Weird & Wonderful Predictions From A Decade Ago


(By Bob McCurdy) I recently dug up some notes from Q4 2008 to revisit the topics and challenges facing the industry a decade ago, hoping to get some insight and a better handle on our current challenges and how things might ultimately play out in the coming years. 

The top headlines along with my observations follow. It never hurts to have a better handle on the past as we seek to forge and shape our future. As the saying goes, “You have to know the past to understand the present and impact your future.” At a minimum, this exercise provided valuable perspective.


TiVo CEO Says End Is Nigh For TV Ads
Observation: Whiff.

Soon Your Mayonnaise Label May Have Sight, Sound, Video
Observation: My mayonnaise continues to sit stoically and mutely on the refrigerator shelf.

Mobile Search Set For New Growth Spurt
Observation: Clairvoyant. Mobile generated 63% of all digital ad revenue the first six months of 2018.

Consumers To Suffer fFom Social Media Indigestion In 2009
Observation: Indigestion emergency. They continue to over-indulge.

Consumers Bugged By Many Ads
Five Years From Now, Media Will Be Totally Intangible
Observation: The headline remains accurate but 10 years hence, media remains quite tangible.

Books, Boxed Software, DVDs — All Headed To Irrelevance
Observation: On point with at least two of three.

Prediction: Two Years Left For Satellite Radio
Observation: The executive who said in 1977, “There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home,” must have authored this article.


Twitter, R.I.P.? Or Is There Gold Buried in Them Thar Tweets?
Observation: Mixed bag but the POTUS should be on their board of directors.

Where Are Radio Industry Ideas For 2009?
Observation: We should be asking ourselves this same question today. 

Will Print Survive the Next Five Years?
Observation: Valid question in 2008. Even more so in 2018. Borrell just predicted newspapers to be -15.8% in 2019.

Recounting Radio: What Do The New PPM Numbers Mean?
Observation: Measurement challenges persist a decade later. Time for the diary to go the way of MySpace?

Deja Vu:

NBC Chief: If We Don’t Evolve, We’re In Danger Of Becoming Like Newspapers
Observation: Even 10 years ago being compared to newspapers was a diss.

TV Nets May Be Forced To Make Drastic Changes
Observation: 2008 must look like the good old days for the TV nets with YouTube, Netflix, and connected TVs to compete against today. 

Radio Ink Forecast Agency Panel: Radio Must Evolve
Observation: Daily evolution should be S.O.P.

Change Is Becoming Radio’s Only Option
Observation: It is always the only option.

Measuring Audience Response Is What Matters
Observation: ROI then. ROI now.

Some Things Never Change:

Radio Holding Its Own Against The IPod, Trying To Embrace New Media
Observation: In 2008, it was the iPod, in 2018, it’s Pandora and Spotify, but regardless, radio continues to hold its own.

CMOs Annoyed By Agencies, Ad Networks
Observation: A decades-old battle but “in-housing” gains significant speed in 2018.

Fraudsters Filch $4B Online; Record Losses For U.S. E-Commerce
Observation: Digital ad fraud is projected to hit $22B by 2020.

The Identity Crisis Of Today’s Ad Agencies
Observation: Every entity in the ad business needs to evolve.

Google’s Schmidt Says Internet “Cesspool” Needs Brands
Schmidt, “The Internet is fast becoming a ‘cesspool’ where false information thrives.”
Observation: This issue has gotten progressively worse.

Canoe Ventures Aims For TV Ad Addressability By 2010
Observation: 2010? Still a long way to go in 2018.

Streams And Podcasts Are Great News
Observation: Podcasts “great news” is evolving into “great opportunity.”

As Ratings Fall, TV Networks Take On Ad-Skipping
Observation: The steep ratings decline continues (-40% the past decade). Cord cutting and declining viewership continue to vex TV execs.

Really True?

AOL Tops Music And Television Sites In September
Observation: First mover advantage lost.

Group M Borrows A Page From MySpace
Observation: Hopefully they returned it. Another first mover advantage lost.

The year in Internet Radio: CBS The Big Mover
Observation: Things sure have changed.

Facebook Tries To Woo Marketers 
Observation: If things keep going for Facebook the way they have been going the past few years, they might well have to begin doing so again.


Epsilon: Marketing Execs Aren’t Sold On Social Nets
Observation: Now all in.

HD Radio Wins iLounge’s Next Generation Poll
“Which of the following next-gen add-on features most interests you?”  
Observation: We wish.

Local Internet Radio Is The New FM
Observation: Not true in 2008. Not true in 2018.

P&G Digital Guru Not Sure Marketers Belong On Facebook
Observation: Where is this fella now that we need him?

Smart Move:

IAB Launches Audience Reach Measurement Guidelines
Will Standardize Key Metrics in the Interactive Industry 
Observation: The radio industry needs to do the same when it comes to attribution metrics and methodology.

While the headlines 10 years hence will surely be different, they will also surely be the same-wrong predictions along with the unmistaken messaging of constant evolution. The future is fluid, malleable, and within our ability to positively mold. We just need to be equal to the challenge. Book it, my money’s on us.

Bob McCurdy is the Vice President of Sales for the Beasley Media Group and can be reached at [email protected]


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