Indie media agency Audience Group hires head of digital and analytics

Independent media agency Audience Group has hired Sam Grimwood as the agency’s head of digital and analytics.

The announcement:

Full service, independent media agency, Audience Group, has married its programmatic and data analytics teams under a new hybrid Head of Digital & Analytics role, cementing analytics into the development and management of clients’ media strategies.

“Being ‘data driven’ is thrown around so much now but it is critical that organisations create a structure and a workflow that actually allows their people to make the best use of the data they have,” said James McDonald, Director, Audience Group. “We’ve united our digital and analytics functions to bring evidence based advertising to the fore.”

Sam Grimwood, Audience Group’s new Head of Digital & Analytics says he was drawn to the challenger media agency because it offers him tools to dig into the data, room to explore and opportunity to think creatively about marketing problems

“What I found across the digital and media landscape is that we have a flood of data but a drought of actual science to make the most of it,” said Grimwood. “Audience Group has the best set up to make use of data and analytics and we’re actively pushing the envelope with client campaigns and helping clients make optimal decisions with their data.”

Many ways to spend each media dollar

As organisations strive to use their data available to help them decide things like where and how to allocate funds, there are even greater expectations on CMOs and marketing departments to be able to rationalise their media buying decisions with hard data.

“Data is useless if it’s just sitting there,” said Grimwood. “I’m interested in finding out where is the best place to put each client’s next dollar of investment. It’s all about helping them make optimal decisions with as much data as makes sense.”

That’s why Audience Group injects analytics into the campaign planning process from the outset.

“So often in this industry a media campaign goes live then data is gathered and fed to someone who can analyse what’s happened, after the fact. That’s an outdated model,” said McDonald.

“In that scenario, the natural thing to do is celebrate any success you can find … yay click throughs! The risk is that you exaggerate what looks like success and minimise what could be deemed failures. And what does any of it matter if you’re not testing against a plan or a hypothesis tied to actual business outcomes or objectives?

“By joining digital and analytics together, and involving them at the design stage of each campaign, we can create a plan that is right for each client and their specific business objectives and can measure for results and ROI that will actually make sense to their business,” said McDonald.

It’s a far cry from Tijuana

In between a Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing & Marketing Management and a research-based Master in Advertising degree at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch, Grimwood started a backpacking business guiding tours in Tijuana.

Previous client-side marketing roles include an award-winning stint as marketing coordinator for Christchurch International Airport, and marketing roles at Australis College and the Australian Institute of Food Safety. Grimwood spent nearly three years as Digital Performance Manager then Senior Manager for Zenith in Brisbane, where he worked on clients such as Lite n’ Easy, Mercedes-Benz and Australia Zoo.

“I’ve discovered that agency-side is my natural habitat,” said Grimwood. “This hybrid digital and analytics role is a natural fit for my skillset and the kind of work I want to be doing.”

Source: Audience Group media release


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