Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

Saint Betteridge, MD, Picnic on Google’s Core Web Vitals initiative, contextual targeting and creativity

As we look ahead to NDA’s flagship networking Trinity Lunch event in November, we’re talking to some of our partners and VIP guests to hear their thoughts on the industry the event will be celebrating. First up is Saint Betteridge, Managing Director at Picnic

What is the biggest opportunity for advertisers or publishers in digital marketing in the next 6 months and why?

The return or rebirth of creativity and contextual targeting. Creative excellence is coming to the fore again, as it should with clients and agencies expecting creative excellence capabilities.

This coupled with the latest developments in contextual targeting, namely machine learning to serve relevant ads in real-time, creates a significant opportunity for premium publishers.

What is the biggest challenge for advertisers or publishers and how will this be overcome?

The deprecation of 3rd-party cookies is well documented so I’m going to go with Google’s Core Web Vitals initiative.

Created to provide unified guidance for measuring a great user experience on the web, it will be essential that advertisers’ formats and publishers’ websites comply with Google’s measurement criteria for the CWV assessment. Google’s AMP supply fully complies with CWV so publishers and suppliers in this space are already in a great position.

What technology are you most excited about at the moment and why?

There are two things I’m going to call out here. First of all, a shameless plug for Picnic Studio, which gives our customers the capability to repurpose their social adverts in real-time in Picnic’s social ad display formats, adding further agility and adaptability to our proposition.

Secondly, deep learning tech developments which are 2500x more powerful than machine learning – amazing tech that can accurately predict user behaviour.

What industry individual or company have you been most impressed by this year and why?

For me it’s OmniGOV, Campaign’s Agency of the Year, for the way it has adapted to the demands of the pandemic and the unprecedented marketing comms requirements. A huge undertaking which has required it to innovate, by for example setting up a supply-side platform. 

What has been yours or your company’s most impressive achievement this year and why?

There are three key achievements to call out here. The first being the fantastic flexible working culture we’ve created at Picnic, where every voice is heard and all opinions are considered.

Team ethos is front and centre in how we all collaborate and work together. Secondly, raising the profile of Picnic across UK agencies. The potential for the Picnic proposition is significant and exciting, and it’s great to be able to represent and take this to current and new customers.

Finally, working with our agency and client partners, and consistently delivering and out-performing their required outcomes, which is a reflection of the quality of the Picnic platform.  

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