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Published September 23rd 2020

Interview: Ogilvy Head of Data & Analytics Julián Esbri on Empathy, Creativity, and Agility, Inspired by Brandwatch Insights

When we talk about consumer data, we rarely talk about empathy as the key to finding insights. For Julián Esbri, the Head of Data & Analytics at Ogilvy, this is an important part of the approach.

For Julián Esbri, creating empathy is at the heart of gathering insights.

“What really interests me is figuring out what people are thinking and feeling,” he says. “This is how we can understand and provide more relevant solutions.”

In a saturated environment, selling things becomes increasingly complicated. For this reason, brands “that are not empathetic to consumers’ needs have fewer possibilities in the future.”

Of course, learning about consumers doesn’t make sales less important. On the contrary, Julián thinks they can be “strengthened” by empathy.

Tech and the process of creativity

Creative innovation does not come about by chance. At least, not always.

For this reason, Ogilvy is monitoring consumer habits in our constantly changing landscape to better understand their wants, preferences, and needs.

Observing changes in campaign performance in real time also helps them to better, and more quickly, detect what works and what doesn’t.

“The Brandwatch platform serves as a barometer to assess what is popular and, conversely, what is not going down well. The result is a creative optimization process which, thanks to technology, is only now becoming possible.”

Julián argues that the campaigns that resonate “out there” are those that show in-depth understanding of the target audience’s problems, desires, interests, and pressures.

“A campaign that doesn’t respond to strategic goals, and that is not built on real pressures identifiable to any consumer, is unlikely to have a tangible impact on a brand’s business,” he says.

The impact of the pandemic

The Covid-19 crisis has threatened many companies and agencies that weren’t prepared for total digitalization. However, Ogilvy’s Head of Data & Analytics emphasizes that establishing clear methods in advance has made it easier for them to react in a quicker, more strategic way as things change.

“The world is changing from one day to the next and relying on well-defined processes ahead of time let us adapt better.”

With the continuous transformation that consumer behavior is undergoing, there is only one possible happy ending – “that brands will adapt to changes and evolve with people,” he says.

The pandemic has led to many a brand crisis, and new processes have had to be established to monitor pain points and vulnerabilities.

“As each account is unique, the first thing that we do is define the parameters that constitute a crisis for the particular brand. Then, it is vital that the whole process is collaborative,” Julián explains.

One way Ogilvy has delivered value to clients during this time is with Brandwatch Signals, which sends notifications via email when there are significant changes in conversation around a brand.

“Signals helps us to understand a business’ health and to detect threats as well as opportunities for the brand. This is how we can really help our clients,” he says.

Thank you to Julián for chatting with us. You can find him here on LinkedIn.

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