Death Of An Ad Man… Again

By SuperSpy 

AdWeak is running one of those pieces talking about how woefully unprepared agencies are for the future. HOW MANY TIMES ARE YOU GOING TO RUN THIS ARTICLE? Christ.

“Forrester Research believes today’s ad agencies are not well-structured to take on tomorrow’s marketing challenges, needing to move from making messages to establishing community connections.

Yes, Yes…

“-the research firm paints a grim view of the current state of advertising, which it believes is in “a world of hurt” because consumers are tuning out the messages the industry is predicated on producing. Instead, it believes shops need to be organized around communities, not disciplines. What it is calling “the connected agency” would not only know certain communities but also be active members of these groups. Pushing messages would give way to encouraging voluntary engagement, and ongoing conversations would replace time-based campaigns.”

Forrester’s then goes on to bemoan about how consumers increasingly do not trust marketing messages. Duh. That they use tech tools to tune out ad messages and that the idea of a “captive audience” are a thing of the past. Really? No…! Consumers also respond to community outreach. You must be joking!?! They only thing Forrester skipped out on (this time) is throwing the slow ad agency digital transition into the pot.

Oops! We spoke to soon. The end piece to this article is from Peter Kim, co-author of this gem, saying that, “The first step [agencies] need to take is with digital integration,” Kim said, adding that the organization of agencies around specific skill sets is the root of their problems. Yawn.

We are on record saying that PR firms have a better shot of making the future work to their advantage than agencies currently do. We believe that. But, look dude… WE GET IT, but your analysis is full of wild Futurama scenarios, lack of credit for agencies who are changing the game, and the whole problem of their being a client involved. We, the ad agency, often have a tough time getting the client, the guy who pays the bills, to shift. We’re not excusing the industry’s slow move to digital or failure to pick up on some of the changes in consumer culture, but it’s not always within our control. Trust. We wish it was.

By the way, Mr. Kim, Prior to joining Forrester, “an international marketing manager at PUMA AG. He was responsible for global creative production and traffic, built the firm’s first internal creative team, and managed marketing finance. He also architected PUMA’s global digital marketing presence and built eCommerce businesses in both the US and EU. Prior to PUMA, Peter was a principal consultant with Razorfish, where he formulated digital strategies for Fortune 100 companies. Peter began his career at Coopers & Lybrand as a research analyst focusing on the energy industry.”