Wunderman Thompson's Kiesse Lamour on Retail Media, EU Law, and Adland’s Carbon Footprint

On this week's episode of The MadTech Podcast, Kiesse Lamour, global head of media at Wunderman Thompson Commerce, joins ExchangeWire's John Still and Lindsay Rowntree to discuss the growth of retail media, the upcoming DSA and DMA, and the ad industry's current approach to sustainability.


Retail media set for further growth, say GroupM

Do you think this is a realistic prediction? What do you think will drive retail media’s growth?

Global retail media spend could rise 15% year-over-year to USD $101bn (~£93.9bn) in 2022, and again to USD $160bn (~£148.7bn) by 2027, according to GroupM’s 2022 Ecommerce and Retail Media Forecast. This growth will largely be spurred by the incumbents (such as Alibaba, Amazon, and Walmart), but the space will become more competitive as more brands enter retail media and more networks appear, the firm predicts.

GroupM’s global director of business intelligence, Kate Scott-Dawkins, described the estimated growth rate of retail media by 60% over the next five years as “a bit on the conservative side,” but nonetheless puts retail media’s growth ahead of digital advertising. Meanwhile, global ecommerce is predicted to generate 19% of global retail sales this year, and 25% by 2027.


European Commission chief points to new laws and collaboration as key to tackling Big Tech

Have we seen collaboration between the EU and US to regulate Big Tech pay off? Do you believe the DSA and DMA will be effective in improving consumers’ data privacy and making the internet more balanced?

The European Commission’s chief competitions officer, Margrethe Vestager, has reasserted her office’s mission to rein in the dominance of Big Tech. Speaking to Wired, Vestager said that the Commission has been working more closely with authorities in the US, where leading players like Google and Meta are based, to ensure that instances of anti competitive behaviour are remedied. 

Speaking about the upcoming Digital Services Act (DSA) and Digital Markets Act (DMA) Vestager asserted that the DSA will provide internet users with consumer rights that are more similar to those they have offline; the DMA, meanwhile, will give smaller companies a better chance of thriving by more closely monitoring the activities of dominant firms, including proposed acquisitions. Both new laws also aim to eradicate the use of “dark patterns”, tactics employed by some website owners to make visitors more inclined or mislead them into accepting certain targeting and tracking permissions. 

Whilst Vestager revealed she was “disappointed that there are not more businesses saying: we do privacy by default and we’re interested in providing services without collecting enormous amounts of data”, she reiterated that consumers must be made more aware of the rights they have over their data, and said that the Commission is working to raise this awareness whilst making compliance more straightforward.


The ad industry needs to do more to tackle carbon footprint, say majority of marketers

Do you agree that the ad industry is not doing enough to tackle climate change? If so, why do you think this is the case?

Over 75% of marketers believe that the ad industry is not doing enough to reduce its carbon footprint. That’s according to research by Good-Loop, which also found that 87% of marketers think the industry has a responsibility to lower emissions.

The “Counting Carbon: How US Marketers Are Tackling Adland's Climate Crisis” study revealed a lack of standardisation when it comes to calculating the environmental impact of campaigns, with 56% of US marketers relying on estimated figures or calculations, and a mixture of in-house and independent solutions being employed. 

The study also indicates a sluggishness to act amongst marketers themselves, with just 2% of surveyed organisations having reached net zero and only 24% having set targets to achieve this goal, despite 51% saying they plan to do so at some stage. One potential reason behind this could be a lack of education on the topic, with 69% of brand marketers and 54% of agency marketers saying that more training programs and resources are needed to help them address the issue.