‘The Real, the Unreal and the Reinvented’: Ogilvy’s annual marketing + communication trend report

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‘The Real, the Unreal and the Reinvented’: Ogilvy’s annual marketing + communication trend report

Ogilvy’s new Futures trend report ‘The Real, the Unreal, and the Reinvented’ has been released. The report explores new marketing technologies, new takes on brand purpose and the reinvention of traditional communication approaches.


The annual collection of marketing and communications insights uncovers 12 key trends affecting brands and creativity, focussing on new ways to cut through the noise to create impactful work.

Its findings – gleaned from cultural, design and creativity events held in Australia, New Zealand and around the world – point to a shift back to more traditional marketing approaches as the revolution of new technologies takes hold, whilst brands and organisation continue to look for purpose, according to Richard Brett, CEO of Ogilvy PR and Ogilvy Health.

Says Brett: “There’s no doubt that our entire industry is excited by the potential for these new technologies.  But amidst this buzz, we’re also seeing a fascinating retreat to more analogue modes of experience, drawing us back to traditional marketing techniques that are tried and tested; but they are being reinterpreted, reinvented and rebooted with new methods and new technologies.

“And we expect to see more of this experimentation and remixing as a way to problem solve and engage, particularly given the purpose-led marketing of the past decade is not going away.”

These movements have been captured and fully explored in the report as the Real (new ways to deliver real authenticity and brand purpose), the Unreal (less explored trends in AI and their role in communications) and the Reinvented (the reinvention of traditional marketing techniques).

Key findings include: 

– A desire for more authentic social media and brand experiences, putting more power in the hands of influencers, inspiring them to create their own businesses and brands (‘The Economics of Influence’).
– The power of tangible experiences that people touch, hear and taste, giving rise to a ‘Made Media’ trend that explores how physical things can effectively convey important messages.
– The emergence of a counter-cultural movement, championing an alternative path to consciousness and meaningful, authentic connections, particularly through the use of psychedelics (‘The Rational Antidote’).
– The potential for AI to empathise with and interpret human emotions, leading to deeper connections between humans and virtual entities (‘Vocoloids’).
– A new wave of fan artists using AI to create new kinds of content that’s hard to distinguish from the real thing; supercharging the previously identified ‘Extreme Fandom’ trend and providing exciting opportunities for brands (Extreme Fandom was a key trend identified in Ogilvy’s 2022 Futures #6 report)

Adds Brett: “As we usher in new technologies, it’s important to remember that sometimes the most complex and important issues are best articulated in the simplest of ways, requiring a combination of emerging technologies with tried and tested techniques.

“What Futures #7 demonstrates is that a mix of technology, purpose and emotional experiences is where our industry will need to focus its efforts in order to engage with an increasingly disengaged consumer.  What balance we strike over the next 12 months between these three pillars will be key in ensuring the success of brands in the future.”

Insights from Futures #7 are built around inspirational work showcased at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity, Rising Festival, SxSW, TEDx, Nudgestock and Cannes in Cairns.

Copies of the Futures #7, and previous Futures reports can be downloaded at www.ogilvypr.com.au/futures

Key trends in the report will also be discussed during a special webinar held today, Wednesday September 13, at 12.30 AEDT.  To register, visit https://lnkd.in/grhWeAkd