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2017 MEDIA MARKET, Part I: Interview with Serbian media agency executives

28December 2017

Advertiser Serbia

Direct Media’s Media Planning Director Marija Matić spoke to Advertiser Serbia as part of an interview with Serbian media agency executives addressing the media market in 2017.

We talked with media agency executives about accomplishments in 2017, effects of general market conditions on media buying, and expectations for 2018… By Nenad Danilović.

We asked the managers the following questions:

What was 2017 like for your agency?

How would you rate 2017 in terms of media buying?

What global media, information, and marketing trends will mark the 2017/2018 season in media planning and buying media?

What are your expectations for 2018 in terms of business conditions for your company?

Marija-Matic-DM-2Marija Matić, Media Planning Director at Direct Media

The agency’s performance in 2017: At the end of December, we can say that 2017 was definitely a very successful year for us.

If I were to describe it, I would say that it was interesting and extremely challenging more than anything. At times, it seemed as if we were working round the clock and the previous seasonal nature our business completely went out the window. It felt like the number of presentations, campaigns, and reports was through the roof… But, ultimately, our final answer is that this was a very successful and wondeful year for Direct Media.

We also won several awards at prestigious festivals both in our country and in the region, and we positioned ourselves as the first media agency that offers full digital service. Our community efforts, many lectures, and taking part in all major conferences have demonstrated that we always highly value both social welfare and our profession and industry’s advancement. The award we won for corporate volunteering speaks to this.

For us, the most important thing is that we have proven ourselves as a reliable partner that advertisers fully trust to guide them through the complex media ecosystem.

What we always point out is that we have an excellent team of people who are Direct Media’s greatest value.

Business in 2017: Continues to be turbulent, with global media’s impact ever increasing.
The media market is recovering year after year, and this gives rise to hope in a faster advancement of the entire industry.

Television is still the most important medium, but digital is definitely becoming the second most important one. The entire industry will have to adapt to the way digital works and the economy it brings, which will be quite a challenge. We are becoming part of the global process and this is the biggest change we can expect.

Trends in the media market: I think that in 2018 we will reach the point where the industry will come at a crossroads. The media—which continue to evolve increasingly rapidly all over the world, while technology brings more and more options for following different types of content—are following suit in our country. This process, which has been announced for some time, is coming to our market, too. This is first visible in the media because already in this region we have several choices and ways of following different types of content.

I expect that this market will also step up and enter this stage and start taking itself seriously as a market where global trends have most certainly already arrived. It seems to me that too often we lull ourselves into thinking that we’re a small market, not realizing that global processes are coming quickly and inevitably.

With campaign planning, what we already do apply is that we always put the consumer we’re targeting in the center of all our campaigns.

Consequently, the whole process of media planning and buying is increasingly leaning toward audience planning and buying. Digital brough this on, and now it is spilling over to all other media. This is a new planning philosophy and only as such it can survive in this era of technology. I expect to finally see serious analysts who combine traditional research, databases, and mathematical analyses for precise targeting.

Business expectations in 2018: Direct Media is a regional leader, as well as a leader in innovation, and I’m positive that we will maintain this position in 2018. What makes us true leaders is that we constantly look into the future, identify major trends, and respond accordingly.

Media agencies will have to turn to linking advertisers’ media strategies and business results. It’s not going to be easy, but it’s the only possible direction. Knowing consumers and integrating more aspects from strategy development, ways of communication, content creation and media activation will be in the agency’s focus.

What is important for us is that the entire adverting industry is consolidating. There are reasons for being optimistic. I hope that the industry will find a way to appeal to young, smart people who are entrepreneurial in spirit and willing to adapt to the constant changes that the media and communications encompass.

Performance marketing is coming. Let’s keep that in our minds.