Daniel Henriksen
Apr 26, 2019

Why advertising needs to be a two-way game

Daniel Henriksen on why the Greek philosophy of 'Dyad' needs to be resurrected in the media and advertising industry.

Why advertising needs to be a two-way game

Text: Daniel Henriksen

In any business relationship, the sustainability and success of the relationship is the value created jointly by customer and suppliers, and where the cooperative business relationship takes input from the customer’s perspective and the supplier’s perspective, finding an equilibrium where both are satisfied with the outcome of the relationship. In sociology, this is defined as the ‘Dyad Perspective’, which in Greek describes ‘dyad’ as a group of two people and their interactions.

Why do I think this is important to ressurect this relationship in today's day and age?

I believe the idea of ‘mutual value’ has been eroded by a general ‘abundance mentality’, both in personal and professional settings. We’ve become prone to simply wanting more for ourselves, and to make reference to the mathematician John Nash and his discovery of ‘Game Theory’.

We’ve also forgotten that business interactions and social games can be cooperative, where participants negotiate binding contracts that allows them to plan joint strategies maximising the payoff of each player.

The media and advertising is, unfortunately, not immune to this mentality - and perhaps more so. After, all, with so many players interacting in the 'advertising game', it seems inevitable that cooperation is challenged by the misalignment of objectives, disconnected communication flows and sub-optimisation. These inequalities and disconnects have resulted in a race to the bottom, where everyone is trying to get more for less.

This is obviously not sustainable in the long run, and worsens the pay-off for each player. Marketers see less return of their media investment, leading to greater scrutiny and lower pricing. That means agencies are less able to invest in talent and technology. Advertising technology players will have difficulties innovating, and publishers will not be able to invest in great content and journalism.

It’s very clear. We have reached an unsustainable point, and there is no longer an understanding of mutually beneficial creations in the media and advertising industry. Unless everyone in the ecosystem collaborates to find win-win solutions that create mutual value for all 'players' in the 'advertising game', in other words, we will all lose and worsen our long-term pay-off.

The question is, how do we get started on this journey?

As an outcome-driven media company, we believe that first, we need to define the success metrics that connects directly with our clients’ marketing and business goals. When clients are assured that every dollar spent is delivering measurable results allowing them to grow their business, it will in turn allow us to continue investing in the best people, technology and data, and publishers to invest in great journalism and content creation. 

We will all be able to continue innovating and continue to maximise the value we deliver to our clients’ in the next three, five, 10 and 20 years. 

Only by acknowledging and respecting that all 'players' in the 'advertising game' needs to get value in return from their investment will we be able to ensure that outcomes each player get are aligned with their ultimate business goals, and business relationships remain sustainable. 

Daniel Henriksen, head of outcome media planning, Xaxis Asia


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