That pesky recession

Liam Walsh writes: I was in Hong Kong last week at our regional summit to worry and solve the fear factor around January to June next year.

I mention it was in Hong Kong as this is an international port and hence I must be terribly important, perhaps sophisticated?

Nah,  it is always best to keep one’s lies plausible.

Anyways the recession that is ruining my 2BL radio listening (and almost every media experience) is here and it is kicking the stuffing out of our little digital cottage industry. So it begged the question, what on earth should we do to get more money next year as marketers mostly look for cuts?

Well this is the time when a recession can be a good thing because the business I am working in is unashamedly beautiful when the economic cycles turn.

The reason is that performance advertising is extremely low risk. Sso while there is much talk about digital growth slowing, there will be significant growth in performance advertising.

Of course search is a form of performance advertising too, actually a really big form, and our friends at google aren’t booking any significant decline in growth.

Sure sounds like a plug for my business but it isn’t, well a bit. The digital marketplace can demonstrate ROI.

ROI is over-used and our twenty something generation are ‘bored’ by it, but commerce has a higher threshold for boredom, it respects revenue more than a shiny toy.

Ben Shepherd writes: I’m unsure what impact the recession will have on digital aside pushing up the traffic levels of finance and money related websites.

So far I haven’t seen any noticeable decrease in client spending or sentiment – which is surely a positive sign. The only main thing that has been noticeable is a lot of job movement in the past month – lots of people in sales/marketing roles both client and publisher side either leaving of their own volition or being pushed out the door.

Performance and Search should see more interest in the first half of 09 for the risk reasons Liam outlined above. I think search’s gains will normalise as the year progresses as the real battle for business will be demand creation, not demand fulfillment.

Google is trying hard to tell the market it can work to deliver incremental custom … but the perception is still it’s a fulfillment channel. I guess Google has to say it can work for branding – the branding dollars are what it needs to deliver the growth the market is expecting.


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