Everson To Agencies: Flatten Yourselves

The advertising industry is not fully exploiting the benefits of Facebook, according to Carolyn Everson, the social network’s VP global marketing solutions, who joined in a “fireside chat” with Horizon Media Founder and CEO Bill Koenigsberg at the 4As Transformation Conference in Miami Wednesday morning. 

"I get asked by clients what agencies do it best," says Everson. "It's a hard question to answer. It comes down to the team. You can have the same agency and have one team that is very forward-thinking thinking mobile first. And another team within the same agency group operating more traditionally." 

Newer agencies have an advantage, says Everson. She gives an A grade to the "mobile native company [that] thinks in a mobile way" -- the ones that "offer easy-to-navigate apps and operate without silos and legacies. They are utilizing the best products and outcomes. They are very sophisticated."

These new upstarts are eager to embrace newer trends as well.

Everson predicts virtual reality and artificial intelligence will represent a consumer shift similar to the switch from desktop to mobile. "We are going to be teleporting bits of our lives. Your grandma will appear in your living room virtually in 15 years,” she predicts. 

But legacy companies that have been around for decades are lagging behind with B and C grades, Everson said.

"Consumers have the most personal device [ the smartphone] with their own apps.Their expectation isn't about disruption, it is about enhancing their experience. You have to have the right ad to serve them at the right time." However, legacy companies have "a different process that they have been set up to do," she says. "Take down walls. [For instance] no longer have a specific TV group. Flattening out their groups and using data to enhance their creative," she recommends. 

It is difficult to underscore the shift among consumers to mobile. Some 100 million videos are consumed each day. Ads need to be immediately engaging. People spend 1.7 seconds watching a video on their phones versus 2.4 seconds via desktop. 

Today's smartphone users have short attention spans. Some 45% of ad viewers who spend at least three seconds watching a clip will stay for 10 seconds and are likely to stay for the full clip. Most ads, notably, are consumed with the sound off. 

Everson stressed that Facebook's ad strategy must be aligned with other channels. "We learned in last year [Facebook is best] utilized connected with TV, billboards, radio in driving incremental reach.”

The agencies and advertisers that are doing it right see results, says Everson. Toyota recently saw a sales lift by effectively utilizing data to deliver ads with a select outdoor sport, including kayaking and hiking, based on the viewer's interests. "Data informs creative," she says, but this strategy is "not as rigorous or accepted as it needs to be."

Acura's TLX campaign also exceeded expectations. The first phase targeted 43 million people who previously demonstrated affinity for Acura over a three-day period. The second phase retargeted these viewers that engaged with the first spots with additional information about performance details and then directed them to a website for a test drive.

Ultimately, this campaign resulted in a 9.3% increase in vehicle sales specifically tied to Facebook.

1 comment about "Everson To Agencies: Flatten Yourselves".
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  1. Randy Giusto from Outsell, Inc., March 24, 2016 at 12:19 p.m.

    I was talking about agencies needing to flatten them selves back in December in my report on Digital Agency Challenges Ahead - 

    "Flat is the new “in” thing, as smaller agencies embrace a flatter organizational structure to drive better productivity, become more nimble and responsive to the needs of clients, and boost staff morale. Bigger agencies will find this harder, as they’ve built up years’ worth of organizational hierarchy."

    https://www.outsellinc.com/search/d7entity/49943

    Flattening groups and using data to enhance creative is one key strategy, but flatter orgs tend to be more agile and can more quickly address client needs.


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