Unfortunately, Nostradamus did not make any predictions for marketers, not that I believe marketing horoscopes can be made and deciphered. 2012, for me, personally was a year when I witnessed more slowdown amongst agencies (either in terms of growth or YoY revenue) but the end of 2012 did throw a few encouraging signs. While most brands expanded their horizons and expanded their digital marketing budget, the news was made when quite a handful digital agencies were acquired by the bigger sharks (okay, I know that’s a rude word when not spoken in boardroom), whether at a good price or not is unknown to a novice like me.
2013 might prove to be watershed year for digital marketers because I feel that companies are waking up to a few things that have been abandoned earlier. In the past few years, clients have realized the critical effect of digital marketing, especially the brands that are targeted at urban consumers. I experienced marketing managers strategizing to integrate their brand’s offline activities with online marketing. Unlike earlier, when the digital and traditional agencies were expected be to divided by the wall, 2013 might see them working better in tandem. In fact, there could be a paradigm shift with digital agencies creating strategies and plans and traditional agencies executing them (how wishful I am). I won’t be surprised because most digital agencies have now begun to focus on the creative side apart from nurturing technological prowess.
The digital ad and marketing spends have risen over the years, and that’s a good sign. 2013 will definitely see a surge in that. From making it to the annual marketing plans to being put in real. In 2012, it was encouraging to see some brands hire digital marketing specialists and social media specialists to focus on the new medium. 2013 would definitely see more brands replicating that and handing over digital duties to experts. Another good news for digital agencies.
Overall, I see two 2013 making news for the following two: 1) watch for more acquisitions and mergers 2) Definite emergence of social media from brand point of view.
May 2013 be a win-win-win for client-agency-consumer.