On March 8th global brand strategy firm, Siegel+Gale hosted its fifth annual International Women’s Day breakfast in New York City. Anchored by a lively panel discussion and moderated by S+G’s Global CMO Margaret Molloy, the morning was both intimate and broadly relatable. In attendance were over 70 senior marketing executives across a myriad of industries. Many had met before at previous Siegel+Gale events and reconnecting on this important day at such a pivotal time gave the event urgency and a sense of joy. The morning started with a special performance by Heather Massie, who presented a scene from her one-woman show “Hedy! The Life and Inventions of Hedy Lamarr!” Remembered almost exclusively as a beautiful and glamorous movie star from the 1930s-1950’s, Hedy was also a brilliant inventor who is responsible for, among other things, the underlying technology that has made mobile phones possible. With her compelling performance, Ms Massie captured the spirit of Ms. Lamarr and perfectly set the tone for the rest of the morning.
It's International Women's Day, so we're celebrating by shining a light on some of the brilliant women in our network. In line with celebrating women, we interviewed the inspirational group chief marketing officer at Havas UK, Tracey Barber, on gender equality, breaking down barriers and working with UN Women. Who is the woman that inspires you most and why? My sister, Sara. Because while I can (and often do) feel hugely inspired by industry leaders, vocal activists or other forces for good, I believe that sisterhood delivers a unique bond which we should try and emulate in our working lives. A shared agenda, having each other’s back and a bloody great dollop of humour gets you through a lot. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
“Let it be absolutely clear, the loss of a discount will neither scare nor distract one single NRA member from our mission to stand and defend the freedoms that have always made America the greatest nation in the world.” In the wake of yet another mass shooting here in the US the NRA is lashing out at companies who have decided to cut ties with them. They are mad at them and aren’t going to take it anymore! And as for the brands? Well, apparently the feeling is mutual. In large part, this change of heart isn’t being driven by the brands, but by their customers. People are starting to demand that companies take a position on issues that many of them would just as soon avoid if they could. And, frankly, we shouldn’t find this surprising. Over the last decade, marketers have shifted focus from what a brand “does” to what a brand “believes.” We’ve stopped talking about the benefits of a given product or category. Instead, we’re inviting customers to ask, “Do our belief systems align around how the world should work?”
‘How Coca-Cola Took Over The World’ by Giles Lury is the follow-up to his book ‘The Prisoner and the Penguin’ which I reviewed way back in 2014. Like that book, HCCTOTW is primarily, but not exclusively, stocked full of brand origin stories. Unlike that book (whose subtitle ‘modern marketing stories’ missed that the majority were from the 20th century) the subtitle here perfectly captures its essence - “101 marketing tales to inform, inspire and entertain”. (Incidentally, the title refers to the first story in the book in which the Coca-Cola brand crosses paths with the crew of the Apollo 11 mission). This time Lury has segmented his book into chapters, grouping tales together around common themes; Branding, Origins, Naming and Identities, Marketing Strategy, Communication, Innovation, Repositioning and Revitalization. Additionally, each story (and its key message) is listed at the back of the book, making it easy for the reader to quickly find an entry months after initial reading.
From #MeToo to #TimesUp one thing is clear, although 2018 marks 100 years since women won the right to vote, the war on gender equality isn’t over yet. At the Golden Globes, Oprah Winfrey dedicated her entire speech to highlighting gender inequality declaring passionately: ‘A new day is on the horizon. And when that new day finally dawns, it will be because of a lot of magnificent women and some pretty phenomenal men, fighting hard to make sure that they become the leaders who take us to the time when nobody ever has to say ‘me too’ again.’ And it’s not just shaken the core of Hollywood, the #MeToo movement has had a ripple effect across every industry, with countless women speaking out against sexual assault and inequality. So, in New York we came together to discuss gender bias in the marketing industry, providing a safe space for our members to have an open and honest conversation about how they feel their gender has impacted their career.