A very interesting article has appeared on eMarketer some time ago, making 10 predictions for this current 2007 and some of them i have found particularly interesting, spending some time analyzing and thinking on their subject, that i even came so far as putting my thoughts on them here :
1. Online Ad Spending Will Hit $20 Billion – i do not see any point of believing that the growth of the internet advertisement is going to slow down in the next couple of years, at least until 2010 or 2011, or if some global economical change is going to influence it. Referring that in the last 4 years the growth was about 30%, it is hard to believe that this year it is going to slow down to 19%.
2. Some Money and Lots of Hype for Online Video Advertising – this one is really very interesting, especially since Google has “splashed” 1.7 billions of dollars into YouTube. Also the number of digital video recording devices, internet connection speed etc are the factors making it more probable, but:
I. all the money going to this market are just making 4% of the total share.
II.i do not really see how to maintain the number of users on a site full of visual advertisement, with moving pictures, toys and so on – it is more appropriate for kids. I think that visual advertisement is something that have to be based on word of mouth, with a reference as a Youtube, so the people would share the link for funny advertisement and not be obliged to face on everyday basis. Visual advertisement is something almost “alien” for the business environment, you know, for men with long ties etc …
III.Google and others will have to invent a new way to put the video advertising into the search results. Google has had its share of success because of doing what people were needing – fast search with no web directories or other bull crap. None of the typical 90s yahoo links (counting to 100’s on their front page at that time), no fancy Clippy’s taking different forms completely annoying the user – just doing strictly what was needed – so now here is one million dollar question – how to insert video advertising into the search results without annoying 99 percent of the customers ???
3. Social Networks Are Set for a $1 Billion Windfall – this is according to the research is the most progressive area, doubling its spending from 448 millions. International expansion should help it a lot, but now there is a question, which until now i have not seen a reasonable answer on – how to interlink two or three persons speaking different languages and having none in common. We all could dream about everyone speaking english fluently, but the truth is – you gotta spend some time finding someone in Europe for example talking reasonably good english. No, it is not that hard, but i am referring the percentage of all population, and even when based only on digital age generation, i know way too many people knowing only “hello”, “yes”, “no” and “good-bye”.
Once i was working with someone who has had a great idea about how to do this “interconnection”, and it is one of the greatest sorrows that i have, that the project we have had dream about for years since middle of the 90s, have not been implemented until now.
4. Downloadable Games Will Get Hotter – yes, no doubt about it. Online games are getting hotter and hotter, with all those Eve, Everquest, World of Warcraft, Second Life and others there is a big niche to be played on, also such systems as Half-Life’s own Steam engine, making it possible to play only when online or downloading the patches with a direct internet connection…
Also more people are starting using credit cards online, and even some big stores are offering an alternative way to pay for games, and mobile phone games are getting better and better and more popular – there is still a lot of market to be conquered. Even in Portugal i know of one firm hiring a lot of developers to ensure their success on the mobile phone game market.
5. Thirty-Seven Million Strong: A ‘Minority’ Bigger than Canada – wait for Brazil and China to come in and then the internet will be more “international”
6. Mobile TV Arrives – it is a prediction for 2007 ? Germany’s World Cup was a very different event, in a very special very well developed country, for others it should become a reality beyond 2010 in my opinion.
7. US B2C E-Commerce Will Cruise Past $200 Billion – “132 billion of this will be online retail sales and $91 billion will be online travel.”, it is interesting to see, that online traveling is occupying 35% of the whole share alone, surely it is a very special market to watch out. =O)
8. The Retail Power of Word of Mouth – at the moment i am reading a book called “Word of mouth marketing”, written by Andy Sernovitz, i found this book on the wonderful blog of Presentation Zen, and i am completely agree with the statement of the eMarketer – the future is with “word of mouth”, as the traditional marketing is dead.
9. Broadband Services Will Matter as Much as Speed – this one is focused on VoIP and its growth for about 6.2% this year, i do agree with that, thinking about all the friends who has “upgraded” their international communications and even more about those friends who has not yet. =O)
10.DVRs Pump Up TV Viewing – i agree with this one so much! People are not going simply to drop watching TV, a lot of people need it to relax their brain after working day – otherwise why do we have so many “stupid” soap operas in the evening (and their number is growing year after year, not only in the evening). What is happening now – watching TV, will be changed for watching on computer, but only in the next 5-7 years (if not later), at least here in Portugal.
Overall i agree with the most of the predictions, but as the online marketing is growing and starting overtaking the real world marketing share i expect to see a lot of changes already this year.