SEO/Marketing

 

The future of web designers and advertising agencies

17:47 Wednesday Feb 1, 2012

by Terrence Bull

            

With the growing popularity and ubiquity of the Internet, the face of advertising and marketing is irrevocably changing – and so are the skills and direction of those who deliver the consultancy and creative services to businesses – the advertising agencies and the web designers.

Major branding agencies last century went from being print and direct mail centric to being television centric. In the new millennium they are now fast become web centric. With the increased demand from businesses trying to navigate the world of websites, SEO, social media and Internet marketing, web designers with almost no background or understanding of traditional media are now becoming the agency of choice. To combat this competition, and with the writing on the wall for traditional media, larger advertising agencies are now up-skilling and become experts at all things web.

How does this affect business’s seeking help?

For the business owner, they must now look deeper to see if their agency of choice has a solid foundation in traditional marketing. This is because some web designers have a misguided vision of marketing born from ‘internet marketing’ (which in some cases comes from skills learnt from spammers and other dodgy practitioners of ‘Web Based Marketing’). They must also see if their agency has a strong history, and the technical skills required to carry out web based initiatives. Therefore they need a mix of a traditional advertising agency and a technically strong web development company.

The understanding required for SEO, social media and getting the most from a website is not learnt overnight and, to get the most from it also requires an understanding of traditional marketing. Don’t be someone’s guinea pig when there is such a thing as negative marketing – i.e. advertising and marketing initiatives that have a negative impact on your business. It simply makes no sense to entrust your most powerful marketing weapon to some student who has little to no idea about of what they are doing. Yes they may be able to build a website that will wow you, but there are websites and then there are Websites. A good rule to go by is, ‘the less you understand about websites, the more you will need to rely on the skills of your provider’. Don’t let your ignorance be your limiting factor.

What does this mean for advertising agencies and web designers?

Print design skills alone do not cut it. A true web designer must have a strong working knowledge of the basic web languages (HTML, CSS and JavaScript) in order to get the most from a website design and to take advantage of other Internet mediums – like social media and Google AdWords. On the other hand, just because you can build a wicked website design, does not mean you understand marketing – you need a foundation in traditional media to get the most of web marketing (e.g. did you know that a website follows the same rules as direct mail? Do you even know what the rules are for a good direct mail campaign?).

Both the web designer and the traditional advertising agency need to up-skill. It is obvious to all that this is a minimum requirement for longevity and even survival in the industry.

For the web designer, their hold on their market of website delivery is slowly slipping away. The large and small advertising agencies are partnering with CMS software developers to provide a broad platform of web services to their clients. They are even hiring talented web designers and developers to support their existing creative and production departments to make the most of the CMS system and other web based software they are using. Ask yourself, who would you prefer to coordinate your marketing, a talented web designer who knows little to nothing of traditional media, or a company with a board understanding of all available advertising mediums?

For the advertising agency, the client is desperate for new ideas and excited by the possibilities that the Internet offers. They are dropping their Yellow pages advertising in favor of upgrading their website. They are switching their budget from print to social media marketing and are hounded by every SEO ‘expert’ on the planet who is promising a pot of gold at the end of the Google rainbow. Ignoring it won’t make it go away. ‘Specializing’ in print/TV/radio or whatever, does not have a future with recessions, depressions and global financial meltdowns decimating advertising and marketing budgets and driving companies to find ‘new’ ways to just maintain their current turnover. Even radio networks are investing heavily in their own web service delivery company to better service their client’s needs.

How can we help?

While Woogloo does not provide a training service, be it web design skills for the print designer, or marketing consulting skills for the web designer, we do provide well thought out direction and a consulting service for both the traditional agency and the web designer. We also provide a network of fully accredited and skilled professionals who can supplement your current offering to ‘round out’ your business so you can be more than competitive in this rapidly changing industry.

Our software is the most powerful, easy-to-use and comprehensive web design and development platform in the world. Whether you are building CMS websites or powerful web applications, Woogloo V3 can more than exceed your requirements. It is fast, fully cross browser and cross platform compatible and is extremely rapid to develop on and flexible enough to meet any dream scenario.

We must warn you that you may need a radical overhaul of your current thinking, but this may just be the impetus you need to forge ahead in your plans for ‘World Domination’.

 

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