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Post recession we are heading for a digital media revolution

Posted on 16th March 2010 in Insight
Written by: Fiona Rickard

The economic downturn has profoundly affected both consumers and the
marketing industry and experts also claim it has also accelerated trends
that were already at work.

According to WARC a number of short- and long-term factors are shaping
shopper behaviour at present.
An example of this is the "demand for simplicity" which began to gain
ground prior to the crisis as people's lives became more complex, but
gathered speed in the downturn due to a desire to go "back to basics".

Equally, interest in corporate social responsibility was building before
the recession, but has now accelerated as customers pay closer attention
to the activities of brands and their owners. However in contrast to
this the rise of "green consumerism" has been slowed by the highly
uncertain financial climate, although some opportunities do remain in
these areas. Plus previously-observable shifts towards "ethical
consumerism" and "extreme experience seeking" appear to have been
"arrested" for the moment.

MEC believes that the forces which are remaking the marketing and
communications industries were "already with us" before the downturn.
The industry is undergoing a greater transformation than that which
followed the launch of TV in the 1950s of the mass adoption of the web
in the 1990s.

Digital media offers brands and agencies unprecedented opportunities to
influence their target audience and drive sales, meaning communications
are more important than ever. Making effective use of the mass of data
now accessible via the web, and adopting a more "organic" approach to
media planning and buying, will also be key when adapting to the new
world.

Producing "liquid content" which can be spread across a variety of
platforms, ranging from YouTube and social media to smartphones, is also
vital as media usage habits evolve. In line with this idea, brands must
be willing to "let go" of control, as old business models, and former
approaches to communications, become out-dated. The marketing industry
must get ready for the new way of communicating in a post recession
world where savvy consumers have access to information 24/7 and have the
ultimate power to impact and influence how your brand or product is
perceived in the market place. Data sourced from Warc 12 March 2010

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