FICCI Frames 2020: WPP’s Mark Read on the structural shift in media consumption on digital channels

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Updated: Jul 07, 2020 7:24 PM

As digital transformation accelerates, advertising dollars and subscription money will shift creating pressure on traditional broadcasters, highlighted Read

The outdoor industry needs to move online and provide clients with much faster ways of changing their creative and adapting themselvesThe outdoor industry needs to move online and provide clients with much faster ways of changing their creative and adapting themselves

With a growing number of companies turning to digital media in order to drive demand through digital channels during the lockdown, ad spends on traditional media is set to be impacted in the post-pandemic world. “The biggest difference is changes in consumer behaviour, which I think is more resilient. In the US and UK, we saw in 2008-09 a massive decline in newspaper advertising and a big decline in newspaper reading and that spend never came back,” Mark Read, chief executive officer, WPP said. He was speaking at the 21st edition of FICCI Frames being held virtually.

According to Read, there will be a structural shift in media consumption on digital channels and that will accelerate further post the pandemic phase. “As it accelerates, advertising dollars and subscription money will shift creating pressure on traditional broadcasters,” he added citing the need for marketers and companies to increase their investment in technologies. He further cited an example of how despite an increased viewership on TV from 14-18% in most parts of the world and local news viewing being doubled, traditional media such as television, print, cinema, OOH have been the most impacted during the pandemic.

Read also pointed out that India has shown one of the most severe reactions in terms of advertising spends across the world. “In India, we expected ad spends to be up by about 13% in the year but it was already impacted by the first quarter down 5%,” he noted. However, the country has now entered recovery and renew stage where people have started thinking about what they want to do once the pandemic is over. He stated that there are three phases of the pandemic namely ‘React, Recover and Renew.’

Lastly, Read delved into the importance of the outdoor medium in the post-pandemic world. As per him, the outdoor medium will come back, especially the digital outdoor medium with its ability to target messages more precisely by audiences, time of the day and measuring the impacts more carefully. “The outdoor industry needs to move online and provide clients with much faster ways of changing their creative and adapting themselves,” he explained.

Read Also: FICCI Frames 2020: Star’s Uday Shankar on how advertising revenue is the biggest bane of the Indian M&E industry

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