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The events of the past two years have led to significant disruption to the advertising landscape. People’s media habits changed considerably as their physical location was altered. Advertisers were driven to adopt new investment strategies as audiences changed, and physical channels were limited. Consumers sought more online distribution and product access through eCommerce, and in response brands and businesses pivoted to service a growing market need. The overarching theme through this period has been Acceleration and it is a trend that is set to continue.

It took Netflix 5 years to reach 10m households, Disney+ will get there in 3. eCommerce saw 5 years’ worth of organic growth in just 12 months. Developments in areas such as programmatic out of home gathered pace. While the future is looking brighter as we emerge from the pandemic, it does not look any more predictable. Which of the habits adopted by audiences, advertisers, agencies and media owners were transitory, and which mark real structural changes?

Through this report from OMG UK’s Media Intelligence Unit, we outline 75 themes we are following across six forces, and mark the seven big trends that we believe will dominate discussions within advertising over the medium-term future. Leveraging the expertise within our agencies and centralised expert functions, we unpick them and consider how they potentially impact strategy, planning and investment decisions as the marketing and communications plan of the future is created.

By considering these themes and their outcomes now, and planning for their impact in 2025, brands can ensure they are ready to thrive both now and in the future.

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