Client-side media and marketing professionals have a lower opinion of media and media agencies than they did two years ago, according to new research from ID Comms.

And those with the most exposure to media agencies – media professionals – are also likely to have the lowest opinion of agency expertise.

The ID Comms Global Media Thinking Report 2019 is based on responses from 177 marketing, media, and procurement professionals with a range of global, regional and local market responsibilities across a diverse spectrum of categories; together they represent a combined global media investment in excess of $20bn.

Media as a cost

The global management consultancy found that respondents are more likely to view media as a cost to the business and a complex headache, rather than an investment for growth; they are also more likely to view their agency as a commodity supplier instead of a strategic partner.

Underperforming on key competencies

On a scale of 1 to 5 (where 1 is unacceptable, 3 meets expectations and 5 is outstanding), agencies were rated below average by media professionals on key competencies such as:

• identifying relevant data-fuelled insight (2.45 v 2.50 in 2017)

• providing neutral and objective planning recommendations (2.35 v 2.50 in 2017)

• integrating owned, earned and paid media (2.12 v 2.31 in 2017).

Procurement attitudes improve

Procurement professionals are more likely to see media as an exciting opportunity and an investment for growth than two years ago; they provided the highest average scores for media thinking from agencies (2.97 v 2.77 in 2017). This compares with this year’s average scores of 2.68 and 2.49 for marketing and media professionals respectively.

“We could be witnessing the emergence of a new kind of procurement leader, one for whom cost reduction is just one part of a larger set of objectives around driving innovation, ROI and business development,” suggested Paul Stringer, Consultant at ID Comms.

Advertiser shortcomings

While client-side personnel are critical of agencies, they’re also aware of their own shortcomings, rating themselves below satisfactory in almost all areas of media management (with an average score of 2.56 out of 5) and unclear on how to set clear KPIs for media (2.55 out of 5).

Client and agency are also divided on who should define an advertiser’s strategic approach to media: 73% of respondents think that role should sit with marketing professionals, but nearly half of all agency respondents (45%) believe they should be responsible.

And while more than three-quarters (79%) of the advertisers surveyed agreed they have a clear vision and strategy for media internally, ID Comms noted that the research’s other findings point towards a lack of confidence among advertisers that their strategy can cope with today’s media landscape. 

Sourced from ID Comms