Harvard dives into advertising’s future

Harvard dives into advertising’s future

The Harvard Business Review has turned its considerable intellectual capital to the future of advertising in a collection of articles, blogs and analysis by some of the foremost though-leaders and academics on the profession including WPP Group CEO Sir Martin Sorrell.

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On the landing page to the HBR Insight Center, it says: “After decades of stasis, all hell is breaking loose in the ad business. With the explosion of new media and technologies and the rise of empowered (and sceptical) consumers, marketers are finding that the old bag of tricks no longer works so well. And they're inventing fundamentally new ways to pursue advertising's principal job: persuasion.”

Apart from Sir Martin, contributors include Jerry Wind, the director of Wharton's Future of Advertising program, Bonin Bough, VP of global media and consumer engagement at Mondelez International, and Baba Shetty, CEO of Newsweek/Daily Beast.

The HBR Insight Center on the future of advertising has been set up to explore the industry’s transformation. From looking at technologies that are reinventing how companies connect with customers, to how big data and new analytic tools are allowing advertisers to fine tune and microtarget their messaging in real time, HBR’s highly credentialed bloggers also examine the new breed of consumer that, increasingly, rejects interruptive messages and demands that advertising present itself only when invited — and then only if the message offers value.

Consumers' growing involvement in advertising, both as arbiters and creative collaborators also comes under the spotlight.