Circus CEO Bruno Lambertini: “We Can’t Even Imagine Where Technology is Taking Us”
What: We talked to Circus marketing CEO Bruno Lambertini about his priorities for marketing innovation and how to survive through the digital revolution.
Why it matters: The world of marketing is changing at an accelerated pace, agencies like Circus Marketing, that are willing to take risks and invest in a smart way, will survive in the new economy.
In the world of business, innovation means quite simply the process of translating a new idea into a service that consumers will buy, thus creating value. Innovating is vital to every business, and we might safely say that, without it, companies need not even try to survive. Circus Marketing, a multicultural digital agency with 8 offices in the U.S., Spain, and 5 Latin American countries founded in 2005, strives to create high-impact advertising campaigns that engage consumers to an emotional degree. Portada talked to CEO Bruno Lambertini to find out more about how Circus utilizes different tools, but mainly data analysis, to drive innovation.
Portada: What are the key tools for marketing innovation according to Circus?
Bruno Lambertini: "Data combined with AI and Robotics, with a boost from 5G connectivity, is an explosive combo that opens a thousand opportunities in the world of marketing and communications. These are elements we’re exploring and experimenting with at Circus."
Portada: How does Circus Marketing understand the need for innovation?
B.L.: "Marketing innovation is not only about creative ideas. More than ever, clients today want to see ROI and demand effective campaigns. Every strategy of ours is based on deep knowledge of audiences through smart use of data. Not two days are the same at Circus, we never face a task the same way as the previous one, and that’s an essential part of the innovation process.
The only thing that really affects human behavior is a great idea that answers to data-driven consumer analysis. Ideas are the core of our business, as well as a neuralgic element of communication, but data provides context and new technologies boost distribution and impact on consumers. This combination is what makes innovation at Circus."
Portada: How have marketing needs changed in the last decade? What are Circus' tools to address them?
B.L.: "The need for innovation has always been a part of communication and marketing’s DNA. In recent years, the industry has changed in an accelerated way, mostly because audiences have modified clients’ needs and expectations through new consuming habits. When we thought of ATL as ATL and we thought of digital as digital, many digital agencies were born, but they are also considered traditional today. Now, traditional ATL and traditional digital agencies need to innovate to survive.
Circus is an agency based on this new economy, it’s a hybrid model that takes the best of both worlds and adds data, tech-driven ideas, and content-generation tools in order to tackle new challenges. At Circus, the data and planning areas work closely together to generate actionable insights that favor creativity in order to generate an emotional connection with audiences, which translate to unique, powerful results."
Portada: Competition is tough, what would you say are today's most important values and skills to have in order to succeed?
B.L.: "The companies that belong in the so-called 'New Economy' are the ones that are completely rethinking whole industries, and they have three things in common: 1) they base their business on the intelligent use of data and technology, 2) they use a collaborative work scheme, and 3) they have teams composed of diverse profiles, but always sharing the same mindset and allowing for disruptivity. Circus is a new economy agency because it has these three components, which are very attractive to brands and talent. The companies we work with, Netflix, Uber, Spotify, and WeWork, among others, show a communion of our culture and theirs."
Portada: How does Circus make sure to reach its clients' goals?
B. L.: "We combine our own in-house generated data with reports from various consulting agencies and information sources. Also, working with new economy organizations like Netflix, Uber, Spotify, and WeWork among others allows us to constantly update and Exchange disruptive ideas. Our goal in terms of client relationships is to build partnerships that include information mobility: they provide knowledge of the industry and we provide knowledge of this hybrid marketing/communication world, and about how the new economy Works. When we achieve this collaboration, that’s when we have executions that impact positively on campaigns’ ROI."
Brands need to be willing to take risks.
Portada: What are the main obstacles to innovation?
B.L.: "There are many challenges, but let’s highlight two, one from the agencies side and one from the advertisers’ side, which can be found to a lesser or greater extent depending on the market, but at the end of the day they’re there. For agencies, the main challenge is investing in data. With all the transformations in the digital world, as well as in media consumption habits, investing in in-house data generation is a must to survive. Communication strategies need to be based on data analysis to generate impact effectively. On the other hand, brands need to be willing to take risks."
Portada: In a nutshell, where do you see marketing going in the next years?
B.L.: "The world is changing really fast. There is a revolution in the way we think about marketing, and this is caused by the smart interpretation of data together with artificial intelligence and robotics. This combination will allow us to be more precise and creative, and will take us to places we can’t even imagine right now."