Tanwa Edu joins Lumen Research as Head of Attention Consulting


Tanwa Edu has joined Lumen Research as Head of Attention Consulting.
She will lead our growing team of attention consultants, helping clients understand the reality of attention to their marketing and working with them to optimise their media buying and creative development for the future.
Tan has a background in media planning and buying, having worked in senior roles at Mediacom, OMD and M2M, before taking a role at Chanel UK as Head of Media. This gives her unparalleled experience in helping brands navigate the ‘attention economy’.
We sat down with Tan to get to know her a little better.
You’ve held senior roles in both media agencies and client side. What can each learn from the other?
Both sides face similar challenges; media that is ever evolving, more questions being asked, more unknowns, all leading to more work and more pressure. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing: work can still be done in an interesting, efficient, and effective way. Everyone is in this together. People buy into people. Clients want people working on their business who are passionate, good, honest, don’t necessarily have all the answers – and can be honest with that – but want to help find the answers.
Media agencies need to know they can challenge clients in a constructive and honest way. Good clients appreciate that. It reminds them why they are paying for the service. Media agencies need to remember they live and breathe media 24/7 but clients don’t. Media is an important part of a marketeer’s role, but they only have a limited time to give to it, so agencies need to make that time well spent.
Clients need to know a thank you goes a long way with agencies. Showing appreciation for work means people are willing to go that extra step. Share as much as possible with agencies about your business and let them in as much as possible. This helps keep the passion alive for working with a client but also to think outside the box and deliver the pro activity clients crave.
Why do you think the topic of attention is gaining so much attention at the moment?
The general consensus in the industry is the current metrics used in evaluating media aren’t still fit for purpose. Everyone is looking for more meaningful KPIs and consistent metrics that work across media. And the Dentsu Attention Economy project, which has recently been nominated for a Media Week award, suggests that people are now doing something about it.
What attracted you to join the Lumen team?
It was two things. Firstly, the recruitment policy of hiring people with certain qualities. Everyone at Lumen has to be kind, honest and brilliant. That sounded good.
Secondly, it is a business whose proposition is actively addressing a real industry need. Lumen has the tech and has the vision to be ready to address future needs too.
You’re new into your role, but what do you think Lumen needs to start doing, stop doing and continue doing?
It’s only Day 3! But from what I have seen so far:
Keep doing – caring about producing high quality research work
Start doing – Moving our work from being ‘interesting insight’ to an everyday trading tool
Stop doing – Stop giving away so much good insight for free (Ed: a sentiment echoed by Simon Peel at adidas on a recent episode of the Madtech podcast)