CANNES – For MEC, understanding the consumer purchase journey involves making waves and showing clients how their “momentum” stacks up against competitors. It’s a blend of data, content and technology—something that the Cannes Lions festival is catching up to, according to the global media agency’s Nathalie Haxby.

“We’re seeing a lot of that now with the Entertainment Lions, the awards for content and creativity, the Creative Data awards as well,” Haxby, who is Global Marketing Director, says in this interview with Beet.TV.

Making waves is the responsibility of MEC’s WAVEMAKER unit, which uses data and analytics showing how consumers behave and how they buy to inform content creation. The goal is to figure out which points in consumer’s journies are the most valuable to particular marketers.

With “tons and tons” of data available to her teams, “Our job is to try to make sense of that and really glean the insights that come out of that data,” Haxby says.

MEC brings to the table its own research study—called MEC Momentum and running for several years now. Its purpose is to close gaps in understanding what buyers do during the purchase journey, how their perceptions of brands influence their behavior and how they make their choices.

“We’ve surveyed more than 350,000 people in 30 countries, 60 categories to look at how they go around the purchase journey. We use that data and blend it with our clients’ data to create really targeted messages at certain points throughout the purchase journey,” Haxby explains.

Knowing that MEC itself has audiences that it needs to reach, the agency is constantly evaluating its own presence on platforms like Facebook and Snapchat. “It’s a learning curve for us all, but we would be remiss if we didn’t do what we said our clients should be doing,” says Haxby. “We have to do it for ourselves.”

She references an MEC session at Cannes in which iHeart CEO Bob Pittman talked about the power of radio, a medium sometimes overlooked.

“Ultimately, 250 million people listen to radio in the U.S. every day, so that’s something we have to tap into. We forget sometimes that it’s another platform. It’s called podcasting now, but it’s still radio.”

This video is part of Beet.TV’s Coverage of Cannes Lions 2017. For more from the series, please visit this page.