Letters

Media Agencies: Playing the Numbers Game
Ienjoyed reading “Media Gambit: The Scramble for Supremacy” [Media Agency Report, Dec. 20]. The analysis, planning, buying and selling of media time and space has seen more change than any other area of marketing and advertising. If our minds are boggled at the speed of change and the number and types of options available today, we ain’t seen nothing yet. The need for media specialists, be they with full-service advertising agencies, media dependents or media
independents, has never been greater.
One thing remains constant, though: Good media people know their numbers. I would therefore like to point out that the billings reported for Universal McCann by the Recma Institute in Paris do not represent Universal McCann’s global media billings. (They do not even reflect our true billings in Europe.)
Officially launched in 1999, Universal McCann, McCann-Erickson’s global media operation, manages more than $14 billion on behalf of our clients annually. That would actually place Universal McCann as “top dog” in the global media game. Also, one has to wonder when the media player ranked as No. 1 globally by Recma in fact “has yet to take shape in the U.S.,” as your publication itself says in another article in the section (“Omnicom’s Media Dilemma”). The U.S., after all, is the world’s largest single media marketplace.
As a media professional dealing with constant change in our industry, I still feel comfortable in at least one area of our business–making sure the numbers add up.
Mark Stewart
Executive vice president, regional director North America
Universal McCann, New York
Given the fast-paced nature of what you call “media empire building” in the article titled “Media Gambit: The Scramble for Supremacy” [Dec. 20], it’s understandable that market developments frequently outstrip the news.
For the record, TN Media’s consolidated global billings, entering the year 2000, stand at $7.4 billion, which will be reflected in this year’s Recma report.
This easily places TN Media within the top five of the largest global media agencies.
Tim Zagin
Senior vice president,
manager, international media
TN Media, New York