Erin Lanuti | The Innovator 25 Americas 2017
Charting the future of public relations

2017 Innovator 25 Americas - Erin LanutiThe Innovator 25:

Erin Lanuti

Chief Influence Strategist 
MSLGroup
New York 

“I find the best way to get out of a creativity rut is to completely unplug.”

Erin Lanuti spearheaded MSLGroup's efforts to quantify the role of influence against brand lift and commerce. This ultimately led to the creation of a hybrid offering between Publicis Communications and Publicis Media agencies — Conversation2Commerce. She assembled a cross-Groupe team that broke down the decades-old barriers between creative, media and public relations. The full scope of her contribution includes creating a global infrastructure, new patent-pending technologies, new ad formats, measurement methodologies and technology partnerships. Over the course of the last year, she has broadened the offering to include Conversation2Credibility and went from one to now over seven different methodologies to deliver brand lift and commerce that can be utilized across search, social, native, display and e-commerce. 

How do you define innovation?
Innovation is the creation of new ideas and solutions that add value.

What is the most innovative comms/marketing initiative you've seen in the last 12 months?
I loved the BBH Nike Unlimited Stadium campaign that was done in Manila, Phillippines . BBH created a giant running track which took over a whole city block in Manila. Runners could race against a digital avatar of themselves running at their best time.

In your opinion, what brands and/or agencies are most innovative around PR and marketing?
Samsung and Always are two brands doing this well as they understand the intrinsic need for PR and marketing to work in partnership to both co-create and amplify great ideas.

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider 'innovative.'
The most recent example is when I first embarked on the journey to build a solution that would enable MSL to measure the impact of PR against tangible brand KPI’s like brand lift and sales. That journey soon ballooned to include several innovations - ad technology, measurement methodologies, etc. – and today is the Publicis Groupe solution Conversation2Commerce.

Who do you admire for his/her approach to innovation?
When I think innovation, I look to people like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk. They are both examples of serial innovators who adopt a fail fast approach which enables them to progress at a rapid pace.

How do you get out of a creativity or productivity rut?
I find the best way to get out of a creativity rut is to completely unplug… yes go dark. I like to leave devices at home and spend a day outdoors with family and friends.

What advice would you give to the PR industry around embracing innovation?
I believe everyone can be an innovator. I think people often lack the willingness and champions to help them bring their innovations forward. This is a huge problem for companies and the PR industry as a whole as we need to foster a culture that embraces innovation.

In your opinion, what's the most innovative place in the world?
I think China is one of the most innovative places in the world. I am amazed by the sheer pace and volume of technological advances being made there every time I go.

What's your favorite hobby that's not work-related?
Golf.