Last week two great things happened: one, Tim Pointer (our Co-Founder and CEO) spoke at Auckland’s ad:tech event in the Forward Thinking stream; and two, a few of us got to tag along to immerse ourselves in all things advertising. The theme for the day was “welcome to the post-advertising era”, and the content really excited us for where the industry is heading.


Did you miss out on tickets? Want a refresh of the day? Or are interested to know our thoughts on un-fu*king the industry? If so, keep reading!


Group of Upriser's at Ad:tech 2017

Transparency is just a buzzword

Tim Pointer, CEO of Uprise Digital Speaking


A few weeks ago, Tim attended an advertising conference in New York and just about fell to the floor when someone stated that “transparency is just a buzzword”.


Transparency isn’t a “buzzword”. It’s not something that is ‘so hot right now’, although in some circles that’s exactly how it’s viewed. Complete transparency across fees charged, placement and viewability of ads, and effectiveness of campaign performance should be the minimum standard that clients demand from their digital agency.


Transparency was one of the core issues that Tim addressed in his speech at ad:tech. He also spoke about other challenges that the digital advertising industry currently faces, including:


  • Market testing framework and approach – Why taking a strategic view is more important than the tactics themselves.
  • Marketing driving the bottom line – Optimising your message and advertising to drive demonstrable and meaningful results, and not getting distracted by vanity metrics.
  • The dangers with using digital attribution to validate assumptions – How best to eliminate media bias.


Tim closed by pointing out that although we have access to more data and refined targeting than ever before, we’re more hamstrung with how to apply this than ever before.


If the New Zealand advertising industry addresses the critical areas identified above, we are perfectly positioned to become the market leader that the rest of the world looks at as an example of excellence in the world of Digital Advertising.


‘I don’t have time!’… Or do I?

Big Tony from NZ Spark Advertisement



Collectively, our favourite speaker of the day (besides Tim of course) was Brent Smart from IAG. Brent shared his thoughts on how we as marketers can ‘make marketing great again’ through storytelling and focusing on making experiences feel meaningful to the consumer.


We have to remember that consumers have a finite amount of attention for marketers to work with. Studies have indicated that we are each exposed to over 5,000 branded messages each day. We are constantly making decisions on what content to watch or engage with, and what content to ignore and skip.


Our biggest challenge as marketers has become getting people to emotionally engage with branded content. It is becoming clear that the answer isn’t just through competing with other brands via one-to-one targeting or by running a compelling promotion across a selection of advertising channels. Targeted experiences don’t beat shared experiences.


As marketers, we shouldn’t be selling all the time. It is possible to develop ideas that live beyond the media plan. When someone has a positive brand-to-consumer experience, this builds affinity. If we are prepared to stop what we are doing and engage with a brand’s people, advertisements, and products – this is incredibly powerful.


Spark has over the past few years created some great story-based content through its television ads. A personal favourite below, tells the story of Big Tony, a working class New Zealander, who is struggling to connect with his daughter – but finds a way through music.



As digital marketers, we have the opportunity to build storytelling into all of our advertising campaigns regardless of production and budget.


Platforms like Google, Facebook and Instagram have a plethora of options (and more on the way) where ads can be used to educate, inspire, and tell a story to consumers. This enables us to take consumers on a journey from basic awareness and engagement, right through to very specific targeting and call-to-actions to aid conversion efforts.


Through this journey, consumers can associate with the brand, educate themselves on the products, and then eventually become a customer if the experience is a positive one. SEMRush provides some great examples in this space.


Want to hear more from our Uprisers? Keep an eye out on our blog, Facebook and LinkedIn!


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Phoebe Prescott, Uprise Digital Matt Currie, Uprise Digital Ash Duncan, Uprise Digital

Written in collaboration by: Phoebe Prescott, Matt Currie, Ash Duncan 

27 November 2017