We're interested in personalization of advertising and marketing at scale: Sir Martin Sorrell

Sir Martin Sorrell on S4 Capital's areas of focus and guiding principlesComyan
  • Sir Martin Sorrell announced the launch of media consultancy firm, MightyHive in Mumbai.
  • He spoke about S4 Capital's areas of focus and the four principles that they follow
  • Sorrell is optimistic about the Indian market which is growing at a faster rate than other markets and has a great potential
  • He shared that their focus will be on developing a new era, new-age model and on disrupting the traditional business approach model.
After being at the helm of WPP for close to three decades, Sir Martin Sorrell launched S4 Capital, a digital advertising and marketing services company. In India currently, Sorrell has made two strategic announcements, firstly that of its global content practice MediaMonks acquiring Delhi-based content creation and production company WhiteBalance, and secondly, the launch of media consultancy MightyHive’s new office in Mumbai that will be led by Smita Salgaonkar.

While addressing a press meet, Sorrell spoke about S4 Capital’s areas of focus and the guiding principles. “We are currently focusing on two things, firstly on developing a new era, new-age model and secondly, on disrupting the traditional business approach model. We have four core principles. One is purely Digital. We’re not interested in any traditional activity. India is an interesting market because here Digital accounts for 20% of the market whereas globally it’s around 40%. However, while Digital is growing at around 30-35%, traditional is growing at high single digits and the overall industry is growing at about 10-12%. It’s not as rapid a growth as we've seen in the past but it’s still very strong in a worldwide context. It’s different because the market is still dominated by traditional media but with digital coming up fast,” he said.

Delving deeper into their principles, Sorrell said, “Our second principle is this model that we have of first party data driving the development of digital content and programmatic. We're interested in personalization of advertising and marketing at scale. That’s on the content and programmatic side. The third fundamental principle is a tagline, ‘Faster, Better, Cheaper’, which sounds a bit simplistic but it really has traction with clients. To my mind, those are the things the clients are really focused on. We have been looking at industry trends and the thinking is dominated by those three things. So ‘faster’ is about agility. Old legacy companies are looking for their organizations to become more agile. ‘Better’ is about understanding the digital ecosystem. There are around 14-16 companies like Google, Facebook Amazon, Tencent, Apple and Microsoft, that we’re focused on and we have to agnostically evaluate those companies for our clients because that's how they distribute their digital. So understanding those companies is about ‘better’. And then the final area is ‘cheaper’ and becoming more cost efficient. And the fourth principle is a unitary structure instead of a fragmented one.”

Sorrell also spoke about the increasing need of transparency in business which he said will help reduce the penalties being imposed on agencies by clients for not being able to fulfill their promises.

While not disclosing the absolutes, he shared that S4 Capital has had a good 10 months and the last two months have especially been good. “We are now up to a market capitalization of $1.1 billion. We have 2000 people in 26 countries. So we’ve had a good start in just a little over a year. I’m very pleased with the progress but there’s a lot more work to do,” he said.

Globally, S4 Capital has won some major new clients including Sony Pictures, Coca-Cola, HP, Google, and Apple, among others.

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