Does Your Agency Have a Big Wireless Client? Why the Hell Not?

By Claire Daniel 


Attention all #WWDDD acolytes: “If Don Draper were working today, he’d want a wireless account,” writes Michael Learmonth in the International Business Times.

Does your agency have a wireless client? IBT provided some numbers to show us why the answer should be “oh yes.”

  • According to Kantar Media, telecom is the third-biggest ad category by spending (behind retail and automotive), and the fastest-growing among the top 10. Wireless carriers and handset makers spent $9.4 billion in 2013, up 8.2 percent from 2012.
  • On TV, device manufacturers have spent $366 million on national TV ads for mobile phones and 36,597 ads have aired since the beginning of the year, according to iSpot TV.

What’s driving all this?

The U.S. smartphone market is saturated and once-novel features (apps! nice camera! touch screens!) have become commodities. New entrants from China and now Amazon’s (NASDAQ:AMZN) Fire Phone come in each year. Then there’s the two-year upgrade cycle: Each interval is another opportunity to convert an iPhone user to Android or Windows.

“These are all companies with incredibly deep pockets and huge war chests, cash,” said Ian Schafer, CEO of ad agency Deep Focus. “What they’ve seen is for the most part the returns correlate to their ad spending.”

No surprises there.