Second up in our series of blogs, where we get to know a little bit more about some of the speakers that will take to the stage at Adobe Summit in London (14–15 May), is Will Hayward, vice president of advertising for BuzzFeed.
Will talks bravery in digital marketing and reveals his favourite campaign, which of course features a cat….being more like a dog!
Can you tell us a bit more about your role at BuzzFeed?
I head up the commercial side of the business in Europe — so the creative work we do for brands, the sales team, the account management team and our product positioning.
What key digital marketing trend do you see making it big by the end of 2014?
I think brand owners will finally move beyond the age of destinations. This is something that very much belongs in the history books — the idea that the entire function of digital marketing is to drive clicks through to a website is as equally limiting to your interaction with customers as it is unrealistic. Lets work harder to go to where consumers are, and tell stories so good that they get shared across the social web.
What are you most looking forward to at Summit this year?
Can you give us a little teaser into what you will be exploring in your Summit talk?
We think about social currency quite often. Why do people share? What is it about the bits of content that they share that makes them want to do so? And how can brands create something of value that would encourage their target audience to repost the content?
What is your favourite thing about being a digital marketer?
The pace. Working with really smart people. Thinking about the future and focusing on the creation of great work, in-spite of the dearth of such work in the market.
What campaigns have inspired you the most recently?
O2’s be more dog, of course.
If you were given complete freedom, both creatively and financially, what would you do next?
There is a common pot of brand values that all marketers claim — customer first, inclusivity, tech focused. If I had total freedom I would focus on work that defines what a brand ISN’T — Facebook do this well (they aren’t perfectionists, they “move fast and break things), as I think Apple do (they aren’t humanised, they are to a certain extent anonymous). That doesn’t require financial freedom, just a little bravery.