5 Trends Every Marketing Agency Needs to Pay Attention to in 2016

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Is your agency ready for what’s ahead in 2016? The marketing world continues to evolve at a rapid pace. In 2016, it’s truer than ever. Agencies that fail to adapt to the “new normal” run the risk of being left in the dust by their competitors. While many of these changes involve technology, many others involve cultural and social shifts within our society. Familiarize yourself with the five most notable trends to watch out for in 2016 to remain as competitive as possible.

1. The Digital Transformation is Upon Us 

For a long time, agencies have kept digital technology separate from other aspects of marketing. That’s changing rapidly. In 2016, things won’t be so siloed. Creatives and others within agencies will increasingly work in a collaborative fashion. The digital revolution is done, and the post-digital world requires agencies to seamlessly incorporate digital technology into all aspects of their work.

2. Personalized Conversations 

Retailers have been tracking consumers online for some time, but now the technology exists to actually do something useful with the information. More importantly, the information is no longer only useful in the online world. Indeed, retailers will increasingly have the ability to connect directly with consumers wherever they are, whether it’s online or off. Access to free Wi-Fi and mobile is largely responsible for this particular shift. Agencies should encourage retailers to embrace omnichannel marketing to create a seamless experience.

3. Generation Y 

By 2020, more than 50% of the workforce will be made up of workers who belong to generation Y. Born between 1981 and 1999, they are known for their desire to control their own destinies. They don’t crave the stability of long-term job commitments but are driven by their passion for what they do. Entrepreneurs and freelancers, they thrive on creativity and will rapidly change the face of marketing in the years to come.

4. Advertising and Media Merge Again 

Thanks to developments like big data and the rise of social media, marketing and media are getting cozy again. Successful marketing agencies understand this and will embrace it. Already, many brands are hiring younger, hipper agencies that understand how to effectively market to online users, as it’s a whole different ballgame than it is with other forms of media.

5. Diversity 

More than ever, gender equality and diversity in general are top concerns for both retailers and marketing agencies. Retailers understand that inclusivity is key, and agencies are taking note. The best and most successful agencies will make a concerted effort to hire more young women and to elevate women and minorities to higher positions. They will also strive to help employees achieve an optimal work-life balance, so you can expect a lot more telecommuting to happen in the months and years to come.

With any luck, you’re already at least somewhat aware of the trends to watch in 2016. Whether you are or not, make a point to embrace them however you can. In doing so, you will be well ahead of the competition.

Jennifer Groese

As VP of Marketing, Jennifer works alongside our agency clients to support and grow their new business efforts.