Marketing Featured Global

ANA ties with WARC, LIONS to launch global business practice to ‘crack the code of creative effectiveness’

New York, USA – The ANA Global CMO Growth Council (ANA), a partnership between ANA and Cannes LIONS that represents over 1,200 chief marketers worldwide, has partnered with global marketing insights company WARC and LIONS, the home of creativity, to launch a unique long-term research partnership that will create a global framework that guides and supports brands in ‘Cracking the Code of Creative Effectiveness’. 

The initial goal of this project is to address both the culture of effectiveness within organisations, as well as the elements of campaign effectiveness. Other fundamentals of effectiveness, aligned with the ANA Global Growth agenda’s Brand, Creativity & Media pillar, will be incorporated into the creation of the roadmap and foundation for the practice.

Using insights from the ANA, WARC & LIONS, and leveraging work from award-winning marketers over the course of the next twelve months, this partnership will work together to create a framework CMOs and brands can follow to establish a culture of both effectiveness and creative excellence leading to long term success for their businesses. The partnership hopes to leverage peer-to peer-learning, case studies, events, and forums to investigate and benchmark the internal beliefs, organisation structures, and creative frameworks that consistently produce the highest level of creative work and effective culture.

As part of the partnership, the ANA and WARC will also conduct an extensive worldwide qualitative study amongst CMOs to identify the elements of a culture of effectiveness and jumpstart the industry moving towards more effective marketing. The study will build on the existing Creative Effectiveness Ladder, developed by WARC and LIONS, a framework to understand how to utilise creativity to drive specific marketing outcomes.

To kick-start the project, on-stage interviews were conducted at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity at the WARC session ‘What Does it Take to Build a Culture of Creative Effectiveness’ moderated by Harjot Singh, global chief strategy officer at McCann Worldgroup with Joan Colletta, global brand marketing and global creative effectiveness program lead at McDonald’s, and Qaiser Bachani, global head of digital COE and Europe consumer experience lead of Mondelēz International. 

The further insights will be presented at the ANA Masters of Marketing conference from 25 to 28 October 2022.

Nick Primola, EVP and head of Industry Leadership and CMO Practice at the ANA, head of Global CMO Growth Council, said, “Creativity is key to unlocking the energy within brands in order to advance business growth and societal good. This partnership activates all the right stakeholders to truly ‘crack the code’ on creative effectiveness and ultimately drive the industry forward.”

Meanwhile, Simon Cook, CEO of LIONS, shared that LIONS powers global best practice in creativity and they know through analysing years of Lion-winning work that creative effectiveness drives business growth and societal change. 

“Through this partnership with WARC and the ANA, we will support the acceleration of effectiveness in creative work, by reaching the broadest breadth of the global industry, underpinned by the data and insights collated through the Creative Effectiveness Lions award and the accompanying Creative Effectiveness Ladder,” said Cook.

Paul Coxhill, CEO of WARC, noted, “The aim of this partnership is to drive a culture of effectiveness in our industry. WARC’s vast knowledge base, proprietary data and extensive experience in marketing effectiveness, combined with the ANA’s work with their Global CMO Growth Council in partnership with LIONS, will help accelerate the practice of effectiveness.”

The project will continue to be activated after Cannes Lions through a tri-branded podcast series of CMO interviews. Starting in early 2023, the ANA, WARC, and LIONS will also launch the business structure for socialising, benchmarking, and recognising creative effectiveness work, as well as the optimal culture of effectiveness.

Platforms Featured Global

WARC launches new practice to aid brand marketers in e-commerce strategies

London, United Kingdom – Global marketing insights company WARC has launched a new practice called ‘WARC Digital Commerce’, a platform that brings together analysis, best practices and insights for brand marketers and e-commerce leaders to build digital platform marketing strategies and plan for success.

The new practice is launched alongside parent company Ascential which can allow users to track retail media benchmarks and stay ahead of the market with snackable insights on ad spend, shopper journeys and industry growth.

In addition, WARC Digital Commerce will also feature in-depth, evidence-based reports on major digital commerce platforms including Amazon and Walmart, as well as an assortment of continuously refreshed articles providing a detailed look at the strategies and tactics successful brands are using to grow their brands online and quickly outpace their competitors.

Amin Mrini, VP at WARC Digital Commerce, said, “WARC Digital Commerce is founded on the belief that brand marketing and ecommerce are converging – yet the two disciplines speak different languages and have different metrics for success.”

He added, “With this launch we will provide a clear understanding of how to optimise presence, media investment and use creativity to magnify influence on the major digital platforms and drive sales.”

Meanwhile, Patrick Miller, co-president of Ascential Digital Commerce, and co-founder at Flywheel Digital, commented, “As the worlds of marketing, sales, supply chain, and digital commerce come together, it’s paramount that marketers have a comprehensive understanding of how their brands are showing up and performing on the major retailers.”

He added, “The launch of WARC’s Digital Commerce platform is a gamechanger for brand marketers wanting to understand theirs and their competitors’ latest performance data and gain insights and knowledge that will help grow their brand.”

Following the release of the WARC Digital Commerce platform, WARC has released a report about Amazon titled ‘WARC dComm Index™ on Amazon (Q1 2022)’. In the report, WARC provides marketers with a closer look at how Amazon is evolving its business as well as the challenges and opportunities it offers, along with some key takeaways to help marketers turn data and KPIs into actionable insights.

Gregory Grudzinski, head of content at WARC Digital Commerce, and author of the report, said, “Amazon has recently broadened its focus and leaned into the upper marketing funnel – thereby creating a powerful opportunity for brand marketers to use Amazon for brand building as well as for sales.”

Marketing Featured Global

Big Tech to snare 10% of global ad spend by 2030

London, United Kingdom Globally recognized tech platforms are on course to account for 10.0% of all worldwide ad investment by 2030 according to advertising agency WARC’s latest report. 

According to the analysis, advertising expenditure by Alibaba, Alphabet, Amazon, Baidu, Meta, Microsoft, Netflix and Tencent in 2021 totalled $46.6b (+49.4% year-on-year), accounting for 6.0% of all ad investment globally. On the current trajectory, Big Tech’s share of global ad spend is estimated to surpass 10.0% by 2030.

Big Tech’s spending on advertising is also growing faster (+49.4%) than categories such as media and publishing (+34%), technology and electronics (+26%) and retail (+21%). The study also found that Big Tech contributed more than a tenth (10.4%) of all global ad spend growth in 2021.

The report has shown that Amazon becomes the world’s biggest-spending advertiser. In 2009, Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos infamously asserted that,

“Advertising is the price you pay for having an unremarkable product or service.” Fast-forward to 2021, Amazon invested $16.9b in ads (+55.0% year-on-year), the most ever spent by a single company within a 12-month period. 

However, Amazon’s expenditure model appears to be self-funding: investment in advertising helps Amazon to draw shoppers to its e-commerce platform, which in turn increases the revenue it gains from retail media ads – as well as ad spend on products like Twitch and Freevee.

The second-largest advertiser within Big Tech is Alibaba, which invested $8.8b (+84.4%) in 2021. Fuelled by China’s flourishing e-commerce market, Alibaba has grown its share of total spend in the Big Tech category from 2.9% in 2014 to 19% in 2021 – exceeding Google-owner Alphabet in total ad investment ($7.9b, +47.0%) for the first time.

Meanwhile, Microsoft shows the lowest commitment to advertising. It invested $1.5b in 2021, a sum that has remained stable since 2016. However, this may change in light of the prospective acquisition of gaming company Activision Blizzard and Microsoft’s growing ambitions in the metaverse space.

The report also noted that while Big Tech companies are investing vast sums in advertising in absolute terms, these platforms are also growing revenues at a remarkable rate. 

In many cases, Big Tech brands are investing a lower percentage of total sales in advertising. These businesses do not feel bound by rules to maintain levels of ad spend relative to total sales, as one might find in categories such as CPG or automotive.

The notable exception is Facebook-owner Meta, which has accelerated its ad investment. Meta’s ad spend as a percentage of sales has grown from a mere 0.8% in 2017 to 2.5% in 2021.

Marketing Featured Global

WARC launches new sustainability hub, urges industry to commit to net-zero goal

London, UK – Global marketing insights company WARC has partnered with top advertising organizations LIONS and the UK’s Advertising Association to launch the WARC Sustainability Hub, a one-stop resource to help marketing practitioners worldwide tackle the challenges and find innovative ways to implement more sustainable actions to address the climate crisis.

WARC said the new hub is in response to the ongoing global mission of reaching net-zero by 2050, and to lead in empowering the marketing industry to be aligned with the said mission. Environmental and social organizations all over the world, such as the United Nations, have been pushing for the coalition to achieve net-zero emissions in order to manage global warming and keep the global temperature rising above the safe threshold of 1.5 degrees

The new WARC Sustainability Hub brings together a curated collection of content including best practice, effectiveness case studies and thought leadership. Additional resources will be curated from Ad Net Zero, a UK industry-wide initiative led by the Advertising Association, the IPA and ISBA, to reduce the advertising industry’s carbon impact.

Paul Coxhill, CEO of WARC, said that as an industry, advertising and marketing players should not only take the lead in helping change consumer behaviour but also need to look at “own conduct.” 

“To kick-start the launch of this Sustainability Hub, we are delighted to release the WARC Guide to Net Zero Marketing, freely available to all, to help cut through the noise, by providing actionable sustainable marketing best practices to start addressing this global emergency,” said Coxhill. 

Stephen Woodford, chief executive of Advertising Association, commented, The challenge of climate change requires collective action, not just in the UK but around the world. This new Sustainability Hub will help advertising practitioners reduce carbon emissions and produce work to support more sustainable ways of living.”

To launch the Sustainability Hub, WARC has also recently released the WARC Guide to Net Zero Marketing. The report provides a roadmap to help the industry drastically reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions it produces, and achieve a net-zero target.

The Guide contains a compilation of recent industry research and features contributions from more than a dozen industry experts from across the world. It presents frameworks to help marketers drive behavioural change, features examples of brands showing climate leadership, and practical advice on how to avoid the perils of greenwashing.

Lena Roland, author of the report and managing editor of, said, “The global marketing industry is well-placed to help in addressing the climate emergency, given its position at the intersection of several business disciplines with a major environmental impact. But reducing carbon emissions requires systemic change, including rethinking how adverts are made and taking a lean approach to media planning”. 

The report is available for download on WARC’s website. In addition, a series of podcasts on the topic will also follow, which will be available to listen to on all major platforms, including Spotify, Apple, Castbox and RadioPublic.