Yosuke Toyoura | The Innovator 25 Asia Pacific 2017
Charting the future of public relations

2017 Innovator 25 AP - Yosuke ToyouroThe Innovator 25:

Yosuke Toyoura

iMarketing Director

Coca-Cola Japan 
Tokyo

“There should be ample support for risk-taking, creativity and initiative-taking in digital activities”

Since joining Coca-Cola in 2013, Yosuke Toyoura has led an eye-catching evolution in its digital work, culminating in the launch of a mobile app that linked product sampling to temperature, generating 4m downloads in just one year. Toyoura’s work demonstrates a comfort with risk that marks him out as a genuine innovator in Japan, and his views on IoT application for consumer brands reflect how technology is disrupting traditional marketing in the country. Prior to Coca-Cola, he led digital marketing at P&G and Nike. 

How do you define innovation?
When it comes to innovation, conventional thinking is that we tend to focus on the hard side of technology. However, I would emphasize the importance of our ability to analyze the huge amount of data in digital from and new ways of thinking, how we harness different dots of new technology to create new business platforms.

Most innovative PR/comms campaign you’ve seen in the last 12 months?
NIKE #Breaking2: Attempt to break the two-hour marathon barrier. While the event will be closed to the public, anyone can experience the excitement by tuning into Nike’s live pre-race show and stream of the attempt. 

What brands and/or agencies are most innovative when it comes to marketing/PR?
n/a

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider ‘innovative.’
Always. As a person who is in charge of digital marketing, I am expected to deliver something new by leveraging new digitally enabled new capabilities. In recent IoT world, there are so many opportunities to come up with new business ideas behind capabilities of 'mobile enabled physical'.

In what area of marketing/PR do you see the most innovation?
Digital & ecommerce platforms.

How would you describe the communications/PR industry’s level of innovation?
More innovative than other marketing disciplines.

Where do you see the greatest opportunity for marketing & PR to become more innovative?
Digital & ecommerce platforms.

Who most influences how innovative a brand’s marketing/PR is?
CMO

Who is your mentor and why?
Family, colleagues and friends: There are many insights to come up with new ideas in the everyday conversation with people who I interact with. Especially, I value the voices from others based on his/her experiences since actual experiences give us lots of great lessons. 

How do you find inspiration?
Through running in the morning: I'm a runner, participating in full-marathon events 5 times so far. Running in the morning is kind of daily habit. During the work out, I am thinking many things such as my life, weekend plans, and my jobs. Occasionally, I came up with new ideas during the running because my brain gets activated in positive manner. 

What is your advice for people seeking to bring new ideas and ways of doing things to their organizations?
Promoting agile and risk taking culture: There should be ample support for risk-taking, creativity and initiative-taking in digital activities. Bold risks have been rewarded, and the occasional failure should be seen as a natural outcome of innovation. 

In your opinion, what’s the most innovative place in the world?
Seattle.

What’s your favorite time of day and why?
Drinking after working with good friends. This is the best way to release daily stress and energize for tomorrow.