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Observatory International Curated Newsletter – February 2022

Economies are re-opening, societies around the globe are moving towards a post-pandemic world and businesses are likewise looking forwards.  Consumer behaviours have been altered and brands need to focus on what a ‘new normal’ means for them and their interactions with their consumer base.  Expectations around data, processes and sustainability are becoming business critical.

To help you make informed decisions for your business we have compiled the best marketing expertise and points of view from key industry thought-leaders and organisations.

An ongoing industry pressure point is access to talent, with a high volume of churn across both client and agency-side being seen since the onset of the covid pandemic.  This ‘Great Migration’ looks set to continue based on a new survey from MarketingWeek, which reports that 57% of marketers are looking to change their job.  A further 28% have already changed roles in the past 12 months.

A desire for higher wages, developing new skills and having a fresh challenge were listed as key motivators for change.

This topic was also one of those covered by a recent WFA panel session ‘Spotlight: Mitigating risk – inflation, agency talent shortfall, etc.’ featuring Lucinda Peniston-Baines, Observatory’s co-founder & Managing Partner, which aimed to help clients better collaborate with agencies in the face of this rising problem.

Agency models are also under scrutiny once more.  Recent suggestion that the agency holding group model is in decline has been countered somewhat by 2021 business results, with Omnicom, Publicis, Dentsu and Interpublic all reporting organic growth of 10% or more and reporting revenues higher than pre-pandemic levels.

This revenue bounce back is a positive indicator for the industry as a whole, however some commentators are still keen to suggest that changing consumer behaviours and the need for brands to have a digital-first mindset means that legacy holding company models don’t possess enough agility to adapt in the longer term.  Higher percentage growth rates for new model companies could suggest that recent results are an anomaly and that momentum is shifting more towards new models.  How effectively is your agency model meeting the needs of your business?

WARC has released its annual Marketer’s Toolkit for 2022, which aims to help marketers navigate current industry disruption and gives insight into key trends that will shape marketing strategies in 2022.

As many markets move into a post-covid stage and economies re-open, identifying the key drivers of change within the industry – such as societal, technological or creativity – will allow for renewed strategic focus and a chance to exploit new opportunities.

Technology continues to be one of the key drivers of change within the industry, both from a consumer behavioural point of view as well as a business management need.  To help businesses determine which technologies will benefit their organisation, Capgemini have released an update of their Technovisionreport, which covers key technological trends that should inform business strategies and transformation plans.

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