Chris Weil, CEO & Chairman | Momentum
As the role of agencies continues to shift, and brands reevaluate their marketing models (eg. the trend to move resources in-house) what can the ad industry do to showcase its value in new ways this year?
The in-housing conversation has gotten louder but by no means does this nascent trend imply the marginalization or disintermediation of agencies. Agencies actually have a great opportunity to reorient their organizations to prioritize data-driven marketing and advertising.
In order to truly drive client growth, our traditional calling-card of creative excellence must now be infused with the application of data and technology and a new talent configuration to support it. This means going beyond our roles as lead strategic experts and investing in our own proprietary technology.
At Momentum, we are excited by how VR/AR can become a special sauce for experience-based consumer engagement programs. We also know that agencies can build their own AI-based business intelligence platforms that can serve to better quantify and qualify the results of our campaigns to better show that what we do drives business results. Our Momentum BI platform for instance serves as the real-time, always-on, customer feedback loop fed by first-party data that inform client marketing initiatives on an omnichannel basis.
What was a hot industry tool/trend in 2018 that you anticipate going away in 2019, and what will it be replaced by?
The in-housing trend, ironically. It would be exaggerating to predict that it will go away but I don’t think it will gain the disruptive level of traction that many pundits think it will. The programmatic media revolution is still a relatively young occurrence and our entire ecosystem has gone through a fair amount of growing pains. While I applaud progressive clients taking a more proactive and attentive approach to programmatic advertising, it doesn’t seem feasible for brands to bring their programmatic and data tech practices in-house. It is not what a client does for a living.
It requires a significant commitment culturally and resource-wise, not to mention the creation of a different business than what the client’s core business is and that can prove harmful to a client’s core organization. The increasing client demand for greater accountability from their agencies and their vendors is a very positive and helpful development but marketers more than ever still need great strategic and technical partners to implement and manage all of their efforts.
In short, with greater transparency, shorter timelines and better measurement and analytics, agencies just have to get better to continue serving our clients.