The Independent Media Agencies of Australia (IMAA) has announced the results of its latest member Pulse Survey, which found that 85 percent of independent media agencies will grow staff by up to 25 percent or more, however, more than half say that the quality and depth of the talent pool is still poor.
Eight in ten agencies have adopted a flexible working model post-pandemic, working from home and in the office.
Indie agencies are also focused on diversity and inclusion and sustainability, with more than 75 percent saying that D+I is extremely or very important to their agency, while a similar percentage say the environment is extremely or very important to them.
Among other findings, return on investment and delivering against campaign objectives are the two equal top priorities for indie media agency clients, followed by access to data, insights, and reporting, outstanding customer service, and commercial transparency.
Independent media agencies forecast that Australia’s total advertising expenditure market will grow in 2022, with 90 percent agreeing that spend will go up by between 10 percent and 30 percent.
Key media channel growth this year will come from BVOD/CTV, digital video, and digital out-of-home, with all predicted to grow by 25 percent or more. Podcasts, digital social, search and display were forecast to grow by up to 25 percent.
The cookie-less future was the most nominated industry trend in the coming year that would have a likely impact on agencies’ business and technology strategies. It was followed by heightened reporting and attribution requirements from clients, multi-channel advertising strategies, and media in-housing.
IMAA CEO, Sam Buchanan, said: “Our regular Pulse Surveys consistently show our members looking to grow in the year ahead – the jobs are there but the talent pool is not, and this continues to be a source of frustration as their businesses grow. Flexible working models have become the norm and there is a key focus on diversity and inclusion, one of the key reasons our Diversity Council was formed this year.
“And despite the cost of living and inflationary pressures, seeing the RBA increase interest rates again to steady the economy, the independent media agency sector is still growing and investing, which augurs well for our industry.”