Q&A: Bonin Bough, head of social media, PepsiCo
We talk to PepsiCo's digital and social media director about the company's initiative to champion innovation and how to stay one step ahead of competitors using technology.
How do you create a digitally fit global organisation? Society is approaching 100 per cent digital. Organisations used to be digital and you interacted with computer at work. At some point in time technology became mobile and social and society grabbed it and ran with it. It's everywhere in our lives.
But, for some reason, organisations became a little bit stagnant and closed. They weren't on Twitter and so on because of litigation. The IT infrastructure became too big [to handle] all those things.
As soon as everyone's competence grows that's when you see the innovation and an organisation truly hit its stride.
We have to close that gap and it starts with continuing to educate the people inside an organisation.
We talk about digital fitness because the way you get physically fit is not just going to the gym once. It happens as a part of life. How do we make this [digital] a part of the journey this organisation is on?
Some organisations will just set up a Twitter or Facebook page and leave it at that. Is that enough?
They're not listening and they're not learning what it will take to be a part [of this future].
The world is changing at a pace we've never seen before. You have to have a culture that allows [flexibility]. Most of these organisations, if they took a step back, would realise innovation is in their DNA.
The world is littered with innovation products that no longer exist and so on. If we take that and remove the fear - we know that this works as it's driven the performance and growth we've had and bring that same approach to digital, it allows us to be open, to think differently. You just can't be afraid.
With successful initiatives such as the Mr President Campaign (where citizens could submit messages to newly elected Barrack Obama) how do you top that?
We just keep getting better at it. I run the digital centre of excellence. We have some of the brightest minds in digital, not just in my team but also in the business.
We can continue to come up with creative concepts and things like that but the most important is the education piece. As soon as everyone's competence grows that's when you see the innovation and an organisation truly hit its stride.
We are approaching the time when every one of our products is connected to the internet. We are about to accumulate data and insight at a rate we've never been able to do before with a level of accuracy we've never had before and deliver that into the supply chain to drive sales. It's an exciting time!
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