Q&A: Dylan Taylor, executive creative director, BMF
BMF executive creative director Dylan Taylor discusses technology adoption, judging creative and marketing items internationally.
Q: Are international markets getting more similar to one another as digital media makes global reach easier?
A: It depends. Some major advertisers are running global work in a lot of similar-viewpoint markets. The most intelligent of them are personalizing and localizing those campaigns. There may be a global line, but it has local effects, and those are usually more successful. If you're just transposing ads from one area to another, they're not really talking to the audience. Digital does afford us the ability to personalize and localize, so everyone should embrace it.
Q: Do daily deals complicate or enhance local efforts?
A: Daily deals and group buying are both good ideas, but I wonder if there will be a backlash. I went to a restaurant the other day and there was a separate queue for group deal buyers because the restaurant got slammed with them. There's a race to the bottom of prices, and everyone is looking for the best deals for the more functional items so they can spend more money on discretionary items. The middle is being hollowed out and worlds are becoming more extreme. Utility items are cheaper and discretionary items are getting more expensive, so it's an interesting time to be a marketer.
Q: Is it tougher to market between every day and luxury items?
A: It depends how you portray the value message. The smarter marketers are talking about how useful or valuable a product or service is to negate the need for price discounts. If retailers can't discount, they have to up their level of customer service, which we're seeing in Australia.
Q: Where does Australia see itself compared to other regions in technology adoption?
A: A lot of direct work at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity had a mobile solution attached, and while Australia is a big adopter of new technologies like mobile, the networks aren't great. The actual use of mobile for marketing in Australia is limited by a bandwidth issue. We're slow in uptake of mobile compared to online ads and email, which were all rapidly adopted.
Q: Are markets like Korea and Japan the future of direct?
A: I think with mobile and tablets, we'll all always be on, and marketers need to be delivering value and service wherever we are.
Q: In your experience judging creative awards, does work from particular regions have a consistent, almost predictable look and feel from year to year?
A: Sometimes there's a mimicry that goes on in advertising and we push to fight that. Each country has its own tone, look and feel. In terms of judging, many campaigns around the world benefit from good PR undertaken by the agencies, and judges often feel obliged to give a piece of work gold in one show if it won gold in another. On the other hand, it's always exciting to see fresh work and discover that new wave of work from any area.