AANA’s John Broome on the future of advertising

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A day after the AANA’s Media Challenge this week looking at the future of advertising and media, AANA chief executive John Broome was a guest on the Sky News Business Mediaweek segment where he spoke with Ingrid Willinge.

Tell us about the message from the US where advertisers have been talking about taking back control.

Some marketers in the US think they abdicated control of their relationships in the digital supply chain in particular. It is quite a complex supply chain so it is quite easy to pass on that accountability to partners.

The message is that if you want to really understand and drive that you need to take back control. That means CMOs are putting themselves back in the driving seat.

Does that message resonate more with big US and global companies more than big Australian advertisers?

The big US companies will do that but the principal of what they are saying is applicable to every single advertiser – whether you are in the top 20 of advertisers or even a smaller one of the 3,000 national advertisers in Australia.

Some advertisers are cutting back their media spend and still grow their businesses. Is this bad news for publishers and broadcasters?

No… it is actually good news. Good publishers and good broadcasters will have the advertisers’ goals in mind around driving effectiveness and working toward outcomes that will drive advertisers’ businesses. Anything that drives better ROI is good for the whole industry.

John Broome with Ingrid Willinge

The turmoil surrounding Facebook continued to build this week. If there was a regulatory crackdown, will that make it harder for advertisers to market one-to-one utilising data?

Let’s make this absolutely clear this is not just about Facebook – this is potentially about anybody who holds people’s data. That can be a brand owner, a publisher, a platform or a broadcaster. We have a duty to ensure we are protecting people’s data in an appropriate way and if we don’t we are going to lose the public’s trust. We need to ensure the appropriate protocols are in place and are very visible. If we don’t, the pressure for government regulation is going to grow.

There have been moves in Europe via the general data protection regulation, and Australian businesses need to be aware of some of the requirements around protecting first-party data.

There has been talk about moving media agencies’ functions in house but not all advertisers see this as the answer.

It makes more sense for some US advertisers where the businesses have scale and it can make strong economic sense. In Australia we are operating at a different scale. It may be that there are 20 to 30 top advertisers here where it might make economic sense. For the majority of advertisers they really need to work with their partners in the industry, particularly the media agencies, to make sure the relationships are based on trust, transparency and effectiveness.

Does audience measurement remain an issue?

It does. Technology is moving very fast and measurement systems need to keep pace. We are not where we need to be. We need to catch up.

Ingrid Willinge

How long before measurement will be more accurate?

We are much closer than we have ever been. In the next 2-3 years you will see big moves in cross-media channel measurement.

If TV broadcasters move to improve the viewing experience by screening less ads, is that bad news for advertisers?

Not necessarily. Value is a combination of quality and price. There are lots of things going on with broadcasters in the sense of addressability, for example. If the point of connection is more relevant and a better experience for the viewer then the effectiveness of that might be greater. It is incumbent upon us to make sure we are not annoying the viewer with our advertising. Decreasing clutter might give us the ability to invest more in effective advertising.

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