Ad Agencies To Blame For Financial Crisis? Let’s Get The Sexy Back

By SuperSpy 

A new poll from Harris has found that two-thirds of Americans (66%) believe advertising agencies have at least some responsibility for the current economic crisis because they caused people to buy things they couldn’t afford. The study goes onto to say that one-third (33%) believe they have complete or a great deal of responsibility. And people say advertising isn’t effective? In your face! Advertising FTW!

Of course, this argument that agencies are to blame is ridiculous on so many levels. Sure. Folks need to point fingers at someone – other than themselves, banking institutions, government and the oh-so pathetic SEC. Still, this is yet another blow in the perception of advertising as an industry.


One of the many conversations weeding its way throughout the industry is the marketing of advertising as a career choice, as a desirable profession. In Britain, advertising is a rock star job. It’s something that people actually choose rather than simply fall into. As one Brit told me – “advertising is considered a creative intelligent career choice that has a enviable persona to it. The same way that good British comedies are respected, so to is advertising.”

Can we say the same thing about American advertising? Does anyone love or respect it? Hell, do you? We’ve got at least one big problem in the U.S. It’s the whole “evil” Adbusters line of thought. The one, which skips over creativity/entertainment/culture creation. A straight line get drawn from the negatives of a capitalist system directly to the ad industry. Another issue is that Americans are bogged down in advertising. It’s often considered a nuisance. Although, again, Britain is covered too. So what’s the deal?

At some point, advertising held a slightly warmer place in the American heart. Hell, the Clio’s used to be televised way back when. This brings me to the video below posted by Adversity. Steve Stoute brings up a good issue that is applicable for every color under the sun – how do we get college kids to WANT to be in advertising? How can we get the sexy back?

More: Q & A With John Gerzema, Chief Insights Officer Young & Rubicam