What We Learned At MAD//Fest 2019 - E1Media

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What We Learned At MAD//Fest 2019

Some of the E1MA team attended MAD//Fest on the 13th & 14th November. Here’s some of our favourite insights and stories:

Influencer – “Micro vs. Macro: Understanding Scale in Influencer Marketing”

Influencer co-founders Caspar Lee (of YouTube fame) and Ben Jeffries delivered an excellent discussion on Influencer Marketing:

  • Use a combination of Macro (10,000+ followers) and Micro (under 10,000 followers) Influencers for your campaign.
  • Larger influencers are excellent for building brand awareness, but smaller ones are better for conversions  as social media algorithms favour (sigh) “authentic” engagements. It can also be a waste of money chasing huge, global influencers for your UK-only business.
  • Take your time when choosing an influencer – make sure they align with your brand’s values. 
  • Be wary of untrustworthy influencers who purchase likes and followers, particularly on Instagram.
  • Remember that you’re not just paying an influencer to “shout out” your product – they are producing content for you, so make sure you re-use it across your channels and make the most of it.

Lumen Research – “Attention Mobile! How attention technology can boost your mobile advertising”

Lumen’s Managing Director Mike Follet present their interesting eye-tracking software and the insights they have found while using it:

  • For video content, keep it short – people typically lose interest after 15 seconds.
  • Include your branding at the start of the video for maximum brand-recall but display your product at the end.
  • Design video content for mobile-first. “Vertical” videos are by far the most popular way consumers watch videos.
  • If you need to shorten a video, take out the parts that do not emotionally resonate with the audience.
  • 90% of people’s attention on Facebook is on the news feed and so optimise your ads accordingly.

Paddy Power – “Making mischief: combining live and social interactions”

Paddy Power’s head of Brand Activations Paul Mallon showed the audience a selection of their (often controversial) marketing campaigns – discussing which ones worked and which didn’t:

Their message was simple – don’t be afraid of your audience.

You cannot please everyone, and the backlash they receive from social media ‘keyboard warriors’ almost never have an actual negative impact on the business.

During the 2018 World Cup, Paddy Power donated thousands of pounds to LGBTQ+ charities each time Russia scored a goal.

Despite all the backlash they received on Twitter, a grand total of 4 people closed their betting accounts.

You can see their hilarious response to the backlash here:

Dishoom – “How culture, story and experience can disrupt a category”


Dishoom founder Shamil Thakrar spoke about how his ‘chain’ (though he hates the word) of Indian-inspired restaurants came about, and the power of storytelling:

  • For each individual restaurant, Dishoom crafts a unique world that they want their customers to experience when they walk inside.
  • You only need to visit their website to see how serious they take this. Everything aspect of a restaurant, right down to the screws, has been carefully considered.
  • Attention to detail is critical – customers want to feel truly immersed when they step into a restaurant (unless you are, say, McDonalds).
  • Focus on creating value for your customer and your team first. THEN you can start making a profit.
  • Make sure your brand is poetic in the way it tells its story.


Bonus Insights

Reform Political Advertising: There are no rules on political advertising in the UK.

Skyscanner: Perfect your offering before marketing it. You don’t need a ‘company culture’ page – demonstrate your culture through your dealings with customers.

IBM: The secret to inspiration is to lock yourself away from the outside work a few hours a week, with just a notepad and your imagination. If you’re struggling for content ideas, ‘remix’ existing content and make it your own. After all, “originality is just undetected plagiarism”


Tenzing: The entire E1MA team are now addicted to their natural energy drinks. Not so much of an insight, but perhaps demonstrates that giving away free samples can still be an effective marketing tool!