The Hopeful Are Here: The Return of Innovation Marketing in a Pandemic

In unprecedented times, we are ready for this

We find HOPE here, because that is how we have always seen the world.

We believe in opportunity; to grow, expand, to know each other more.

We thrive together; as partners, in team, culture, nation and globe.

We fight for greatness; protective, aware and respectful.

We do what is in front of us; an inhale, a message, a movement, solution.

We find disruption, when we are looking for HOPE.

Our time is now. In every agency, we are there. We are disruptors; idea pushers, left fielding not-stopping-at-no-ers. Across technologies, cultural firsts, startups, movements, we've been inspiring, challenging and showing up, and we are ready for this.  

HOPE

I have always said that the greatest attribute of an innovator is HOPE. How that comes to life as an innovation executive is moving innovation into practice. At this unstable time, all our messages have landed in new contexts; we're all starting on a never-imagined blank page. Brand, creative, account, strategy, it is time all of us harness the innovator in our hearts and minds, the HOPE. 

We must:

• Inspire. Find those lightbulb moments working from home and don't let them go.
• Cultivate. Share everything with our teams. (There are no bad ideas in the brainstorm.)
• Ideate. Don't copy the culture, next it.
• Practice. Go big and meaningful. Thrive small and powerful.

The next few weeks and months, our work as marketers is more important than ever because our brands, clients and work is required to help the world. We're storytellers, selling and showcasing what's possible via our brands, and now we are all disruptors. We don't have time for apprehension. We are in action. Ever-changing, action.

ACTION

At moments in culture when we have felt the push backwards it is innovation that has catapulted us forward. The very companies that found their feet in the economic fallout of 10 years ago—Airbnb, Uber, Lyft, Slack, Pinterest and Netflix (which none of us could imagine quarantine without)—have delivered economic growth to the U.S. and the stock market of today. In tandem and in relation, VCs have more than doubled their funding from $31.3 billion in 2010 to $82 billion in 2018.  

We are catapulting forward, and we're prepared for this opportunity. Innovation executives have changed the narratives from slush fund to growth model, shiny object to indispensable business asset, gone comic relief to coin. We've gone from the solo CINO to executive champion, team leader, mentor by working across the business. We are in the arsenal, embedded in the fabric, and here to help.

Innovators do not rest on laurels, wowing and walking off. We are passionate and pioneering. 69 percent of innovation's impact is measured by sales growth. For innovation to grow in a company, we all must grow. What was once pie in the sky is now purposeful profit. 20 percent of innovation leaders expect greater than 15 percent growth. True growth in ACTION, "strategy through execution" that affects both the top- and bottom-line revenue.  

Our HOPE tactics are our drive; that solution mindset that turns nevers to maybes, and impossibles into yes. We continue to be agile and nimble in the midst of any business challenge or economic state; by staying:

• Hyper relevant. On the pulse, and aware of effect.
• Network powered and inclusive. Never alone. We're in the middle of the business, top of mind. Partners keep us pioneering.
• Data driven. We see the same numbers as everyone. Reason leads to possibility.
• Technology propelled and& asset smart. Always On. Strategically aligned.

We show up, never hesitant. We're here to understand, suggest, solve and deliver.

RESPONSE

Here we are. The words we have exhausting us to repeat—unprecedented, never before seen, these unheard-of times. Unequivocally the world has changed. How is up for experience, but we don't have to have answers, we must remain close to our promise. Where disruption remains, it is the seasoned determination we possess that makes us the greatest ally, confidant and executive in this time.  

We are in this together. Everything every person does is connected to the belief in another. We are all here to help each other. We must leverage all our resources and believe we have enough.

As we begin our marketing communications to the world at large at this time, find your disruptors, your flag-waving believers, find the innovator in you. Learn to adapt, remain open, take reflection, consistently offer solution. Disrupt with HOPE.

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Mordecai
Mordecai is head of innovation and partnerships at Innocean Worldwide | Americas (Hyundai Motor Group), a group she began 2-plus years ago at the agency.

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