SOURCE: Skyword


June 11, 2013 09:00 ET

New Report Predicts Digital Agency Revolution

Experts Share Their Take on Evolving Agency Structure, Players and Technology

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwired - Jun 11, 2013) - A new industry report, "The Digital Agency of the Future," provides a forward look at the evolving agency organizational structure, skillset and technology. Made available by Skyword, the leading platform for quality, original content production at scale, the report contains the collective insights of marketing and advertising experts from top digital agencies.

Contributors include CP+B, Digital Influence Group, iProspect, King Content, Likeable Media, Mindjumpers, Omnicom's Resolution Media, Raidious, The Search Agency, Magnitude Media and Voce Communications, among others. Seasoned experts offer best practices on how digital agencies can fine-tune their thinking, offerings, talent development and technology infrastructure to support brand engagement and relationship-building along the new consumer journey. The report discusses critical challenges faced by today's agencies, including how agencies are adapting to the increasing media convergence and the evolvement of search and social media. 

"The information era has indelibly changed the relationship between brands and consumers. Relevant information is quickly becoming as valuable as the product or service offered, and reaching customers early in their buying journey is critical," said Tom Gerace, founder and CEO of Skyword. "Digital agencies need to evolve their strategies so they can properly position their brand clients to reach and engage customers in today's converged media landscape."

Notable highlights from the report include:

  • New direction in strategy: Agencies are now expected to provide strategic guidance, as well as comprehensive buyer and channel understanding, to help brands engage the customer during each stage of the consumer journey. The agency of tomorrow will offer digital advertising, audience insights and engagement as well as content marketing to create and sustain authentic, compelling experiences across channels.

  • Move toward customer-centric operational design: To address the complex, dynamic consumer journey for their clients, agencies need to focus on engaging the consumer in the early stages of information discovery. Consumer audiences are increasingly difficult to reach, and growing demand for content across channels poses a systemic challenge for agencies seeking to create and distribute quality content at scale. To meet these challenges, agencies must leverage people and tools focused on coordinating delivery of their various services for each client account. Delivery can no longer occur in silos.

  • Fresh skillsets and expertise: With increased focus on generating compelling content to fuel earned and owned media channels, agencies are expected to become "always-on" service providers and create consistent customer engagement across all channels. This will give rise to new agency roles, including: data-driven account owners, responsible for driving lift for clients across all service lines; conversationalists, who know the brand story and can manage customer relationships in real-time across social media; agile content creators, the new brand journalists; and customer insight specialists, in charge of interpreting large amounts of customer data for the rest of the agency team.

  • New tech stack for account insights and workflow efficiency: The build versus buy debate will play out differently at each agency, but the imperative for paid media will always be to link tools and information into a dashboard that is intelligent enough to inform account strategy. As agencies creep toward real-time delivery models, workflow technology will also be vital to remaining efficient and profitable. The agency marketing technology stack will continue to merge best-in-breed monitoring, content planning and production, content dissemination, customer relationship management (CRM) and analytics solutions.

"The agency of tomorrow does not necessarily have to offer paid, owned and earned media services, but they have to know how to integrate these marketing channels effectively," noted Jamie Pappas, Principal, Pappas Advisors.

"Things are changing rapidly in the agency environment. Digital agencies are not only evolving to meet the changing demands of an increasingly complex media environment and the rising tide of social, information-hungry consumers, but also to manage those needs across an extremely distributed workforce across a variety of time zones," added Robert Murray, President, Skyword. "Agencies will need to make sure they connect branded messages and relevant content across formats, devices and channels to effectively reach consumers for their brand clients."

Download the free report and related infographic here. Follow the conversation on Twitter by using hashtag #futureagency.

About Skyword
Skyword delivers all that organizations need to reach and engage their audiences with quality, original content designed to succeed in search and social media. Quality content is essential for reaching and engaging consumers today, but the creation process is messy, inconsistent and immeasurable. The Skyword Platform makes it easy to produce, optimize and promote content at any scale to create meaningful, lasting relationships with customers. Skyword for Agencies is an offshoot of the Skyword Platform designed to meet the specific needs of marketing and advertising agencies that manage original content programs for multiple clients. Leading agencies using Skyword platform include Digitas, iProspect, Digital Influencer Group, King Content and Omnicom's Resolution Media, among others. Skyword also provides access to a community of more than 20,000 professional writers, and its content strategy and editorial teams can help ensure the ongoing success of clients' content programs. Skyword is a privately held, privately funded company headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts. Investors include Allen & Company, Progress Ventures, Cox Media Group and American Public Media Group.

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