Top brands and provocative thought leaders gathered last week for our annual Tinuiti Live virtual event. This year featured half-day expert discussions designed to provide attendees with networking, as well as specific and actionable strategies to accelerate brand performance across the funnel.
The event was packed with over a dozen sessions across three tracks—Martech and Measurement, Media, and Digital-First Creative, as well as insight from successful brands like Etsy, Ancestry, Bassett Furniture, Audible, Bonobos, and more!
Some common themes (within sessions) throughout the day included:
- The importance of flexibility and agility: Some of the most established companies are among those that are most open to the new (and ever-evolving) marketing landscape (which may explain why they’re still around!)
- The importance of explaining what you’re doing—and why—with your finance team when you do change things up, and what things might be different this time around (ie. an expected longer path to purchase)
- Experimentation and early planning—being open to trying new things, learning as much as you can from them, and applying those learnings to future projects
- Communicating effectively, and often, with internal teams and partners
- Strategically choosing partners
Insight from former Top Executive at Disney+ and CEO of TikTok
Kevin Mayer kicked off the day with valuable insights from his experience as a former top executive at The Walt Disney Company overseeing its international Direct-to-Consumer business, which included global streaming platforms Disney+, ESPN+ and Hulu.
Mayer shared his involvement in the development and successful rollout of Disney+ that today has over 100M subscribers.
“People kept asking me at Disney+, how are you gonna beat Netflix? I genuinely didn’t care. I only cared that Disney+ served our consumers. I’m a huge subscriber to ‘consumer above everything else,” Mayer said on Thursday.
Prior to that role, he executed major acquisitions including Pixar, Marvel, Lucas Film, Bamtech, and 21st Century Fox. Most recently, Mayer served as CEO of TikTok and COO of its parent company, ByteDance—driving one of the greatest disruptions in social media history helping steer the world’s fourth-largest social media platform with nearly 700M users.
In addition to the growing importance of having an online presence (to cater to shoppers’ needs in a pandemic and post-pandemic world), Mayer also shed light on the growing popularity of live streams and the opportunity available for advertisers.
“Using live streams and influencers to actually sell on the platform is an enormously powerful thing and that’s the future. It’s a tsunami coming our way.”
You can listen to Mayer’s entire keynote speech in our on-demand recording available here.
Didn’t get a chance to attend the event (or every single session)? No worries – we’ve got a brief recap of each of the presentations held throughout the all-day event in chronological order below.
Building a Foundational Tech Stack to Support Your First-Party Data Strategy
Nirish Parsad, Marketing Technologist, Tinuiti
Andrew Richardson, SVP, Analytics & Marketing Science, Tinuiti
The new wave of privacy changes has made the need for a first-party data strategy more pressing than ever. In this session, Nirish Parsad and Andrew Richardson discuss why so many advertisers still struggle with siloed data, underutilized tech, and a fractured view of the customer.
- What a holistic 1P data strategy really means
- The foundational tools and systems advertisers need
- The measurement strategies that every advertiser should be testing in 2021
“As it relates to building first-party data in the age of privacy, we [as marketers] have navigated this before and it did not kill marketing or advertising.” — Andrew Richardson, SVP, Analytics & Marketing Science at Tinuiti
“There’s really cool tech out there that is underutilized – which means you have to choose between going deep or MacGyvering it. There are over 8000 marketing technology platforms available today (up from 150 in 2011).” — Nirish Parsad, Marketing Technologist at Tinuiti
Brand Meet Performance, Performance Meet Brand: A Fireside Chat with Ancestry.com
Diana Diguido, EVP, Client Strategy, Tinuiti
Todd Pollak, SVP, Global Customer Success & Commercialization, Ancestry
Paige Grossman, VP, Global Brand Creative and Media, Ancestry
Ancestry’s Paige Grossman and Todd Pollak discussed the importance of—and value they have seen from—implementing a full-funnel marketing approach. In part, this includes investing time in mapping a cohesive customer journey across all touchpoints to better understand what role each channel will play to move people toward a purchase. Testing all year long, they applied the strongest plays to their holiday campaign.
In recent years, Ancestry has also built a toolkit with suggested photography elements, headline examples, and more to help work quickly, efficiently, and in total alignment—internally, and with partners like Tinuiti.
- Planning Principles: The importance of early campaign planning, breaking down silos, and regular cross-channel alignment so everyone has a full understanding of what others are focused on
- Why driving the “why” behind everything you do, both internally and externally, is so crucial
- The power of mid-funnel, consideration-based, product-based education that provides potential customers a better understanding of Ancestry’s offering prior to taking advantage of a free trial—understanding the long game
“When you learn about your family history, you have stories to share with your family, and specifically you can share during the holidays—anytime, but it’s really important during the holidays. You bond over those stories and it brings you closer together,” noted Paige Grossman, Ancestry’s VP, Global Brand Creative and Media.
This was a brand benefit Ancestry had been seeing some traction on, along with good signals, and they leaned on that as something to share and gift during the holidays.
Brand Building on Amazon: Optimizing Creative to Boost Conversions
AJ Swamy, Client Solutions Strategist, Tinuiti
Compelling creative content can make or break your full-funnel Amazon strategy. In this session, AJ Swamy explains how brands use enhanced creative tools on the Marketplace to not only make their brand look prettier, but to drive traffic to an entire catalog and increase detail page conversion rates.
- Best practices for Amazon Enhanced Brand Content (EBC), Video, and Stores features
- How to upgrade the shopping experience to make it more visually engaging and interactive
According to Swamy, brands should be leveraging creative to showcase the value of their brand on their Amazon Store. Tactics such as “customized landing pages to match specific traffic sources” also help to improve and grow conversion rates.
“Wherever a customer sees your brand they expect to see it in its highest form. Don’t snooze on your Amazon creative. You only have 60 seconds or less to make an impact on your Amazon page – take advantage of that creative opportunity.”
— AJ Swamy, Client Solutions Strategist at Tinuiti
How Audible’s Mobile App Performance Continues to Scale: A Look into a Transparency-First Approach
Liz Emery, Senior Director, Mobile & Ad Tech Solutions,Tinuiti
Danielle Smith, Senior Director, Mobile Marketing, Audible
There are over 235 million smartphone users who are seeking out privacy-preserving measures. How can a mobile app continue to grow, while maintaining the trust of consumers? In the following session, Liz Emery, and Danielle Smith discuss how Audible prioritizes a transparency first approach with publishers and consumers, which has allowed them to consistently scale performance.
- How to approach keyword transparency with Apple Search Ads
- The right ad placement tracking measures, winning consumer conversion paths, and more
“For us, it’s about customer obsession. We are always trying to focus on the journey of the customer. Whether someone is going to the app store looking for entertainment, a bestseller, or a trending podcast – we just want to make sure we are giving that person the opportunity to discover “Audible”. And it comes down to a combination of our consumer focus, our product offering, competitive insights, and smart targeting. And every so often [Tinuiti] will recommend running a new search match campaign (if we are experiencing a stagnant performance on certain keywords) to give us the ability to open up our keyword set and find new opportunities. The [Tinuiti] team has been amazing in terms of collaborating with us in this space. And that’s been very helpful.”
— Danielle Smith, Senior Director, Mobile Marketing at Audible
The Consumer has Evolved, Now Brands Must Too: How Bassett Furniture Evolved Their Media Strategy with OTT
Jesse Math, VP, Advanced TV & Video Solutions, Tinuiti
Heather Petersen, Director, Digital Marketing, Bassett Furniture Industries Inc.
Tinuiti’s Jesse Math, VP of Advanced TV & Video Solutions, and Bassett Furniture’s Director of Digital Marketing, Heather Petersen, explored the success that the American-made furniture brand has seen—and continues to see—through promotional and evergreen OTT advertising.
A well-loved brand that has been around for 120 years, Bassett understands the importance and necessity of new approaches to marketing that keep up with changes in the marketing landscape, as well as changing consumer needs.
With the far-reaching impacts of COVID resulting in a cut to Bassett’s media spend, they decided to go all-in on OTT, fully replacing their linear TV advertising initiatives. There was some early concern that with removing traditional television ads, there would be a decline in traffic to their brick and mortar stores, but that fear did not become a reality.
Bassett will continue monitoring to determine if a return to linear TV advertising makes sense for their business goals, but as of now, they are continuing to enjoy the more cost-effective benefits of OTT, seeing no negative results from removing traditional.
- How COVID impacted Bassett’s advertising plan, with the switch to always-on OTT actually being an easier transition due to its necessity
- How to strike a balance between national and local KPIs
- The importance of educating the decision-makers at your company to help them understand what changes you’re making, and what the anticipated effects will be
Are you Speaking your Customer’s Language? How Your Audience Experience Could Be Affecting Conversion Rates
Kendall Giglio, Senior Director, CRO, Tinuiti
If you’re not 100% satisfied with your current conversion rate, odds are you’re not speaking their language. In this session, Kendall Giglio explains how brands can take a step back to objectively look at how a brand is perceived by their customers with a breakdown of the four key areas where the misalignment is probably happening.
- Tools for user Behavior Tracking and Analysis
- How to use click activity and scroll maps to really understand your customers
“The sooner you realize that people don’t buy from websites, they buy from people; the sooner you can create a better site experience for your customers.”
— Kendall Giglio, Senior Director, Conversion Rate Optimization at Tinuiti
Addressing Addressable: Targeting & Measurement in the Era of Programmatic Convergence
Helena Tse, Head of Growth Marketing, Bonobos
Kolin Kleveno, SVP, Addressable Media, Tinuiti
Ecommerce heavyweight Bonobos explained how they’re leveraging first-party data to execute a full-funnel media strategy that converges both programmatic & social. In the following session, Helena Tse shares with Kolin Kleveno how Bonobos was able to capitalize on an upper funnel advertising campaign at the 2021 Masters at Augusta National Golf Club.
- Actionable strategies on loyalty, audience segmentation and targeting
- How to put the customer at the center of your marketing and grow first party data
As it relates to a full-funnel campaign, Bonobos had an extremely successful golf campaign earlier this month during the Masters Golf Tournament.
“We had a partnership with CBS, and the viewership of Masters truly over-delivered (from a brand impression standpoint). We had Justin Rose as a sponsor, which of course gives huge credibility to our brand (as he dominated the Masters for the first two days). But the real question was how do we complement our brand and upper-funnel initiatives with performance? We also used multiple different channels from OTT to SEM to Facebook and very strong email campaigns throughout that weekend. We made sure that we had inventory and merchandise. It really was a full-funnel effect and the measurement isn’t just sales and conversion or impressions – it was actually everything, together. We saw an increase in our brand impression metrics, the new customer acquisition numbers, traffic, PLP views, and conversions – all positive and that’s what we were really excited about.”
— Helena Tse, Head of Growth Marketing at Bonobos
Emerging Social Platforms: Leveraging Upper Funnel Tactics to Drive Conversions
Avi Ben-Zvi, Group Director, Paid Social, Tinuiti
Erica Haile, Senior Growth Partner, Reddit
Bob Armour, Chief Marketing Officer, M1 Finance
Patryk Wlodersky, Acquisition Marketing Manager, M1 Finance
Tinuiti’s Group Director of Paid Social, Avi Ben-Zvi, sat down with Reddit’s Erica Haile and M1 Finance’s Bob Armour and Patryk Wlodersky to discuss the immense value M1 has found in connecting with an engaged Reddit community.
“We’re home to thousands of communities that are really dedicated to specific interests, and we can reach users that are really engaged.”
— Erica Haile, Senior Growth Partner, Reddit
M1 Finance has taken advantage of the unique advertising products and targeting capabilities available through Reddit, diving into some of the successes they’ve seen. In explaining what he likes so much about Redditors, Bob Armour shared, “They tell you when you’re great, they tell you when you suck; there’s real passion there.”
- The value and importance of testing in crafting your marketing strategy
- How M1’s awareness-based marketing strategy on Reddit differs from their strategies for other social platforms
- The benefits and reach of Reddit’s “Community Takeovers”
- Exploring that Redditors aren’t actually averse to advertising on the platform, but they don’t want it masquerading as something else. “Redditors are smart, and they want to be spoken to like they’re smart.” — Erica Haile, Senior Growth Partner, Reddit
“We want to obviously do as much lower-funnel as we can, but there comes a point in time where more people need to know about you, right? A lot of people still don’t know about M1, and you need to feed that bottom of the funnel with different channels where your target audience is.”
— Patryk Wlodersky, Acquisition Marketing Manager, M1 Finance
Expert Panel: Creative Strategies for Real Action on DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion)
The recent awakening in our country around social and racial justice has inspired countless brands to step up their DEI efforts both internally and out in the world. While some brands have walked the talk and made a real impact, others have found out that paying lip service while failing to take accountable action can hurt their brands even worse than if they had remained silent. Tinuiti Live’s panel discussed a variety of game-changing strategies to help brands move beyond talk and into measurable and meaningful DEI practices that perform.
The panel included:
- Arthur Benjamin, Senior Director, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Tinuiti
- Tory Hargo, Product Design Manager, Product Architecture, Facebook
- Rochelle Hinds, VP Social Media, OneUnited Bank
- Elizabeth Morrison, Chief Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging Officer, Levi Strauss and Co.
“Culture is simply what you choose to reward and what you choose to punish. Does your company reward or punish diversity, equity, and inclusion behaviors?”
— Tory Hargo, Product Design Manager, Product Architecture at Facebook
“It’s not about perfection, it’s about optimizing the system and bringing as many people along as possible.”
— Allison Brown, Head of the AbbVie Experience at AbbVie
4 Steps to Ensure Business Durability in an Ever-Evolving Marketing Landscape with LiveRamp’s Anneka Gupta
Anneka Gupta, President & Head of Products and Platforms, LiveRamp; Tinuiti Board Member
Nii Ahene, Chief Strategy Officer, Tinuiti
Anneka opened her discussion with a compelling visual of scuba divers surrounded by colorful fish, explaining quite simply that she loves water: the ocean, snorkeling, the fish. She discussed a recent, pre-pandemic vacation she enjoyed, trying out diving for the first time. As a lifelong swimmer, she expected to take to it easily and instantly but found these new “uncharted waters” weren’t what she was used to.
“I was in a completely different world; I was looking at the ocean really from a 3D perspective instead of just from the top looking down. And I find—like all of us do—when we’re faced with change, that it can be a very, very scary experience; it can be terrifying. But I also knew that this was something I really wanted to do—that it was going to be worth doing—because once I got comfortable, and once I got down there, I would experience something transcendental.”
— Anneka Gupta, President & Head of Products and Platforms, LiveRamp; Tinuiti Board Member
Anneka explored the metaphorical implications of this real-life experience, tying it into the radical transformations all brands and marketers must make in the changing privacy landscape. While this is “uncharted territories” for us all, like her first scuba diving adventure, it will be worth it.
- The series of decisions you have to make, in life and marketing, to get to the destination you want
- How to assemble a “mosaic of different solutions” to better understand your customer
- The power of the company you keep; focusing on strategic partnerships that can help you navigate complex, ongoing changes
- What options brands have to get more insights from their partners
- Your responsibility in building a 1:1 relationship with your customers
“Think beyond your business to see who you can partner with to build a better view of your customer. Your data is the lifeblood of your business.”
— Anneka Gupta, President & Head of Products and Platforms, LiveRamp
The Future of Omni-Channel: Using Platform Technology to Bring Together Brand and Performance
Annica Nesty, Sr. Director, Marketing Science, Tinuiti
Kristine Koetter, AVP, Omnichannel Marketing, Maurices
Tinuiti’s Annica Nesty and Maurices’ Kristine Koetter explored the importance of using platform technology in understanding brand and performance. “Viewing our marketing performance from an omni perspective has made sure that we’re putting our dollars in the right pocket.”— Kristine Koetter AVP, Omnichannel Marketing, Maurices
Kristine explained Maurices’ emphasis on providing the same brand expectations to customers, regardless of where they’re doing the shopping. Through the cohesive measurement plan that MobiusOS made possible, they could really dive into and deconstruct the customer journey.
“We’re able to drive efficiencies by seeing things more holistically. That’s really helped us make better decisions.”
— Kristine Koetter, AVP, Omnichannel Marketing, Maurices
- Enabling Analytics to unlock, and future-proof, omni-channel performance
- Establishing unified marketing measurement across all channels, in-store and online
- Navigating the challenges of getting all your systems and teams working together
- Acquiring new customers and increasing efficiency
- Tapping into the insights your brick and mortar locations can offer. “Some of the greatest insights we have into what customers expect comes from our store teams.”—Kristine Koetter
“We need to continue to personalize the customer experience; that’s the whole goal of omni-channel. We want to be sure that no one is left behind, and we’re reaching the customers where they are.”
— Annica Nesty, Sr. Director, Marketing Science at Tinuiti
More Bang for Your Buck: Maximizing Media Spend Impact for Mid-Stage D2C Retailers
Josh Brisco, VP, Growth Media at Tinuiti
Kady Srinivasan, SVP, Head of Global Marketing at Klaviyo
Emerging D2C retailers can punch above (way above) their weight class when it comes to maximizing media spend impact. In this session, Josh Brisco and Kady Srinivasan cover media mix theory based on brand maturity.
- Leveraging native platform tools to evaluate ad spend from a performance branding perspective
- How to harness first-party data early in the new era of privacy
Breaking Down Silos: How a Creative-First Approach to Performance Branding & Acquisition Media Can Work Together to Amplify Growth
Carla Anderson, Creative Director, at Tinuiti
Sam Dennigan, CEO, at Strong Roots
What’s in a Brand? In this session, Carla Anderson and Sam Dennigan break down the silos between performance & branding efforts. They also discuss how the marketing strategy that Strong Roots utilized to bring their EU-based brand to the United States.
- Why brand engagement is important in today’s climate
- New methods of measuring brand marketing performance
“During the pandemic, we couldn’t offer samplings in the store (which is a huge part of our marketing strategy). We had to figure out how to tell as many people as possible [about our brand] because we were not able to engage in a physical way in an in-store environment. So, we took a very traditional marketing campaign of free sampling and converted it into a digital marketing campaign to raise awareness and work with [Tinuti] for distributional media.”
— Sam Dennigan, CEO, at Strong Roots
“Performance is what drives conversions, measurable incremental testing improves over time. Branding is about building those connections, creating recognition, loyalty, and authenticity. Our approach is you can merge those – and do both!”
— Carla Anderson, Creative Director, at Tinuiti
Fireside Chat with Etsy CMO Ryan Scott
Ryan Scott is Chief Marketing Officer at Etsy, bringing two decades of marketing and ecommerce experience to the company. He leads Etsy’s digital marketing, advertising, communications, brand, market research, and international growth initiatives, elevating Etsy to new shoppers around the world and deepening engagement within the existing community.
The success of Etsy during the pandemic and beyond has been nothing short of phenomenal. In this session, Scott disperses insights into how the brand activated new customers gained during COVID and how the convergence of brand and performance fueled the site’s stellar growth.
As it relates to marketing, Etsy recently launched a series of new advertising campaigns with a focus on how to “keep commerce human” including this ad (below), which features a young woman named Shiori:
“When you think about a mission like ours, ‘Keep Commerce Human’ – what I think we try to do here is to bring together some emotional value. But you have to have performance marketing, let’s call it extending the work. We work with [Tinuiti] and our partners Google and Facebook as an extension to optimize [by channel] whether it’s a video, Facebook, or Instagram. It’s combining the power of storytelling with the ability to target and retarget for performance.”
— Ryan Scott, CMO, Etsy
Hot Takes from the Experts
Dalton Dorne, Chief Marketing Officer, Tinuiti
George Gallate, Tinuiti Board Member
To close out the information-packed event, Dalton Dorne and George Gallate highlighted some of their favorite takeaways from the day’s sessions, including:
- Kevin Mayer’s advice for what CMOs need to grow in their career, which includes: flexibility, embracing change, becoming technologically adept, and understanding the true nature of your brand
- There is no ideal tech stack, but there are ways you can get there
- The importance of transparency requirements for yourself, and your partners
- The importance of first-party data to execute through the full funnel
- The need to sometimes be scrappy and have a start-up mentality, even if you are an established brand
- The power of Mobius in integrating first-party and third-party data to drive performance
- The importance of brand and performance coming together, and not viewing them as “competition” for one another
- Details on “flipping the funnel” in today’s increasingly 1P data world
- Turning customers into friends through social media
- The value of using data to build brands on Amazon through a variety of vehicles
- The necessity of reminding ourselves to step back and look at what our customers are actually doing
- How to be more inclusive in your marketing, and a better ally at work and in life
- It all starts with making the decisions of what to stop, start, and continue doing. Once you’ve made the first decision, you have a better idea of what decisions need to be made—and what actions need to be taken—from there
Famous YouTube creator closes out the day
Violinist and YouTube Creator DSharp closed the event with some Google-sponsored, crowd-pleasing entertainment. He opened and closed his performance with DSharp originals, taking an array of requests from the audience in between, which ranged from DJ Khaled and Drake’s Popstar to Billie Eilish’s Everything I Wanted. And…we hope Tinuiti Live was everything you wanted, too!
If you missed out on any must-see sessions, we encourage you to check them out On Demand. See you at the next event!