The rainforest and the advertising industry
I’ve had a week to digest the talking points of our Zeitgeist conference, where royals, bankers, business leaders, journalists and even an Amazonian tribal chief came together to discuss issues of the day. But one issue in particular stuck in my mind – sustainability.
Sustainability was certainly the key theme as the Prince of Wales made a moving and humbling speech about the environment and technology, pleading that the Amazon be “treated like a human being.”
But there were also lively debates about the future of the media industry, and indeed, the sustainability of the business models of traditional media. It was a chance for us all to think about the roles we play within the industry, how content producers manage and make money from content and how we sustain quality and valuable advertising output. It was also another chance for Google to understand the concerns of newspaper and TV owners, and ensure their thoughts are top of mind for us in helping them make money from their content on the web.
From talking to agency leaders at the event, it’s clear media agencies will be fighting tooth and nail over any big accounts that come up for grabs over the coming weeks and months. The industry must be careful that the stiff competition doesn’t become a cut-throat exercise in cutting costs, inevitably leading to a downfall in the quality of advertising. Indeed quality and value for money is something all agencies and media owners need to ensure is sustainable when trying to encourage advertisers to invest in marketing in the downturn.