Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Forrester Says Advertising Is Changing Forever. What Are Associations Doing to Keep Up?

I was in a meeting this morning about how the reason non-dues revenue is down is because members are posting jobs on Linkedin and Facebook. The answer, naturally, is forbidding "free" advertising on Facebook and Linkedin. If they can't post it for free then they will pay us to post it. Right?

Don't we all wish.

The reality is that the world as associations have always known it has changed and is not going to change back. Job boards and print ads in publications used to be a slam-dunk; now they're not. End of story. Instead of spending time spinning wheels talking about what we can forbid people from doing for free, we need to be spending time thinking of the next generation of things companies will pay for.

Forrester Research just published their five-year interactive marketing forecast and their findings echo my sentiments:
"...media is in trouble, or at least in the middle of a transformation."

Highlights of the report include:

  • Digital marketing, which will be about 12% of overall advertising spend in 2009, is likely to grow to about 21% in five years

  • Social "media," which will account for $716 million this year between social network campaigns and agency fees, will generate $3 billion in five years.

  • Of all the parts of digital marketing, social network marketing one is poised for the most explosive growth.

The upshot? In Josh Bernoff's own words:
"If you're in advertising, you'd better learn to speak digital, because that's the way the world is going."

And if that's the way the world is going, it's also the way your corporate partners, recruiters and sponsors are going. What is your association doing to prepare?

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