Analysis & Opinion

The new digital landscape

January 21, 2011 MullenLowe

The new digital landscape is one of fragmentation, distribution, interaction, delegation, integration and elation! Media vehicles that dominate today – You Tube, Facebook – literally did not exist six years ago.

The recession in 2009 drove a heightened focus on efficiency and increased digital display and paid search budgets at the expense of other channels. Yesterday content portals dominated consumer time online and ad revenue. Today, clearly, social media has completely changed the world – brands are targeting consumers demographically, behaviorally and with dynamic messaging and offers that pertain to their preferences. Hyper targeting through the fray of content directly to audiences via large ad impression aggregators called ad networks has increased considerably. But wait, publishers suddenly realized that this practice of selling their impressions was de-valuing their content and thus eventually going to be a no-revenue model.

Now, Time Inc, CondeNast and other premium publishers are selling their content exclusively across multiple devices – smartphones, iPads, PC, Print, Web TV – forcing content to remain just as important as audience targeting in the digital realm. Digital content consumption will continue to fragment as Web-enabled TV’s explode in the next couple years. Eventually, we will see more of what Turner and Sports Illustrated are already pioneering, and that is securing a certain content alignment across multiple devices with one transaction, one sales rep. Impressions will simply be divided across the delivery devices as appropriate based on demand.

Other trends to watch are:

  • In-game advertising due to the explosion and high consumer penetration of Xbox and PS3 systems that can dynamically serve ads
  • Agency trading desks to answer impression demand for direct marketers
  • Mobile, as consumption increases and adoption of daily usage grows for all age groups
  • How Web on TV and the iPad are going to change the print world and content distribution forever

Get ready!