Saad El Zein , Chief Executive Officer, The Network Communication Group (TNG), shares his views on the state of the advertising business.
The advertising industry we are familiar with is swiftly changing. The question that is often asked is the following: ‘Is it the death of traditional advertising as some people claim?’
The answer to that is: definitely not! It is not the end, yet a conversion is taking place. The advertising industry we knew is changing. It is reshaping. It is transforming.
The era of technology and advancement in communications solutions has led to the consumer gaining increased exposure and tuning themselves differently thus leading to new media consumption habits and diverse expectations. The world is now at the consumer’s fingertips and accessing all kinds of content, advertising, solutions, information, entertainment and branding among others is now just a click away. Clearly, power and control have now changed hands and moved from the advertiser to the consumer. Moved from the brand to the consumer, from talking at to talking to.
With all these changes, what role does the advertising agency now play? How must an agency equip itself to face these challenges? What are the core changes that need to be made to its DNA in order to be able to either regain control or at the very least remain connected and be able to add value to the communications formula?
We see media companies leading the way towards integrated communications solutions and even relying less on the creative agencies. We see digital agencies mushrooming all over the place, trying to take the lead in reaching and engaging with audiences. We witness the rise of content providers on a daily basis and production companies altering their business models to go from high value productions with high budgets to value production that answers the requirements of the digital world.
By changing, these entities are adapting to the constant evolution. So, the question that arises here is the following: are advertising agencies following through with these changes and what should the new format of an advertising agency be?
Creative agencies, the giants of the last millennium, are now changing to become core creative, design and activation agencies, and the media departments of the past became the big players of the present and the future, mainly after embracing digital under their wings.
The industry dynamics, the technological advancements, and consumer behaviour towards media habits and consumption are definitely affecting our way of thinking and reshaping the industry we know.
We are adapting to changes, we are reformulating our DNA so we are part of the race and equipped to answer our clients’ expectations and help them achieve their goals and objectives.