Résumé: Ilonka Laviz joined P&G in her native Colombia in finance, before switching to brand management based in Venezuela. After time in fabric care, she moved to feminine care, where she led the launch of the Naturella brand in Latin American and eventually other regions. Ms. Laviz came to her current role, marketing director-digital brand-building strategy and global e-commerce, after extensive work on digital behind the Always brand in the U.S.
Challenge: "Make sure everyone globally is doing just as well in a consistent way and stay in the forefront of this fast-paced environment."
Quick fact: She started in finance and worked in marketing but was trained as an industrial engineer.
Like her predecessor in the role, Ilonka Laviz wasn't a digital or media specialist when she became P&G's top global digital-marketing executive in 2011.
But also like her predecessor, Lucas Watson, now YouTube VP-global sales and industry marketing, who had previously worked on Pampers, she came from one of P&G's most digitally focused brands -- Always.
"The DNA of that brand moves around teenager, the most digitally native consumer we have," Ms. Laviz said. In 2000, P&G had created BeingGirl.com as a community for current and would-be users of Always and Tampax, she said, "So in a world where Facebook didn't exist, we were having conversations with our customers."
Now she's working to help make digital central to the marketing of all P&G's 300 brands globally, in part by helping arrange the Signal P&G event in Cincinnati from Federated Media and featuring executives from Twitter, Google, Amazon and others.
The idea, Ms. Laviz said, isn't necessarily to hike spending on digital, Ms. Laviz said. "More and more it's very clear this is no longer about digital marketing, this is truly about brand building in a digital world where people are connected all the time."
P&G's Summer Olympics effort, where Jodi Allen, VP-North American operations and marketing believes the company got more consumer exposure from various digital channels than paid TV, is a case in point.
"It was a great example," she said, "of offline and online integration and how we're listening to what's happening in the world in real time and action on that ."
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