Happy New Year and welcome to 2013. Our friends across the group and globe have been pulling together a summary of predicted trends for the year ahead. January always brings a rush of these, but we wanted to share them as there are some good points to kee[p in mind...
For starters one can hardly miss the signs of media convergence today. Mob scenes erupt with each new iPhone launch, sales of tablet devices have skyrocketed, and Twitter hashtags have cropped up with increased frequency on both TV commercials and programming. Second screens became a dominant force in 2012, and will continue to reign in the coming year.
In turn, the culture quake driven by the Millennials, presents a challenge for marketers. These modern marketers must adapt and merge the ads they buy, the content they own and the media coverage they earn into a converged strategy that’s fast and fluid enough to keep up with the multiplatform now.
Here are 10 of the major trends in media and marketing for 2013:
- Mobile Focus: With the increasing penetration of smartphones in both developed and emerging markets, new users are more likely to first come online via mobile today. Effective marketers will shift their focus from advertising and sponsorships to developing new and interesting tools embedded in the phone (think geo-location and gyroscope) to attract and engage mobile users. Increasingly, brands and agencies will depend on mobile technology experts for multiplatform success.
- Social TV: The blossoming of the second screen/social TV space will continue to evolve as users discover and interact with their favorite shows and commercials by responding to on-air polls, coupon and contest offers via their handheld devices. Brand marketers will turn to technologies such as Shazam and the newly-launched iSpot.tv to mine second-screen engagement through big screen content.
- Commercial-tainment: A recent Edelman study found that 80% of Millennials want to be entertained by advertising. Brands like Macy’s, Juicy Couture and ASOS began to merge commercials and entertainment last year with short, engaging shopping videos. This year, expect brands to expand that model to capture even more second-screeners by incorporating contests, sweepstakes, coupons and exclusive content.
- Viral Strategies: The speed with which information travels via social media presents a high-risk, huge-reward opportunity for brands aiming to become this year’s marketing equivalent of PSY’s “Gangnam Style” or Invisible Children’s Kony 2012 campaign.
- Visual Interest: One picture is worth a dozen tweets to social media users who went picture crazy in 2012, thanks to visual sharing sites Instagram and Pinterest. Expect major brands to jump heavily onto the visual bandwagon with apps, photo sharing and Pinterest-like mosaic interfaces.
- Ad Versioning: Gone are the days when TV advertising involved merely matching the right ads with the right media. In 2013, advertisers will increasingly rely on technology that tweaks both the creative and the copy in real time to “version” it automatically. Expect these “smart” algorithms to also execute version testing and adapt each ad to its environment.
- TV 2.0: Despite predictions of TV’s imminent demise, the growth of second-screen users has actually bolstered its popularity while at the same time diverting millions of eyes from the big screen. How will advertisers respond? Expect some to experiment this year with the creative use of sound to get their message across in much the same way as radio.
- Data Planning: Advertisers who were overwhelmed by consumer data last year will reap its benefit this year, now that they’ve identified the sophisticated systems necessary to make sense of the information. Expect more effective multiplatform marketing plans as a result.
- YouTube: YouTube, with its eclectic mix of DIY and commercial video content, will continue to grow in popularity, especially among Millennials. Advertisers will watch closely for opportunities as YouTube settles into its new Los Angeles production studio this year and forms partnerships to expand its content to movie theaters, home entertainment systems and digital storefronts.
- Voice Recognition: Granted, Siri and Google Now didn’t catch fire the way some had expected, but the fault lay more in the execution of voice recognition than in the concept. That’s likely to change in 2013 as SRI, the maker of Siri, courts vendors to build on the Siri framework. Expect VR to make your voice heard on the websites in the coming year.
A big thank you to Jen Razor for pulling this together.