Tom Denford and David Indo from ID Comms: how the big events of 2016 will shape media this year

On #MediaSnack this week Tom and David head to the rooftop to get a bird’s eye view of 2016’s biggest media themes and personalities. As well as looking backwards they also assess which of these themes will have an impact in 2017.

The ID Comms Top 10 for 2016 is:

M is for Media

It has been a phenomenal year for media. Media has never been so high on the corporate agenda and more marketers are now seeing media as an investment rather that cost. Tom and David also name their media person of the year, Bob Liodice, CEO of the Association of National Advertisers (ANA).

E is for e-auctions

Media pitches are increasingly being managed through procurement e-sourcing platforms, which removes the opportunity for agency creativity, charisma and culture to win a media pitch. This rubs uncomfortably against the idea that marketers are taking control of media investments. We won’t see e-auctions going away but marketers have got to balance the race to the bottom on costs with a clear strategic ambition for media that makes it more than just a commodity buying exercise.

D is for D’Angelo

In 2016 P&G appointed Gerry D’Angelo as Chief Media Officer. The hire was announced a few months after the ANA released its much-anticipated recommendations for brands including the need for senior media executive oversight. This shows that big brands such as P&G are taking media governance very seriously and we expect to see more appointments in the coming year.

I is for ISBA

In March 2016, UK’s trade body presented a new template for media agency contracts aimed to address the media transparency concerns and swing the balance of power back to the advertiser. A great initiative, which has subsequently been rolled-out internationally.

A is for Association of National Advertisers

The Association of National Advertisers created a landmark piece of work in 2016. The US advertiser trade body conducted a year-long investigation looking at media agency financial management. The results revealed alarming insights about “non-transparent” agency financial management practices. We believe that the ANA media transparency investigation will be a catalyst for many positive behavioural changes in the industry in the coming years.

S is for Stats

This year has been challenging for digital marketing numbers. Incessant debates on ad blocking and concerns around ad fraud; continuous reporting on Facebook’s measurement reports; click-fraud activities to name but a few. We have also seen some interesting statistics in other areas. Research conducted by Campaign magazine has indicated low levels of morale in media agencies accompanied by concerns over the lack of senior leadership in media agencies. Ad Age also quoted research which predicted that 67% of the US top advertisers are considering pitching their media agencies in 2017.

N is for New

There have been a lot of new entrances into the media market in the last 12 months. One of the most successful new agencies – Hearts and Science won more than $6bn in less than a year and now works with brands like P&G, AT&T and others. The Copenhagen-based media buying platform Blackwood7 opened offices in London and New York. We also saw the launch of the new media agency network called Local Planet.

A is for Agencies

Big changes are afoot in media agencies, which have been notoriously shy of leadership and structural changes. We saw the creation of Publicis Media, new agency offerings from the big networks, and a sudden run of leadership changes at major Publicis and WPP media agencies, notably. Kelly Clark’s appointment as Global CEO of GroupM.

C is for Consultants

This year will see the continued march of the management consultants. 2016 was notable as the year when the stealthy rise of Accenture, Deloitte’s and others resulted in stronger positions in digital marketing services. We also saw some major ‘traditional’ acquisitions, notably Accenture’s purchase of creative agency Karmarama.

And finally…

K is for Killer ideas

Despite many negative conversations around media in the last year or so, we have seen some phenomenal media work. The inspiration and business impact coming from great strategic media thinking is remarkable. We look forward to seeing more great ideas from all sides in 2017.

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