AANA adds three tier-one brand marketing leaders to its board

Tourism Australia's Lisa Ronson is one of a trio of new appointments announced during the 90-year old association's AGM

From left: Martin Brown, Andrew Hicks and Lisa Ronson
From left: Martin Brown, Andrew Hicks and Lisa Ronson

The Australian Association of National Advertisers (AANA) has added another three high-profile brands to its board including the CMO50’s number one for 2018, Tourism Australia’s Lisa Ronson.

The new appointments were confirmed at the association’s annual general meeting yesterday and also include Woolworths director of marketing, Andrew Hicks, as well as Nestle director of ebusiness, strategy and marketing, Martin Brown.

Ronson has been leading Tourism Australia’s marketing efforts for the last four years and has more than 15 years of experience in brands and marketing, working for Westpac, Carlton & United Breweries, Visa and David Jones. Her efforts at the nation’s tourism body, and her work on the ‘Dundee’ US Super Bowl campaign, saw her awarded top billing in this year’s CMO50 of Australia’s most innovative and effective marketers.

Hicks took up the top marketing post at Woolworths in 2015. He joined the supermarket giant in 2008, initially on the Dan Murphy’s brand and rising to national marketing manager in 2012. Brown meanwhile, has spent 15 years with Nestle globally, including stints as global brand director for Kit Kat in Switzerland, and the snack’s regional manager across the UK, US, Canada, Japan and Oceania. He took up his latest Oceania role in September.

Earlier this year, the AANA also appointed Toyota CMO, Wayne Gabriel, and Adobe Advertising head, Sam Smith.

“As the peak national advertising body, it is important the AANA board continues to elect leading marketers from a variety of industries to help ensure we understand he full gamut of issues impacting the marketing profession,” AANA CEO, John Broome, said.

The AANA celebrated 90 years this year, and took the opportunity during its AGM to reflect on the changes to media over that time in a panel session featuring outgoing Fairfax CEO, Greg Hywood, and former News Corp chairman and well-known industry giant, Kim Williams.

During the discussion, it was clear both gentlemen saw further disintermediation and fragmentation continuing across the media landscape, with Williams noting digital has been a destructive force in media and one we’re not out of the woods yet on.

“You can’t just shift from analogue to digital, it crushes value,” he commented. “That’s the order of the day, you have to reinvent as you manage that – you can’t presume those old operating margins.”

Williams also suggested new-age digital social players are a dangerous force in market, and described Facebook as being “utterly reckless in its responsibility to the community to remove material that has bad intentions towards that community.”

Yet both Hywood and Williams were against tighter regulation generally as a force for preserving media going into the future. Hywood, for example, said media law reform in Australia had given advertisers the opportunity to now go to one single place and get access to many different platforms.

It’s these media reform changes that paved the way for the $4.2 billion merger of Nine and Fairfax, which cleared its last hurdle in the Federal Court this week.  

Hywood also compared the maturity of digital advertising and media today as “The FJ part of the Internet”. “There are many complex social and business problems that have to be solved,” he said. “Marketers, government and media have to work in a way to ensure competition, open markets, and the ability to win.

“But to regulate that also poses massive damage.”

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu 

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