The Year Ahead for Communicators

Posted by Alexa Hunt

Philly Ad Club’s Outlook Breakfast Shines a Light on a Hopeful 2016

With a new year comes new perspectives. Philly Ad Club kicked off 2016 by sharing perspectives from communications professionals in a breadth of different industries - from restaurants to automotive - and opening the conversation to the possibilities the year holds.

In a room full of advertising, marketing, and branding brains, panelists shared their unique insights and opportunities for 2016. With some reflection on the past and commitments to the future, here’s what the pros say to expect:

  • Diane Mastrull, The Inquirer’s small business writer, launched the program with some expectations for the day. We learned some pretty neat things about her - including her knack for cooking meatballs and writing Sunday columns!

  • Jim Appleton of the New Jersey Coalition of Automotive Retailers kicked us off with a brief review of where the economy took automotive business, and, in fact, 2015 marked the best year in the biz since 2005. His view on 2016 remains positive citing a bit of continued growth in dealership advertising, especially, and the fact that the industry remains in an evolution toward marketing personal mobility trends rather than automobiles themselves. (P.S. - The Philadelphia Auto Show takes place January 31st-February 7th!)

  • Lars Eller of Royal Bank America spoke about themes he plans to focus on in 2016 which revolved around the dramatic change in “basic” banking including the impact of virtual access and digital tools as well as the value of building customer and community partnerships. He mentioned that the banking industry continues to provide more robust, on-demand services in response to consumer need. More, the capabilities of banks - including their relationships in communities - remain in the growth stage. Targeting plays a big part in this year’s efforts as Lars finds that “less is more.”

  • Jenny Parker-McClosky represented the Constitution Center and centered her conversation around goals to inspire people to learn, visit and debate. The Constitution Center aims to help visitors become more informed and involved in the national political conversation while gaining strong discourse skills - applicable to every aspect of life. In addition, Jenny reminded us that the Constitution Center remains the only museum dedicated to the United States Constitution, and with tactics to get consumers involved this year - going so far as to offer them a chance to take the Oath of Office during their visit - impactful social media and viral marketing make for a promising New Year.

  • Peggy Mika of Christiana Care Health System offered insight on the morphing healthcare industry. She expressed the transition occurring in the field - much of it due to the Affordable Care Act - which requires her team to overcome unique marketing hurdles such as new, complicated messaging and audience education. Peggy’s primary goal for 2016 remains to change mindsets for patients - encouraging them to get well and stay well with guerilla marketing efforts which bring her messages to places like hair salons and restaurants. Talk about change!

  • Judy Moore joined us from Garces Events to talk about this year’s movement toward “Latin hospitality:” an effort to infuse culture into everything the company involves itself in. In order to achieve this, Garces Events tasks itself with acquiring great employees, leading Judy and her team to strategize different approaches to advertise for talent. In addition, awareness initiatives remain at the forefront of 2016 priorities - helping to promote new restaurants but also contributing to the search for skilled prospects.

  • Scott Nash, founder of MOM’s Organic Market, dove into the industry of grocery marketing. Scott reinforced the focus on experience for both his customer base and his team members. The industry, he said, remains in a period of fierce shifts and innovation where the unconventional markets rise. With what many may consider a radical approach, foregoing various traditional marketing tactics like SEO, Scott’s plans for 2016 remain to focus on remarkable customer service - including adding his email and phone number on the bags consumers take with them.

We think it’s safe to say that this year offers promise and excitement across all verticals in the Philly region. Keep an eye on our blog and social media channels for updates on our 2016 plans. We’re looking forward to a prosperous, exciting year with our clients and partners!