Leaders in Conversation
Leading Transformation in the New Normal
Jacki Kelley, CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network Americas and Yoshihisa Suzuki, Executive Officer, Dentsu Inc. discuss the Dentsu Group’s challenges, opportunities, vision and commitment in this never-before environment.
CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network, Americas
Jacki has been a recognized and lauded leader in the advertising and media industry for over 25 years. Jacki joined Dentsu Aegis Network in 2019 as President, Chief Client Officer DAN US and was appointed to CEO, Dentsu Aegis Network Americas in January 2020. Jacki serves on the boards of Ad Council, FreshPet and Comic Relief USA and has been honored with the United Way of New York City’s Power of Women to Make a Difference Award, as well as number one on Business Insider’s 30 Most Powerful Women in Advertising list.
Executive Officer, Dentsu Inc.
Yoshihisa Suzuki initially joined Dentsu Inc. in 1990. He spearheaded and led numerous business areas such as the Marketing Division, the Business Creation Division, and the Promotion Division. Under his leadership, ‘People Driven Marketing’, the integrated framework for aggregating and advancing the Dentsu Group’s marketing methods has been deployed. He was the former President of Dentsu Digital Inc. from 2017 to 2019, and was newly appointed as an Executive Officer of Dentsu Inc. in 2020, energizing the strategy of Dentsu’s digital transformation.
Envisioning the new normal post COVID-19
The past few months have brought our business and people to test, as the pandemic, economic, and societal storm impacted our professional and personal lives in a way few of us had anticipated or experienced in modern history, but I have always been an optimist. While it may seem difficult to speak of optimism in the face of so many devastating and heartbreaking moments, I believe we will emerge stronger as an organization, more resilient and compassionate as leaders and individuals.
I agree. We must look beyond the distress and see these issues as opportunities for a fundamental structural transformation. We are well equipped to help our clients move toward a world where business growth relies on the ability to realize a business structure that integrates online and offline, and to realize new work, consumption, and experiences that offer a new level of efficiency and satisfaction. By doing so we create value not only for clients but also for society as a whole, a new normal in value creation.
Diversity and integration: The strengths of
the Dentsu Group
I believe the current situation will bring out the best in the Dentsu Group because we are a partner that can solve unforeseen challenges, with a reputation of being able to make the impossible, possible. We have exceptional expertise both online and offline, sophisticated analytics, outstanding creativity, and the unique competence as a solutions producer integrating diverse competencies and executing with a commitment to results. In moving toward a new ideal post COVID-19, this will make a substantial contribution to our clients’ success.
The challenges in the Americas markets were intensified by the social and political events in addition to the public health and financial crisis felt by the rest of the world. We have been able to rise above this challenge as a truly global company. The Dentsu Group comes from a lineage of diversity and inclusion in our workforce and our biggest strength lies in self-reflection and continuous, relentless improvement, with Kaizen being a key part of our heritage.
We are doubling down our commitment to our employees, clients, and society, to be more transparent, bolder, and braver in building a world-class workplace that reflects our values and the communities we serve; driving sustainable growth through innovation; and delivering idea-led, tech-enabled and data-fueled brand transformation at a global scale.
Leading the transformation of marketing
Like many of the greatest leaps in business and technology, major transformations take place in bursts during a short period of time, driven by pivotal events. In this time of change, we help our clients to fast-track business-critical transformations through holistic strategies, end-to-end commerce solutions across our media, creative, and CRM LoBs, bridging online and offline customer experience; identity platforms built for the cookie-less world; powerful alliances to deliver true integration in marketing; as well as purpose- and data-driven creativity that communicates at the individual level while driving results at scale.
Dentsu sees marketing as founded in people. We develop data-driven marketing that can deliver optimum solutions for achieving client goals through leveraging insights into people, creativity that sparks changes in people’s feelings and behavior, and algorithms that optimize marketing investments. Knowing our clients’ customers and potential customers will lead to higher ROI on the part of our clients and enhance their customers’ engagement as marketing will provide information that they need and is more relevant to them. When we are able to comprehend customers even further with data available in the 5G era, we will be able to cultivate new relationships with them.
Our role as an agency group will shift more and more toward helping our clients’ business sustainably thrive for the long term. Businesses will not be able to grow in isolation but rather can succeed as part of a connected society of inclusive partnerships, industry alliances, and joint ventures with the public sector. We must bolster our current mandate of delivering growth solutions by introducing integrated solutions that address unmet needs in society while simultaneously creating enterprise value. By putting society, and the communities in which our client‘s businesses operate at the center of our work, we can help brands intersect with culture in a far more meaningful way than most do today.
The power of global collaboration
While the global crisis is undeniably tragic and the Americas take a heavy hit in many ways, we are fortunate to have the ability to leverage our global presence, and to learn from our regional markets that are ahead of us, such as APAC and EMEA. This has proven invaluable in this unprecedented environment where traditional marketing playbooks are often inadequate. While being sensitive to our clients’ confidentiality, we are also able to pool our collective experience working with clients globally so that our clients can come out of this ahead of the game. We are especially excited about the collaboration around sports and entertainment where Dentsu’s legacy business provides meaningful differentiation for the rest of the world.
The same issues are constantly being shared somewhere else in the world, and since the COVID-19 crisis, this has become even more evident. To make the world a better place, clients will be restarting from zero and will require speed. Marketing in the connected age will be about the speed of being the first to establish a de facto standard, with more clients using the knowledge gained to improve. The Dentsu Group will be a forerunner in sharing common issues around the world including solutions and knowledge.