The threat to the communications industry from the likes of Accenture, IBM and other large consultancies as well as from tech firms such as Adobe or Salesforce is now very real according to Campaign.
The recent acquisition of a large digital firm by Accenture in Australia and last year's sale of crisis comms firm Regester Larkin to Deloitte are just some examples of how the big guns are parking their tanks on the lawns of the marketing industry.
The bold prediction that one of the big six holding companies will be acquired by the likes of Accenture, IBM or Salesforce within 2-years is a sobering thought but not a new one.
What this industry must do is to realise the threat and modernise itself. We must go on the offensive and work with our clients big and small to neutralise the assault by developing campaigns that are scaled to meet the business challenges of our time. Rather than being an afterthought in the minds of management consultants, great marketing and communications must be the front and centre of business strategy.
The reality is what those firms [in consulting and IT] are doing in marketing services is [already] very similar," he said, pointing to areas such as service design which is "inherently creative". Consultants including Accenture, Deloitte and EY and IT companies including IBM and Salesforce have made a growing number of relatively small acquisitions of marketing agencies around the world in the last couple of years.