The three essential Cs of performance marketing – Oliver Williams, Total Media

Why creativity is an essential skill for performance marketers and using non-traditional media metrics.

Oliver Williams
Head of Digital Performance
Total Media

What does it mean to win a PMW 30 Under 30 award?

It goes without saying that to be recognised as one of PMW 30 under 30 is a great honour and a great thing to have achieved in the last year of my 20s! It’s clear from the others on the list that there is a lot of people doing brilliant work in the industry so it's great to be in such good company. I’m also hoping that it serves as inspiration for members of my team to think about entering the award in future.

What are the top three essential skills for a performance marketer?

Curiosity – whether that is staying on top of industry developments to add to your skill set or asking the right questions to learn and develop from others. 

Creativity – always thinking about how you can use your own knowledge or the data sources that are available to you to build creative plans to drive performance – doing this the same over and over will only work for so long!. 

Confidence – not being afraid to try something new. It won’t always work first time (if at all) but maintaining the confidence in your strategy through iterative test and learn can go a long way to achieving great results.

What is underrated in the industry right now?

Whilst I’m biased as it's our core proposition at Total Media I would have to say the impact that behavioural science can have on campaign performance. Due to macro-economic factors user behaviours are changing at a greater rate than ever and for brands, investing time and resource in understanding user behaviours both online and offline can have a substantial impact when developing creative or deciding which data points to use in campaign planning or activation. We’ve seen some great results when using more behavioural lead copy solutions that address real world challenges and using data points that aren’t necessarily 'traditional' media metrics in campaign optimisation.

What is the best bit of advice you’ve ever received?

“Negative results aren’t always bad if you know why it happened and have a solution.” This was said to me ahead of one of my first client calls at the start of my career but has stuck with me. Of course the less negative the better but what I take from this is that we shouldn’t be afraid to test or try something new for fear of the results not being as hoped. As long as there is a next iteration or an alternative to improve results this shouldn’t affect our motivation to go for it when it comes to innovation.

How do you get motivated?

Sounds cliché but the fact that the industry is all about hitting targets makes it hard not to stay motivated. Whether that’s helping clients overcome challenges or working on a more personal level with my team at Total to help them hit personal targets motivation, is never hard to come by. Oh and a decent playlist and strong coffee usually helps…