Building a Brand in a Mobile-First World

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The big, scary word for advertisers everywhere is fragmentation –consumer’s ability to choose anything and anywhere make it difficult for companies to build their brand the traditional way. Advertising on mobile is monumentally more complex than the conventional media real estate of decades past, and it is a puzzle for advertisers to understand how and where to spend their money.

To discuss how to build brands, Gigi Stone Woods, national TV host and news anchor, lead discussion in a panel with Harry Kargman, Founder and CEO of Kargo, Peter DeLuca, SVP of Brand Communications at T-Mobile, Pam Wasserstein, CEO of New York Media, and Adam Saper, Managing Partner and CFO at Eataly. Each panelist brought perspective and expertise knowledge on the subject.

The start of the panel began by describing the media landscape as absolute chaos, epic disruption, and a need for reinvention. The question is, how should brands reinvent? In an environment that is drastically changing, brands must deliver consistent, quality messages.

What will never change about advertising, though, according to DeLuca, is storytelling. Advertisers are forced to tell their stories in different, new ways that catches and engages consumer’s overloaded attention spans. In a chaotic, nonstop culture, to stand out, brands must continue to effectively communicate core stories.

Additionally, Wasserstein asserts that these stories should be genuine and specific. Saper agrees, believing that to build a brand, it needs to come from an authentic place of the brand’s identity.

To combat the fragmentation, Wasserstein contends that advertisers should understand the ways in which audiences engage with content across multiple platforms and meet them where they are, effectively utilizing the voice of each medium.

Another result of the modern media landscape is a focus on efficiency, as Kargman denounces. Though efficiency and programmatic ad buying is great, creativity and an opportunity to inspire audiences should not be a casualty.

The panelists also emphasize that the correct context for content is impertinent, and Wasserstein underlines that context matters, as delivering the correct messages is an opportunity to enhance the consumer experience, reflecting well on a brand.

Another way for consumers to deem a brand agreeable is to deliver the correct messages – these days, subtle messages. With data and privacy a concern for all parties involved, consumers want to feel safe and not as if Big Brother is watching. Because of the incomprehensible amount of consumer data available at advertiser’s fingertips, using too much data for developing messages can make advertising feel, in the panelists words, “creepy”.

Building and maintaining a distinctive brand confronts advertisers, especially in a disrupted mobile-first world. But solutions to make brands thrive are possible when leading with strategies just as reinvented as the modern advertising territory.

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