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We all have wish lists, whether online, emailed to friends and families or in our heads. In 2018, marketing continues to evolve as an amalgamation of classic strategy and discipline blurred with instantaneous means of interacting in real time with consumers. The Forbes Agency Council recently published its top 15 trends for marketing in 2018. The bottom line is that consumers are asking for, and actually demanding, a more sophisticated level of integration from marketers. They don’t care how you’re reaching them – advertising, digital, public relations, product placements or celebrity endorsements – as long as you communicate seamlessly with them and deliver a tangible benefit to make their lives or the world better or easier.
Let’s take this incredibly daunting challenge for marketers and simplify it by delineating the perfect agency attributes as a partner in 2018: the Marketers’ Agency Wish List:
What I want from my agency in 2018:
- Make sure my brand has a strategic positioning and builds on it in everything I do. There are so many options and distractions for me – I need you to be the strategy police.
- Integrate what used to be a separate discipline called “digital” into everything I do. There is no “digital” anymore; it is the way we communicate – in real time, in real life and seamlessly to our consumers. I don’t need “digital” in anything, because digital IS everything. No need to separate it out anymore. We stopped separating the message from the medium decades ago. 2018 is the year that digital is accepted as omnipresent in all marketing efforts.
- Give me video, video, video. My consumers’ attention span is down to a split second, and I know that video breaks through – everything. Every time you make a recommendation, consider if it should be executed in video first.
- Everything you develop for me must not just seem, but must actually be authentic and transparent. Consumers are part of my marketing department; they understand what is real and what is contrived. My brand has a purpose, and I want that communicated – bring my brand on home to my target audience with some old-fashioned, authentic grass roots programs in addition to our ongoing critical online conversation.
- Redefine ROI – I need you, my agency, my partner, to bring every emerging technology developed as recently as five minutes ago to me with a recommendation on how to test it. But when you show me the ROI results, please include these “experiments” in the metrics. Innovation in marketing is proliferating, so it is now a way of life in our relationship. We need to account for the experimentation.
Marketers need agencies to lead, support, clarify and deliver what is effective consumer marketing as the word formerly known as “digital” comes into full blossom in 2018.