Once Madison Avenue traditional ad agencies (and smaller ones) totally recognize, accept, learn completely, and implement effectively Internet Search Marketing as the "Cornerstone" of their client's total marketing strategy, the husband and wife depicted in this cartoon (click to enlarge) may indeed represent many real life couples who have grown so dependent on the Internet that their night stands have PC's on them! They may even watch the Web Marketing Association's web site WebAwards in all their favorite categories along with the Academy Awards.
Today is the first day of the OMMA Global Hollywood Conference & Expo. They talk about the evolution to a "100% Solution", and say: "As a result of more and more dollars shifting into digital and interactive-based media platforms, it is possible to imagine online media and marketing disciplines driving all marketing efforts." Search programs are certainly an important part of that 100% marketing solution mix. OMMA conferences are produced by MediaPost which did an article on 2/23/06 entitled "Verklin: Search Crucial To Marketing" which had the CEO of Carat Americas and chairman of Asia Pacific, David Verklin, saying: "In my perfect future, the strategy for any client is focused on driving prospective customers to a Web site first. From that Web site, consumers could then either browse, make a purchase, contact customer service, or find a brick-and-mortar location." So whether it's commercial or informational online search results the husband or wife are looking for (as differentiated in Yahoo! "MINDSET" Beta), they can go to bed content that they've found the "content" that they were looking for.
On 3/14/06 the NYTimes.com said the following:
"The goal of the agencies and agency companies is to offer search marketing services internally rather than requiring clients to go to independent specialist agencies." This was in their article entitled "More Agencies Investing in Marketing With a Click" (free registration may be required to view article). There are many consequences to traditional ad agencies absorbing the independent SEO-SEM entrepreneurial specialists, in my opinion. Besides many SME's not being able to afford the "100% Solution", I hope there will always be the small and medium sized SEO-SEM specialist consultant firms as they are the "backbone" of the Search Marketing Industry while helping the U.S. and world economy. Anytime competition of any kind is lessened, it is not good for consumers or clients.
Jim Hedger's 3/16/06 article, "Complexity Compels Changes for SEO Firms" reviews the situation nicely from a search marketer's perspective, and ends by saying: "The entrance of large scale advertising firms to the search marketing sector will have a profound affect on the industry as it evolves over the coming years. With paid-search advertising being branded the most effective form of direct marketing, and search being estimated at a staggering $15 billion+ industry by 2010, the only question many have for Madison Avenue is, “What took you so long?”"
This Brokerblogger.com blog author agrees with that thought, as I have watched many small and medium sized traditional ad agencies struggle to survive, and large agencies struggle to keep revenues up due to TV and Print media being so negatively affected by Cable-Satellite and the Web since about 1999.
4/19/06 Postscript = Bob Liodice (Pres. & CEO of the ANA) said in his 4/17/06 ANA Marketing Musings blog post: "In fact, it is my strong belief that in most instances, a roster of agencies – working in tandem – can provide better insight, stronger focus and broader expertise than any single agency. To me, it seems not only appropriate but necessary that marketers partner with a range of expert resources that collectively offer the full complement of competencies and best practices necessary to build strong, enduring brands." This is reassuring to me that all the special knowledge and expertise that is needed by well rounded search marketers won't be gobbled up or overtaken by traditional ad agencies. Of course, I see search marketers, on the other hand, adopting more and more traditional ad agency competencies in order to drive more views and conversions to their client's web sites.
2/3/10 UPDATE: Madison Ave is embracing 20 Million of Pepsi's ad budget online vs. the Superboowl as noted in this FT.com article entitled: "Pepsi push harnesses Facebook potential" that was referred to in Seeking Alpha's "Pepsi, Facebook and Super Bowl Advertising"