Home News Agency & Marketing Salaries Remain Flat According to Latest Prosperity Survey

Agency & Marketing Salaries Remain Flat According to Latest Prosperity Survey

Pictured: Gary Mullan

Salaries across the Irish agency and marketing industry remained flat in 2023 and will continue to remain so for much of 2024, according to the latest Prosperity Recruitment survey which looks at salary trends across Ireland’s digital sector.

According to the survey, “salaries have flattened for a second year in a row, although we expect them to rebound by the end of 2024, driven by more favorable headwinds such as lower interest rates.” The Prosperity survey also notes that “we expect hiring to recover from the second quarter of the year onwards but that “companies will find it hard to fill certain roles, especially in the area of performance marketing and other MarTech type of roles.”  The survey also notes that “this, in turn, will drive the need to outsource some of the talent to other markets, “ and that the recruitment group has already sourced international talent for Irish companies through its existing Center of Excellence in Barcelona.

According to Prosperity, one of the key features of the employment market in the future will be that “GenZ is set to change the workplace as it becomes the next big pool of talent, representing nearly 50% of total hires in the Digital Sector in Ireland by 2025.” It also notes that “AI will likely create more jobs than eliminate in the next 5 years, as it goes through a consolidation phase where companies figure out the best use cases for them. What happens beyond then is difficult to assess.” However, it says that “Ireland’s digital sector will remain a driving force for the Irish economy as it remains the most business-friendly country in the entire EU-zone.”

According to Gary Mullan, CEO of Prosperity, “AI is poised to change everything, from SMEs to Corporates to Startups to Main Street. For the better.” He adds that “Ireland is in a good position to lead the AI charge in Europe. Our privileged position as main European HQs for virtually all AI big players puts us in good footing. AI will also help organisations significantly reduce their skills gap with minimal investment in training”.

Mullan also adds that “in a nearly full-employment market, as is Ireland, companies will need to get creative beyond salary to attract top talent. Even though companies are mandating employees to return to the office, employers would do good to retain some sort of hybrid model. It helps reduce turnover as workers clearly appreciate flexibility”.

Overall, he says “Ireland does well attracting digital talent but cost-of-living might become a major problem if it continues to increase at the current pace”.

The Prosperity survey also says that while the agency space in Ireland is alive and well, “there are concurrent developments that have the potential to disrupt those who fail to adapt. One, of course, is AI and the second is the talent shortage in performance-based marketing. Almost 3 out of 4 dollars are spent in digital channels nowadays (GroupM, 2023) so the demand for these roles has increased. Agencies compete with clients to attract the same profiles in the areas of programmatic, PPC, social ads, platform specialists, and so on. In fact, it’s one of the few areas where salaries will increase significantly in 2024.”

“We know that agencies are constantly adapting, but in the next 2 to 3 years, they will need to adapt even more. Besides ChatGPT, Gemini, DALL·E, and so on, there is an ongoing surge of niche AI tools targeting very specific use cases such as ad creatives, video generation, copywriting, content planning, digital strategy, or even decision-making, which might take away some of the work agencies do. To remain relevant, agencies will need to stay on top of developments in AI, if not lead the charge and bring about the change themselves, so clients don’t look elsewhere to fulfill their needs.”

This will also present challenges on the client side, Prosperity notes. “CMOs will need to adapt in different ways. AI comes to mind again, although it’s not clear that AI tools can truly substitute for the unique responsibilities of CMOs such as setting strategies, managing budgets, and leading their teams. However, it seems obvious that CMOs need to stay on top of AI developments to help their organizations navigate through the ‘excitement phase’ of AI. Another major adaptation will occur at a generational level. Gen Z is poised to become the prominent generation of professionals in the following years, especially in the digital sector. This generation has different aspirations than the previous one, the Millennials. CMOs must internalize the need to adapt to these aspirations in their strategies to attract the best talent. Spoiler alert: salary alone will not be enough.

Prosperity notes that “CMOs average salaries are quite high compared to the average salary in the digital space in Ireland. They command one of the highest salaries in our 2024 Salary Survey at up to €150,000 per year.”

To download a copy of Prosperity’s annual survey click HERE

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