Predicting advertising trends for 2013

The end of the year is upon us. Instead of reflecting on all of the horrible advertising we've seen in the past year (boy, there was a lot), we're instead looking ahead. Advertising is constantly evolving, scrambling to try and break new ground while also keeping up with the rapidly changing social trends and trends in technology. 

With that, we make our best predictions as to what trends will further emerge in 2013. 


Ready or not, you will see more advertising geared towards your mobile device(s). The days of a company being satisfied with just airing a commercial on television are over. The days of accountability and targeted impressions are here.

Every "traditional" commercial will have some sort of online counterpart. Live programming, whether it's sports, sitcoms or something else will have ways where you can follow along on your mobile device. The age of the second screen is here and with it will come targeted advertising to you, the viewer.

Moving away from the television are the ways advertising will work with phones out in public. Ads will be sent to your phone as you near a certain shop or restaurant. The technology is already in place and there's really nothing holding companies back from really pushing mobile content to their customers. 

Even Less Privacy

This is more of a fact than it is a prediction. Take any privacy you have right now in the online world - it isn't much - and kiss it goodbye. The move towards all of our digital information being readily available for advertisers and companies will only continue. 

Gone are the days where what you do online is your own business. 

Content is King

There once was a time where a company could purchase an ad on television and then sit back and wait for the needle to move. After the ad was completed or produced, there wasn't much to follow up on. Now companies are on the hook for content - lots of it - in order to support their traditional advertisements. 

There now needs to be content online and in social media backing whatever traditional ad is deployed. This content needs to be updated, engaging and topical. Social media content has to be constantly churned out, refreshed daily. 

This need for new content has not only created more jobs in the advertising world but it has flooded social media with messages geared towards advertising. 

Ads Geared for "You" Not "Us"

As I mentioned above, the days where a company going out, buying a TV ad and running it are over. The process is much more in depth and complicated now. 

The focus on demographics and who the ads is focused on has never been higher. Companies want to know exactly who is watching their advertisement and when they are watching it. They can't afford to have their marketing messages go out to the wrong people as it would be a huge amount of wasted resources. 

You've already seen extremely targeted ads online, with companies using your information (remember, lack of privacy) to serve up related ads based on your online activity. These types of focused ads will continue to spread out through television and through your mobile device. We may even see a future where based on what's in your phone will determine what ads you see outdoors. 

David Rogers

About David Rogers

Managing Editor of the NHL blog Puck Drunk Love, the St. Louis Blues blog Frozen Notes and Awful Advertisements, a blog on ...awful advertisements. Contributing Editor for Awful Announcing.