Looking in the Crystal Ball: 2007

By: Mark S. Zagorski

When it comes time to make year end predictions I think it is prudent to give the impression that you actually know what you are talking about by prognosticating about events that directly touch your business. Staying within that parameter, here are a few thoughts from MediaSpan?s unique market vantage point.

— Integrated, multi-asset online campaigns will finally begin to make an impact. We will see more campaigns that involve not just a video pre-roll, but also display ads, podcasts and audio streaming spots that are all touting the same message as part of a cohesive campaign. This will be the result of the creative and media teams at online agencies becoming more closely coordinated after years of separation.

— The growth of geo-targeted online ad campaigns will double that of the internet ad market as a whole. Easier ways to buy, track and deliver geo-campaigns, coupled with an influx of ad dollars from traditional advertisers who are used to spending locally will drive the growth.

— At least 3 major daily newspapers will shut down their traditional print businesses and go to an online-only model. Two will fail, and one will get purchased by Google.

— More people will stream news clips of their local newscast via broadband connections through set top boxes and their PCs than will watch it ?real time? on television. Google will launch a free video streaming service for this business in exchange for sales access to video on multiple local platforms.

— Black-box ad networks (i.e. those where advertisers do not know where/when their ads show up) will rapidly become a thing of the past due to increased cases of ads showing up next to questionable user-generated content. Instead, advertisers will push for robust auction based ad network systems that allow for transparency, but total flexibility with regard to pricing and delivery.

— M&A activity in the online video space will die off by the end of Q1, as social networking did mid-2006. With nothing new to fill the investment banking void, the mysterious notion of ?business fundamentals? will come into play, and ancient online concepts such as ?content portals? and ?ad networks? will see a flurry of consolidation and investment activity.

Here?s to an exciting 2007!

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