I usually have my blog post written in advance and have preselected the date/time for at least five post to be published for any given week. This week has been a bit different. For some reason it has been more of a challenge this week comparative to others. I thought I would make this post a bit more personal to share what I’m hearing from small-to midsize ad agencies across the country.
- More agencies are coming to grips with the importance of social media that it is a necessity. If they are to survive they must “genuinely” be participant. They can’t just give lip service to its importance, they must demonstrate to their clients that they “get it.” This is a big change from clients pushing, prodding and poking their agencies to get with it in social.
- I believe agencies are starting to wake up to the fact that their business model must change. There aren’t many, but there are a few examples of agencies beginning to figure out how to generate income from social media.
- A lot of agencies are still trying to figure out what their staff make-up should be and will be say in the next five years. What skills sets will be most needed, what new positions will need to be added.
- Some agencies are so financially stressed from client’s marketing budget cutbacks, that they are frantically searching for any tips on how to generate leads within the next 30 days. They are extremely frustrated at the lack of network, referral business and their cold calling initiatives have been fruitless.
- A number of agencies CEOs that I’m hearing from are trying their best to hold their staff together without having to make deep staffing cuts. Their outlook for 2009 seems to be more about holding-on for what they feel will be a difficult year.
- A few of the agency principals that I talk with are genuinely excited about this communications revolution and are energized by the possibilities it creates. They are stepping up and stepping out to grow their agency and gain market share despite the recession. They are not waiting around for other agencies to figure this out. They are carving out their own path, creating their own model for success.
“If the ad community and marketing community with all of its creative and intelligent minds cannot find a solution for using, effectively using, social networks and user-generated content, it will be the greatest loss to the advertising and marketing business that we’ve ever experienced.” Jack Myers, a leading media analyst