Well, Mad Men (and Women) of the modern era it seems your time may very well be running out! Advertising agency mistrust is at an all-time high, and not JUST due to programmatic. Agency evolution is in question.
Travelling back in time, “marketing” was very much a BIG deal. It was intuitive as to who the major players were, and what they were capable of.
Now, flash-forward to the present day, where thousands of agencies thrive on the boom of digital advertising; leaving us to question: Who are the experts? What are they capable of? And how can we differentiate from them?
That’s the problem, isn’t it? You can’t; Not like you used to anyways. Why? There’s way too many of them! And the ‘agency’ in the traditional sense is dying – or to be frank “has died” and people have chosen not to accept it. But now, it is time!
Time to say goodbye to traditional, legacy-centric, large-infrastructure, and pre-internet processes; making way for a new era of agencies. Small, agile, creative/content based consulting agencies that brands and their in-house teams can bounce their ideas off.
Why The Call For Agency Evolution?
Brands are asking questions and demanding more transparency than ever before. Many are no longer convinced that agencies are adding value, and express low trust in them, according to ID Comms’ Global Media Transparency Survey 2018.
They want to know where their money goes – from agency fees to media spends, negotiating vendor deals and more. So expect all to come into question when on-boarding your next client, or proving ROI to your existing clients. Not having answers or obvious rationale is no longer going to cut it.
All of the above is what has been fueling the mistrust, and causing strained relationships between agencies and brands for years, causing brands like Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Mastercard and more to vow to ‘take back control’ of their advertising.
I’m sure I don’t have to spell it out, but it’s not looking good for traditional ad agencies. From the levels of trust to the threat of agency bypassing, automation, and more, revenues are declining or breaking even at best; margins are shrinking, and consultancies are the NEW ad agencies.
So for those that aren’t ready, or willing, to compromise on their traditional endeavours and to adapt to an ever-changing world of digital transformation, I have only one word: Sayonara!
Stick around in the coming weeks for a more in-depth look at the effects of automation and culture on the future of advertising agencies.