For years, those of us in the agency environment have predicted, pondered, and strategized about the future of our work. Is the agency of record dying? What happens when clients take everything in-house, or freelance it all to their networks? Is our work becoming commoditized? Is it a race to the bottom? What are the opportunities going to be 5 or 10 years down the road? Will we all be out of work?
It reminds me of this clip ...
Here are three takeaways from the panel about the work that will continue to be valued and prioritized by clients in the coming years.
1. Data -
Data is at the center of all we do. Data informs the work. Data proves the work. Data drives the strategy.
We all know that you can drown in data. We're not talking about data used as trivia, but accurate and meaningful data that is at the heart of both your strategy and execution. Data tells you if you're talking to the right people, telling them the right things, and effectively driving your audience to take action. It helps you calibrate your messaging, find new prospects and improve your efficacy. We can't afford to do anything without it.
2. Content -
Content has become a non-negotiable part of any strategic execution. When putting together any campaign strategy, put content at the center. If you create great content, you can promote it with any campaign element, version it to reach distinct audiences, and use and re-use it in various formats and applications.
3. Brand Essence -
Integrated campaigns, where every channel and tactic shares the same creative and the same messaging, are a thing of the past. The only way to produce targeted content that's right for each audience and channel is to let the brand flex a bit. The brand essence should carry through, while letting the campaign elements be diverse enough to reach each target audience.
What's your experience? What does your agency bring to your work that you can't do yourself?