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Mebrulin Gets Uncaged

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Mebrulin Francisco, Global Head of Audience & Data Enablement at MediaCom sat down with Bant Breen on The UNCAGED Show to talk about her career and background, as well as how MediaCom designs communication strategies that deliver short-term results and help brands build for the future. Below is an edited excerpt from the discussion.

Bant Breen: MediaCom helps brands and businesses unleash their growth potential through media. The hot topic today for everybody in the media world is data. Tell me a little bit more about what you're working on, specifically at MediaCom.

Mebrulin Francisco: There are three avenues to what I'm doing on a broad level. One avenue is ensuring that we have a practice that allows us to provide solutions to clients and help them understand how they leverage their first-party data in more actionable ways. A lot of our clients have data sets that sit within and how their time to value is very long because it's either sitting in disparate platforms or there isn't an internal centralized team to help them navigate the platform connectivity. What ends up happening is a lot of first parties just sit there. What we do is we help teams strategize like, “How do I really take advantage of all these data sets I have about my customers,” and then how to create a data strategy around that, starts with that as my foundation, and then how do I build on top. Depending on my business objectives, and then how I act, I'm less reliant on a cookie and more reliant on my data. That's one practice we're building. The second thing that we're focusing on is putting ourselves up to speed. As the industry continues to grow and expand and move, we must move and anticipate, and not only intersect but be predictive and be there when finally, the marketplace catches up. A lot of the work that I do is working with a sister data company, like choreographing to help us create a very strong foundational data architecture, and infrastructure, so that we can serve our clients based on solutions that are tied back end to end. From audience creation, planning, activation, and measurement.

Bant Breen: A broad topic in the industry today that people have talked about are things like a cookie less world. How do you put some of what you guys are doing into context?

Mebrulin Francisco: What we're finding is that there's a different level of maturity. It is not dependent on a category at all that you would expect because we do see some clients that have direct consumer interaction, and they're still not leveraging. We're taking as much value out of that data as they can write. Then some clients don't have direct consumer interaction. They're advanced in the way that you approach the marketplace and how they're setting themselves up for the future. What we've done is create tools and capabilities and take assessments to help clients identify the biggest vulnerability. It's not just what I think is happening, but assessing through the lens of data, through the lens of investment, through the lens of technology, and through the lens of measurement. Give them that text with what your biggest vulnerabilities are, that you will have challenges in the future once all these data signals are lost. In addition to that, help them prioritize what their testing schedule should be and what the roadmap should be because I think that what we're finding in this discussion is, “How do you prioritize that?” There are so many solutions, you can go crazy. I think that the assessment portion is important because it's prioritized,

Bant Breen: I think the responses, certainly in situations of the general supply chain issues for companies, there's a lot of empty shelves still. And you don't see them, you don't see them online,

Mebrulin Francisco: I think more brands are getting to the point where they're getting better at that journey using that data. I think more brands understand the importance of not treating data as a commodity. There's a true value exchange, I got an opportunity to expand that I use that term a lot. Other people looked at me “Why do you use it so much?” Because there are two angles to it from business to consumer. The more I can create value, and give you what you want, the more you're going to come back. It's like a no-brainer. We all know this, but we’re falling short. If we haven't been delivering on that promise and consumers are telling us like, “Yeah, you're not you're not relevant to me.” That's a big problem. Then also the value of thinking about how more and more brands are leveraging their data to create new business models. We've seen ever more retailers making direct buys and using that data for networks and creating networks, and that trend will continue to progress I would imagine.

To see the full interview on the Uncaged Youtube channel, click here.

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