Wall Street Journal Highlights Big Agencies’ Struggles

July 12, 2006

Publicis Chief Seeks Unity Within
In today’s Wall Street Journal article Publicis Chief Seeks Unity Within, Aaron O. Patrick points out some of the problems large advertising agencies face.

Publicis Groupe’s chief Mr. Levy called the heads of Publicis Groupe’s agencies…where he told the gathering of 130 senior executives that Publicis had created bureaucracy to “satisfy egos” and suffers from a “silo mentality” that hurts clients.

I’ve never worked for a large agency, but I’ve worked for a number of large corporations. It’s hard to make things happen. This supports my idea that companies may actually find better value in smaller agencies. GM recently dumped Leo Burnett for a smaller agency. Some of the best viral marketing has come from smaller agencies (I don’t have time to link to them all – sorry).

Mark Morse, founder of my (small) agency, Morsekode, often talks about the bureaucracies of his former employers, Fallon and Carmichael Lynch. He says those silos and layers were the reason he founded Morsekode. He wanted to start something different. He felt we can offer creative in line with any of the largest in the world, but at a better value because of our size and structure.

I think he’s right. We’ve been proving him right.

Furthermore, I know that our clients enjoy the relationship we are able to afford because of our size — the personal touch and the responsiveness that every customer longs for.

Communication Often A Problem
This recent quote from a MarketingSherpa case study highlights another problem clients typically have with agencies: communication.

The main problem is communication. I need to guide my virtual team, if I can’t communicate, then it’s not a good partnership. Personality has a piece of it.

I like what this guy says about personality. The personality of a team can mean the world to an effective relationship.

That’s the stuff that really energizes me. I’m glad not to be one of 130 senior executives who have to spend time worrying about silos. . .I’ll stick to composing ideas that grow business.

That’s where the fun is . . . and where the results are too.

PS For you regular readers. Thanks for stopping by. I’m going to take a little break to investigate the beauty of relaxation in southern Spain and do my best not to stay connected. Enjoy July and I’ll come back with some new marketing discussion topics in August. Thanks again for stopping by.


One comment

  1. have a great holiday john….

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