Why Is Turkey One Hot Advertising Market For 2013

Image Scott Goodson, Contributor - Forbes - I am writing a new book about how our world is being reshaped by technology. How the energy and perpetual desire of youth to connect is re-engineering this brave new world into a mosh pit of “globalistas”. Amazingly, the ancient trade routes – created centuries ago by people on foot or on ships that circled the Atlantic and Pacific rims – are being smashed and reinvented by a whole new generation of connected people, creating the most exciting, and hopeful open space of people and ideas ever.

Look at it from a macro perspective, and you can follow the jet plumes of a new generation criss-crossing the earth, curious about new cultures near and far. These are the new business heroes reshaping things…the interesting and relevant people we want to see more of doing new and dynamic things.

From a micro perspective, just look at how connected Turks are with the explosion of digital. Turkey is going gangbusters. The market is growing at an annual rate that smokes pretty much every other country in Europe.

In Turkey the advertising and digital market is booming. And there are no signs its slowing down anytime soon. Sure it’s fair to say that the region between Turkey and India is booming too, with 1.5 billion consumers and loads of young people who want to make their mark. My agency StrawberryFrog just did the new global Emirates “HELLO TOMORROW” campaign because Dubai is once again hot and on the rise.

Yet Turkey has an angle that puts it in a category all its own. And if you’re in advertising it’s worth taking a closer look at this unique ecosystem of creativity, vitality and technology.

If you’ve ever been to Istanbul you know why it’s happening. Just watch the kids. The kinda in, kinda now, kinda cool youth that are stylin along the city streets are modern, relevant and connected. They’re armed with latest smart phones, stylish clothes and an attitude that says watch this space.

This country cruises the digital super highway moshing culture from around the planet. This is the former city of Constantinople after all. The city where the Gladiators of Rome and the legendary visionaries of Asia met, hung out, made peace and, in the process created modern civilization.

That was then. Today, Turkey has more internet users than every other country on earth, just behind 13 countries with significantly more citizens. And get this, 30 million of them use Facebook. According to BTK data, they’ve got 40 million 3G users and Turkey leads the list with the highest social media usage through mobile internet – that’s if you believe the KPCB 2012 Internet Trend Report. Turkey marketing leaders and executives think that conventional marketing approaches need to change dramatically.  Search engine advertising and social media are the two major phenomena in Turkey today. Right now digital marketing talent is scarce I’m told, which seems crazy since all this energy, technology would make this one of the best places in the world to be creative.

Being the young truth and culture junkies that they are, they adopt and morph ideas. They seek out and reinvent ideas. They develop fragrant ideas and fresh perspective because they scour the plains of the internet constantly seeking new trends. They travel millions of miles over the web into local culture, breaking down walls, breaking down borders, smashing open doors.

The advantage of countries like Turkey is they haven’t had 80 years of advertising or traditional television history holding them back. Technology has enabled them to leapfrog many other countries and become a digital trend setter because internet usage in Turkey has gone beyond a means of entertainment. Companies consider the digital platform as the most vital asset at reaching users. Additionally, this platform enables the creation of a brand, its respective ecosystem and assists start up business at finding a footing.

According to the BKM (Interbank Card Center) data, the Turkish e-commerce market reached a whopping 25 billion in 2012. In this period many different ventures with a variety of different models were set-up. With these ventures many foreign investors entered the Turkish market.  In 2012, starting with Galata Business Angels, Angel Investors Networks were set up. Other VC companies such as 212 Ventures followed soon enough.

So what’s the most exciting work in Turkey and who’s doing it?

Founded by Alemşah Öztürk in 2007, 41? 29! , is a prominent name in this field. As an agency they have done many nationally and internationally awarded campaigns and continues to do so for its large roster of clients which include brands such as Unilever, Garanti Bankası, TTNET, Microsoft.

Another important name in this field is Rabarba, founded by Oğuz Savaşan in 2007. Rabarba has been serving major brands such as Unilever, Turkcell, Peps, and Turkish Airlines.  Having won many awards since its establishment, Rabarba recently got a major nod from Capital Mag as it was chosen the “favorite ad agency” of 2012.

C-Section established by Enis Orhun and Tuna Tiryakioğlu in 2008 make waves. Since its establishment, C-Section has served many major brands such has Efes Pilsen, Vodafone, and Coca-Cola.

In terms of the brand aspect of the industry, digital investors in Turkey, and the degrees of their investment vary from industry to industry.  In the Interactive Marketing Summit of 2012, Turkcell was awarded as the most innovative brand in digital, while Efes Pilsen was recognized as most effective Social Media using brand.  The best mobile using brand award was given to Garanti Bank and Elit was chosen the most creative brand in digital.

Who are the MVPs of this market?
Whomever is behind the new Turkish Airlines ad featuring Messi and Bryant, that’s crashing YouTube globally deserves a pat on the back.

By Scott Goodson  - (chairman and founder of StrawberryFrog, and author of bestseller Uprising: How to Build a Brand and Change the World by Sparking Cultural Movements. McGraw Hill, April 2012) – in close collaboration with Kutay Ates.
Last modified onSaturday, 06 May 2017 10:07