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2018: A year of discovery

In 2018, Britain will re-discover some of its lost confidence and feel a bit better about itself. We won't have an election or referendum for the first time since 2013 and this will help. Brexit talks will progress and we'll start to think more about the future. We won't win the World Cup, but we might be fairly proud of our young team, at least before the tournament. The corporations that will prosper will be those talking positively to Government about Britain’s future – as will brands that can capture a sense of a young, futuristic Britain. And as the world continues to appear more dangerous, it will be another bumper year for the best of British tourism and leisure.

Businesses will continue to be on the back foot in Britain and at Board level companies will, possibly incorrectly, spend more time thinking about protecting their reputations than growing them. This is understandable as there are so many agendas where business is behind where society expects them to be, including gender pay, BAME, sustainability, ethics, taxation, inequality and cyber security.

Inside big companies there will be more re-organisation, merging of functions and removal of silos. This will be good news for communicators that can manage reputation, develop corporate stories and handle all forms of content. But it will be less good for those who still think PR means media relations.

The agency sector in the UK will have a tough 2018 . The economy is likely to be sluggish and this will hit the whole marketing services industry. Client organisations will continue to take more and more “business as usual” work in house and merge functions, sometimes getting rid of stand alone “corporate communications” units. The agencies that will prosper will be those that make a difference in times of opportunity and crisis – and those that have cracking ideas.