Nokia Puts DR in Your Pocket1 Jul, 2008 By: Thomas Haire Response
The new Nokia Interactive works with Hyundai, BP and Pepsi on mobile campaigns, and Jeremy Wright says the company — and the mobile marketing revolution — is just getting started.
Wright Takes Circular Route
Wright has been engaging brands for much of his 20-plus-year career. However, he got his start in a medium as far — technologically speaking — from mobile as could be. "My career started in London as a book editor ... I found it a little slow," Wright says drolly. "I moved across into broadcast media and eventually became editor of a magazine on broadcast policy and research, during the era of deregulation in the 1980s."
Jeremy Wright Global Director, Mobile Brand Strategy, Nokia Interactive Advertising, Boston [email protected]
After a few years, Wright moved to the agency side of the world. "I spent 12 years in the advertising agency business," he says. During that time, he was working for a part of the massive Japan-based Dentsu group and helped move them into the digital and online areas in 1997.
"Shortly after that, I came across Engage, a part of CMGI, which had developed a lot of companies in the early days of the Internet," Wright says. "They were launching in Europe, and I became their first European marketing director. Eventually, I became managing director of Engage Media."
However, Wright had the itch to start his own business — and to delve into yet another emerging marketing medium. In 2001, he and two co-workers from Engage spun off a new company, named Enpocket, which would seek out answers about the efficacy of mobile as an advertising medium.
"We won a contract with BT Cellnet, which became O2 (a leading mobile carrier in the U.K.) — that was really the first of its type — to develop SMS advertising and see what form mobile users might accept," Wright contends. "We ran some of the first SMS text marketing trials in the U.K., with some major branders like McDonald's and Cadbury."
Many of the trials had good results and interest in mobile marketing grew rapidly. "It was purely push SMS marketing — but people found it as acceptable as TV or radio marketing, as long as they knew where the message was coming from and that there were clear opt-outs," Wright adds.
At the same time, Wright was taking a lead role in the mobile industry, serving as chairman of the U.K. MMA from 2002-2004. "I led the development of the first code of conduct for mobile marketing — a code that's now been taken around the world," he says proudly. "Back then, there was a real backlash against E-mail spam and many worried that in a more personal channel like mobile, consumers would close down marketing before it could get started. Luckily, because of that pressure, the policies necessary to regulate the space were developed earlier in mobile."
Between the positive tests, the new code of conduct and growing technology, Wright and Enpocket were perfectly positioned for great growth from 2001 to 2007. "We simply evolved with the medium — richer content, greater reach, the growing mobile Web," he says. "Last year, it became clear that major players like Nokia, AOL, Microsoft and others were interested in developing their capabilities in the medium."