Review Preview No.3
Welcome to RP No.3, a series of essays from across the MEC network that cover the most significant trendsof the past 12 months, while also looking forward to what we expect to be the key trends of 2013 and beyond.
Looking back, some things developed as we expected especially in the area of technology with mobile and tablet innovation, producing new devices from Google, Amazon, Apple and the entry into the tablet market by Microsoft. This resulted in significant growth for the sector driven by greater choice for the consumer – both in terms of screen size and cost.
This growth in screens continues to revitalise television and the opportunities to create and distribute engaging content was brought to life magnificently during the London Olympics and bodes well for the health of the television business and for marketers to effectively use television to reach their customers.
Smartphone growth continued apace globally, with Samsung and Apple leading the market but also reflecting tough times ahead for some of their competitors. As anticipated, we saw further developments in the area of m-commerce as retailers began to see the business opportunities which, when aligned with consumer demand, suggests that we will see more significant developments in the coming year.
Social media continues to evolve and proliferate. The Facebook IPO and subsequent fall in value created a lot of discussion as did the acquisition of Instagram, which in turn, created another stir towards the end of the year when they changed their terms of service. This brought into focus the on-going data and privacy debate where alignment between the regulators and practitioners is some way off; but, as the Instagram episode demonstrated, the solution has to be rooted in respecting consumer’s needs as they are quick to act.
The reality of the connected consumer is now with us, perhaps most obviously demonstrated by the Twitter hashtag that accompanies so much of the media we consume. Looking forward, we expect to see further marketing benefits derived from reaching connected consumers across multiple screens.
We have identified eight trends that we believe will be of significance over the next year. These have been developed from the points of view shared in the essays. What they demonstrate is that, while the emphasis varies between regions, the overall themes are consistent globally. And while technology continues to develop at speed, it’s not technology itself that creates change but how consumers choose to interact and use it.
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