Association of online publishers Helping media owners build better digital business

"We are still chasing yesterday's audience"

Scott Thompson
Scott Thompson, Head of Digital Research at Starcom Mediavest Group is speaking at AOP’s Research Forum, 'Unlocking insight from changing online behaviour' next week, on 17 November at IPC.

He gave us the agency view on research in digital media, and how publishers and agencies should be working together on insight and data.

Find out more about the event, also featuring speakers from ITV, Kantar, MediaTel and dunnhumby, or book your place online now.

1) How is the planning of advertising and marketing activity adapting to the ways in which consumers are embracing the online environment?

I think it's taken some time, but we are finally at a point where it is generally accepted that the online environment is different from other forms of media; the fact that the technology puts the user in complete control of what they look at means that you can't just carpet bomb them with exposures and expect to change attitudes and behaviours.

That means that if you can't see beyond the traditional role of "bought" media and look at how it mingles with brands' owned spaces and word of mouth, then you are missing the huge opportunities that it offers as a marketing platform. After all, consumers don't care about the divisions between these kinds of spaces.

2) What are the most significant drivers of insight that determine changing consumer behaviour and consumer understanding?

For me, it is all about understanding how the digital world and the human world mix.

It's very easy to get swept along with the excitement of the latest website idea or new gadget, but unless you understand what it actually offers to real people - especially the people who are going to be interested in your product - then you are going to be either jumping on board the next Second Life because the geeks think it's interesting, or dismissing the next Twitter as a passing fad because it isn't reaching mass market penetration.

3) How do you integrate insight from consumer behaviour on and offline to create a holistic view?

That's probably going to be the biggest challenge for researchers and marketers alike over the next few years. The last ten years have seen some fundamental changes in the way we understand consumer behaviour, but the fact is we are still chasing yesterday's audience.

4) In what ways should publishers and agencies collaborate on insight and data to maximise the effectiveness of advertising and marketing activity?

I think the best way forwards is to think of the industry as a classroom; we work together on our homework, but we sit in the exams on our own.

The fact is, if you've invested in something new and innovative, you've bought the right to learn from what you've done.

An experiment isn't a failure just because it didn't do what you expected it to do, or what you hoped it would do. It's only a failure if you don't learn anything from the results.

But at the end of the day, everybody wants to be the rock and roll brand, who can honestly claim that its viral sensation was a part of the plan from day one.

Find out more about the event, also featuring speakers from ITV, Kantar, MediaTel and dunnhumby, or book your place online now.

Supported by

Kantar Media
Event Sponsor: Kantar Media

Research Magazine
Media Partner: Research Magazine

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