Though I worked in Big Media for many years, it still surprises me how long it takes some of these corporate 'aircraft carriers' to turn around. Just read that CondeNast is combining their digital and print sales forces. Why must it take an economic downturn to consolidate these P&Ls? I attended an entertainment industry mixer last night and was surprised to hear several of the major studios still balkanize their digital and physical home entertainment divisions. As long as incentives are misaligned, and an "us vs. them" orientation prevails, the ball ain't never gonna get down the field.
Speaking of digital advertising, check out this spot. Forget the politics and profanity of the piece (although that is part of what makes it work), it strikes me that if more advertisers created web-focused content like this -- let's call it advertainment -- rather than continuously recycling and re-purposing their vanilla 30-second TV spots, we wouldn't all be looking at a plateau in digital media buying. Yes I know sensational messaging like this is difficult to pull-off in display, but the point is the same: Your customers now have the ability to tune you out, so start telling stories. Compelling stories. Big fat sticky Digg-able recession-proof stories.
From a macro standpoint, it's pretty simple: higher conversion tactics attract greater spend.