There’s an interesting piece by John Gapper in the FT tying together some salient trends in Madland. His thesis is that creativity and media planning are getting rehitched after a lengthy divorce. It’s a bit of a shot-gun remarriage driven by two compelling circumstances: 1) cost pressures caused by the recession, which will make the big networks rationalise the ragbag of boutique specialists they have acquired over the years and 2) the nature of effective internet marcoms, which is a million miles from the traditional segmentation of agency skills. Here’s the flavour of 2). ” [Internet campaigns] demand a lot of creativity – a good internet or mobile campaign is more like a short piece of programming or entertainment than a marketing pitch – and a sophisticated grasp of consumers, and how to use old and new media. In other words, it draws on the entire range of the industry’s fragmented skills.”
Certainly something will have to give as revenue is squeezed out of the traditional agency model. Check out Coca-Cola attempts to impose a new “no win, no profit” fee structure on its agencies.