These regular, exclusive member events aim to deliver insightful presentations and provide guests with the opportunity to network with other marketers.  Below is a snapshot of our recent networking evenings over the last few months and, if you would like to receive information about our next evening, please email

Insight event with Channel 5 & Nationwide

30 November 2016

Our final #ISBAinsights event of the year took place on 30 November and featured Sara Bennison, the first ever CMO of Nationwide and former CMO of Barclays, plus Ben Frow, the charismatic Director of Programmes at Channel 5. Both spook about rebranding, growing and bringing new ideas into their respective businesses. 

Here's an overview of what our esteemed speakers discussed on the night: 

The Journey of Channel 5: Kicking Up A Storm in the Broadcast World.
Be bold and be creative. Channel 5's Director of Programming Ben Frow provides an insight into running a commercial business, but taking creative risks – the hits and the misses! He also discussed how the channel is building a reputation and growing the all-important ABC1 and 16-34 audiences.

Nationwide: the best brand story never told
Sara Bennison is a leading figure within the industry, a member of WACL, vice president of ISBA’s Council and Treasurer of the Advertising Association’s Front Foot initiative. Sara’s previous roles include Head of Marketing Communications at BT and Managing Partner at Grey London. Following 7 years at Barclays ending up as CMO, Sara became the first CMO of Nationwide, and took her place at the executive committee table. Loved by those who know it and yet lagging competitors in terms of awareness, Nationwide has been in many ways the best brand story never told. Sara spoke about the approach she is taking to change that and shared some of the learnings along the way.

Watch Ben's presentation below: 

Insight Events 2016

Nov 2016: McDonald's & Niche


21 September 2016

Given that Twitter HQ was the setting for September's #ISBAinsights event, here's a quick 140 character summary from the night: 


Watch the McDonald's presentation here >

Watch the Niche presentation here >

June 2016: Coca-Cola & Google

  08 June 2016

132 lucky ISBA members descended on Google's offices in London for what was a truly fantastic evening of insights and networking. Our two excellent presentations, covered by Google's Rohan Gifford and Coca-Cola's GB Marketing Director, were rounded off with a prize draw, congrats to both of the following:

  • Asus Chromebook: Fergus Campbell, Gumtree
  • A place on Google's Squared Online: Miranda Essex, P&G
  Lifting the veil on the new marketing strategy of Coca-Cola
Bobby Brittain, GB Marketing Director of Coca-Cola

Changing the marketing strategy and product line-up of one of the most valuable brands in the world, and a new product launch, is no mean feat in your first year as Marketing Director. Bobby shared his insights as caretaker of one of the most valuable brands in the world and his learnings from overseeing their move to a “one brand” strategy.

Watch Google's Rohan Gifford discuss where advertisers should be investing here >

April 2016: Mumsnet & Direct Line

27 April 2016

As the name suggests, our #ISBAinsights events are designed to give our members practical insights from leading marketers to help inform, educate and guide. Our session with Direct Line and Mumsnet filled that brief 100%. Over 70 members were present for what was a fantastic night, jam-packed with insights, tips and strategies, that no marketer should miss.

  The journey to transform Direct Line
Mark Evans, Marketing Director, Direct Line

Direct Line created the direct market for insurance in 1985. 3 decades later it was sitting on a burning platform, disintermediated by price comparison websites in a commoditised market. Having lost their relevance, Mark Evans spoke about the journey to successfully transform the brand's fortunes, taking us on a marketing 101 journey, where a really simple brand idea that had been hiding in plain sight became the lightning rod for communications, propositions, social media, digital marketing, customer experience, operations and even through into culture, returning the brand to its market leadership position of yesteryear. Contact Jane to view a selection of slides from Mark's presentation. 

Watch Carrie Longton from Mumsnet discuss how brands should approach mums here >

February 2016: L'Oéal & DCM

03 February 2016

Our first #ISBAinsights event for 2016 and we've had some incredible feedback from some of the 70+ marketers who turned up on the night and we're looking forward to seeing where things go from here!

There was a real synergy with our speakers, with references to love branding running across both presentations. In what proved to be a highly informative session, #TeamLoveBrands definitely had some new recruits by the end of the evening. Huge thanks once again to our sponsors, DCM and congrats to our winner of 2 VIP Tickets to an upcoming movie premier! 

  How to build a love brand
Hugh Pile, Chief Marketing Officer, L'Oréal

It’s an aggressive and fraught marketplace, and only the strong will survive. It’s never been more important to stand out, and stand for something. Hugh Pile gave us a masterclass in the five core elements of a love brand - one that is engages people on a emotional level. He looked at the role of functional vs. emotional messaging and gave tips on how your business may be able to think differently about their approach to branding.
  The ad receptivity challenge
Karen Stacey, CEO, Digital Cinema Media

Outlining how the number of available channels and ad overkill has led to a real ad receptivity challenge, Karen took us through the topline results of the Millward Brown / DCM Building Box Office Brands report which explores the role of cinema in today’s cross media landscape. 

Insight Events 2015

December 2015: O2, Virgin Media & Gleam Futures

09 December 2015

There was more than just mince pies and mulled wine on hand at our final #ISBAinsights event of the year:  three excellent presentations from three excellent brands ensured our 2015 series of events went out with a bang!

  Dominic Smales
Managing Director and Founder at Gleam Futures Ltd
Gleam Futures manage and represent the very top tier of 'social talent’ in the world through offices in London and Los Angeles. The joint reach of the top 10 talent on Gleam Futures Roster delivers over 50m subscribers on YouTube and will have clocked up over 5 billion views just this year alone. More and more brands are partnering with social talent but the talent itself professes to want fewer but deeper relationships: what is the answer and why is this space so appealing? How has ‘vlogging’ evolved over the last 12 months and what does the future hold? Dominic showed us good and bad examples of how brands are working with this generation of social talent and how to measure success.
  Ian Cafferky, Head of Marcoms, O2 UK
"Here for the ups and downs – this is what sport is all about” - O2
Ian shared his views on the achievements of their recent Rugby World Cup campaign - #WearTheRose. Giving us a frank overview of how the brand tackled the challenge of engaging with all levels of sporting fans, together with taking on the risk of a poor performance, Ian highlighted how O2 gave the campaign life through fans, achieving positive sentiments from consumers despite England’s defeat.
  Ellie Tory Norman
Head of Brand Advertising & Sponsorship, Virgin Media

‘Vivid is here’ and with it comes a whole new direction for Virgin Media. Ellie highlighted key learnings from the brand’s latest ‘Inspired’ campaign, focusing on how brand building and taking a layered approach to communications, together with research and consumer insights, helped steer their marketing strategy and campaign propositions to gain traction in what is one of the country’s most competitive sectors.

October 2015: Post Office & Performics

08 October 2015

How do you make a brand relevant to a new generation of consumers? Getting Simon Bird in on the action may just be part of it! At our most recent Insight event, Pete Markey, the recently appointed CMO of the Post Office, gave us a unique look at how they're modernising, innovating and incorporating data to both elevate the brand and engage with a whole new audience!

  • Watch Pete Markey's presentation here >
  • Watch Jon King of Performics discuss performance marketing here >

September 2015: Mini UK & Facebook

16 September 2015

Michelle Roberts, Marketing Director of Mini UK, says that everybody has a 'Mini story' and given the turn out at our 3rd Insight event of the year, she might just be right! Over 60 marketers were present to hear Michelle discuss how the iconic brand engages with their consumers, going beyond 'branding' to include real-time, experience marketing and how they put customers first at all touch-points, from information search, right through to purchase and delivery. In addition to Mini UK, we were also lucky enough to have Ed Couchman, Head of Agency Relations at Facebook on hand to present insights into how brands can and need to be creative to stay relevant in our ever mobile world. He presented some fascinating insights from the worlds of Facebook and Instagram - not only giving our members plenty of food for thought, but laying out some challenges for them to ensure they don't get left behind.

  • Watch Michelle's presentation here >
  • Watch Ed's presentation here >

May 2015: Manchester Utd & VisualDNA

07 May 2015

The goal of our Insight events is to provide our members and their teams with winning insights. All puns aside, our latest event with Manchester United and VisualDNA did just that! Proving that Manchester Utd truly are a global team, Jonathan Rigby, the team's Head of Marketing gave us a first rate look at how engaging with both their past and their fans has made them the sporting phenomenon they are today. Not to be outdone was Burnley FC fan, Jon Hewson of VisualDNA, who took us on a fascinating journey through the five different personality types and what they mean for advertisers. You can now catch up on his session here >

March 2015: Sport England & Sainsbury's

06 March 2015

What a way to kick off the year! Our offices were packed to the rafters, as over 90 marketers filed in for what was (as those present on the night told us!) our best Insight event yet!

First up, we had Mark Given, Head of Brand at Sainsbury's, who gave us a unique, behind the scenes look at their recent campaign 'Christmas is for Sharing', plus insights into the very real nature of managing a campaign which carries such high levels of expectation.

As Mark made his way to his seat, Missy Elliot entered the room. Ok, maybe not. But her 00's classic 'Get your freak on' did reverberate around the room as one of the most impactful viral ads of late hit our screens - you guessed it, #ThisGirlCan. Sport England's CEO, Jennie Price gave us a fascinating look at the research it involved and how keeping those insights at the heart of the campaign gave it the impact it ultimately had. We could go on, but it would be much easier and more useful for you, to just watch the video >

Insight Events 2014

November 2014: The journey of ITV

12 November 2014

Our final #ISBAinsights event of 2014 took place on 12th November and boy did we end the year on a high! Taking place at the London Television Centre, this was our first insight event to focus on one individual advertiser - the broadcasting powerhouse that is ITV.

A record number of members were present on the night to hear how the UK's largest commercial TV station has evolved, both commercially and creatively, since its founding back in 1955. Reemah Sakaan, ITV's Network Marketing Director, gave us a unique insight into their recent re-branding, describing how the process forced the station to not only open up artistically and think like a brand, but to also embrace being #reem!

We also heard from ITV's commercial team, who introduced us to FUSION - which encourages the move away from 'sponsorship' and towards 'connected partnerships'.

In addition to insights, our hosts also offered one lucky attendee the chance to win two highly sought after VIP tickets to the X-Factor semi-final! Congratulations to Hayley Foy of Morrisons who was our winner - we're sure you'll have no trouble finding someone to accompany you on the night! 

October 2014: John Lewis & Smith+Co

08 October 2014

Fast becoming a staple of the industry's calendar, our October event drew over 50 marketers from some of the UK's best known brands to ISBA HQ for a night of top insights and great networking! Big thanks to our speakers and everyone who showed up for making the night such a success!

Paul Coby spoke to us about JLABs - a project which offered start-ups the opportunity to pitch their technology ideas and win £100k investment plus the opportunity to work with John Lewis. Paul discussed some of the technology ideas he saw, why they decided on Localz as the winner and how their proximity iBeacon technology will improve their customers' shopping experience.

Shaun Smith gave us an insiders look at building advocacy through customer experience, by being BOLD - standing up, standing out and standing firm. Tim Wade built on this with a deep dive into how Best Western differentiated their brand from competitors and built advocacy through 'hotels with personality'.

July 2014: Vodafone & Blackjack

16 July 2014

Our brand new office in Covent Garden played host to the third of our Insight events in London. In what was described on the night as a 'master-class', Vodafone's Director of Brand Marketing, Daryl Fielding gave attendees a highly engaging and thought provoking presentation on what she terms as the seven critical factors required for creating a successful brand strategy. Drawing on her experience working across brands such as Dove and Milka, Daryl's insights gave our members plenty of food for thought.

We also heard from Ian Priestman, Project Director at Blackjack, an agency who specialise in promotional and experiential marketing campaigns. Ian gave us an insight into what's involved in creating a successful experiential campaign, with specific examples including brands such as the Mini Countryman, Nissan and Cadbury's.

May 2014: ASDA & Weve

15 May 2014

The second of this year's Insight events took place in the creative surroundings of TWBA\London and featured two highly engaging and insightful presentations from Asda and Weve. Over 40 marketers heard Dom Burch, Head of Social, Asda discuss how they created and implemented a social strategy relevant to both Asda and their customers. We also heard from Tom Pearman, Weve's Director of Brand, who highlighted the top 5 areas that brands should be looking into when it comes to mobile.

March 2014: Bob Wootton & John Brown

06 March 2014

The first of our London Insight event of 2014 took place on 6 March with over 40 marketers present to hear our very own Bob Wootton discuss transparency and the current situation with buying ads in the digital space. Alex Silcox, MD of John Brown was also on board and gave some very interesting insights into content/native marketing and the strategies that brands should be employing to achieve success when it comes to the 'C-word': CONTENT!