Havas Media’s Peter Sedlarcik On Using Data In A Crisis

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As the economic downturn continues, marketers are focused on proving ROI.

“There’s a doubling down on scrutiny in terms of where media dollars get invested,” says Havas Media chief data officer Peter Sedlarcik.

But that scrutiny is also extending to branding. As marketers navigate the recession, a health crisis and protests against racial inequality and police brutality, they’re listening to consumers and looking at sentiment data to figure out how to respond and drive impact.

“If you’re taking a stand on these matters, consumers are going to expect that there’s a follow-through on that,” Peter says. “Data will ultimately show … are there brands that are going to be able to walk the walk?”

Despite the chaos, marketers haven’t forgotten about the looming deprecation of third-party cookies, and are working on building up their first-party data sets to continue tracking ROI and listening to consumers.“There’s a lot of heady topics on marketers’ minds as they try to navigate through one of the most challenging economic periods in history,” Peter says.

At home with his wife – also a media agency executive – and two kids in Westport, Conn., Peter is working through these challenges with clients while adapting to distance learning and working from home. He’s streaming a lot – both TV and music – and often finds himself listening to spa music while working to relax.

“I type into my search bar ‘calm,’ which is the frame of mind I’m wishfully thinking I want to be in,” he said.

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