It is now time to turn the
spotlight onto global media agency MediaCom, an agency
which has five offices across the UK, including Manchester's MediaCom
MediaCom UK plan and buy media for
some of the country's biggest advertisers, such as Sky, Volkswagen,
DFS, GlaxoSmithKline, Procter and Gamble and Universal.
They work across all traditional,
new and emerging media, from TV, to Digital, Print to Content, Out
of Home to Mobile and Sponsorship to Search.
Representing MediaCom North is
Digital Operations Director, Rob
Weatherhead. Rob has been working with MediaCom for over 2
years, having previously worked at Latitude Digital Marketing. Rob
was named in Media Week's '30 under 30' in 2011.
Rob is a contributing author for
the Guardian Media Network, Econsultancy and Haymarket
Publications. In addition, he has a passion for all things digital
and is a regular speaker at events such as Fresh Business Thinking,
Business North West and SAScon.
Hello Rob, and thank you
for letting us interview you for our Digital Agency Showcase. What
is your main job role and responsibility within
I am the Digital Operations
Director for the MediaCom iLab function based out of Manchester. It
is a centralised digital department which services MediaCom offices
in Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh and Dublin delivering
strategies for our clients across PPC (pay per click), SEO (search
engine optimisation), Affiliate, Display and Technology.
As Operations Director, my role is
to ensure the teams are delivering digital strategies for our
clients, which not only meet the brief, but are also at the
forefront of the market in terms of thinking and innovation.
Aside from client strategies, I am
also responsible for ensuring our technology solutions set us apart
from our competitors and deliver real added value to our clients
2. Please could you pick a
case study from 2012, and explain why you have chosen it to
represent MediaCom's work?
I have chosen to highlight the work
we completed for National
Tyres on their local strategy. This case study stands out as it
won an award at the
2012 UK Search Awards. It is also a great example of where
superb results can be achieved without the need for huge budgets
and where, with a little bit of innovative thinking, search can
deliver in different ways based on a client's needs.
3. What brief were you
initially supplied with, and what objectives did the MediaCom team
devise when briefed?
The brief provided by the client
was deliberately open ended, 'how can we use search to support our
local branch network.'
National Tyres historical media
strategy had centred predominantly around regional press to
generate branch awareness. Whilst successful in some areas it came
with a reasonably high cost per customer.
In addition, advances such as
mobile Internet has provided consumers access to information
wherever they are, and if a consumer needs a tyre urgently they
would look to find a local provider on their mobile.
Mediacom was challenged with
putting together a strategy, which made the most of this changing
4. What campaign strategy did the agency devise to
answer the brief and objectives that were set?
The objectives of the campaign were
four fold: capitalise on the growing use of local search to find
tyre providers, provide a greater performance than regional press
activity, drive calls from mobile sites directly to the local
branch network and reach people that are in need of a tyre urgently
at the right time, in the right place, with the right
MediaCom put together a strategy
consisting of: a local search campaign based around the branch
network, effective planning around key times of tyre purchases, and
an effective localised user journey which allows for direct contact
with the branch and local level offers which could be redeemed in
5. How did MediaCom
implement the campaign strategy?
In order to reach people in the
right location, we set up geo-targeted campaigns around the
catchment area of each branch involved, and this supported the
regional press activity using complementary messages.
Advertisements were targeted to the
location of the searcher and ad extensions in the form of maps
further enhanced the local appeal. This also enabled distressed
users to get directions to their nearest National Tyres, and
further helping those that may find themselves in distress in an
was implemented on all of the geo-targeted campaigns to take into
account a number of factors:
National Tyres would see an influx of interest at lunchtime and
after 7pm during the week so increased bids were put in place at
these times to make best use of a relatively limited budget.
Tuesday were the two high-volume days were we typically saw a 40%
uplift in conversion to customer calls. Advertisement bids were
significantly higher on these days to capitalise on this trend.
alongside our print team we were able to co-ordinate tactical
increases in CPCs (cost per click) in line with our press activity
being distributed to capitalise on any potential brand awareness
click to call extensions - which enable customers to directly call
from the numbers on mobile sites - allowed for a direct call
through to National branch from mobile devices further playing to
the needs of the mobile searcher. This saw a huge impact with
over 100 direct calls per month generated through click to call
alone representing over 7% of overall call volumes.
mobile friendly, landing pages, were created to specifically target
branch location, gave customers the details they needed including
maps and directions. In addition unique 0800 numbers directed
them straight to the relevant branch should they wish to follow up
As a final
incentive to use National Tyres over a competitor and in support of
National Press activity, bespoke offers based on branch locations
were displayed in both the PPC (pay per click) advertisements copy
and the landing pages.
offers for individual branches such as "20% off Exhausts in
Portsmouth" or "50% off MOTs in Kingston" could all be followed
through in branch and tailored to an individual branch managers'
needs and pricing strategy.
These offers could be redeemed in
branch simply by displaying the offer coupon on the mobile
6. Could you tell us what
results were derived from the campaign strategy, and any positive
feedback that MediaCom received from the campaign?
The PPC (pay per click)
advertisement activity was a success from launch, driving calls at
a cost 70% cheaper than regional press across the five initial test
branches. Due to this positive performance the activity was
expanded to include a further 13 branches, and this generated over
1,300 calls per month direct into branch.
Local PPC (pay per click)
advertisements now forms part of the launch strategy for any new
branches introduced by National Tyres as the client considers
location based advertising key to the success of their branch
7.Could you give a top tip
to any perspective digital marketing candidates who would like to
work in an agency like MediaCom?
Love digital, and keep
learning. The people who do well within an agency environment
love what they do, and keep looking for ways to learn and do things
better. If you are looking for an easy life, then an agency
probably isn't for you. But if you are looking for an
environment where you can learn quickly, have variety in your work
and be rewarded based on performance then an agency can be a great
place to work.
The Candidate's Summary:
Here at The Candidate we are
extremely impressed by the great use of local within this campaign.
MediaCom took a challenging task, and overcame it with great
results. It definitely deserved the award at the UK Search
We would like to thank MediaCom
North and Rob for taking part in the Digital Agency Showcase, and
we hope they continue to win at what they do.