In the spotlight: Association of New Zealand Advertisers’ Lindsay Mouat

In the spotlight: Association of New Zealand Advertisers’ Lindsay Mouat

3 minute read

Meet Lindsay Mouat, CEO of ANZA

Article details

  • Author:Lindsay Mouat
    CEO, ANZA New Zealand
5 March 2021


I was born in… a very small town called Gore at the bottom of the South Island of New Zealand, one of the southernmost communities anywhere in the world. I’m a Kiwi born and bred.

How I got into marketing… I went to university with the intention of becoming a geography teacher. And somewhere in those three years, I realised I didn't want to spend the rest of my life standing in front of a classroom. I looked around and discovered marketing which I'd really never heard of, and thought that sounded interesting. I started studying marketing and somehow it just all clicked.

My first marketing job was at Glaxo (now GSK). I then worked on the launch of the Yoplait brand in New Zealand (bringing a French dairy brand to a dairy producing country is kind of ironic!). I then joined Unilever as a market research manager and spent the next 20 years with the company in marketing and business leadership roles in Australia and New Zealand. I was very much a client-side marketer before I came into my role at the Association of New Zealand Advertisers (ANZA).

Industry issues we are focused on… ANZA celebrates its 90th anniversary this year, one of the earlier founded national associations. For a small country like New Zealand, much of what we focus on as an advertiser association is around global issues and translating what's happening at a global level down to local level, both in terms of initiatives and responses.

There are two big issues on the agenda:

  • Marketing to children (or in fact not marketing to children): Our goal is to better engage with our critics, help them understand what we do and how responsible brands operate, and show how we can protect vulnerable audiences.

  • Online regulation: Both in terms of combatting online harm which I'm very passionate about, and in ensuring competition and transparency. We're trying to encourage our government to be a fast follower of legislation, which is on the horizon in the EU, Australia and elsewhere.

    Following the live-streaming of the Christchurch attacks in New Zealand in 2019, I spoke to WFA members during Global Marketer Week in Lisbon on the need for our whole industry to respond and hold platforms to account. We’ve seen real progress since then and the Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) is the way to move the needle. It’s a great example of how we as an industry can collectively work together to facilitate change.

If I could change one thing about the marketing industry in 2021… I'm a big Mark Ritson fan and I really like his message around the industry needing to pivot back to strategy. We need to get back to actually listening and understanding consumers and reflect on what we stand for. I think Covid has helped in some ways in forcing clients and agencies to reflect and act on this.

One thing Covid-19 has taught us… our capacity to change can happen quicker than we thought was possible. What really struck me was the significant behaviour changes in the way we work, sell, distribute and engage with people.

One thing most people don’t know about me is… I’m a hopeless tennis player, but I just love the game. I've been lucky enough to see Roger Federer in Wimbledon, and also got to see Rafa Nadal, Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic play. Rafa conquered Roland-Garros and I told my wife that this was the peak of my tennis career, just sitting in that stadium watching him. Last year we were supposed to attend the US Open to complete my personal Grand Slam. Maybe next year.

One fact about my country… we take great pride with New Zealand being the first country to give women the right to vote in 1893. We've now had three female prime ministers and increasingly more women leading in politics and business. From a gender perspective, we've been pretty progressive here.

This is part of a series of monthly interviews with heads of national advertiser associations in WFA membership.

Contact us