Last week, leaders from Tinuiti spoke on different stages at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France. The festival is the largest annual event where nearly 15,000 professionals from the creative marketing industry worldwide come together.
As the leading independent performance marketing agency and most recently named Microsoft Global Client Partner of the Year, Tinuiti joined top brands and partners to discuss performance marketing and the major industry shifts leading into 2024.
Tinuiti’s President Jeremy Cornfeldt and Chief Marketing Officer Dalton Dorné, were asked to weigh in on the most pressing topics facing the industry today. Their talks covered how to use AI to achieve business success, avoiding employee burnout, and CMO trends.
If you weren’t able to attend, check out our full recap of the event including top takeaways from our own experts at Cannes below!
Tinuiti Explores the Era of Innovation and the Significance of Agencies Embracing Generative AI
Generative AI is quickly becoming an essential tool for companies to innovate, increase efficiency, and drive creativity. The big questions are: How can independent agencies lean into this new technology, what advantages does it bring, and what will it mean for new and future talent?
On Tuesday, June 20th, Cornfeldt spoke at the Microsoft Agency Disrupter Series on “The age of Innovation and the Implications of Agencies” held at the Microsoft Beach House.
“Imagine an office packed full of summer interns – really good summer interns. That’s a good way to think about where Generative AI is at right now,” Cornfeldt said.
“It’s nice to have the extra support, but it doesn’t know enough yet to replace us. But if we start to embed elements of it in our everyday work, we won’t get caught on the back foot as it evolves because we’ll be evolving along with it. We must already be embedding elements of it in our everyday work. This way when those interns have finally graduated and are fully qualified, we’ll be able to put them to work for us in ways that will make our work (and our lives) better.”
The panel, including experts Shannon Pruitt, Global Chief Content and Partnership Innovation Officer at Stagwell, and Price Glomsk, SVP Global Media and Partnerships at PMG, discussed a variety of AI-related topics such as:
- What do you see as the short-term opportunities from this technology?
- Independent Agencies have a reputation of adopting technology quickly, are you running or walking in view of Generative AI?
- We have heard that there are differences in how agencies and brands are reacting to and adopting Gen AI – brands seem to be more cautious – does that statement hold true and what are you doing to educate them?
According to Cornfeldt, over the next five years, company success will be defined by how effectively agencies and brands can use generative AI and automation technologies to reimagine their work processes, eliminate mundane tasks, and unleash human creativity and strategic thinking.
“We’ve embraced JOMO (The Joy of Missing Out) philosophy with an objective to delegate routine, mundane tasks to machines, thereby enabling our team to focus on more engaging, valuable work for our clients. We recognize that the future of work is increasingly automated and there’s minimal satisfaction in performing repetitive, low-skill tasks. As we continue to evolve, the focus shifts away from hands-on-keyboard tasks and moves towards using our cognitive abilities to deliver unprecedented value for our clients and stakeholders,” he says.
“In essence, our success will hinge on more than our capacity to incorporate new technologies. It will be determined by our ability to transform our operations, empower our employees, and enhance the value delivered to our clients. The true measure of our progress will be in the symphony created by humans and machines working together, each amplifying the other’s strengths, to deliver unprecedented outcomes.”
Tinuiti’s Insights on Retaining Top Talent: A Focus on Empowering Women
The need for creative women and diverse talent in the workforce has reached unprecedented levels. Unfortunately, at the same time, employee burnout is also surging to new heights. According to recent reports, more than half of working women say their stress levels are higher than they were a year ago.
Dorné joined a panel discussion for an honest conversation on employee burnout (specifically for women) and “How Companies Can and Should Retain Their Best Talent.”
During the event, moderators posed an important question to the panel members: How can companies prevent employee burnout in a post-Covid environment? According to Dorné, Tinuiti’s recent launch of “Project Connection” has been instrumental in maintaining valuable friendships that stretch far beyond the walls of an office boardroom.
“Coming out of the pandemic, sixty percent of our workforce was remote – before it was only thirty. So, one of the things we did at Tinuiti was we closed most of our offices where that population had shrunk. We kept New York and San Diego open but we reinvested the money from those offices into an initiative called ‘Project Connection,’, Dorné said. Project Connection was mentioned as one of the factors in Inc. Best Workplaces award to Tinuiti in 2023, the sixth year Tinuiti has been named.
“What you really miss from work is the relationships and the personal time and that overall connection. It’s not just about being at a desk or a conference room. At Tinuiti, we have Friendship Funds…. If you live in the same city as someone, even if you’re not part of the same team — you can still get together! All you have to do is take a selfie of your get together and we’ll expense it to the company.”
Tinuiti also has funds available for team off-sites, on-sites, and other variations that bring people together in real life. As a result, 75% of employees used the program within the first three months of launching it this year, Dorné said. “Those friendships you form at work are so important in your adult life and we’re hoping to re-establish that,” Dorné said.
In addition to questions the post-COVID working environment, the panel also discussed:
- Creative strategies to keep retention high and maintain employee engagement with their work
- The role employee recognition and support play in preventing burnout, and how can companies incorporate these practices into their culture
- How work burnout impact different demographics of women
- How can leaders take care of themselves, recognizing you can’t pour from an empty cup
Want to learn more about how to empower your employees and combat burnout?
Creative Thinking Skills in Your Business: A Dialogue at LinkedIn Collective Studio
Dorné also spoke at the Cannes Lions LinkedIn Session Outline held at the LinkedIn Collective Studio.
A B2B Marketing Benchmark report from LinkedIn recently revealed a growing need for CMOs to add creative skills to their repertoire. Given the entire Cannes festival is centered on creativity, Dorné was asked how she’s working to add or incorporate these skills into her day-to-day work at Tinuiti.
According to Dorné, by integrating creative thinking skills, CMOs can maximize the impact of every dollar spent, driving both brand awareness and bottom-line performance simultaneously.
“For example, to grow our own business, two years ago we launched our first ever brand campaign called Rethink. Performance. Following the brand name change to ‘Tinuiti,’ we knew obtaining name recognition and brand awareness in the marketplace was key. We launched a provocative omnichannel campaign that ran across streaming TV, social, display, online video, mobile, and audio streaming. The campaign challenged CMOs to shift their perspectives around some of the industry’s most hot-button issues, from data privacy to navigating the walled gardens. As a result, we saw a 50 percent increase in press mentions, 40 percent increase in site traffic and 70 percent increase in enterprise write-ins.”
3 Top Takeaways From Cannes 2023
Q. Coming off of your attendance at the world’s largest festival on creativity in advertising, what does the word “creativity” mean to a performance marketer?
“In today’s world where all marketing is digital and therefore measurable, the lanes of “performance” and “brand” marketing are arbitrary. Creativity is as important as accountability and they go hand-in-hand. Cannes is no longer just an opportunity to celebrate the best creative work, it’s a hub of conversations that accelerate innovation.”
– Dalton Dorné, Chief Marketing Officer at Tinuiti
Q. Why do performance marketers need to be at Cannes?
“It’s an idea factory. You can see and hear approaches, techniques, and technologies in a few days that you’d otherwise need a year to fit in.”
– Sean Odlum, Chief Product Officer at Tinuiti
Q. What’s the one piece of advice as a performance marketer you feel like everyone at Cannes needs to hear?
“Our number one threat is complacency and Cannes is one of those events that forces everyone to challenge the status quo, push beyond what we think is possible and take tangible steps to continue to push the envelope. Regardless of the hot topic of the moment, you can always count on the brilliant people at Cannes to provide perspective and context on what the road ahead will look like.”
– Jeremy Cornfeldt, President at Tinuiti