Ogilvy Cape Town’s digital media agency, recently hosted a global summit to discuss the future of digital media as well as to share insights and best practices amongst the Neo@Ogilvy group. Attended by nine managing directors from across Neo’s 39 offices worldwide, the discussion was lead by global CEO, Nasreen Madhany and hosted by Mia Scholtz, Neo@Ogilvy’s Cape Town Managing Director.
As one of the world’s leading digital and direct media agency, the group made a number of key predictions that pointed towards global trends which are, and have been emerging in the South African market. The talks outlined the projected global market spend for online advertising for 2014, predicted as US$96.8-billion, as well the specific trends related to this.
“Locally, we’ve seen a 30 percent year-on-year increase historically and this is expected to continue. This is a reflection of the increased interest from South African companies in digital marketing, something that has grown significantly over the past four years,” says Scholtz who, for this reason, emphasised the importance of the Neo group’s information sharing policies – a practice which is integral to its worldwide success.
The following digital marketing trends were predicted:
■The mobile evolution:
Despite the penetration of mobile phones into the South Africa market and the increasing use of smartphones, the impact of empowering billions of people with real-time connected devices is in its infancy in the country.
On the horizon for 2011 and beyond is the rapid enterprise adoption of tablets for productivity – this is evident in the number of different manufacturers producing tablets and speaks to the adoption of an “always on” consumer mentality. The convergence of social, local and mobile digital channels – the South African market will continue to feel an increased push for the use and adoption of applications such as Foursquare as fostered by campaign rewards programmes and the increased use of near field communication(NFC) which allows for simplified transactions, data exchange, and connections with a touch.
In addition to this is the increasing use of digital video in the mobile context. The medium has the power to spread campaign elements virally and will command more attention in digital strategies.
■Rise of the digital analyst:
With the push toward the use of more content on multiple channels, it is predicted that employers will be pressed to turn to digital analysts who source, monitor and interpret analytics to ensure the optimum use of mediums for each campaign. This is something that is not yet been seen as a recognised position in local media agencies.
■Integration: a deeper conversation:
While there is much talk about integration throughout agencies and from offline to online, the philosophy needs a deeper focus within digital. Current and future digital strategies can no longer rest on the performance of an individual digital channel such as web, mobile, search or social but rather, best performance lies in the use of inter-relationships between these channels with a strong search strategy at the core of every digital campaign.
“While we recognise these and other trends, Neo’s advantage in the digital category, however, stems from our ‘always new’ rather than ‘innovation approach’ meaning that while Neo will always be an early adopter, we will continue to be channel neutral and use the best channel to meet our client’s business goals,” says Madhany.