Aedamar Howlett, marketing director, Coca-Cola Great Britain:
“As marketers, we know consumers are not one homogenous group and this year has been characterised by change. More than ever, brands need to reflect the diversity of consumers and at Coca-Cola, diversity has always been part of our DNA.
“We’re carrying this through everything we do right down to our product innovation – diversifying our portfolio of drinks through acquisitions like Honest, or breathing new life into classics like our Schweppes mixers, we’ve worked hard to give choice.
“2017 has definitely shown the versatility of many household brands – Heinz 50th anniversary Beanz Meanz Heinz partnership with Selfridges was a high-end celebration of British nostalgia. Heineken’s Worlds Apart campaign was emotive and showed a desire to lead change.
“We’ve also shown we can drive change by leading the sustainability conversation – showing the depth of our brand and our ability to use our marketing power as a force for good, encouraging consumers to recycle more through our first-ever recycling focused TV commercial.”
Rachel Bristow, director of client partnerships and collaboration, Sky Media:
“The crack-down on media transparency is a big moment of 2017. With the rapid rise in digital opportunities many brands have been caught out with brand safety, fraud and viewability issues – so understanding the impact of this and having trusted partners has to be key. It’s only right that advertisers know where their ads are going, if it’s being seen by a real person and if it’s even viewable.
“Audited and trusted measurement like BARB gives advertisers the security they need – without this transparency advertisers are jeopardising their brands well-earned equity and putting their precious budget in front of bots.”
Craig Greenberg, head of strategic planning and insight at William Grant & Sons UK:
“One of the biggest moments of the year for marketing undoubtedly was the backlash against Pepsi’s purpose-driven film with Kendall Jenner. It highlighted that celebrity associations with brands can’t be empty – we need meaningful partnerships to tell a resonant story. Hence the rise of the micro-influencer.
“But it also demonstrated that business purposes must authentically connect with brand heritage and values, credibly link to the proposition, and must ‘do’, not just ‘say’.
Zoe Burns-Shore, head of brand and marketing, First Direct:
“Top of the list has to be the brand relaunch work for First Direct. We delivered a multi-platform campaign designed to help us position First Direct for a new generation of awesome customers. Our ads are iconic so it was a major project for us, and 18 months in the making. Everything from getting agreement to the budget to finding the right astronaut suit was a labour of love but we were so pleased with the reaction to the end result. Seeing it finally go live was both terrifying and amazingly exciting.
“Second would be working with Diane Morgan on a series of short films about getting people to try new things and the internal barriers we put up that stop us doing that. We thought it was a strong campaign, but you never know until it goes live. It was brilliant to see how this well put together social content outperformed all the KPIs we put in place so convincingly.”
Harry Lang, marketing director at online sportsbook Pinnacle.com:
“For my key marketing moment of 2017 I’m going with cryptocurrency. I can’t remember a new product or entity becoming so mainstream so quickly when the key drivers were, for the most part, digital and word of mouth.
“Whether you backed bitcoin early or are kicking yourself that you missed the boat it’s now officially part of our monetary world and it got there in record time.”