Industry Thought Leaders Weigh In With Media/Advertising Forecasts For 2020

Dec 16, 2019

Brad Adgate Contributor

Democratic Presidential Candidates Participate In Third Debate In Houston

One of the few certainties in 2020 will be it will be a big year in politics. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) GETTY IMAGES

In media and advertising, there will be just a few certainties in 2020; It will be a big political year, there will be the Summer Olympics from Tokyo and Super Bowl ad pricing will set another record. To find out what else may happen we asked a few industry experts to gauge their thoughts.

Rick Ducey, Managing Director, BIA Advisory Services

“Marketers will continue to shift spending to follow consumers’ media habits. But the “digital curtain” keeps these marketers from reaching consumers on ad-free platforms like Netflix. Thus, the frenetic growth in ad-supported streaming video services to meet the demand for reaching audiences in premium, long-form video environments. 2020 will start the reckoning of oversupply by streaming video providers. We’ll see exits, downsizing, M&A. And…the entry of new start-ups who think they’ve found important niches.”

Tim Jones, CEO, Publicis Media Americas

“Brands need to ramp up their identity resolution capabilities in order to create personalized experiences at scale as we move towards data-led, digital-first, opt-in world.”

“5G becomes a reality this year, supercharging consumer experiences across IOT and opening new opportunities for tech across supply chain & inventory management.”

“While programmatic continues to dominate digital media, new challenges around privacy and supply chain management mean brands need to invent new processes that better balance consumers’ need for privacy with the benefits of targeting and personalization.”

Shereta Williams, President, Videa

“We will start to see applications of the new privacy law in California (CCPA) and how it affects the local TV environment. The impact of technology for local TV will be significant in 2020. Broadcasters are going to need to partner with platforms and use their technology to meet mass scale and the technology providers will need to have freer reign. That will beg the question of what the right amount of appropriate regulation is on big tech.”

Jacqueline Corbelli, President/CEO, and Rob Aksman, Chief Strategy Officer, BrightLine

“The streaming war is on and we’ll start to see who the real winners are in 2020. Watch for the stalwarts’ next move as they start to respond to new entrants, Disney and Peacock. We expect to see Amazon in particular move the goalpost a little, as the only player with content, a device to watch it on, seamless integration with purchase and an enormous membership base that other players won’t make a dent in. Their asymmetric positioning will be a very interesting dynamic to watch in 2020. Unlike Apple, which we believe will continue a long struggle to succeed in TV.”

Cindy Riccio, President/Founder, Cindy Riccio Communications

“The 2020 elections will most definitely affect the media cycle. While consumer TV will cover the elections, we’ll see more time and space devoted on social media to try and show transparency. Facebook recently put out a press release to publicly announce their responsibility to stop abuse and election interference on their platform one year in advance of the elections. Some of the measures they will take to help protect the democratic process include fighting foreign interference, increasing transparency to confirm the owner of a page and labeling state-controlled media on their page, as well as making it easier to understand political ads so that people can see how much candidates have spent on them.”

Vincent Letang, EVP, Global Market Intelligence, MAGNA

“U.S. total advertising sales (linear + digital) grew by +5.1% in 2019 to $224 billion. In 2020, normalized growth (excluding cyclical) is predicted to slow down from +7.2% to just +4.4% due to the economic slowdown, but factoring in record cyclical revenues, actual revenue growth will reach +6.6% next year. Media owners’ linear advertising sales decreased by -3% to $95 billion this year (excluding cyclical effects). MAGNA predicts a further -4.4% in 2020 as continued growth in out-of-home media (+6% in 2019) and the resilience of national television (-1% to -2%) and radio (-1%) won’t offset the bigger revenue declines in print media (-14% in 2019) and local broadcast television (-4% excluding cyclical).”

Dave Morgan, Founder/CEO, Simulmedia

“Viewership on ad-supported premium video on-demand services in the US will decline as a percentage of all streaming video services as the proliferation of ad-free streaming services take more share of streaming viewership.”

Suzanne Grimes, EVP Marketing, Cumulus Media & President, Westwood One

“Pharma will be the next major category to rediscover radio. Last year, P&G stunned the marketing ecosystem with an aggressive move into AM/FM radio. The goal of P&G’s addition of radio into their media plans was to counter digital fraud and the collapse of television viewing levels. We expect pharma advertisers to follow suit. In recent months Pfizer and Abbvie have made new investments into radio to generate incremental reach to their base TV plans.”

Barry Frey, President/CEO, DPAA

“Media agencies will compete on data capabilities. As media agencies build out their data platforms, ingesting third-party, client and agency data, the ability to cut, massage and draw insights from these large repositories will see agencies competing and winning business based on their systems.”

Marc Ferrentino, Chief Strategy Officer, Yext

“Natural language is the future of search, and will change how each and every one of us interacts with computers. Computers can now, for the first time really, understand our language. This has enormous implications that we’ll see play out in a very real way in the coming year. In 2020, advances in AI and natural language processing will continue to improve search platforms’ ability to understand user questions and deliver direct and accurate answers. This has enormous implications for businesses of all kinds, as they will need to structure their facts strategically in order to answer natural language questions both in search engines and on their own websites.”

Art Zeidman, EVP, Growth, Collab., Inc.

“User-generated content (UGC) storytelling will become more prominent as a way to authentically connect using real-life narratives”.

Collin Colburn, Analyst, Forrester 

“TikTok’s parent company Bytedance bucks the trend and waits to IPO. The social media video app TikTok reportedly has over 500 million monthly active users globally. And its parent company, Bytedance, is anticipating 2019 revenues to more than double over last year’s $7.2 billion — to $16.8 billion. Our bet: Bytedance will be courted by Meredith Corporation, Snapchat, or Facebook with offers to buy TikTok. Meredith owns MySpace and would resurrect it with TikTok. Snapchat would like to scoop it up because of its parallels as an image-based platform, and it would help Snapchat expand its global user base and grow its content creation abilities. And Facebook, which has been an aggressive acquirer over the years, might try to snag TikTok — while it already co-ops TikTok video creation capabilities into Instagram — but regulators won’t allow it. In the end, Bytedance will hold off for an IPO until 2021.”

Keri Roberts, Brand & Content Strategist and Co-Host of the Inside VOICE Podcast

“I think advertisers are going to be forced to create content marketing in the form of audio including podcasts and voice technology, because people don’t want to be sold to and they want a way to consume information anywhere, anytime and efficiently. People will buy and be long-term customers for those that provide education and value up front.”

To view this article, please visit forbes.com

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