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SoDA is the Society of Digital Agencies


Or as they decree ... "THE Digital Society"... 
A network and voice for entrepreneurs and innovators around the globe who are creating the future of marketing and digital experiences.

Here are some excerpts from their recent Digital Outlook Report:
http://thesodareport.com/forecast/forecast-introduction 

... strategic leadership was declared the most valued skill in clients’ relationships with their agencies. This supports the notion that clients are prioritizing execution over big ideas.

Although obvious, it is important to remember client's spending priorities:
     - Digital experiences (82%)
     - Content development (76%)
     - Digital projects (71%)

... clients are not outsourcing. They rely on their agencies. But...

"Many agencies, however, are finding (and contracting with) strong and sophisticated digital production partners in developing economies, allowing them to maintain healthy margins despite the demand for rapid-fire innovation and the growing complexities of client work across an ever-expanding array of screens and consumer touchpoints. In our study, over one in five agencies (22%) were leveraging nearshoring and offshoring services for digital production."

Getting back to digital fundamentals, where clients are remembering that trendy tech is fun to talk about but may not be as successful at helping them reach their goals as solid data-driven strategy.

Disconnect... We asked respondents on both sides whether clients’ organizational structures hinder or facilitate innovation. Forty-eight percent of client-side respondents said it helps while 51% of agency respondents said it hinders. A more startling disconnect emerges when it comes to perceived strengths within those organizational structures. Agency respondents believe that clients are very weak in the areas of executive management, user experience, and technology, while clients said their companies had little to no gap at all in these areas.

According to clients, the primary reason they fired their agencies was pricing or value, a new option this year, which garnered 37% of responses. Perhaps even more telling is the distribution of the rest of the responses on the client side. While cost overruns were second in last year’s study, this year that response is eighth, behind each of the following choices, which received between 20% and 24% of responses:

  • Unhappy with creative
  • Unhappy with strategy
  • Unhappy with project management/account management
  • Mismatched agency size/ability
  • Understaffed/Underexperienced

76% of agencies believe that digital agencies will be lead agency

Agency Ecosystem
http://thesodareport.com/forecast/agency-ecosystems/

While there is a lot of talk about the rise of nearshoring and offshoring as a potential threat to agencies in developed markets, only a minuscule percentage of clients (1%) are opting to offshore production to other markets while keeping digital strategy with a lead agency. 

Many agencies, however, are finding (and contracting with) strong and sophisticated digital production partners in developing economies, allowing them to maintain healthy margins despite the demand for rapid-fire innovation and the growing complexities of client work across an ever-expanding array of screens and consumer touchpoints. In our study, over one in five agencies (22%) were leveraging nearshoring and offshoring services for digital production.


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