New IAB chief vows to tackle digital issues head-on

mew-iab-2The new boss of digital advertising trade body IAB UK has pledged to provide better services to both clients and agencies and serve the industry “more assertively” after being appointed to succeed Guy Phillipson, who is stepping down after 12 years in the role.
IAB chief operating officer Jon Mew will take up the CEO post next week, having first joined the trade body as head of mobile in 2008.
His appointment comes at a challenging time for the digital ad industry. Despite grabbing the lion’s share of marketing spend, there are increasing concerns over viewability, measurement and effectiveness issues. Combined with the seemingly unstoppable rise of programmatic and ad-blocking, Mew’s “to do list” would be enough to make some wince.
However, he appears unfazed. Mew said: “The sensational range of digital services that have become part of our daily life are primarily funded by advertising. I want to re-assert positivity around this.
“The IAB will restructure to provide greater engagement with agencies and advertisers. Also, reflecting the pace and growth of our sector, the IAB’s activities will be focused to serve the industry more assertively.”
Mew joined the IAB from Orange (now EE), where he was head of marketing. He has also held senior roles at Freeserve and ITV. He was promoted to director of mobile and operations soon after; a role which involved merging mobile into the core part of the organisation and has been COO since September 2014.
IAB UK chairman Richard Eyre added: “The IAB will soon represent a £10bn industry in this country, more complex and variegated than any other media sector. However, this scale comes with no slowing of innovation and will continue to adapt, demanding both agility of mind and positivity of action.
“Jon not only has a deep understanding of the workings of the IAB today, he has a compelling vision for its future and proven skills to execute on a demanding strategy. I’m excited to be working with him and his team to deliver it.”
Under Phillipson’s watch, the digital industry experienced rapid growth – in 2005 it was worth £825m; by 2015 this had hit £8.6bn. The former Vodafone marketing chief plans to remain in the industry and is currently seeking non-exec and advisory roles.

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