Insights from Europe's Most Innovative Brands

The digital age has ushered in sweeping changes for brand marketers. With customers taking control of the channels and messages they engage with and creating their own unique, personalized experiences, the customer experience has necessarily become more important than ever for brands. While navigating the shifting sands of customer expectations, tighter regulation and greater competition, one trend is now beyond dispute: the future of marketing is personal.

Most brands now subscribe to the idea that they must deliver impactful, customer-led interactions that deliver a clear brand purpose and narrative. However, if the perfect, one-size-fits-all marketing strategy has been conceived of, we have yet to hear of it. Rather, collaboration and the sharing of best practice are essential means of raising standards as a whole. With customer and data-led engagement at the heart of the CMOs’ priorities, we must bring all marketers together to evolve the conversation.

We at the Incite Group recently spoke to three brand marketing leaders to find out more about the challenges they are facing heading in to 2019, as well as which technologies and trends that brands will seek to leverage in their pursuit of the ultimate brand marketing strategy.

A common theme throughout the discussions was a desire on the part of brands to derive deeper insights from data analytics, to optimise the customer journey, sales, marketing and distribution. The sense is that there is a great deal of potential to attain transformative insights if the right technologies can be applied in the right areas. As Spark Networks’ Bart Visser explains, “a data-driven understanding of which formats and channels work for which brands, and in which markets is essential to ensure marketing efficiencies and improved brand recognition, as well as to create a seamless experience for customers.”

From Aon’s perspective, Arjen Vissers predicts 2019 will see the market make great strides in data and analytics-driven marketing intelligence. Where marketing is concerned, “understanding future clients and following, predicting and adapting to their behaviour is the key to future success.” The picture is somewhat similar at Volkswagen; “Now the time has come,” says Michal Szaniecki, “to gain even more actionability and simplicity with data management and visualisation to detect and monetise behavioural patterns in big data quicker than the competition.” It seems likely that as more companies seek to leverage this advantage from better data analytics, the first-mover advantage will diminish. The caveat is, however, that all concerned must begin the process of integrating advanced data analytics into their marketing, sales, distribution and customer experience strategies sooner rather than later or face being unable to compete in a customer-centric, technology-driven environment.

Check out the “The Priorities and Challenges Facing Marketing Leaders in 2019” to hear exclusive insights from Michal Szaniecki, Managing Director SEAT and Cupra, Volkswagen Group, Bart Visser, Director of Brand Marketing, Spark Networks and Arjen Vissers, EMEA Marketing Director, AON.

Access the full Q&A now for exclusive and detailed insights into:

  • Top three strategic priorities for brand marketing leaders in 2019
  • The technologies and trends marketing leaders predict will heavily impact marketing and customer engagement in 2019
  • Why understanding the customer journey, delivering personalized experiences and predicting future customer needs is non-negotiable for the future-focused brand

Access the full Q&A here

This Q&A and article were produced in association with the CMO Council’s partner event, the 2019 Brand Marketing Summit, taking place 25-26 June, at the Grange Tower Bridge Hotel, London, UK. Welcoming over 120 attendees from globally-recognised brands, the two-day event is Europe’s only brand-focused and brand-led marketing conference and will explore the cutting-edge marketing strategies driving brand growth and differentiation in crowded markets. CMO Council members can use the exclusive discount code "CMOC200" to have £200 (about $261) off registration. For more information, please visit the website:, or just get in touch:  

Paul Bergamini is the Project Director at the Incite Group. He is responsible for driving the group's conferences from concept and strategy through to delivery. Through insights gained at the conferences and in the interactions he has with marketing executives globally, he is also responsible for producing content from whitepapers to webinars. He is currently focused on how brands are understanding their customer's journey and delivering personalized, exceptional marketing. This includes the key partnerships that marketers are forming with industry partners to elevate marketing and inspire loyalty.


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