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It’s time for ad agencies to stop acting like “business professionals.”

When ad agencies wonder why they aren’t succeeding, they should look to the insights from this article.

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017/05/22/vice-and-lululemons-brand-innovation

While agencies are trying to mirror their client’s “business focus,” VICE has figured out that clients are looking for what they CAN’T get from within their own walls.

Money quote…”Baim, who is British, and his Brooklyn-based team had recently spent four days at Lululemon’s headquarters, in Vancouver, for an “immersion” that included hours of yoga and meditation. “You should know that I only learned how to say ‘Namaste’ in the last few months, thanks to you,” Baim said. “And then you guys came to our office and we got you fairly drunk.”

Many a client that has told me that a great ad agency’s value was delivered through being DIFFERENT — thinking differently, acting differently, even dressing differently.

Agencies — stop trying to BE your clients — get back to what you do best. Be more creative, more interesting, and less paranoid.

Or, be prepared to sit in meetings parroting phrases like “big data” and “optimization,” whilst you watch the bottom line fade.

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