Recession, the continuing rise of digital and the future of mediums including TV and newspapers have been among the key issues facing adland in 2008. Anyone needing proof of this need look no further than the top downloads by WARC's media agency subscribers this year.

Most popular of all was The digital media market in 2008, which was based on research by The World Association of Newspapers, and found that digital adspend is set to increase in value from $9 billion (€6.6bn; £5.9bn) in 2002 to $73.1bn in 2011.

In terms of individual media, a guide to Making the most of outdoor advertising took second place overall, and analysis pieces on the global newpaper market and the "new television" made the top ten.

Media commentator Joe Mandese also had two articles among this group. The first discussed five trends that will change media, from neuroscience to location-based targeting.

The second argued that individual mediums are becoming much less important to consumers than the content they provide.

The presence of Different approaches to recession advertising and marketing and Winners and losers of the next UK media downturn in the top ten also demonstrated that the adverse economic climate is weighing heavily on the minds of media agencies.

However, figures from the Global Media Cost Comparison, and a case study for fast-fashion chain Zara, provide strong clues as to how innovative thinking could be the key to beating the slump.

The top ten articles in full are:

1) The digital media market in 2008

2) Making the most of outdoor advertising

3) Zara – letting the stores and consumers do the marketing

4) Different approaches to recession advertising and marketing

5) Five future trends that will change media

6) Winners and losers of the next UK media downturn

7) Summary findings of WARC's Global Media Cost Comparison 2006

8) The half-life of media

9) The new television

10) The worldwide newspaper market in 2007

Data sourced from World Advertising Research Center (WARC.com)