|Edwin Ward, Director of Ogilvy Malta|
Traditional advertising agencies face significant technical challenges driven by what is happening to consumers. The Maltese consumer is no different to any other consumer. Until recently, PBS’s 8:00pm News commanded the largest single audience for advertisers, at an average of 150,000 viewers per evening. But there’s 217,000 Maltese on facebook, and 1.5 million page views per day on www.timesofmalta.com putting that 150,000 average to shame. More, there’s 123% mobile penetration in Malta, meaning there’s almost 500,000 handsets out there which can take a commercial message to you at any time of the day or night. Consumers have turned away from media channels that built the agency industry and have moved toward emerging internet and mobile media. Advertising agencies must build new interactive competencies quickly in order to survive, which is why we have formed part of a “cluster”.
Clients are beginning to ask how social media marketing will impact their current business model and what it means for their marketing investment.
Social media is changing the way everyone does business, let’s look at some changes:
A paradigm shift for how new business is acquired. According to a recent survey, 80% of decision makers say they found the vendor, not the other way around. Instead of finding your prospects, the “new” new business paradigm for Marketing 2.0 is to help your prospective clients find you. It’s a sophisticated game of hide and seek.
SEO is now a critical part of new business strategy. 80-90% of business to business transactions begin with a search on the web. That means that SEO is a very important component to your new business programme if you are in B-2-B.
A blog is a necessary component for marketing your your brand and its promise. It wasn’t that long ago that it became understood, every business needed a website. Today it’s, every business needs a blog. Who will give you a believable voice online?
The growth of new media mandates a new kind of relationship with your advertising agency. Social media is now mainstream, and late last year Ogilvy Malta took the first step to becoming Facebook’s only official marketing partner on the islands. I can’t imagine ever advising a client to deal with an advertising, PR, or interactive team that doesn’t get social media.
As David Ogilvy always said in his vision for our company: “Encourage innovation. Change is our lifeblood, stagnation our death knell.”