OK—I’m totally calling BS on political consulting firms and marketing agencies in general that claim they “do digital, too.” I’m sure it’s easy to say—but I can tell you from experience that it isn’t easy to do.
I left the company I was working for when they couldn’t see digital as the future, coming straight down the road at them with brights on. So I started my own company and have worked for myself ever since.
And, yes, a few years back we would get excited because we had a banner ad in the header on ESPN.com. The industry has come a long way. I and my company have grown up in it and with it. The growth has been phenomenal.
Think about it. The spend is bigger on digital now than it is on TV. Bigger than TV. And people “watch TV” now on just about anything but a TV, and on just about any “network” except for ABC, NBC and CBS.
So the TV firms are saying they “do digital, too”? I guess if I had a TV firm I might say that also.
But you can’t just hire two kids out of college and say you have a digital department. You don’t.
Digital isn’t just intense—it’s complex. You’d have to have a full design department and video capabilities and data and project managers and advertising experts and oh, strategists who live and breathe digital because it changes literally overnight. Otherwise, you’re missing the point.
Digital is getting so big, so fast—some of the disciplines could be separate companies. Like data and analytics. Hmmm…maybe I’ll start one.
For years and years, political general consultants have sold against digital firms, tried (successfully at times) to grab 100% of the media placement budget, and otherwise treated digital companies like second-class citizens. The world is turning and those same consulting firms have changed their tune because they’re chasing the dollar with no clue what they are really doing. And while some of the industry facts are still being settled, I know two things to be true.
One, you don’t do digital.
And, two—we do.