A Case For Drinking

bear_suicide1We were asked to look at the results of a recent marketing industry survey that basically showed that industry was suicidal. Ar first glance the results make you want to go out and buy a big case of spirits, invite your friends round and come back out in Autumn.

Businesses and Agencies are undoubtedly facing a tough time, having to reduce down overheads, and in Agencyland that’s people, which had a big emotional impact on a business.

That said, the majority of marketing money is still spent on traditional media and advertising. If you can save £3m by cutting a big ATL campaign, yet generate broadscale awareness by spending a 10th of that on BTL surely that’s a great opportunity, and value for money.

When the goings good it attracts new entrants and there’s more competition for work. Agencies undercut each other and procurement drive down fees. When the markets bad, there’s less work, and the Agency base shrinks, but Agencies are still undercutting each other and procurement are naturally looking for savings. The difference is that there’s no room for failure.

The successful agencies will need to run tight ships, monitor costs and focus on delivering strategic brand advice, big creative ideas, and exceptional client serving.

During a crises, you need strong people around you, and that’s what Clients are looking for. They want the people who are prepared to stand up and be counted and fight for what they believe in. This isn’t the time for the faint hearted or those lacking in confidence.

Probably now, more than any other time in the last 10 years BTL Agencies have an opportunity to demonstrate that they belong on the top table. That it’s not just about amplifying an idea created by another Agency. It’s about creating and amplifying and strategically leading from the front.

The shrinkage that will occur over the next few months will have a big human impact. There’s probably not a person today who doesn’t know someone who’s lost their job, or had a downturn in business, this survey naturally reflects that. The reality is that we don’t really understand what’s happening in the market place, or how to make it stop.

As a new start-up that’s lean and although our Clients are worried about what’s happening, they’re also focussed on delivering some of the most exciting campaigns ever. The walls may come crashing in, but we’d rather not be sat at home burying our head in the sand with a case of spirits. We’d rather be outside trying to make a difference for the Agency and our Clients.