2030 Revisited: The Impact of 2020 on The Future of Advertising – An Essence Report

In January and early February of 2020, we asked an elite group of marketing practitioners, executives, and academics to speculate on the future of advertising in the year 2030. At the time we conducted our research Covid-19 had not yet been declared a global pandemic or established its now-universal dominance over our lives, businesses, and priorities. Not long after publishing it became clear we would need to revisit our research in light of the scale and transformational consequences of the coronavirus.

So, at the end of 2020, after a year spent in varying levels of lockdown or voluntary sequestration, we re-interviewed our growing panel of experts to understand how they think Covid-19 has impacted the likelihood of the 15 scenarios we originally explored.

Our experts expect eight future scenarios to be even more likely following the events of the previous eleven months, including the use of biometric data (65% more likely), time spent in virtual environments (59% more likely), and trends toward subscription services (59% more likely), personalization (56% more likely), and micropayments (46% more likely). Nearly 60% felt 2020 will accelerate the trend toward consumer prioritization of environmental impact and over 40% saw an increased likelihood that AI and automation lead to job and wage losses. Five scenarios were seen to have been largely unaffected by the year’s upheaval, and our experts rated just two as being less likely than at the start of 2020—the adoption of a global privacy law (50% less likely) and the ability of large tech companies to remain intact (41% less likely) as global consolidated entities.

To read more and download the full report, please head to Essence’s website here.