The inside story behind the Facebook and Mondelez global strategic partnership

28/03/2014

Facebook and Mondelez, the owner of Cadbury and Oreo, have joined forces and signed a global strategic partnership. So with two giants sitting down to dinner together, what are the benefits of strategic partnerships, and what can other brands learn from this? Jerry Daykin, the new global digital director for the Mondelez account at Dentsu Aegis Network, was formerly European social media marketing manager at Mondelez. He explains how partnerships can transform brand-building and take it to a new level.

Jenny Cornish Jenny Cornish Carat Blog Editor Carat UK
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Facebook’s platform has developed into a powerful brand building tool which no longer just connects brands with communities to their biggest fans, but also allows them to reach & engage millions of the consumers that matter to their business. Our strategic partnership unlocks creative support, capability driving training, innovation opportunities and media savings which will allow Mondelez brands to find the very best way to use the platform to achieve this.
 
The partnership supports Mondelez’s global ambition to move more of its media spending into innovative digital & mobile channels, and to more efficiently reach their target consumers. It’ll also help them better measure the impact of this shift and truly show how it affects their bottom line, which is crucial for any ROI focused business. Their brand teams will get direct access to strategic, creative and even engineering resources at Facebook and the opportunity to brief them with the real business challenges they face.
 
Brands should be aware of the shift in the scale of opportunity that Facebook, and other digital platforms, are now starting to offer. Many of them now reach more people than traditional media channels, and whilst they must be approached differently this does allow them to drive objectives in similarly traditional ways. Partnerships like this are an important way of getting added value, often from existing media spends, and for driving real changes in an organisation.
 
So how do these partnerships come about? Clive Record, Head of Global Media Partnerships at Dentsu Aegis Network, explains:
 
The Mondelez – Facebook partnership is the biggest that DAN have signed with Facebook on behalf of a global client. More importantly, it is a great example of DAN delivering a media partnership that delivers value way beyond commercial rewards.  
 
Historically, global deals have largely been conducted between the media owner and the client direct and this has led to fairly one-dimensional commercial ‘partnerships’. The major digital media owners are not in the habit of negotiating enticing commercial deals; they have set rigid global rate-card structures that leave little room for negotiation and little in the way of client differentiation.  
 
Consequently, our GMP objective, within Amplifi, is to make the partnerships more interesting and ultimately transformational for the clients. We do this by taking our understanding of the client's business/marketing challenges and structuring a partnership that speaks to these problems. The partnerships are built to work within a broad theme(s) with clear pillars of value, all constructed to deliver against the client challenge. 
 
The Mondelez-Facebook partnership is built upon a clear client mobile and point of purchase challenge: 
 
Mondelez operate in a high impulse category and even though they invest $m’s in advertising, they cannot influence consumers at the moment of impulse.  They know mobile is the only device that the consumer carries at that significant moment and therefore want to figure out how to activate it.
 
The intention is to leverage our investment to develop actionable retail insight and a more effective use of mobile. To create focus we have identified seven key markets and four priority brands. To deliver tangible value, the partnership is built on four key elements: commercial, innovation, data (and research) and capability.  
 
Innovation is part of Mondelez’s marketing DNA and we have subsequently put great emphasis on this area of the partnership, committing to the delivery of 2x transformational innovation projects over the next 12 months.
 
These types of partnerships can only work if we have a senior client sponsor and buy in from the local markets to support the deal: Gerry D’Angelo (European Director of Media) has led this partnership from a Mondelez perspective and ensured local input as well as allowing Carat to lead all partnership conversations.  
 
It was very important that all three parties worked together towards a common goal – this is not about leveraging global spend power to put pressure on the media owner, we had to work with Facebook to deliver a partnership that worked for them too. 
Jenny Cornish Jenny Cornish Carat Blog Editor Carat UK
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