the top ten product industry categories increased double digits. The public transportation, hotels and resorts industry category surged 58 percent, reflecting a consumer return to pre-pandemic behavior.

As noted below, emerging product categories also helped OOH succeed when compared to Q1 2021:

  • Cannabis spend increased 31 percent 
  • Political spend increased 113 percent (and 90 percent over the last midterm election cycle in Q1 2018)
  • Sports betting spend increased 131 percent
  • FinTech spend increased 22x

OAAA found that the top 10 advertisers in Q1 ranked in order of OOH spending were: Apple, Capital One, McDonald’s, Netflix, HBO, American Express, Amazon, AT&T, Verizon and Universal Pictures. 

Eighty-seven of the top 100 OOH advertisers increased their OOH spend from Q1 2021, and 47 of them more than doubled their spend. Advertisers on this list who didn’t spend in Q1 2021 included: Cirque Du Soleil, Credit Karma, Grayscale Bitcoin Trust, Molson,, The New York Times, Not Milk, Peacock, Turner, UiPath, United Artists Pictures, VRBO and William Hill.

And thirty-one of the top 100 OOH spenders were technology or direct-to-consumer brands including these top ten brands according to spend: Apple, Netflix, Amazon, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, ClickUp, Expensify, William Hill and BetMGM.

Leaning Into “And” As A CMO With Jenny Rooney, Co-Founder Of Black Glass CMO House

Jenny Rooney is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Black Glass CMO House, a new membership club for CMOs, focused on empowering, inspiring, and supporting the person behind the title. Before starting CMO House, Jenny spent over a decade with the Forbes CMO Network team, where she managed content and events critical to executive-level marketing decision-makers.

In this episode, Jenny and I discuss defining your unique skills and purpose. Jenny shares that the CMO role is full of nuance, and, to be successful, you have to embrace the “and” that comes with it.

Listen to learn how to uncover your marketing superpowers and harness them for holistic growth.

In this episode, you’ll learn: 

  • The importance of empathy as a CMO
  • The power of defining your skills and purpose
  • What it means to focus on “and” not “or” as a CMO

Things to listen for:

  • [01:00] Jenny’s career path
  • [04:00] What differentiates CMO House from other organizations
  • [07:35] Welcoming diverse perspectives
  • [09:00] Qualities of great CMOs
  • [11:00] Weathering challenges in marketing
  • [15:30] Adapting to new ways of working with tight constraints
  • [19:30] Clarifying your skills and purpose
  • [24:00] Approaching the metaverse
  • [27:30] Using business for good
  • [31:00] The role of CMOs in driving growth
  • [34:00] Re-defining creativity
  • [37:15] Transitioning from CMO to CEO
  • [40:00] Embracing the nuance of the CMO role
  • [44:45] What marketers need to learn more about

Resources Mentioned:

Follow the podcast:

Connect with the Guest:

Connect with Marketing Today and Alan Hart: 

Alan B. Hart is the creator and host of “Marketing Today with Alan Hart,” a weekly podcast where he interviews leading global marketing professionals and business leaders. Alan advises leading executives and marketing teams on brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth opportunities. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine companies.

WWE Names Catherine Newman Executive Vice President, Head Of Marketing

This week in leadership updates, WWE appoints Catherine Newman executive vice president and head of marketing, Lionsgate Television Group promotes Suzy Feldman to executive vice president of worldwide TV marketing and more.

WWE Taps Catherine Newman As Executive Vice President, Head Of Marketing

World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (WWE) has tapped Catherine Newman as its executive vice president and head of marketing, reports Yardbarker.

Newman joins WWE from Manchester United F.C., where she served as chief marketing officer for just over two years.

Lionsgate Television Group Elevates Suzy Feldman To Executive Vice President Worldwide TV Marketing 

Suzy Feldman has been promoted to executive vice president of worldwide TV marketing, according to Deadline.

Feldman steps up from the role of senior vice president, head of worldwide TV marketing and public relations, a role she’d held since March 2019.

Verizon Business Names Iris Meijer Senior Vice President Of Business Marketing and Revenue Operations

Verizon Business has hired Iris Meijer as its new senior vice president of business marketing and revenue operations.

Meijer previously served as Vodafone Business’ global chief marketing officer and held various marketing leadership roles at Nokia between 2009 and 2018.

L’Oréal USA, Milk Makeup Announce Marketing Leadership Updates 

According to BeautyMatter, after spending nearly five years at L’Oréal US’s Professional Products Division, Han Wen has been tapped as the company’s chief digital and marketing officer.

Milk Makeup has also named Nilofer Vahora chief marketing officer after she served as vice president, global marketing on the Tory Burch beauty license at Shiseido.

Additionally, BeautyMatter reports Stephanie Davis Michelman has been appointed global chief marketing officer at Benefit. Prior, Michelman served as vice president and general manager of Bobbi Brown Cosmetics, North America.

Adobe Taps Anindita Das Veluri As Head Of Marketing India

Adobe has tapped Anindita Das Veluri as the new head of marketing for India.

Veluri joins from Deloitte where she served as director. Prior to that, she served as IBM India’s business lead, Adobe Practice.

Wisdom Gaming Appoints Steve LaCroix President

Steve LaCroix has been hired as president of Wisdom Gaming.

LaCroix joins Wisdom from the Minnesota Vikings where he was executive vice president and chief marketing officer.

Zype Scouts Lauren Chadwick As Senior Vice President Of Marketing

Zype has tapped Lauren Chadwick as its new senior vice president of marketing.

Chadwick joins Zype from Blackhawk Network where she was most recently the director of global marketing operations.

Meta Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg’s Exit Nears

Meta’s Sheryl Sandberg is set to resign as chief operating officer within the next few months.

Sandberg worked at the company for the last 14 years—just four years after its founding. Prior to that, she held the title of vice president, global online sales and operations at Google.

Popeyes Names Jeff Klein Chief Marketing Officer

Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen has hired Jeff Klein as its new chief marketing officer after former chief marketing officer Bruno Cardinali stepped down in January.

Previously, Klein was chief marketing officer of Little Caesars.

Chowly Appoints Kristin Peterson As Senior Vice President Of Marketing

Chowly has named Kristin Peterson senior vice president of marketing.

Before Chowly, Peterson was an independent consultant and prior to that served as Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants’ chief marketing officer.

Global Head Of Advertising At South China Morning Post David Wightman Quits

After taking on the role in October 2021, David Wightman resigned as South China Morning Post’s (SCMP) global head of advertising.

During his time at SCMP, Wightman ran a department spanning Hong Kong, mainland China, Asia, US and Europe; and oversaw global media sales, marketing and creative solutions, branded content, advertising technology and sales operations.

Prior to joining SCMP, Wightman was the group director of business operations at Ebiquity.

How To Create More Effective Ads According To Snapchat’s Brand Lift Study

This week in social media news, Snapchat shares brand-building tips, Meta says it’s developing a privacy-safe ad product, YouTube’s new feature lets users connect their TV to their phone and more.

Snapchat’s New Guide Shares How To Build Brand And Create More Effective Ads

Snapchat partnered with Kantar to deconstruct brand lift studies and offer insights on how variables like ad format, frequency and creative features drove lift across key brand performance metrics. Among three more key findings, the research shows that the best way to plan a Snapchat campaign starts with leveraging multiple ad formats on the platform.

Why it matters: As the digital ad industry recovers from changes to Apple’s Identifier For Advertisers and coping with ad tracking regulations, Snapchat hopes to guide marketers activating their first branding campaign on the platform. To do so, it identified four patterns across these outputs.

The details: Snapchat utilized Kantar’s Balanced Attribution product to study 52 campaigns, which included more than 50,000 respondents and 630,000 Snapchat ad exposures in the US, Saudi Arabia, France and Australia. The four patterns it identified include:

  1. Contributors to Success: Snap says to remember that a campaign’s performance isn’t dependent on a single factor such as creative or frequency.
  2. Higher Budget = More Camera Ads: To increase your Snapchat campaign’s performance, the app suggests leveraging multiple ad formats, including content and camera ads. The study found that the reallocation of budget towards Camera Ads maximized lifts in intent and helped build differentiated frequency and incremental reach.
  3. More Creative = Better Results: An exposure that delivers the same message in a different way compared to other creatives in the mix helps with incremental reach and building differentiated frequency, the data found.
  4. Room for Higher Frequencies: A frequency of 4x per week drove roughly 75 percent of total possible intent lift, with the model predicting total saturation at 8x per week. 

LinkedIn Publishes Transparency Report For The Second Half Of 2021

LinkedIn has released its semi-annual Transparency Report, which addresses its responses to professional community policy violations and government requests for member data and content removal in the second half of 2021.

Why it matters: As of 2022, LinkedIn has more than 830 million members and over 58 million registered companies in 200 countries and regions worldwide, according to its About Us. Like it is for all social media platforms, it’s imperative to LinkedIn’s ongoing growth that it responds to fake accounts, misinformation and other policy violations before they impact or drive away users. 

The details: Though most of its content was constructive, LinkedIn witnessed a greater amount of misinformation, fake accounts and other abusive content and behavior. The rise in the amount of misinformation could be attributed to the company’s enhanced automated defense system, which blocked 96 percent of all fake accounts it stopped during the July to December 2021 period. Of the spam or scam content removed in this period, the platform’s automated defenses stopped 99.1 percent and its teams manually removed the rest. Read the full report here.

YouTube Now Lets Users Connect Their TV To iOS Or Android Phone 

YouTube is rolling out a new feature that lets users effortlessly connect their TV to their iOS or Android phone, head of design for YouTube on TV, Brynn Evans, announced in a blog

Why it matters: As of 2022, every single day viewers are watching an average of more than 700 million hours of YouTube content on TV. This growing number challenges the platform’s design team to keep the experience simple, streamlined and intuitive, according to Evans. The function comes 12 years after the YouTube app for TV screens first launched.

The details: YouTube found that more than 80 percent of people report using another digital device while watching TV, sometimes even watching the same video on TV and on mobile while engaging with it only on the latter. 

Given remote controls are difficult to use when controlling YouTube on TV and most TVs don’t have a built-in web browser, YouTube decided to launch a feature that lets users connect their TV to their iOS or Android phone so that videos can be engaged with (i.e., liked, shared, commented on, etc.) directly.

To try this, your phone and TV must be signed in to the same YouTube account. Open the YouTube app on TV, then open the YouTube app on your phone and click “Connect” on the prompt that automatically pops up. Now your phone will be synchronized to the TV.

YouTube says it’s starting to test new designs for its video watch page to help incorporate more uniquely YouTube features–like browsing and shopping for products featured in videos–directly to the big screen to help viewers decide when to pick up their phone and engage.

TikTok’s Creative Center Platform Gives Marketers Key Insights

According to Social Media Today, TikTok has added new insights to its evolving Creative Center platform, about trending hashtags, regional performance stats, key influencers and more. Catch a glimpse here.

Why it matters: The new data offers marketers critical research value as they continue to master TikTok advertising. It also marks TikTok’s larger effort to attract ad dollars as the app is projected to grow its net ad revenue in the US to $5.96 billion in 2022, up 184 percent year-over-year, per eMarketer.

The details: Using the new insights, creators and marketers can research trending hashtags by region and the top influencers aligned with each. This adds to the TikTok Creative Center’s current offerings, including an Ad Library that shows the top-performing ads on TikTok. The new update comes on the heels of the app’s launch of its interactive insights platform in May, which allows marketers and influencers to engage with an array of filters to discover key data points on their target markets.

Facebook Is Developing A “Privacy-Safe” Ad Product

As privacy changes limit its targeting capabilities, Meta’s Facebook is in the early stages of developing a “basic ads” product that won’t depend on users’ anonymized personal information, reports Business Insider.

Why it matters: After reporting its first quarterly decline in active users in Q4 2021, Meta is in the midst of navigating a future in which users’ personal info is no longer freely accessible. To sustain its primary source of revenue, the company is attempting to offer ads that deliver scale while also being able to overcome data regulations like The California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

According to an analysis by data management company Lotame, Apple’s privacy changes would cause a $12.8 billion hit to Meta’s revenue in 2022. Google also intends on instituting changes that would limit advertisers’ targeting ability.  

The details: Facebook’s new product—which is expected to be tested in the US after it launches in the European Union—targets brand advertisers attempting to build awareness and shape perception of products. It would be measured by basic metrics such as engagement and video views, according to Business Insider.

Meta is under pressure to compete with rapidly growing TikTok, which has been a beneficiary of Facebook’s ad challenges. TikTok has been testing capabilities like retargeting campaigns with advertisers, according to anonymous ad buyers interviewed by Business Insider. If TikTok can prove that retargeting is driving performance, brands will likely move more marketing dollars from Facebook to TikTok. 

Meta Adds New Creative Tools And Features To Reels

Meta recently announced new Facebook and Instagram Reels creative tools and features—including poll, quiz and emoji slider stickers—to help creators bring their ideas to fruition, get discovered and grow their audiences.

Why it matters: Many of the new tools Meta launched are copycats of those TikTok already offers creators. For example, the new suggested Reels feature is similar to TikTok’s “For You” page while Meta’s new Sound Sync feature is just like TikTok’s auto-sync video option as both let you automatically sync your video clips to the beat of a song.

The details: Among the new tools coming to Facebook Reels include the ability to:

  • Create, edit and schedule Facebook Reels on desktop.
  • Clip videos on desktop, making it easier for creators who publish long-form, recorded or live videos—and video game creators who want to generate short-form Reels directly from their Live content—to test different formats.
  • Narrate videos and use Sound Sync to automatically sync video clips to a song’s beat. The platform will also have a text-to-speech digital voice to read text.

Among the new tools coming to Instagram Reels include the ability to:

  • Extend videos to 90 seconds.
  • Interact with audiences using poll, quiz and emoji slider stickers.
  • Import original audio directly within Instagram Reels.
  • Use new templates to create reels using the same structure as another creator’s Reel.

Getting discovered and expanding reach will be further supported by Meta’s new suggested Reels in Feed feature, which will be rolling out globally. In addition, creators on Instagram will now have the opportunity to recommend their Reels on Facebook to expand their content’s reach. 

Pinterest Launches “We Belong Here” Campaign For Pride Month

Pinterest is celebrating Pride Month with new opportunities for LGBTQ+ creators, including the expansion of its Creator Fund to two new countries and reduced barriers of entry for these creators to reach new audiences on the platform.

Why it matters: As the platform notes, Pinterest continues to be a forum where all communities go to explore identities, be their authentic selves, build community and find ways to commemorate life’s moments. According to Pinterest, global searches around gender expression, seeking support and creating belonging are trending as searches for “gender identity” are up 55 percent, “genderfluid aesthetic” up 100 percent and “LGBT support” up 300 percent. 

The details: Pinterest has recognized the importance of remaining an inclusive space and as part of Pride Month is expanding its Creator Fund to the UK and Brazil. For this first cohort, the UK will focus on fashion and beauty creators while Brazil will combine creators from the food, beauty, fashion and decor categories. 

To ensure the creativity that comes from LGBTQIA+ creators is not overlooked, the Creator Fund will also reduce barriers of entry for them to inspire more creativity. During training, creators will learn current and relevant Pinner searches such as rainbow peekaboo hair (up 3x) or pride makeup ideas (up 2x). The goal for the Creator Fund, Pinterest notes, is to foster talent through financial and educational support.

Over the next few weeks, when Pinners globally search for terms related to “Pride” on Pinterest, they’ll see a landing page on Today’s Inspiration with the theme of Pinterest’s 2022 campaign, “We Belong Here,” that will lead them to Pride-focused boards and articles on celebrating belonging. 

The Great Debate: Marketing Growth Frameworks

There are two schools of thought when it comes to marketing growth: purists who strongly believe in the traditional principles of brand building and pragmatic balancers who utilize a mix of modern marketing opportunities. That’s according to a new MMA Global report that explores marketers’ approaches to leading growth frameworks.

First up, the research shows that 65 percent of marketers claim to have clear alignment on their growth strategy while 83 percent of the very senior team and 50 percent of all other levels have very clear alignment on growth drivers.

Though greater familiarity with the frameworks indicates increased alignment in terms of growth strategy, not many marketers are familiar with more than one or two leading growth frameworks. For example, 80 percent of marketers are extremely familiar with at least one marketing growth framework while about 12 percent are familiar with at least five. In addition, 64 percent are familiar with one framework and 81 percent are familiar with five. Most are familiar with four (86 percent).

Though 65 percent of companies have very clear alignment about marketing growth drivers, only 25 percent of companies have achieved year-over-year growth over the last five years. 

The two schools of thought MMA uncovered include the “go long and broad purists” and “pragmatic balancers.” The purists are primarily comprised of very senior marketers (43 percent) with strong convictions that the primary drivers of growth include the traditional principles of brand building, reach and penetration. Forty-two percent of these purists have clear gaps in martech capabilities and 59 percent of them don’t believe that some customers are more valuable than others. 

Balancers, on the other hand, are mostly mid-senior marketers (73 percent) who utilize modern marketing opportunities such as targeting and who choose to balance varying approaches without focusing on one unifying theory. Additionally, 51 percent of them have industry-leading, best-in-class martech capabilities. MMA notes that these schools of thought likely co-exist within the different ranks of the same companies.

While 22 percent of marketers maintain a narrow viewpoint on how to drive growth, the majority believe that “going broad” is the best approach (78 percent). More than half of marketers prefer to “go long” when it comes to driving growth while 15 percent prefer to “go short.” Thirty-one percent are more open to maintaining a balance between the two, 37 percent of which are from companies that were formed before the year 2000.

Marketers also can’t agree on whether all customers have the same value when it comes to growth. Forty-five percent believe that all customers actually do have the same value and that companies should focus on increasing penetration. 

Twenty-two percent believe some customers have higher value but the effort of going after them isn’t justified. Thirty-three percent of marketers believe that some customers have much higher value and actually are worth the extra effort. These marketers feel that companies should focus their marketing on maximizing the lifetime value of these customers.

When asked their thoughts on driving return on investment (ROI), marketers assign roughly equal value to media, creative, brand and targeting. Twenty-seven percent of marketers believe that brand equity is the most important driver of ROI, followed by strength of creative (26 percent), media allocation (24 percent) and targeting (23 percent). Creative occupies 49 percent of the total pie, followed by media (reach, targeting and regency) and brand.

Marketers told MMA that they allocate 80 percent of their budget to building long-term assets. Brand assets and customer assets hold roughly equal budget shares. Most budgets are leveraged for building and maintaining brand equity (26 percent), enhancing customer loyalty (21 percent), driving immediate performance (20 percent), improving experience and convenience across the customer journey (19 percent) and developing new products and services (15 percent).

When asked about the essence of branding, 56 percent of marketers cited establishing mental availability while 22 percent named building differentiation. Another 22 percent find value in balancing the two.

MMA also gauged respondents’ sentiment around loyalty programs and found that although they’re a key part of the marketing mix for most companies—especially among service and retail companies—31 percent believe they’re a waste of time and resources.