Havas Media global CEO: The fundamentals of the media business haven't changed

The job of the media agency executive today is exactly the same as what it was 25 years ago. It is all about helping clients to make meaningful connections with consumer. This is still the same fundamental for the media agency business, said Peter Mears (pictured), global CEO, Havas Media in an exclusive interview with Marketing.

In his 25 years in the media industry, Mears has been with notable agencies and networks, first beginning his career at PHD under Omnicom Media Group. He has held several leadership roles with agencies such as IPG and Initiative and took on the role as global CEO of Havas last year.

“The market will evolve and different channels will appear or disappear. But, there will still be a need for clients to connect with their consumers in interesting and meaningful ways. In my 25 years, I find the fundamentals of the media business haven't really changed,” Mears said.

According to him, despite the talk of consolidations and the gloom and doom, the industry is now more “exciting and inspiring”, and there is more happening in this space today than it has in the last 25 years.

“Because of the collision of entertainment, technology and the role data plays in advertising, I feel like this is the most exciting time right now,” he added.

Speaking about Havas' Meaningful Media initiative, Mears added that the study was created to better understand the most meaningful media for consumers, given the rise in ad fraud and privacy issues. According to Mears, the agency looks to understand what are the most effective and impactful ways to create meaningful connections between people and brands.

“We have been focused on all the wrong stuff, on what I would call the mechanics of the business are. I actually think we had lost our way a little bit. Some of the things we were focusing on was not inspiring, exciting, motivating or fun. But now, we are getting back to the bigger picture and not just the mechanics of the different elements in the business. We are getting back to the roots of we set out to be and that to me is super exciting,” he added.

Also present in the interview was Vishnu Mohan, chairman and CEO, India and SEA, Havas Group who explained that moving forward, every new innovation will take a much shorter time. "It will get very difficult to say that there won't be a bigger Google or Facebook," he said.

“If we evolve towards really understanding what people thought was most meaningful for media, this is what that is truly valuable," Mohan added.