For communicators and others, each recent year has produced its share of change – sometimes significant and, other times, as an indicator of more profound changes yet to come. In fact, recently, there was major news in the agency world that WPP is merging two of its biggest agencies — J. Walter Thompson and Wunderman — to form Wunderman Thompson, an entity that will have a staff of more than 20,000 people in 90 markets.

One interesting aspect of this merger is that WPP saw little or no brand equity in naming the firm, Thompson Wunderman or JWT Wunderman or some other name in which a form of JWT was the first name of the new firm – considering that, according to its website, J. Walter Thompson (JWT) is “the world’s best-known marketing communications brand (and) has been reimagining the future for businesses for over 154 years.”

By way of its role in the agency world, according to its website, JWT is known for “our award-winning work and leading initiatives, JWT was the very first agency to air a TV commercial, the first to establish a global advertising presence, the first to rocket a candy bar into space, the first in the industry to hire a female copywriter, the first to create an amphibious prosthetic limb, and the very first to teach a computer to paint like Rembrandt. While we reimagine the future for our clients, we will continue to break new ground and revolutionize the power of our legacy through the campaigns that we create.”

So, as already asked, why is the “world’s best-known marketing communications brand” not listed first in the new firm’s name?  Perhaps, WPP thought it’s future rested in Wunderman and not a 154-year agency.

Or, looking forward, what’s the future of Mic, which is laying off the majority of its staff while the digital publisher works to sell the remainder of its assets? And, what’s in store for other traditional and new media outlets?

And, what will the growing role of video have in your communications programs … and what will you drop, if anything, to accommodate it?

Also on the horizon, according to a projection, Millennials are expected to overtake Boomers in population in 2019 as their numbers swell to 73 million and Boomers decline to 72 million.

Finally, According to the Pew Research Center, 68 percent of Americans have either quit or taken a break from social media this year.  What does that mean for 2019 and beyond?

These are just a few of many examples of how significant change will continue to impact the communications/marketing/advertising communities in 2019.

If  you have thoughts or insights about what lies ahead, let us know as we will be posting predictions in coming weeks. Please send your predictions to phil.rabin@capitolcommunicator.com and check back regularly to see what your peers think 2019 holds for communicators.

 

 

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