The Brazilian Association of Digital Agencies (ABRADI) just finished its first survey, designed to measure the growth of digital agencies in the country. Brazil owns, by far, the largest digital market in Latin America.
The study revealed there are 2,275 digital agencies in Brazil that today gather up an income of $412 million, not counting media-buying investments. As in the U.S., there's a long tail of small digital agencies. Breaking it down, 63.3% of these agencies' annual revenue is below $650,000; 25.5% is between $650,000 and $2.7 million, and only 10% surpass $2.7 million. César Paz, president of ABRADI, said it is expected that total revenue will exceed $500 million by 2010.
Mr. Paz also leads one of the strongest digital agencies of Brazil, AG2. Among the most visible ones are Aegis Group's AgenciaClick, TV1, FBiz and Publicis' Tribal. Additionally, iThink and WPP's Wunderman and Energy are among the ones that have shown fastest growth in the past few years.
Even though Mr. Paz still refers to an "emerging market," 43% of these digital agencies already existed eight years ago. Only 10% of them are newer than 2 years old.
Another local agency that's worth mentioning is LiveAd, not only because of its sustained work -- for Nike, Kellogg, Multishow, Yahoo, Whirlpool and Oi, among others -- but for winning the first and only Gold Lion for Brazil in the new PR category at this years Cannes ad festival, thanks to its campaign "One Thousand Casmurros," made for the biggest TV network in Brazil, Rede Globo. It was the agency's first entry in Cannes.
Commemorating 100 years since the death of one of the greatest writers Brazil has ever seen, Machado de Assis, Rede Globo launched a miniseries inspired by one of his best-known books, "Dom Casmurro." In order to promote it, LiveAd divided the book contents in a thousand pieces and organized a collective reading of the entire text, inviting people to upload their homemade videos reading in front of their webcams. The videos were posted on a special social network.
The results were astonishing: Spontaneous media exposure equaled $6.67 million in ad spend.
"There are many hot agencies in Brazil, but probably, in 2009, LiveAd has been the brilliant one," Mr. Paz said.