Will.i.am, musician at Black Eyed Peas, and Director of Creative Innovation at Intel, speaking at the Cannes Lions International Festival of
Advertising Creativity (to be noted), said, “Ad agencies are yesterday. But ad agencies that can turn consumers into agents that add value to community and life, that’s what it’s about right now.” (via)
A couple of weeks back, I had remarked on the role of agencies in future in the context of brands and curation. I found this post titled ' Why Ad Agencies Should Act More Like Tech Startups' very interesting. The contention was that in these dynamic times, with new services appearing/disappearing faster than ever, the definition of the 'idea' needs to go beyond the traditional creative domains and start looking at technology as a major player, 'leveraging it in creative ways'. Mashable had a post couple of days back on how the advertising industry is preparing for a digital future.
Despite the slice-and-dice that marketing functions have gone through, I still have quite some affection for full service agencies especially if they adapt to changing scenarios and pick up specialised skills and knowledge that would help them tell brand stories better. But I'd agree that understanding not just specific technology, but the landscape itself is indeed something agencies should look at as a priority.
And then I happened to read another post on a blog that I have recently discovered, but is one of my favourites now. The post, titled 50 Secrets Of Blissful Relationships.
.digitaltonto.com/2011/3-blind-marketers” target=”_blank”>3 Blind Marketers, (based on the blind men-elephant tale) is on the subject of marketing shifting from the earlier dichotomies of ATL/BTL and analog/digital to the paid, owned and earned media model, and is essentially about how specialists corresponding to each 'silo' have few perspectives outside of it. Later in the article, he makes a case for the full service agency, as succinctly as “When you’re trying to make sense of an elephant in the dark, it helps to have extra hands around.”
I think that the biggest advantage that incumbent agencies can have with a client is trust, and the reason why many clients seem to bring aboard new specialist agencies is because they are losing the trust in their agencies to deliver on those fronts. But what that also means is that if agencies can build and leverage their understanding of the client's brand figure out a platform/domain agnostic process to generate ideas, and find the best ways to execute them from the diverse options that this dynamic era provides, they can still be of much value to the client.
until next time, a case for briefs, but that's a different post
Bonus Reads: David Ogilvy on Creating The Ideal Agency Culture
and The future of Advertising Technology (via) (click on image to enlarge)