While you might not recognize his name, you likely know one of the marketing campaigns that Bonin Bough spearheaded throughout his career.
When he was the chief media and e-commerce officer at snack food giant Mondelēz International, Bonin oversaw a buzz-generating marketing initiative for a hard-to-please crowd: attendees at the annual South by Southwest interactive, film and music conference in Austin, Texas.
Four years ago at SXSW, Mondelēz cookie brand Oreo rolled out the first-ever 3D-printed food product – a customizable Oreo. People stood in long lines to create Oreos, whose designs were inspired by trending Twitter topics, and the frenzy over this innovation attracted massive amounts of attention from news outlets and on social media.
For his part, Bough doesn’t view the Oreo initiative as a marketing stunt.
“I don’t believe in coming to SXSW and doing stunts, because that’d be a waste,” Bough told Fast Company magazine in 2014. “You have a unique opportunity to see how far you can move technology and get real feedback from people who actually think about this stuff every day in the real world.”
It’s that seasoned perspective on marketing that Bough will bring to &THEN, DMA’s annual marketing conference, Oct. 7-9 in Las Vegas. Bough will serve as the event’s host.
Bough boasts more than 15 years of experience in marketing roles at companies such as Mondelēz, PepsiCo, Weber Shandwick and Ruder Finn Interactive. Aside from Oreo, brands that he’s worked with include Gatorade, Honey Maid and Pepsi.
Bough is also the host of the “Cleveland Hustles” TV show and author of “Txt Me (646) 759-1837.”
While he’s boosted an array of brands, the 3D Oreo is one of Bough’s signature marketing efforts. In the 2014 interview with Fast Company, Bough explained the philosophy behind the Oreo innovation – creating customizable experiences for consumers.
“What we’re looking at here is how do we begin to deliver new engagement experiences around our products for our consumers and customizing it in real time,” Bough said.
Bough noted that some people are willing to go to great lengths to immerse themselves in an engaging experience, with some attendees waiting for over two hours to claim just one 3D Oreo at SXSW.
The SXSW experiment paid off, as the Oreo 3D vending machine drew about one-third of all SXSW Interactive visitors and the campaign racked up an estimated 45 million media impressions, according to design company MAYA, which collaborated on the Oreo project.
“I believe it is those brands that take those brave moments to seize a changing consumer that transform the way organizations operate and ultimately drive growth,” Bough said in a 2015 presentation posted on YouTube.
In a 2012 article about real-time advertising published by Harvard Business Review, Bough indicated that those “brave moments” don’t happen without tapping into the power of data.
“The biggest challenge for brands that want to engage their consumers in real-time is that consumer conversations move at incredible speed due to social and mobile technologies,” Bough wrote. “For large brands, making sense of that conversation requires rapidly sifting through vast amounts of data, but also making that data available across functions within the organization in a way that empowers brands to translate social insights into actions.”
He added: “Only by gathering, analyzing, and broadcasting these data in real-time do organizations position themselves to deliver on a wide variety of organizational challenges. By empowering brands to make strategic decisions on the fly, companies and their agencies can execute on smarter media plays that have small windows of opportunity, such as observing earned media trends and adjusting their paid media strategies to amplify them.”
This article is brought to you by &THEN, DMA’s annual event. Click here to join the leaders of the marketing community and advance your data and marketing mastery in Las Vegas, October 7-9.