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Exclusive Interview with Newton Baby's CMO, Aaron Zagha

Updated: Dec 6, 2023


Aaron Zagha, CMO Newtown Baby

Aaron Zagha is currently the CMO at Newton Baby, the direct-to-consumer brand behind the safest baby crib mattress on the market and other top-rated sleep products. Newton was founded eight years ago to commercialize the first breathable and washable crib mattress. It has since become one of the largest and fastest-growing D2C companies in the baby durable goods category.


In addition to overseeing all marketing efforts, from search and social to Amazon and influencer marketing, Aaron also runs strategy and M&A for Newton Baby. He was previously the head of eCommerce for Teleflora's international business. Prior to Newton and Teleflora, Aaron was a co-founder and COO of Ownza.com, the social shopping and rebate site. Aaron began his career in investment banking at Deutsche Bank.


2024 Advertising Trends: What specific trends do you foresee dominating the advertising landscape in 2024? How might these trends redefine the way brands connect with consumers?


I think we're going to continue the debate about how much control to hand over to Facebook, Google, and TikTok's ad creation and targeting campaign types. As both Facebook ASC and Google PMax campaigns continue to gain traction and outperform, we'll need to ask ourselves what we're paying agencies for and how much brand control we're willing to hand over to the platforms. Your average brand can probably get away with very little control, but the more upscale or lifestyle brands need to keep paying attention to the kinds of ads the platforms are generating and where these ads are showing up. We've definitely seen an uptick in brand safety concerns with some of the recent developments and placements.


Adaptation Strategies for Advertisers: How does your company adapt its advertising strategies to embrace emerging trends, new platforms, and changing consumer behaviors while ensuring relevance and impact?


We've built a culture of continuous testing and learning. At any given time, we are testing at least 5 to 10 new and emerging channels and revisiting channels we might have tested previously. Still, there were at least hearing anecdotally of improved performance. We're also constantly staying on top of industry trends and developments concerning technology upgrades and AI to ensure we're leveraging our time as efficiently as possible. This testing extends to the platforms and the creative we're running in any given platform. The targeting also has to be continuously tested as the platforms are constantly improving algorithms and or breaking them.


Innovative Advertising Approaches: Can you highlight innovative approaches or technologies your company plans to leverage in 2024 to create more engaging and effective advertising campaigns?


We're finding that some generative AI platforms are now producing ad creative at a quality level that justifies their testing for static lifestyle ads. To the extent this continues to improve at recent rates, we're not likely to need many photo shoots going forward. Whereas 2023 was the year for incorporating LLMs into our marketing flow for copy and idea generation, 2024 will be the year we start incorporating generative AI for creativity. Probably not for video ads, but definitely for static. AI photo editing and retouching should also lighten the load on our designers, hopefully freeing them up to spend more time improving the quality of overall creativity.


Consumer-Centric Advertising: How does your advertising strategy prioritize personalization and resonance with consumers in 2024? What steps are taken to ensure advertisements resonate with the increasingly discerning audience?


It really depends on the audience, product, and category. Some audiences don't need personalization. Maybe it's just a well-thought-out product shot. But others require complete personalization, which truly allows the potential customer to envision the life they would be leading with your product. The only way to know if anything is working is to test and learn, test and learn, test and learn....

Future-Proofing Advertising Initiatives: What initiatives or investments is your company making to future-proof its advertising strategies in the face of technological advancements and shifts in consumer preferences anticipated in 2024?


We make sure everyone subscribes to at least a few industry newsletters to stay on top of new tools and trends. Whenever an interesting webinar comes, we'll also have someone attend and summarize for the team at large. We've also assigned a couple team members to stay on the vanguard of AI trends, both with respect to learning and experimentation. But I think the most impactful strategy for us in 2024 will be upgrading our incrementality testing and marketing mix modeling. Now that we're at scale, the efficacy and profitability of our advertising ecosystem are more important than just adding eyeballs and expanding reach at reasonable costs.



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