Joydeep Dey | The Innovator 25 Asia Pacific 2018
Charting the future of public relations
Innovator 25 NA Joydeep Dey

Joydeep Dey

Chief Strategy Officer   

Marina Maher Communications  
New York   

“Think, feel, imagine the world through the eyes of your target audience. Feel what they feel, experience what they do. Empathy deepens understanding, understanding fuels imagination”
In the last 18 months, MMC has undergone a broad reorganization — which included the deployment of an integrated model that has been integral in the agency’s turbo-charged progress. As chief strategy officer, JoyDeep Dey was among the chief drivers of the new model that includes new offerings, including the firm’s proprietary RISE model for social engagement work; its ‘Influencer Moneyball’ initiative; the data-driven 'moments' approach to realtime marketing; and its Hive trend capability. All of which has paid off with some eye-catching work — helping Aflac steal the conversation at CES via a giant robotic duck; assisting Tide’s response to the Tide Pods Challenge safety crisis; deploying its ‘moments’ approach for Tide to connect with micro-influencers to drive sales; and developing an analytics-driven content lab across J&J’s 265+ business units.

In what area(s) does the PR need to innovate the most? 
Creativity, analytics and measurement, technology 

How would you describe the communications/PR industry's level of innovation compared to other marketing disciplines? 
About the same as other marketing disciplines 

Where is the PR industry's greatest opportunity for taking the lead on innovation?
Analytics and measurement 

Who most influences how innovative a brand's engagement is? 
Communications/PR agency. It is our job as communications experts to push the brand and set new standards for innovation and creativity.

How do you define innovation? 
Innovation is imagination paired with a maverick audacity.

What is the most innovative comms/marketing initiative you've seen in the last 12 months?
Tide's 2018 Super Bowl work, It’s a #TideAd. A fantastic, meta, business-driving, creative initiative that brought leveraged the individual strengths of a power IAT.

In your opinion, what brands and/or agencies are most innovative around PR and marketing? 
Tencent is one of the most innovative brands in the world, constantly innovating with consumer to deliver consumers new and better utility.

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider 'innovative.' 
My shift from advertising to PR. PR has always found an earned, interesting way to connect consumers to brands. That earned first mindset, paired with technology and analytics will propel brands forward.

Who do you admire for his/her approach to innovation?  
Jack Ma, co-founder and executive chairman of Alibaba Group. He has consistently reframed challenges and obstacles in his life and career into the fuel for innovation. I am inspired by his spirit of audacity and imagination.

How do you get out of a creativity rut? 
Empathy. Think, feel, imagine the world through the eyes of your target audience. Feel what they feel, experience what they do. Empathy deepens understanding, understanding fuels imagination.

What advice would you give to the PR industry around embracing innovation? 
Inculcate the philosophy of "bias for action" into everything we do. Make decisions with conviction, quickly. Decisions should be made with 70% of information needed, waiting for 90%+ information is futile. Innovation and progress will come from iterative doing and learning.

What would you be doing if you weren't doing your current job? 
I am in my love with job, I get excited to come in every morning and solve problems. To work with brilliant and passionate people who are constantly striving for stronger, smarter, break-through ideas. I wouldn't want to do anything else.

Favorite book/movie/podcast/article that's not related to PR/marketing/business? 
Currently reading, "Forged in Crisis: The Power of Courageous Leadership in Turbulent Times" by HBS Professor Nancy Koehn. It's a marvelous examination of the qualities of great leaders in history. Highlights the need for all of us to have unshakeable faith in ourselves, our teams, and our collective ability to withstand anything.