Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

My Digital Hero: Guy Wieynk, Global CEO, AnalogFolk

Guy Wieynk joined AnalogFolk from Publicis Worldwide, where he was CEO UK and Western Europe, in October 2019, when the agency also bought his consultancy Serum Consulting. A digital veteran, he spent over 15 years at AKQA before joining Publicis in 2015..

Who is your digital hero?

Reed Hastings, Co-Founder, Chairman, CEO, Netflix.

What has he done to win hero status in your eyes?

There are simply too many but at a high level he was brave enough to bet the entire Netflix business around a single pivot from CDs into streaming.    He was the underdog / disrupter in the David v Goliath battle with Blockbusters – clearly, he won.    

He pioneered new management approaches to performance and employee empowerment that  managers  still refer to. Finally, he decided that the Facebook board was not the right place to be for him personally and resigned his seat despite the obvious financial and personal benefits of holding that role.    

How has his heroism helped drive digital?

Netflix has taken streaming to a whole new level and one could argue that it carved out the new battle ground for consumers by investing in original content which is revitalising the production industry.   Netflix’s 2019  costs to buy, produce and license  content  were roughly $15 billion – up from $12 billion in 2018.  

By comparison Apple  has  spent  over $6 billion on new TV shows and movies for its forthcoming service, TV+ and Amazon  spent between $5 billion to $6 billion this year on  content, according to an estimate from BTIG media analyst Rich Greenfield.

What are the biggest challenges in digital we need another hero to solve?

Deep fakes, especially given the uncertainty in world politics at this moment in time.

This is not just a Facebook problem, or even a tech problem, it’s a cultural problem about the spread of misinformation and the digital attention economy we live in that allows it to flourish.

We need a solution to deep fakes that treats the root cause, not just the symptoms.

What is your most heroic personal achievement so far in digital?

I’m lucky enough to have worked at the forefront of the convergence between digital and traditional marketing in my career, having spent the last 25 years helping brands leverage a blend of creativity, technology and data to capitalise on change and  create tangible business results.

These partnerships have led to some amazing work that I’m really proud to have been a part of, including the dual-screen football game experience, Heineken StarPlayer, Fiat Eco Drive and Nike Training Club.  

However, I think my biggest achievement is still yet to come as I embark on my new role as Global CEO of independent digital network AnalogFolk, and champion our mission to help brands use digital technology to make the analog world better!