The Social Commerce Race Is No Longer Just About Facebook

While first to the table, Facebook is starting to see stiff competition when it comes to social commerce according to a new report by Global Web Index.

While Facebook-owned Instagram currently reigns supreme in the world of social commerce, TikTok and Reddit are gaining steam in select markets social commerce capabilities are being tested, showing promise for conversion rates on sponsored posts outside of Facebook-owned platforms.

Overall, the report says that of the over 650,000 surveyed, 13 percent of social network users would be inspired to make a purchase by a “buy” button. Those metrics change when users are on platforms that showcase long-form video content.

For example, 22 percent of internet users viewing livestream content say a “buy” button would be a purchase driver for them. IGTV and Reels also see a higher likelihood of intent to purchase as well.

As social commerce continues to mature, it will be interesting to see how platforms meet this demand for interactive social purchases, or see-it, buy-it kind of content.

New CMOs Take The Helm At Anheuser-Busch, Balenciaga, Trustpilot And More

This week sees a number of shifts in executive marketing roles. AB InBev names a new US chief marketing officer and luxury brand Balenciaga appoints Ludivine Pont Masssignan to helm as CMO amid growth at the label.

Benoit Garbe Ascends To CMO Role At Anheuser-Busch InBev

Benoit Garbe is named as new CMO for Anheuser-Busch InBev as Marcel Marcondes moves to a different role at the beverage company. This is part of larger organizational changes Advertising Age reports.

Christine Feuell Named CEO Of Chrysler

Coming from Honeywell, Christine Feuell is moving to Stellantis to oversee the Chrysler brand as CEO. She comes to Chrysler with a marketing background and previous experience in the auto industry from Ford.

Alicia Skubick Joins Trustpilot As CMO

Trustpilot, a consumer reviews platform, appoints Alicia Skubick as Chief Marketing Officer starting in early October. Skubick comes from Intuit Quickbooks and will now be responsible for growing the Trustpilot brand.

Coslov Promoted To Sr. VP Of Marketing For Republic Records

Alex Coslov is being promoted to the post of Sr. VP of Marketing at Republic Records.

According to the press release, “Coslov will continue to devise, engage and enact marketing strategies and initiatives for a diverse roster, including Pearl Jam, Eddie Vedder, Florence + The Machine, Lorde, James Blake, Clairo, John Mellencamp, Yung Gravy, Glass Animals, Lord Huron, James Bay, Bastille and others.”

Cindy Davis Steps Down From Post As Chief Brand Officer At Bed, Bath & Beyond

Davis is stepping down as Chief Brand Officer of big box retailer Bed, Bath & Beyond. The company has appointed Rafeh Masood as interim Chief Brand Officer in the meantime.

Amid Growth At Luxury Label Balenciaga, Ludivine Comes Aboard As CMO

Luxury label Balenciaga is scaling up according to Business of Fashion, and part of that scaling includes bringing in Ludivine Pont Massignan as CMO from Montcler.

Deutsch NY Brings In First CMO

Nicole Souza is coming to Deutsch NY as CMO, helming the agency’s lead generation efforts. Souza previously held post at The Integer Group\TBWA.

Building To Transform Society With R/GA’s Ashish Prashar

Ashish Prashar (or Ash) is the global chief marketing officer at R/GA. He has a unique background in politics and the creative space.

In this episode, Ash and I discuss his corporate experience and how he got his start, which was being incarcerated for a year as a teenager. Ash says the experience was more transformative than any other in his life, and it gave him the drive and determination to build his career with a lens toward social reform.

Ash joined R/GA most recently from Publicis Sapient. Ash and I discuss his time in advertising and his lengthy career in UK politics. Listen to hear how his incarceration and political career inspire his current work at R/GA and marketers’ role in social reform. 

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The role of marketing in social reformation
  • Taking responsibility for the influence you have
  • The power of designing around people

Key Highlights:

  • [01:32] Ash’s experience being incarcerated 
  • [10:18] Ash’s first job out of prison
  • [14:56] Moving from politics to creative 
  • [20:40] Marketing’s role within social reform
  • [26:21] How campaigning prepared Ash for CMO
  • [30:11] Incorporating the human element
  • [34:28] R/GA’s focus
  • [40:01] Putting the focus back on humans
  • [43:40] Ash’s defining experience,
  • [45:54] Ash’s advice to his younger self 
  • [47:41] What marketers should be learning more about 
  • [50:10] The brands and organizations Ash follows
  • [52:15] The biggest threat to marketers 

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to 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.

What DTC Brands Are Learning From The Pandemic

Last year, direct-to-consumer (DTC) ecommerce sales grew 45.5 percent, generating $111.54 billion and comprising 14 percent of total retail ecommerce sales. This upward momentum will continue into 2023 when ecommerce sales are expected to reach $174.98 billion, according to eMarketer.

In its latest report, eMarketer unpacks the primary drivers of the model’s success—data and feedback—and the DTC trends marketers need to know, with insight from DTC leaders on the key marketing tactics they’re currently leveraging, their view of the current state of retail and their learnings from the past year.

Over the past few years, a greater emphasis on owned and operated online channels has pushed more brands to adopt a DTC model. In 2020, the model became particularly attractive as the pandemic rattled supply chains, delayed orders and closed stores.

The DTC model allows brands to collect first-party data and to leverage that data to scale or improve operations, control brand messaging, choose how products are presented and determine which products require customization and which need to be created, effectively improving margins in all facets of their strategy.

Though digitally native brands faced a tough year, collectively these brands grew their ecommerce sales by 40 percent in 2020—an upward revision from eMarketer’s earlier estimate of 24.3 percent growth.

As the firm notes, the adjustment was due to the fact that 2020 was a mixed bag of performance and at the same time, because these brands returned to their digital-first roots and experimented with secondary distribution channels. In fact, digitally native brands outperformed the market average of 33.6 percent growth, mostly due to the performance of certain brands like Peloton, HelloFresh and Barkbox.

Looking ahead, eMarketer predicts DTC brands will continue to branch out into multiple distribution channels—for example, Harry’s offering deodorant and Allbirds selling apparel and socks. In addition, brands will focus heavily on their values as consumers pay more attention to sustainability, locally sourced products and whether brands are helping to serve communities.

“Now is the time for DTCs to get into expansion mode and figure out how to capitalize on the growth they saw last year. With shoppers feeling more comfortable returning to stores, these brands will likely face heightened competition, so the last thing they want is to lose relevancy with the customers they’ve just acquired,” said Cindy Liu, eMarketer director of forecasting at Insider Intelligence.

As eMarketer points out, what a lot of these digitally-native vertical DTC brands have in common is they’re hyper-focused and usually launch with just a few SKUs, they have a customer-first approach, they built their sales models around subscriptions and memberships, and they have a solid grasp on the power of influencers and word of mouth.

For Quip, vice president of growth Shane Pittson says it’s important they don’t exclude people that don’t want to shop online, and that brick-and-mortar distribution was always part of their plan given “retail is still a very fun place for product discovery.”

As for Scentbird, co-founder Mariya Nurislamova says the company likes to have “really strong influencer relationships.” The company started off by giving free subscriptions to several influencers and eventually, one blogger they gifted drove roughly 300 sales in 10 minutes.

According to John Sheldon, chief marketing officer at SmileDirectClub, the upside to ecommerce is the flexibility to tweak, listen and improve based on feedback to create a superior experience — compared to committing to a retailer a year in advance.

A major part of improving the overall customer experience for DTC brands is leveraging first-party data, to which many have direct access. With so much data at their fingertips, however, some brands don’t know how to utilize it while others don’t feel they have the correct data to work with. Brands should focus on creating more personalized and elevated customer experiences versus simply building transactional relationships, suggests eMarketer.

To better understand the power of DTC last year, eMarketer spoke with David Lester, co-founder of Olipop, a soda brand that didn’t even have a website in its first year of launch in 2017 – until last year when SMS helped drive the brand’s monthly subscriptions.

As Lester notes, cans of heavy drinks at a $3 price point weren’t particularly suitable to the DTC channel but when shelter-in-place orders took effect, Olipop jumped at the opportunity. The brand launched its website in fall 2019, and then ran its first Facebook ad around February 2020. As a result, the brand has seen a tenfold increase in DTC sales over the past 12 months or so, according to Lester.

As Olipop growth marketing manager Steven Vigilante notes, since last fall Olipop has expanded to multiple different acquisition channels and is adding on as they go while at the same time leveraging SMS to build a base of subscribers.

Since making some changes to its site last summer to emphasize subscriptions more, Olipop has grown its subscribers tenfold. Typical open rates on the brand’s texts are about 80 percent, 40 percent of which convert. What’s more, when Olipop launched its blackberry vanilla flavor, it did about $15,000 in sales in 15 minutes. Today, ecommerce makes up close to 50 percent of Olipop’s revenues.

What We’re Reading—Week Of August 30th

Takeaways from advertising and marketing articles making the rounds this week.

When Big Influencers Steal Content, Small Original Creators Lose Out


Amid the race to gain followers, content intellectual property theft has surged, with big and, sometimes verified, accounts stealing content from popular micro-influencers, then blocking the micro-influencer or turning off comments when they get called out on it.

Why it matters: Platforms like Instagram let users report cases of copyright infringement but by the time the violation is recognized and reaches Instagram, the damage—in terms of views and followers lost—is already done to the micro-influencer.

Unlike YouTube, which has better guidelines to safeguard creator interests, Instagram’s Reels makes it difficult to distinguish what’s original and what’s plagiarized as users must tap ‘more’ to see the caption and comments plus the video doesn’t show the date it was posted.

Boards Need Real Diversity, Not Tokenism

Harvard Business Review

The US stock exchange will now require all listed companies to disclose board-level diversity using a standard template and to have at least two directors from underrepresented groups, “including one who self-identifies as female and one who self-identifies as either an underrepresented minority or LGBTQ+,” or explain why they don’t.

Why it matters: To evolve boards’ views of diversity to go beyond tokenism, board members must work proactively to utilize circles outside of their current reach by creating new relationships beyond familiar ones. Boards can also accomplish this goal by engaging organizations specifically founded to help meet their diversity goals, such as Women on Boards, Board Ready and the Latino Corporate Directors Association.

AB InBev’s Natural Light Enters Vodka Category

Food Dive

In an effort to boost sales, AB InBev’s Natural Light has launched a vodka product in three flavors including lemonade, strawberry lemonade and black cherry lemonade.

Why it matters: The vodka category has been gradually growing for years. According to data from Statista, in 2020, nearly 76.8 million nine-liter cases of vodka were sold, an increase of more than 30 million cases from 2004.

NBCUniversal To Select Multiple Measurement Providers; Nielsen Submits A Pitch


NBCUniversal sent RFPs to 54 partners after Nielsen, its current provider, requested its third service hiatus in a year. Eighty percent confirmed participation by the August 23 deadline and NBCU expects to conclude the review process the week of September 20. Six months after that, it plans to start data integration with its new partners.

Why it matters: In previous months, networks that use Nielsen for measurement, including CBS, ABC and Fox, have expressed grievances that it was no longer accurately measuring its performance.

TikTok Partners With Influential To Help Brands Find Creators

Ad Age

TikTok has integrated influencer marketing company Influential into its Creator Marketplace, enabling advertisers to invite influencers to campaigns and access key creator stats plus keywords, engagement rates, growth trends and TikTok audience demographics.

Why it matters: Influential, which has previously worked with McDonald’s and DoorDash on campaigns, claims that the new integration will provide clients better first-party data to support those partnerships.

A Masterclass In Agile Masterbrand With Lippincott’s Nital Patel

Nital Patel is the Senior Partner of Lippincott, where he works at the intersection of business strategy and customer insights with almost two decades of experience. He works with global brands across industries on different issues such as brand architecture, portfolio, assessment, and positioning.

In this episode, Nital and I discuss agile masterbrand, a new version of brand architecture from Lippincott. They explain what it is and dive into the critical aspects of how to implement and use it in your strategy. Nital pays specific attention to the governance of your brand using this model and setting specific timing and criteria for when you merge an extension into the Masterbrand. Listen in to learn all you need to know about managing an agile brand approach.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The concept behind agile masterbrand
  • Connecting new ventures 
  • What you need to manage an agile brand approach

Key Highlights:

  • [01:26] Inspiration for a French whiskey brand
  • [02:55] Nital’s journey to brand marketing
  • [04:45] What is an agile masterbrand?
  • [07:37] Key elements of a master brand
  • [11:27] How connected should a new venture be to the master brand?
  • [13:42] Managing an agile brand approach
  • [18:42] Brands becoming a platform
  • [21:20] An experience that defines Nital, makes him who he is today
  • [23:29] Nital’s advice for his younger self
  • [24:30] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [25:40] The brands and organizations Nital follows
  • [29:09] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to 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 opportunities around brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine startups.

What We’re Reading—Week Of August 23rd

A look at the marketing and advertising news we’re sharing internally for the week of August 23rd, 2021.

Nordstrom Debuts Young Adult Ambassador Program

Retail Dive

Nordstrom has opened applications to creators ages 14 to 22 to join The Ambassador Program @ Nordstrom, which will offer mentorship opportunities including virtual meetings with Nordstrom leaders plus paid styling and content opportunities for participants over 18 years old. Ambassadors who promote products on their social feeds will receive 5 percent commission for each item they sell.

Why it matters: Nordstrom joins the likes of Macy’s, West Elm and Express, who have all launched similar initiatives to encourage creator and fan engagement with their brands. Nordstrom’s foray into the ambassador program is part of a larger effort to attract younger consumers. In March, it debuted a shoppable livestream platform and recently acquired a minority stake in Topshop.

What Are The New Trends In Packaging?

The Drum

According to Jenny Stanley, managing director at Appetite Creative, some of the latest packaging trends include designing for recyclability, adding a QR code, including free samples and transforming packaging into art.

Why it matters: Deloitte research shows that 61 percent of UK consumers have limited their use of single-use plastic and 34 percent have chosen brands that have environmentally sustainable values or practices. As for QR codes, they not only give consumers added value but they also help cut down on packaging elements such as instruction manuals.

Nielsen Study: People With Disabilities Are Largely Absent From TV Advertising

Morning Brew

A new Nielsen study analyzed 450,000 primetime ads on broadcast and cable TV during February of this year and found that just 1 percent of those ads featured someone with a disability despite the fact that 26 percent of the US population lives with a disability.

Why it matters: Discretionary spending for people with disabilities of working age is about $21 billion, according to the American Institutes for Research. Additionally, total ad spend on disability-inclusive ads Nielsen analyzed was $57 million—less than 4 percent of the $1.6 billion spent during the time frame Nielsen studied.

Online Shoppers Don’t Always Care About Faster Delivery

MIT Sloan Management Review

MIT analyzed the preferences of online customers of a grocery chain across hundreds of thousands of purchasing scenarios and found that in many situations, customers preferred precision or flexibility over speed. Additionally, the customer is, on average, willing to wait 10.8 hours longer for a delivery if the delivery window is one hour shorter, and will wait an additional 7.5 hours longer if the delivery can be received on a preferred day of the week, everything else being equal. 

Why it matters: MIT cautions retailers that focusing solely on speed may be too myopic once the pandemic is over. For omnichannel retailers to consider preferences beyond just delivery speed, it’s important they invest in data and analytics infrastructure, collect and analyze customer-specific time-slot selection data and roll out new delivery strategies.

Do Your Digital Design Choices Take Advantage Of Customers?

Harvard Business Review

Brands that design their sites to exploit consumer behavioral bias might benefit in the short term but could cause long-lasting damage to their reputation. To avoid that, executives should play a proactive role in ensuring their digital design functions in users’ best interests because doing so deepens companies’ relationships with its customers.

Why it matters: To determine how your brand might be exploiting customers online, some questions HBR suggests asking yourself include: 1) Are you being transparent in user agreements? 2) Do you make canceling your services easy? 3) Are your default options the best options for customers? 4) Do you frame choices in a misleading way? and 5) Is your product addictive?

Taco Bell Hires Lil Nas X As Its First ‘Chief Impact Officer’

Ad Age

Lil Nas X, a former Atlanta-area Taco Bell employee, has been named the fast-food chain’s chief impact officer, a role that will see him help launch an activation around his upcoming album “Montero,” help advertise new menu items and announce the recipients of Taco Bell’s Live Más scholarship. Kicking off his foray into the C-suite, Lil Nas X appears as a narrator in Taco Bell’s latest campaign highlighting its breakfast offerings, which will be re-introduced to 90 percent of US Taco Bell locations by mid-September.

Why it matters: Brands putting celebrities into the C-suite is nothing new. Ulta Beauty recently named Tracee Ellis Ross a diversity and inclusion advisor, Vital Proteins appointed Jennifer Aniston chief creative officer and Maude tapped Dakota Johnson as creative director.

What We’re Reading—Week Of August 16th

A rundown of the marketing and advertising insights we’re reading for the week of August 16th, 2021.

Taco Bell Partners With Cashmere On All Things Culture

Marketing Dive

Winning and mature brands seeking to perform on new platforms and with new audiences employ the expertise of third-party social culture experts. That’s why Taco Bell has employed Cashmere to help develop its cultural brand strategy.

Why it matters: According to Barbara Yolles, chief executive of Ludwig+, people want to buy into something more than just a taco—they want to buy into a community. Brands that nurture this truth while continuously improving tend to perform well. Yolles notes that there are two sides to the discussion of culture: the culture that creates a company and the impact a brand has on culture. 

Four Key Areas Help Organizations Attract And Retain Talent


LinkedIn recently implemented a policy to permanently remove office expectations and let employees work remotely indefinitely. And Google may find employees are willing to accept pay cuts based on geography if it means being able to work from anywhere.

Why it matters: As employers prepare for “The Great Resignation,” the four ways brands can attract new talent and protect current talent are by: (1) prioritizing and valuing flexibility to manage life’s many challenges and uncertainties; (2) adopting an “Always Be Recruiting” mindset; (3) rethinking the 9 to 5 workday and allowing for greater flexibility and remote options for work; and, (4) offering opportunities to build or experiment on something new.

What A TikTok Creator Earns With 1 Million Followers

Business Insider

Vi Luong is a social media content creator based in California who quit her social media marketing career 10 months after creating her first TikTok. With 1.1 million TikTok followers, 94,000 Instagram followers and 7,000 YouTube subscribers, Luong’s two primary sources of income are brand partnerships and TikTok’s Creator Fund. This year, Luong is working with three brands in year-long campaigns and several others in one-off collaborations. So far this year, she’s earned about $131,000, with four to seven deals per month (including monthly posts as a part of the year-long campaigns). She also earns between $150 to $300 per month from the Creator Fund.

Why it matters: Creators with engaging content are able to earn sufficient incomes to maintain influencer lifestyles and careers; Luong is a testament to that. She advises others embarking on a similar journey to not take every brand deal presented, stating that she now has the option of prioritizing five-figure deals with brands she loves.

Kellogg’s And First-Party Data: How Large Companies Seek Ways To Deliver Online Ads With Precision


Last week, Kellogg’s introduced a dedicated Cheez-Its website where consumers can purchase Cheez-It-themed merchandise, marking a first for the 115-year-old company. The idea behind it is to collect information and test new products before offering them to the rest of the US.

Direct-to-consumer sites have also been created by PepsiCo, which launched two sites in 2020 and found that shoppers mix products in ways that the company doesn’t offer in stores. Procter & Gamble’s Olay, Pampers, Gillette and Braun have all launched DTC platforms that gather first-party data.

Why it matters: Purchasing data will become more difficult as time progresses, leading to media inefficiency and a need to acquire it through other outlets. According to Jordan Narducci, director of global direct-to-consumer ecommerce at Kellogg’s, the best focus group to test a product before offering it nationwide is the group that is “going out and paying for something.” Companies investing in data will put themselves in a more competitive position while also creating better shopping experiences for their customers.

Advice For Managers Seeking Balance Between Efficiency And Compassion

Harvard Business Review

According to experts who study motivation and compassion at work, managers seeking a balance between efficiency and compassion should focus on their interactions with their employees not as being lenient but as being flexible while creating the space for employees to be open about their mental health issues at work and encouraging employees to keep each other accountable.

Why it matters: The amount of pressure experienced by managers who often have to navigate deadlines and expectations set by upper management while maintaining the well-being and efficiency of employees can lead to burnout, low output and poor work quality. 

Excessive Use Of Facebook Linked To Envy, Depression

The Drum

Those who spend the majority of their time on Facebook experience a greater risk of suffering from depression, according to a study by Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University. The study found that those with signs of depression linked to Facebook spend more time on social networking sites. Among Singapore residents, the study could not discern a difference between passive and active Facebook use. Additionally, the effect of age and education levels on Facebook use and depression was marginal.

Why it matters: The effect of Facebook usage on depression is nothing new—it’s an ongoing issue that highlights the need for remedial action. A Facebook spokesperson responded to the study by stating that Facebook aims to “enable people to build stronger communities and more meaningful connections.” Additionally, Facebook has announced initiatives and partnerships with mental health experts and agencies to address mental health issues afflicting Facebook users.

Salesforce’s 6th Annual State Of Marketing Report Addresses Business And Marketing Recovery

Coupled with convenience, personalized messages and experiences are a top consumer demand from brands. According to the sixth edition of Salesforce’s State of Marketing report, marketers reported a 186 percent increase in artificial intelligence (AI) adoption to enhance how they source and manage data needed to deliver these types of experiences.

Salesforce surveyed nearly 7,000 senior marketing leaders from around the world to understand how they live by three critical values for recovery including a relentless focus on the customer experience, an unwavering commitment to helpfulness, relevancy and trustworthiness and the continuous pursuit of innovation.

Customer Experience

At a time when brand loyalties are easily shifted, brands endeavor on connecting and building trust through empathy and prioritizing customer experience. In 2019, Salesforce research found that 84 percent of customers believe the experience a company provides is as important as its products and services—up from 80 percent in 2018. To provide a seamless experience, marketers have shifted their priorities while facing new challenges.

Marketers who are completely satisfied with their overall marketing performance and the outcomes of their marketing investments, what Salesforce refers to as ‘high performers,’ prioritize innovation, improving the use of tools and technologies, complying with privacy regulations and engaging customers in real-time and improving marketing ROI and attribution, in that order. Among the most challenging of these are engaging customers in real-time and creating cohesive customer journeys across channels and devices. Notably, a greater percentage of high performers utilize all communication channels as compared to moderate performers and underperformers, with the exception of websites.

Moderate performers prioritize innovation and are most challenged by engaging customers in real-time, while underperformers prioritize complying with privacy regulations and are most challenged by budgetary restraints.

To ensure a positive customer experience, brands have shifted their marketing approach from a traditional focus on specific stages of the sales funnel or on solitary tactics like email or social media, to a broadened focus on every stage of the process. from branding to acquisition to advocacy. In fact, 69 percent of marketers believe that traditional marketing roles limit customer engagement, hence their shift to a collaborative and comprehensive approach.

In terms of collaboration, Salesforce found that today’s highest-performing marketers are “data-savvy collaborators.” Sixty percent of marketers rate their teams’ communication skills as advanced—a welcome figure given that brands now build helpful and cohesive experiences for customers through peer collaboration and by keeping marketers engaged through every stage of the customer’s journey. 

Commitment To Helpfulness, Relevancy And Trustworthiness

Issues involving privacy and trustworthiness in branding and marketing are nothing new, though now more than ever before, marketers are taking steps to exceed regulations like the General Data Protection Regulation given that privacy remains a crucial element of how customers choose between brands. 

According to Salesforce, 57 percent of marketers go beyond regulations and industry standards to protect and respect customer privacy—an increase of 13 percentage points since 2018. High and moderate performers rank compliance with privacy regulations as the third most important priority while underperformers rank it as the highest priority.

Another way marketers are adapting to meet customers where they are and to remain helpful is through omnichannel marketing as customers expect to be engaged across channels. With 71 percent of customers having used multiple channels to complete a single transaction, agile and adaptive marketers have increased their adoption of diverse digital touchpoints with increases of 40 percent, 35 percent and 34 percent for SEM, customer communities and mobile apps, respectively. 

Tailoring brand messages and content to a customer’s activity on other channels is one example of how multi-channel engagement can be made to be more dynamic. Marketers have made immense progress in this department where more than half of them describe their cross-channel content as dynamic—a significant rise from the less than one-third who reported the same in 2018. To further illustrate this evolution, the number of marketers with siloed cross-channel content, in which channels have no coordination, decreased from 29 percent to 15 percent between 2018 and 2020.

Continuous Pursuit Of Innovation

Under the current circumstances, a commitment to innovation is imperative to success and growth. Roughly 76 percent of high performers state they do a great job at innovating marketing technology, tactics and strategies—versus just 47 percent making that claim among underperformers.

Given the uncertainty and shifts in market behavior since the pandemic began, marketers have adapted and will continue to adapt their use of certain technologies over the next year. High performers, in particular, utilize a range of digital tools and platforms to engage customers at the perfect moment and on the right platform, according to Salesforce. 

Marketers’ use of AI, for example, has skyrocketed to 84 percent in 2020—a stark increase from 29 percent use in 2018—as they leverage it for personalized experiences in individual channels, improved customer segmentation and lookalike modeling, and surfaced insights from data. Fifty-six percent of high performers state that they will increase the use of AI in the next year, as compared to 46 percent and 41 percent of moderate performers and underperformers, respectively. Further, 70 percent of high performers claim they have a fully defined AI strategy, as compared to the 35 percent of underperformers who claim the same.

Seeing The Whole Picture Of A Marketing Transformation With Philips’ Lorraine Barber-Miller

Lorraine Barber-Miller is the chief marketing and e-commerce officer at Philips, a 130-year-old company in the middle of a large marketing transformation.

In this episode, Lorraine and I discuss what makes Philips unique and her background at IBM and ADP before joining Philips. We also discuss Philips’s B2B and B2C complexities as a business and the global marketing transformation she’s leading.

Lorraine says, “We are transforming the function at Philips to build world-class capabilities to position Philips as the leading health tech partner to our customers and consumers.” Both marketing and e-commerce play a significant role in making this positioning a reality, and they do it by executing five strategic priorities: strengthening and protecting their brand leadership, focusing on customer-centricity, meeting the customer where and how they want to be engaged, leading with data-driven marketing, and recruiting and retaining top talent.

Listen to the full conversation to hear how each of these factors influences the transformation.

In this episode, you’ll learn:

  • The complexity of having both B2B and B2C business
  • What it means to transform to digital-first
  • The importance of individual contribution

Key Highlights:

  • [01:19] Living on a man-made island in Dubai
  • [02:06] Lorraine’s career motivations
  • [05:25] Joining Philips during the pandemic
  • [07:37] Navigating both B2B and B2C business
  • [09:45] Driving a marketing transformation
  • [15:05] Engaging a 3,000-member team 
  • [16:34] Where e-commerce fits into the transformation process
  • [20:15] Consolidation agency relationships worldwide
  • [22:22] Lorraine’s advice for marketers leading a transformation journey
  • [27:05] Stepping back and seeing the whole picture
  • [29:25] A moment that defines Lorraine, made her who she is today
  • [30:21] Lorraine’s advice to her younger self 
  • [31:18] What marketers should be learning more about
  • [33:13] The brands and organizations Lorraine follows
  • [34:00] The biggest threat and opportunity for marketers today

Resources Mentioned: 

Subscribe to 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 opportunities around brand, customer experience, innovation, and growth. He has consulted with Fortune 100 companies, but he is an entrepreneur at his core, having founded or served as an executive for nine startups.