A divisive electoral campaign in the U.S. may be bad news for civil discourse but good news for media outlets that will charge premium prices for ad space in the months leading to November’s presidential election. And the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, despite controversy locally and internationally, will add some $2 billion in global ad spend to the year’s total, according to forecasts by Zenith Optimedia (PDF).
Overall, 2016 is shaping up to be a strong year for marketing spending, thanks to the recovery in European markets, special events, and growth in a number of emerging markets, according to Zenith’s forecast. Those positive factors will balance weakness in China and uncertainties in Europe over the ongoing refugee crisis and the fallout from Britain’s Brexit vote. Big events will push media spending up 4.6% in 2016, and additional digital spending will hasten the day online advertising overtakes TV worldwide to 2017—one year earlier than Zenith had previously predicted.
As we approach the second half of 2016, some marketing trends we had predicted going into the year are clearly in evidence, such as the mainstreaming of virtual reality. Other trends, such as the breakup of walled gardens of data, are moving at a slower pace, and the fights against ad blocking and fraud seem to be a draw, at best.
From artificial intelligence to nonverbal communication, here are some trends to watch during the next six months.