On the face of it you would think that the quarantine would be the perfect scenario for digital marketing agencies, after all more people will be online and more people will be looking to buy things through this medium than ever before. With that being said however, there have been some challenges for the likes of TWO NIL CEO Mark Zamuner, which they have had to carefully manage as the uncertainty of the early months of the pandemic threaten to derail an awful lot. There have been a number of tough challenges for these agencies, and these are what they have had to maneuver.
We have seen an enormous increase in ad dollars getting switched to the retail sector and this is why so many agencies had to pivot and refocus on their attention on those areas and on those clients. Any ad work which was being done on the leisure and tourism sector needed to be shut down immediately and attentions shifting to other areas, some were already perfectly placed to do this, other had to make some big changes to the way in which they operated.
Another key challenge for ad agencies was that as they tried to look for clients which had ad dollars that they were happy to spend, most of which coming from the retail sector, they were also losing clients who were struggling to operate their business. This meant that digging into cash reserves was needed for some and that then limited opportunities as well.
Arguably one of the biggest challenges which ad agencies had to face, especially the smaller agencies, was the new method of pitching, doing so virtually. Naturally this is incredibly limiting when compared with a face to face pitch, especially given the levels of creativity which pitches involve in the modern day. With this being said however, marketing firms simply had to take their creativity and instead apply it to the new virtual pitch, something which has presented many challenges.
The biggest challenge for most businesses during this pandemic, and also for marketing agencies has been the uncertainty which surrounded this whole affair, and those agencies who will have done well from this were those who took swift and decisive action early on, and who could see which way things were going.
As soon as people began to die from this virus it was clear that agencies had to become a lot smarter about the tone which they were using in their ads. This became a very sensitive topic very quickly and there was a clear challenge to use the situation to garner some attention, but doing so in a careful manner, striking the balance between the two. Some agencies ignored altogether, others aimed for a fine balance and nailed it, there weren’t many who ended up getting it wrong.
These have been testing times but in the main, the ad industry has handled itself very well.