- WPP-owned digital advertising agency Possible acquired Marketplace Ignition, a consulting firm that helps brands with Amazon marketing and e-commerce strategies, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.
- According to Possible, it made the deal amidst growing demand from marketers seeking help with Amazon and its ad business. Possible CEO Shane Atchison told the Journal interest in marketing and advertising on Amazon has grown beyond retailers, citing increased interest from consumer packaged goods companies over the last 18 months in selling directly through Amazon.
- Amazon’s ad business is on the rise with industry analysts predicting its ad revenue will hit $3.5 billion this year.
Two months ago, WPP's CEO Martin Sorrell said that worrying about Amazon's expanding role keeps him up at night. With the Possible deal, now maybe the exec can get some sleep as the agency conglomerate positions itself to play a larger role in the e-commerce giant's proliferating advertising business as its content and hardware strategies gel.
Beyond adding a specific skill set to its offerings, Possible’s deal is also another wrinkle in the shifting agency landscape. Traditional agencies are seeing increasing competition from management consultancies like Accenture and Deloitte which are both adding marketing and advertising services to their business models. By adding a consulting firm, even with a singular focus, Possible — and by extension WPP — is showing agencies are capable of adapting to industry trends.
Last month IPG CEO Michael Roth said he sees more collaboration than competition as agencies and consultancies begin increasingly operating on the same turf. The deal between Possible and Marketplace Ignition takes that convergence to the next level.
What might be the most important takeaway from Possible’s acquisition is the marketplace’s realization that Amazon is poised to become a major player in the digital ad space alongside Google and Facebook.