Stagwell Group: New Roaring 20's Consumer is Here
CEO says digital marketing is best way to target consumers.
Yeah. Yeah. Mark, thank you so much for joining us. You know the other day, I caught this headline in at age and it said brands prepped for the return of roaring twenties consumerism. The point being that consumers will return to big spending just like they did after the famous 1918 flu pandemic, which launched The roaring 20's. Do you agree with that? I mean, what do you think? Oh, I think we're definitely headed for a new roaring twenties here because look for the last year, people have not bought clothes, they have not gone out. They have not traveled right. They have not had to dress up to really look for others outside the top half resume. So I think you're going to see them get out to the bars, get out to the restaurants, get back on the plains, right, and go out and buy some clothes, all of these things they haven't done. I think you're going to see this big time. Well, that's really interesting. Your company stag. Well, group is a specialist in marketing strategies and you also collect so much data about consumer spending and consumer behavior based on the information that you've been gathering recently. How would you describe this new post? Covid consumer? I think what's really happened here is there's been a 3 to 5 year acceleration of some of the digital trends that we knew were happening. But for example, zoom or teams or they all existed before. But nobody used them in the car to get your groceries, you know, quickly online. It existed, but very few people used it, telethon devices existed. But all of these things during the pandemic, people said, wow, there's a lot better than I thought. So I think you're going to see this move to digital being the most important, most permanent change coming out of the pandemic. So you see that consumers will embrace digital even more than they have rather than slipping back slowly to the old pre pandemic habits that they had. I think the move to digital, I think that's permanent. I think the greater convenience that's offered to so many aspects of life that people didn't realize and that they're used to means that online shopping, e commerce, online advertising, which of course we're in the business of has a jump up that's going to be permanent. So what are you telling your ceo of clients about what their companies should be doing differently? Well, the first thing for any ceo is to understand what happened to them during the pandemic. Did they go with the economy? Or they someone who has a business like a cruise ship where people were really concerned about safety. So they have to answer the question right, What do I do to keep those consumers? What do I do to get my old ones back? Or what do I do to prove that my services are safe? So they have to do that first. And then the second thing is when they know what questions they're answering, They know that online now is a bigger way to reach and target audiences in order to deliver that message. So, talk to us a little bit more about what are the new opportunities? What are the new strategies to reach out to consumers? Well, marketing, not too long ago, it was basically making a 32nd ad, putting it on tv, the Super Bowl being the, you know, the crown jewel of television today. It's about getting the right add to the right person at the right time. That means that you have to coordinate three different activities, which is the advertisement that's targeted to the individual group that you're that you're seeking. Uh and then second people go on a customer journey of consideration and or our loyalty. And so you have to intercept them at the at the right time. And so you need the right message to the right person all at exactly the right time and that's a much more complex marketing process than people are used to. Can you give us an example of a company that's getting this post pandemic push right? And it's worthwhile for us to watch and learn from them. Sure. one of our clients is milk and of course milk had very famous broad camp marketing campaigns in the past. But now that same client is looking at, how do you target people, you know, who might need calcium for their bones, young people who are growing up athletes who would also need it. How do you, instead of doing a big broad campaign, utilize digital marketing to target your market, get the right add to them and really, really approach the whole subject of drinking milk the more targeted fashion. We're seeing that with our client now. And are there any other lessons you learn from the pandemic in terms of new ways to promote products, new, innovative ways of marketing them? Sure. We're building a series of digital marketing products. One of them is around augmented reality because we think people are going to really use that with their phones or with glasses that do that and so they'll see experiences and advertising. Another product is to use A I to predict how news releases or will be received by online reporters and in the blogosphere. And then finally, you know how to create target audiences right using our millions of interviews from the Harris and National Research Group polls. So we have a suite of digital products that are tying right into the trends that we're seeing develop in the marketplace. Mark, I think it's fair to say that during this pandemic it's been a learning experience for just about everyone. But when it comes to leadership, what would you say is the most important leadership les lesson that you got out of this past year and a half? And how is it influencing the way that you're leading the bagwell group? I think the most important thing from a leadership perspective is leadership with a team. Uh I think very often CeoS are highly motivated individuals with their own views. I myself was originally a founder of a small company from Zero and built that up. So I certainly had what I call the founder tendencies of I know what's best and I think in the pandemic in particular, the group approach is really what worked getting the group together, getting the group on the same page, able to kind of implement the changes that you need quickly. And I think long term I believe in that when we have meetings, I never do things by email, I rarely do one on ones. What I really believe in is a group management process where all the relevant people are together in the meetings here, all the same information and participate in the decision making.