This year, we interviewed agency founders, creative directors, CEOs, content strategists, chief experience officers and more. Their answers surprised us, made us laugh; some made us reevaluate what agencies are doing…and what they aren’t.
We’ve collected interviews from some of the most creative, most innovative, boldest and funniest personalities in advertising today.
“Consumers have massive choice, and the democratization of the media means they have a voice. We’ve all seen instances of Facebook groups or YouTube videos forcing a change in a brand’s behavior, so consumers rightfully expect brands to offer them more in return for their loyalty.”
“I think journalism, even of the degraded sort that hangs around rock music, is a really good background for a copywriter. It’s about grabbing a stranger’s attention and then making sense of the world for them in a rip-roaring way. And I still think of myself as a reporter, still with the Jimmy Olsen press pass in the band of my mental fedora (now a real fedora, to obscure shameful baldness).”
“I think there will always be a need for an agency. Does that agency look like it does today? Probably not, and many of today’s agencies will not be in business or will have radically different ways of making money than they do at present in order to survive. The in-house teams typically cannot afford to keep enough top-level talent busy enough to justify the costs.”
“We’ve successfully taken down the wall between creative and production and will soon be breaking through the wall to syndication and distribution of our content with a joint venture we are developing with an unnamed team of individuals. ‘Data-Drive Creative’ is the mantra of our soon-to-be-formed venture.”
“As a Mistress, one would expect her to be a bit hotter, a bit more risqué, and generally more spontaneous than the wife. We had no plan to just go out and replicate what we had already been doing at other places. At Mistress we believe our job is not to do the communications equivalent of sock folding or floor mopping. Clients don’t come to us for that.”
“My short version of content strategy is this: ‘Aligning business goals with user expectations via sustainable online content.’ Businesses flip the lights on every day for a reason. Be it a non-profit, a service industry or online retailer, the hope is that they will be able to accomplish something: furthering support for a cause, providing best-in-class service or selling a need in a way no one else can. Online content can help them do that.”
“When you first start out, you are asking more of your team than is humanly possible. You are asking them to work extreme hours in order to achieve project goals, while also trying to achieve operational stability and hit growth goals. All the while, you need to compete with the ‘big guys’ and win more and larger business deals. I liken it to ‘doing the Ginger Rogers’ — doing everything Fred Astaire (read: Madison Avenue) is doing, only backwards and in heels.”
“Every consumer wants a brand to be helpful, approachable, caring, engaging and bring joy (either through an emotional or utility payoff). Brand promises can be delivered as effectively on application interfaces as they can be on 30-second ad spots. Both manifestations of the brand should be in lock-step and speak to the user in one unified voice and intent.”