Startups partner with brands to innovate mobile marketing

Startup to work on Mondelēz International brands over 90 days

Tony Nguyen (left) and Jessica Finger (far right), brand managers for belVita and Cadbury Favourites, hear startup pitches. Credit: Mondelēz International

Five Australian startups have been selected to partner with Cadbury, belVita biscuits and other Mondelēz International brands after winning a competitive pitch process.

The winning startups will participate in the Mobile Futures Australia initiative to design innovative mobile marketing for brands in 90 days.

The program, which was launched in Australia in May following its success in the US and Brazil, includes five big Mondelēz brands – Cadbury’s Dairy Milk, Cadbury Favourites, Marvellous Creations, Philadelphia cream cheese and BelVita biscuits.

Mondelez International vice-president of global media and consumer engagement, Bonin Bough, said in May that working with startups is key to embracing new digital models.

“You have to go to where people are changing the world and building companies."

The winning startups and their respective partnerships are:

  • Snaploader, an image recognition startup, for Cadbury Dairy Milk
  • MyShout, a mobile app for gifting food and drinks at cafes, bars and restaurants, for Marvellous Creations
  • Issue, a startup that makes bespoke and interactive magazines, for Philadelphia cream cheese
  • Proximiti, a startup that uses geo-analytics to create personalised consumer experiences, for belVita
  • SkiFii, a startup that uses Wi-Fi and beacons to increase mobile engagement between venue owners and consumers, for Cadbury Favourites

The selection process included two days of competitive pitching and “speed dating” sessions between startups and brand managers. There were 60 applications for the program; 13 startups were selected to take part in the pitch process.

“Mobile use is increasing and there’s a lot of innovation coming out of Australian startups to cater for these audiences,” said Anthony Ho, head of marketing services for Mondelēz International.

“We want to be leaders in this space and use mobile innovation to connect with consumers and create new experiences with our brands.

“The startup pitches were all of a really high quality and we’re excited to see how the five startups and brands will work together to create some amazing mobile concepts over the next 90 days.”

Startup incubator Pollenizer assisted in the selection of startups for the pitch event.

“We aimed to find some of the most disruptive technologies that are breaking the retail space in Australia,” said Pollenizer startup coach Steve Sammartino.

“All were excellent pitches, very reflective of the emerging trends coming out of the startup space at the moment.”

Speaking to CMO Australia about the program earlier this month, BelVita brand manager Tony Nguyen said he believed an entrepreneurial mindset is critical for marketers who want to keep up with ever-changing consumer demands.

“You’re not just pushing one message any more; you need to have regular, up-to-date and relevant conversations with your consumers and that requires a more entrepreneurial way of working.”

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