8 weeks into the New Year, we’ve had a sample of what 2014 has to offer the media planning and buying industry. This is what we’re predicting for the months to come.


1. Brazil.

We start off with a surety. The Olympics showed us a few things in 2012 that we feel pretty confident will happen again this year as the other sporting behemoth kicks off in Brazil (provided the stadiums actually get built in time).

a) A given: the rights of the chief sponsors will be rigorously enforced at the World Cup. They will run massive, hugely expensive, uninspired campaigns that achieve massive airtime but leave us all feeling a little underwhelmed.

b) The smart money is on smart, engaging guerilla campaigns (like the one we saw from Paddy Power during the Olympics) generating more interest/PR for less money/commitment.


2. Google Glass.

Or Samsung smart watches. Or hi-tech vests. Or whatever wearable (somewhat) affordable technology finally breaks through, will do so in 2014. Only 10,000 people have themselves a Google Glass at the moment. When that number starts rising, we have no doubt location specific apps and ads (from the likes of Foursqaure) will be there to take advantage.


3. Data.

Our own planning and buying has always been driven by data. We (and our clients) feel a lot safer knowing that we have information about the audience and that the money is being spent in the right time and at the right place. The collection and use of data by the advertising world is going to get more intensive in 2014 and beyond. More information and more detail will be available than ever before. From smart phones (and the wearable tech mentioned above) we expect real time data to become ever more specific and valuable to savvy marketers.   Given this mountain of detail, analysis becomes ever more important. Marketers (and their agencies) will need to be able to sort through this data effectively or risk missing out of the potential it offers.


4. Multichannel.

You watch TV. Drive past billboards. Listen to radio. Read the MailOnline. Watch Youtube. Check Facebook/Twitter. And so do we.   We are all dynamic consumers now so it’s high time we recognise how important a multichannel approach is in securing the best coverage for your brand. 2014 will be the year that those brands who don’t recognise this will be left behind. #ruthless


5. Free(ish) hardware.

Facebook isn’t free. Twitter isn’t free. The old cliché, that if the product online appears to be without charge, the reality is that your details are in fact the product, has jumped out into the public domain in 2013 – and the response from the wider public has, in general, been one of acceptance. The benefits of ‘free’ social media outweigh the downside (if you consider it to be one) of having your details collected and sold.   Our (wildcard) prediction for 2014 is that it’s time that hardware (beyond, but along the same lines as the Metro you picked up at the station), is made available with a far higher pivot toward advertising. Think of a (basic) tablet that, with your knowledge, collects info and sells things to you at a more intrusive (and effective) manner – a two minute video from your sponsor to watch before you can browse, than does your Samsung or Apple (who have created products with the pivot broadly toward the consumer rather than the advertiser) currently. And it’s free – paid for by the business model.   Possibly.


We think that there would be no shortage of people willing to allow themselves to be sold to in return for a free or very cheap tablet – and if Twitter and Facebook can be worth so much on the stock market on the basis of future incomes, our free(ish) tablet should be a shoe in.


By Oliver Brown