Power 100: Nxt Gen 2013

Arron Child, Microsoft

Position: Internet Explorer Marketing, Microsoft

Date of Birth: 23 July 1985

View Arron's LinkedIn profile 

As part of the Internet Explorer marketing team, Child is responsible for marketing campaigns for Internet Explorer and Windows Live. He currently leads the multimillion-pound Explorer campaign across digital, experiential and TV.

Describes himself as: Adventurous, determined, and passionate.

Q: Are there any trends or new media platforms you believe are overrated?

A: Vine, but I’m the same guy that thought Twitter would be a passing fad.

Q: In your view what are the biggest trends affecting your business?

A: London has a real counterculture and consumers expect the advertiser to earn the right to speak to them. Consumers want an open dialogue and a great experience; then they are open to being sold to. The challenge for a business is to have an innate understanding of your market and what you represent and then to communicate with them accordingly.

Q: What skills do you think are most important to get ahead in marketing today?

A: Hard work, willingness to learn and understanding the world around you. You need to really get to know what your target market is and how you can engage with it in a new and surprising way in order for people to want to talk about it. Learn from the best, wherever, however, you can.

Q: What attracted you to marketing as a profession?

A: When I was young I dreamed of playing professional football, having seen that Pelé could stop a civil war for three days so both sides could watch him play. I read Sir Richard Branson’s ‘Losing My Virginity’ at 16 and was amazed at how much fun he had and how much good he could do for the world.

Q: What are the biggest marketing challenges you face?

A: It’s the same challenge we all face. Marketing has changed, as has how the consumer wants to be spoken to. Brands need to understand their identity and how their target market wants to be communicated with. Nike is an expert at this: it is busy building communities, as opposed to advertising prices of shoes. It understands that a meaningful relationship will yield sales in the future.

Q: How are you changing the media channels you use to better reach your consumers?

A: We recently created a campaign called ‘Atari arcade’. We used a mix of digital, out-of-home and experiential. The digital we used was geo-targeted so we could drive appropriate persons to the experiential, and others to the online site. The out-of-home used street-art murals in Shoreditch, along with some brilliant traditional out-of-home advertising. The experiential was also a different step, as it enabled us to showcase our technology and how Internet Explorer brought it to life by using touch etc.

Q: What are your most admired brands and why?

A: I love brands that are creating something new, challenging what we know to be true. Secret Cinema is very much in this vein, as it tapped into London’s counterculture. The idea of asking people to pay to watch a movie they have little idea as to what it will be, dress up and act out the movie, decipher clues and then not to tell anyone about what they have done is sheer brilliance. It’s completely counterintuitive, but that’s why it’s pure genius.

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