In marketing circles, propeller heads rule the day, or so some say. They rule because they can quantify their work, parse the data, draw charts, and speak MBA-to-MBA.
On the other side of the conference table, you have the creative firm and their bold ideas. The problem is bold ideas from the agency don’t exactly instill confidence, in fact, they often do the opposite. Bold ideas are seen as risky, whereas database marketing, marketing automation, personas, and all the rest of the digital daydream, is viewed as the safer bet.
Some argue that agencies need to be more like consultants. I disagree. Instead, agencies ought to do what they do best and double down on their ability to deliver strategic insights, a steady supply of fresh creative ideas and flawless execution of those ideas.
Interesting POV, but becoming more like them is not a table-turning moment. How about we focus on the Big Idea again? Heresy, I know.
— Bonehook (@bonehook) October 9, 2017
Colleen DeCourcy, Global ECD at Wieden + Kennedy Portland, recently spoke to Creative Review about the pressures on creative firms and people today.
“I think that agencies and clients are more afraid, or are disinclined to go through the natural tussle that is part of the creative process.”
“As a creative it’s intimidating right now,” she says. “First of all, there’s a massive loss of confidence. It’s been 15 years of ‘hey, your big ideas don’t matter’.
But clients don’t actually say those words. Confrontation is for drama queens. What they do is reallocate their budgets. It’s a precision move, icing the creative agency.
Theory: The big idea has been sliced and diced to death.
Reality: The big idea is all there is between you and oblivion. #Marcom
— David Burn (@davidburn) October 7, 2017
Part of the problem here is that it’s hard for book smart people to admit that marketing is relatively simple. Naturally, there’s a ton of billable hours in complicated matters. When it’s easy, anyone can do it! Be that as it may, smart marketing is all about identifying the customer’s problem, then demonstrating how the brand solves it. That’s it. It’s a given that you must do it exceptionally well, under pressure, day in and day out. But that’s all there is.