Unilever's Keith Weed on trust, cutting agencies and gearing up for GDPR

Earlier this month, Keith Weed was named the World Federation of Advertisers' Global Marketer of the Year, an award run in association with Campaign. To mark his win, the FMCG giant's chief marketing and communications officer caught up with WFA president David Wheldon and discussed a range of topics from his recent high-profile speech at the US IAB through to coping with GDPR.

Keith Weed (left) receives the Global Marketer of the Year award from WFA's David Wheldon
Keith Weed (left) receives the Global Marketer of the Year award from WFA's David Wheldon

On trust, which was one of the major issues arising from his IAB address, Weed urged marketers to focus on "building trust back in". "Once trust starts getting eroded you’ve got all sorts of problems. Without trust, you don’t get brands," he added.

His pledge not to invest in platforms that "create division in society" was not about hectoring" the social media giants, insisting he wanted to work in partnership with them.

Weed, who is cutting the number of agencies the company works with, also called for shops to "reinvent themselves" to offer integrated solutions. "Marketers are being forced into being the integrator," he commented.

Turning to GDPR, he revealed that for the first time, as a result of the advent of the legislation, he has a legal expert in his team.

Commenting on the award, Wheldon said: "Keith Weed is an inspirational marketing leader, great with his people and for the industry. He is passionate about driving the betterment of marketing and richly deserves to be voted by his peers the inaugural winner of the WFA Global Marketer of the Year."

To see Weed elaborate on these and other issues in conversation with Wheldon, watch the videos below.

On priorities

On agency partners