Buzzfeed Brand Strategy Director Joins iris as Head of Platforms & Distribution
iris has appointed previous director of Brand Strategy at Buzzfeed, Digby Lewis, to a lead role within its newly formed global content division - Content That POPS. The specialist proposition is focused on the creation, production, and effective distribution of content to deliver extraordinary value to consumers and clients.
Lewis will take on the new role of Head of Platforms & Distribution, adding to the agency’s data-driven insight capabilities, bringing more heavyweight distribution strategy, and using his experience and connections to build iris’ editorial capabilities.
He will report into Matthew Kershaw, who joined the team as Managing Director of Content in November 2015. Both Kershaw and Lewis will lead the charge in globalising the proposition from the network’s London HQ, with teams already in place in Singapore, Amsterdam, Sydney, Shanghai, New York and Sao Paulo.
Matthew Kershaw, Managing Director: “Content’s only worth doing if it creates extraordinary value for consumers and businesses, and to do that clients need ‘own the full content stack’; planning, creation, agile production, smart distribution and the data fuel for the process. To that end, we continue to invest in world-class talent. We are hiring from the kind of company many businesses are scared of. Digby has a deep understanding of how content is distributed, and brings a unique blend of multi-channel editorial and commercial experience to iris.”
The Content That POPS ambition is to create more effective value exchange between brands and people through content marketing that has ‘Purpose, Originality, Participation and Shareability’ at its core. During his 20-year career, Lewis has worked as a journalist, TV producer, online video platform manager and developed innovative brand initiatives, including the BAFTA and Webby-award winning Imagination Series for Bombay Sapphire and Sainsbury’s publishing platform Homemade.
Digby Lewis: "I could give '29 Reasons Why I’m Joining iris' but the agency's work speaks for itself. Boss Everyone for adidas shows they instinctively understand how to produce content with purpose that people will want to talk about.
“That said – the world doesn’t need more content. Matthew and I are fully committed to making less 'stuff' for its own sake and focusing on work that has a genuine purpose; as part of the award-winning integrated iris proposition, we have the ability to say no when content isn't actually the answer."
Also playing leading roles in the new venture will be Hannah Beesley, who heads up the social practice at iris, and Aideen Fox as Partnerships Manager who is tasked with building partnerships for iris clients based on value exchange rather than just monetary investment.
iris has been a pioneer of innovative content since it created Pocket TV in 2012 for Sony Ericsson, a branded entertainment content hub created specifically for mobile, and is already creating global content solutions and experiences for brands including adidas, Shell, MINI, Samsung and Johnnie Walker.
The content team will sit at the heart of the agency, alongside and working closely with iris Concise, the micro-network’s consulting, CRM, data & insight business.