Digital dead?  Don’t think so.PlayNice

Is digital-only dead?

Not yet, but could be soon.

Or it may never be.

But one thing is clear…the need for digital-only firms certainly won’t be as pronounced as it was 5 years ago as we look out over the coming years.

In our latest 2014 New Year Outlook Survey Report, marketers and agencies both feel strongly that the future of digital-only firms is bleak.

76% of Marketers and 77% of agencies feel it is “Somewhat Important” or “Very Important” that digital firms offer integrated services in order to survive long-term.

We hear this all the time from marketers when we reach out on behalf of our RSW/US agency clients and from marketers when they call RSW/AgencySearch looking for a new agency.

It’s less about the ability to be wildly creative in the digital space.

It’s now more about creating smart programs that integrate digital in with other platforms.

It’s about understanding how to measure return on the investments you’re making in the digital space.

It’s about using digital platforms to enhance the equity of the brands you represent – equity that may have been established across other, more traditional platforms.

Digital-only will always have a home among some marketers.  But the vast majority will either look for agencies that have digital “at the core” – those that can play across platforms – or they’ll look for agencies that can bring a strong integrated playbook – with digital simply being one smart part of the overall marketing mix.

Digital isn’t dead.

Just needs to be a bit smarter in how it plays with the other kids in the sandbox.


Mark is a 30-year veteran of the consumer packaged goods, advertising, and marketing service industry. Mark started his career at DDB Needham in Chicago prior to earning his MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Business School at Northwestern where he majored in Marketing and Economics. Prior to starting RSW/US in 2005, Mark was General Manager for AcuPOLL, a global research consultancy. Sneider worked in Marketing for S.C. Johnson and KAO Brands. Sneider has been invited to speak at numerous Agency events and network conferences domestically and internationally including the 4A’s, Magnet, NAMA, TAAN, and MCAN. Sneider has been featured in prominent industry publications including Adweek, Media Post, e-Marketer, and Forbes. When not working (which often seems like not often), Mark likes to run miles, go to church, and just chill with a hard copy issue of Fast Company.