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Digital Darwinism: The New Marketing and Media Ecosystem

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In the current issue of strategy + business magazine, Christopher Vollmer, a partner with Booz & Company in New York City, comments on the “digital Darwinism” that is reshaping the world of media and marketing:


An ecosystem is an
appropriate metaphor for today’s marketing environment. It is a
dynamic, complex, and interconnected community in which marketers,
advertising agencies, and media companies depend on one another, to a
certain extent, to survive and thrive. But it is also a brutal,
competitive arena, where a kind of “digital Darwinism,” or survival of
the fittest, holds sway, rapidly distinguishing winners from losers.
Companies that possess certain preferred traits in their organizational
DNA or that have superior skills of self-adaptation are positioned to
flourish in this ecosystem. Those without either face almost certain
extinction.

The marketing and media ecosystem has
arrived at an evolutionary threshold. Old structures and ways of
working persist but are fundamentally challenged by newer, more
dynamic, more innovative alternatives. Numerous developments have
brought the industry to this transition point. Consumers have more
control and choice. Their media usage has fragmented. Many more
advertising platforms exist. And marketers are insisting on greater
precision in targeting and accounting for their ad spend.

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The recent economic turmoil only accelerates
this evolutionary transition. Companies across the ecosystem have to
acquire or develop three dominant traits to survive: relevance,
interactivity, and accountability.”

According to Vollmer, companies adapting well to this new environment include Dell, Nike, HP and P&G. The Marketing & Media Ecosystem 2010 study is available as a free PDF download on the Booz & Co. site.

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