Entrepreneurship in emerging technologies with Vaibhav Namburi – Episode 14 – Cut the Cliches

Straight off the back of last week's bonus episode, we're turning now to emerging technologies. Think artificial intelligence, mixed reality, augmented workforces and other new shiny buzzwords in marketing and business. We get the insights directly from the source this week as I sit down with one of Australia's brightest entrepreneurs, Vaibhav Namburi, or V as he's more commonly known.

Disclaimer at this point is that V and I have worked together for a couple of years as we mention in the show.

I genuinely believe that he's one of the country's best and he's active on social channels. So after you've heard the show, check out some of his videos on LinkedIn. He's an engineer by trade who's now solving business problems using technology for some of the world's biggest companies.

He's already built a blockchain solution for the United Nations, mobile apps for the likes of William Hill and News Corp along with PwC.

Not only that but he's built his own product in the form of automated recruitment platform Laddr, a company built by devs for the hiring of devs. An automated and anonymised recruitment tool which allows engineers to portfolio their work and save time without the need to do multiple tech tests. Disrupting recruitment by reducing the shortlisting process for candidates down to a few clicks.

Vaibhav Namburi - Five2One founder - Emerging tech - Commswork best B2B tech PR agency Sydney Melbourne Brisbane

We delve into some of his insights as a founder and marketer of his own brand:

- We discuss how he got into the industry
- How to differentiate yourself in business
- Marketing methods he’s used in his business
- How to harness social media
- What’s next in emerging technology in the 12 months
- Ethics in AI
- Challenges he faced with building his businesses
- Branding
- Problem solving in growth marketing
- The biggest lessons he’s learned
- Why he focuses on marketing
- The importance of simplicity, messaging and trust in business
- Cliches

If you like what we’re up to at Cut the Cliches, please give us some online love in the form of reviews on your podcasting platform of choice. We welcome all thoughts and keen to hear more about what you’d like to see on the show next.

Cut the Cliches Episode 10 – Super Bowl Advertising – Liam Fitzpatrick hosts live Networx panel

Cut the Cliches hits Episode 10 and to celebrate we’re bringing you a special live edition which looks at the issue of Super Bowl advertising.

Our head of comms and host Liam Fitzpatrick acts as facilitator in this session which comes from Victoria Park Ballroom in Brisbane, and is part of the Networx event series.

The panel includes:

  • Sarah Kelly, associate professor in law and marketing at University Queensland
  • Rob Hudson MD at Clemenger BBDO
  • Luke Wheatley, head of creative and content for Flight Centre.

We discuss this year’s most successful spots, which ones failed, whether paying $5m for 30 seconds can deliver on ROI for brands, the power of competitive interference, lessons marketers can take away, as well as the panel’s favourite all-time Super Bowl ads.

This week’s episode live from Victoria Park Ballroom, enjoy:

Here are some of the ads we discussed:



Carl Junior gives the Super Bowl its first plant based burger ad

Pepsi subverting a common preconception about its brand

Off-brand effort from Olay with Sarah Michelle Gellar

Newcastle Brown Ale runs spot in 2014 about the ad they would have made with the right budget

The original ad which launched the “you’re not you when you’re hungry” campaign for Snickers

Volkswagen “The Force” remains the most watched ad of all time

Dollar Shave Club’s humourous ad was Luke’s all-time favourite ad

Cut the Cliches – Episode Three – Steve Sinha

Data. It’s the new battleground.

We’re producing more than ever – 90% of all data in existence was created in the last two years, according to an IBM Marketing Cloud report. And that was at the end of 2016!

So how can we make the most of it? And what do marketers need to know about those harnessing it?

Cut the Cliches turned to a man who has spent most of his professional life answering those questions. For episode three, our host Liam Fitzpatrick was in Sydney to get the thoughts of Steve Sinha, COO (and acting-CEO) of the Australian Alliance for Data Leadership. Under that umbrella is a host of other organisational acronyms including ADMA, DGA, IAPA, DTC and IQ. His experience spans three decades in the industry across the UK and Australia.

We chatted with him back in the middle of winter, when we both had colds and England were still in the World Cup. (We’ve since witnessed that football did in fact not return home.)

Topics discussed ranged from:

– Steve’s background in media across UK and Australian agencies
– the future role of agencies
– a return to the full service model?
– how marketers can get the best out of their agencies,
– why brands are taking services in-house,
– the rise of customer experience
– the educational offering of AADL
– what’s next for the organisation in the next 12 months.

Next week we speak with Shaik from GameFaceAI about sports analytics.

Tune in then.

Transparency issues in ad tech industry highlighted during Programmatic Media Summit

Let me preface this article by saying I have worked with a number of ad tech vendors, doing some stellar work for clients.

But despite having worked in the industry for the last seven years, there remain problems. Long argued issues of brand safety, measurement and an overall lack of transparency in the process of digital ad buying has followed the media narrative around programmatic for much of the last decade. Since 2011 we’ve seen articles like this one from Digiday on the ‘wild west’ of ad tech. But a year of acquisitions has narrowed the ad tech pool of players – and a noticeable shift to reposition as martech companies has been accompanied by increased conversations of education and adding demonstrable business value.

Well Sydney’s ICC played host to some of the industry’s foremost thinkers in the space at last week’s Ashton Programmatic Summit.

To give a little context, it’s well worth, seeing the opening remarks from the IAB’s Vijay Solanki here.

And for further insight on transparency issues, which were highlighted during the event, see Which-50 cover story from Andrew Birmingham in his post here.

In an effort to address the ad fraud, Ad News reports that App Nexus is enforcing ads.txt which it explains: “The IAB’s ads.txt protocol is an effort to crack down on ad fraud in programmatic trading. It makes it much more difficult for fraudsters to commit domain spoofing, where imitation domains mimic premium publisher’s URLs to trick buyers into buying inventory from an unrelated site.”

During the event, Danielle Uskovic, head of digital APAC for Lenovo pointed to the success in the last 10 years of programmatic, going on to claim it’s the future for all media buying “From print to billboard to radio and TV, it’s all going to be served programmatically – so it’s time to embrace it. It’s time to realise that this is the future.”

Uskovic went on to call out naysayers of ad tech, covered by Ad News, to which Mark Ritson has replied in the comments and points out the industry needs to address issues within the ‘murky’ (P&G’s Marc Pritchard’s wording) value chain.

Infamously sceptical about the effectiveness of digital media, Ritson has dedicated his weekly column in The Aus to highlight the discrepancy in margins for media agencies between digital ad buys (typically 7-10 per cent across the duopoly of Facebook/Google) over traditional media (often just 3 per cent for TV, OOH, radio, etc).

The debate is not going away any time soon as industry events will continue to build on the tension between the diametrically opposed Jason Pellegrino from Google and adjunct business professor Mark Ritson.

Has Aussie creativity lost its edge?

OMA asked Ali Tilling, Simon Fowler, Andrew Howie and Carmen Bekker about their thoughts

Pier One provided the rather opulent Harbour setting for my breakfast this morning, kindly laid on by the folks at the Outdoor Media Association. What got me out for a 7am start, apart from free bacon and eggs? The chance to hear some of the industry’s best debating the relative strength globally of the Australian creative industry.

Contending that we’d commercially fallen behind the rest of the world were ex-JWT Carmen Bekker and Meat & Livestock marketer Andrew Howie. His tagline-laced trip down 80/90’s ad memory lane, helped laugh off any potential for yawning. Kiwi Simon Fowler from WithCollective and Brit Ali Tilling from BMF offered their rebuttal.

    Talent Drain

It’s not exactly a new phenomenon, but it is an important one. Carmen highlighted that unless Australia can attract and retain the best talent, there are plenty more hotbeds that can offer greater access to global accounts. And it’s that struggle to export work beyond these shores that is often a problem. Advertising at its best celebrates diversity, in thought, culture and background. We need to ensure this is a great place to work so…

    “Don’t let the bland and mediocre run us”

Charmaine Moldrich from OMA spoke of her recent trip to a Swedish creativity awards, and the strength of European work compared with Australia. The depth of great work across Europe is very apparent. “It shouldn’t only be judged on awards, but the level underneath that.”
And inevitably the issue of Sportsbet’s ‘Putting the Roid in Android’ ad came up. In this PR’s opinion a genuinely great ad, that was clearly never meant as anything other than tongue in cheek. I haven’t heard moral compass used as a justification since Tony Blair in 2003.

MLA’s always humourous Andrew Howie, called it: “Australian’s aren’t funny anymore. There’s been a rise in a group I call the ‘Concerned Australian’ who are bothered on behalf of others…for our MLA ad only about 6 of the 746 complaints were valid”, the rest were those appalled on behalf of vegans.

    We need more Lions

Cannes based ones are great, but outside of awards, it’s the everyday bravery of marketers that will get more effective ideas across the line. It takes a brave marketer to trust that daring creative ideas will work for their brand. And agencies have a role to play. An intense level of ROI is needed according to ex-JWT Carmen Bakker, “We need to give marketers the tools to prove that it works, give them the results to be sat at the top table”.
Being ex-agency it’s perhaps easier for MLA’s Howie to accuse most marketers of being ‘shit’. But his reasoning is right, most swim in the middle of the pack, because it’s safe.

    The three P’s

Pitching. Price. And procurement. The increasing role of procurement in the pitch process is potentially dangerous, as decisions may come down to simply price. Not only that but it’s damaging to the industry to have the incessant pitching culture where IP is often given away. All panelists were against this increasing trend. As BMF’s Ali Tilling pointed out, the tenure of CMO’s is continually shortening, averaging just 14 months now. It’s difficult to have the trust need to back creative execution if most don’t get to see a second Australia Day. The creative culture from that perspective needs fixing.

    Data, Insight, Strategy

If the CEO understands the insight, informed by the data, then he/she can explain the strategy. Simon Fowler of WithCollective claimed that we need clients to “buy the logic” behind the magic (aka strategy). And if they understand the strategy it doesn’t matter what the creative is said Howie. “My CEO can simply know that lamb brings people together” whether that strategy means sponsoring Pride or running ads helicoptering Mitchell Johnson from a sun-lounger in Bali for Australia Day.

The Twitter poll on the day agreed that Australia had lost its edge, but there is a lot of great work being produced. It could always be more effective though, measuring business impact of campaigns. Howie’s marketing approach seems obvious, but let’s ensure creative, media and PR are briefed together to allow each to contribute to the success of a campaign idea. Which in turn will hopefully mean the channel is less debated and important, as long as the audience is being reach in the most appropriate platform, be it outdoor, TV or Snapchat.