Clients To Agencies: It's Not You, It's The Customer

MALAGA, SPAIN -- Big marketers are increasingly bringing digital media functions in-house, not because they want to marginalize their ad agencies or gain media-buying “efficiencies,” but because it is enabling them to get closer to their customers.

“We do it for a customer perspective,” Blake Cahill, senior vice president of global digital marketing and media at Royal Philips explained during one of the opening sessions of the I-COM Data Summit here this morning.

“The customer is rapidly changing,” he continued, adding that the number of marketing signals being generated by digital media also is proliferating and those things inherently require marketers to be more involved in processes that they historically outsourced to agencies, including some media and creative processes.



“We built our stack. We want to own our data,” added Bruce Hoang, digital and data communication director at French telecommunications marketer Orange.

He said Orange began by building its own internal trading desk to begin managing programmatic media buys in-house, and that its stack includes its own data management platform (DMP) and a seat on a demand-side platform (DSP) so that it could directly parse the “lower funnel and the upper funnel and determine performance ourselves.”

He noted that Orange has since brought its digital community management in-house as well, also because it allows its marketing team to be more in touch and more responsive to its customers.

“In a fast-changing world, big companies like Orange need to adapt, be more agile,” he explained, adding that managing digital touchpoints and processing and analyzing the data they generate are vital components of managing customer relationships and mining insights for acquiring new ones.

“For years we relied on the expertise of agencies,” he said, adding that his marketing organization still relies on external agencies for creative, strategy and general media-buying, but that digital has necessitated bringing digital functions in-house as part of a marketing “transformation.”

1 comment about "Clients To Agencies: It's Not You, It's The Customer".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, May 15, 2019 at 12:07 p.m.

    What they didn't say but it's also worth noting is that much of their digital media activity is in the sales promotional category which, in the past, very often was  the sales department's, not the brand manager's, area of responsibility and was done in-house or serviced by specialist agencies. In this context, as opposed to broad based branding campaigns, of course it's a good thing to get a closer feel for your customers.

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