WARC, the global authority on advertising and media effectiveness, has released MENA’s Anatomy of Effectiveness, a report aimed at advertising agencies, marketers and media owners alike, highlighting five key priorities for brands seeking to improve their impact in the Middle East and North Africa region.
Following on from the successful launch at Cannes Lions last year of WARC’s Anatomy of Effectiveness, a MENA perspective has been applied to the white paper, which has been produced in collaboration with Choueiri Group and Kantar.
Top industry leaders from the region’s marketing communications industry have drawn on their expertise to share their views on how the ideas outlined in the report translate in the region.
Contributors to the report include, Asad Rehman, Director Media & Digital Transformation, MENA, Unilever; Karsten Janckowski, GM Marketing and PR, Infiniti Middle East; Youmna Borghol, Chief Data Officer, Choueiri Group; Shadi Kandil, CEO, MCN MediaBrands, Middle East; Manaswita Singh, Executive Director, Insights Division, Kantar UAE; and Ziad Skaff, Managing Director at Hall & Partners, Dubai.
In addition to local expert commentary, the report is supported by data and includes a range of case studies of best in class marketing from around the region, from brands including Uber UAE, STC Saudi Arabia, Nescafe Egypt, Vodafone Turkey, Head & Shoulders MENA, relevant to each of the five themes.
David Tiltman, VP Content, WARC, comments: “Around the world, there’s a rising concern among marketers that traditional forms of advertising are not driving brand growth in the ways they have come to expect. They are facing the challenges of attracting and holding consumers’ attention in a fragmented media environment. They see the rise of ad blocking, and the mounting problems within digital communications. And these issues are relevant in MENA.
“However, there’s a huge opportunity to hone the craft of marketing for the MENA region by adapting global best practice to work with local, cultural and socio-political nuances and reach over 400 million Arabic-speaking people.”
WARC’s MENA Anatomy of Effectiveness highlights the following five priorities for marketers who want their advertising budgets to deliver a return:
- Invest for growth: Covers the wide range of factors that marketers need to consider when determining budgets, setting realistic objectives and working out what a campaign should deliver. Also outlines how to understand MENA’s macro conditions such as population movements and supply chain management.
- Balancing spend: Sets out the frameworks for investment to ensure sustainable success by establishing equilibrium between brand building and sales. At a local level, it looks at how to balance digital and offline media spend, and how to avoid common mistake such as focusing only on Ramadan.
- The power of effective reach: Successful brands plan for both reach and targeting. In MENA, TV enhances digital media effectiveness and continues to be the strongest channel to build brand awareness; it is particularly effective in providing cross-generational reach.
- Plan for recognition: Distinctive, unique and simple brand assets used consistently will strengthen a brand. However, localisation is essential for global brands which need to make room for cultural nuances and adapt business models to different ways of working.
- Be creative, be emotional, be distinctive: if all other things are equal, creativity makes the difference. MENA has seen a growth in communication strategies that humanise brands, capitalising on the region’s strong heritage of rich storytelling and vibrant creativity.
WARC’s MENA‘s Anatomy of Effectiveness report, to help the region’s brands and agencies drive more effective engagement with their consumers, is available to download in full here.