Talking Mobile with Intel’s David Veneski

David Veneski spearheads media initiatives for one of the world’s largest brands. As Intel’s Director, North America Integrated Consumer Marketing and Advertising, David has developed industry-leading media strategies, gaining wide recognition for his innovative and unique approach to digital, social and mobile campaigns. Mobile Media Summit Director of Programming Jay Field caught up with David to talk about the growth of mobile and what to expect when he takes the stage at Mobile Media Summit Chicago.
Jay: David, welcome back. At this year’s Mobile Media Summit Chicago, you’ll be reprising a discussion you had at our San Francisco Summit in 2013 with John Durham of Catalyst S+F. Looking back, how have the changes in the past two years matched what you predicted then? What are some surprises in mobile you didn’t see coming?
David: Thank you for the opportunity to join again this year, Jay. Glad to be coming to the Windy City and sharing some time with John and Paran during Mobile Media Summit Chicago. A lot has happened since 2013. One thing that I’ve been saying for years is that the mobile device is our ‘First Screen’. What we’ve seen with the evolution of mobile over the last few years proves that. Not only is it our first screen, for the younger generation (Millennials) it is sometimes their ONLY screen. Imagine a world where you consume every piece of content in your life on a 4-6” screen – everything from music and short form video, to books and images shared through Snapchat & Instagram, to – dare I say – full length TV shows and feature films. Two years ago I don’t think you would have seen such an aggressive shift of content consumption from the ‘horizontal’ screen of Television to the ‘vertical’ screen of your mobile device.

As you can see by the pace of the industry and the innovation around mobile, this is the platform to focus on from a media and marketing perspective. Looking back at what John and I discussed in 2013, it’s remarkable to see how much our brand accomplished in the mobile space up to that point – and we’ve only gotten better since. Intel is built on innovation. We take that very seriously, not just in the products we develop but also how we market them.

Our work in mobile is 4+ years in the making and we’re extremely proud of the programs we’ve built with key media and agency partners. As early as 2011 we realized that smart mobile executions around key passion points (such as music, sports, and entertainment) were critical to us reaching a desirable audience. You could almost say that we were ahead of our time focusing on those passion points as evidenced by how prevalent music, sports and entertainment are in mobile today.

We’re experiencing an acceleration in innovation like none we’ve seen before on a media platform. It’s exciting. I’m glad Intel is invested in, and continuing to be a leader in mobile brand and media executions.
Jay: As you touched on, in 2013 you said that mobile is no longer the 3rd screen, it is the 1st screen – particularly with the 18-24 age group. How have you been able to integrate this insight into Intel’s marketing in 2015?
David: Our audience focus for 2015 is squarely on Millennials in the U.S. The larger media platforms like TV obviously provide air-cover across a range of ages and audience types – but even then we purchase programming that is favorable to our Millennial target.

With regard to mobile (and all of our strategic media buys), we definitely implement the data and insights to identify the right opportunity, for the right target, on the right platform.

We have two jobs this year with our marketing efforts: continue to build the Intel brand while driving demand for Intel-based products. With mobile, we have a unique opportunity to do both through a very personal platform. We are working to customize ad formats for the ‘vertical’ screen. They are often fast, interactive, and predominately video or rich media with a trend toward ‘buy’ buttons that are optimized for mobile to allow our customers the ability to transact immediately.
Jay: Give us a preview of your upcoming talk with John Durham in Chicago, where you’ll be discussing ways to keep mobile media fresh and innovative. How do you build an organization that makes great mobile marketing?
David: John and I are still forming our chat. We’ve done this a few times before and I love John’s perspective on the industry and the opportunity in mobile. I’m sure the discussion will be lively. He’s a great interviewer that does a wonderful job of tailoring a fireside chat to the subject (mobile media and marketing) as well as his partner on stage. I’m really looking forward to sharing some time with him.

Regarding your organization question, I’m a firm believer in collaboration with leaders in the industry. We have great internal talent at Intel that teams well with media partners, agency partners and mobile-specific experts outside of the walls of our buildings. Mobile is still pretty new territory for most brands (we’ve been blessed to be exercising our marketing and media muscle in this space for some time) so I think it’s critical for companies to be open to that outside collaboration with partners that live and breathe this space every day. That said, you also need internal champions that identify trends and have a passion for these emerging media platforms. I’ve got a strong interest in mobile and an affinity for breaking new ground on media platforms that allow for continued innovation. In the U.S. region we’ve had the opportunity to consistently test new media and marketing capabilities in mobile and we’ll continue to do that in 2015, 2016 and beyond.
Jay: What can we expect to see from Intel in the coming year? How will you evolve your efforts to take advantage of wearables, location-based services, the internet of things, and other new tactics and strategies?
David: I mentioned previously that we have two jobs at Intel this year and in 2016: continue to build the Intel brand and drive demand for our products. With that brand building you’ll see a messaging shift that brings the goodness of Intel on the ‘inside’ of your product to be a more clear value proposition and show how we are an enabler of great product experiences on the ‘outside’. We enable so many experiences that people are not generally aware of, beyond being a component in a PC or tablet. Our focus on our core business remains vital – we won’t waver from that. You will also see us embrace all compute platforms that are available to us while growing our footprint into new areas, including wearables and the internet of things. We lead in innovation and we have great history to draw from. I’m excited about what’s ahead of us.