Media Wizards

Which media agency is doing the most innovative work? How do you keep pushing the envelope your own brand?

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Hey!!

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What even is innovative anymore? Maybe I’m just over media but looking forward to responses.

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IMO, you can't centralize innovation. You can't have one team just doing innovation. Likewise, you can't centralize brains... you can't have GroupM folks doing the brainy work, and everyone else in individual agencies are glorified client servicing folks. Truth is, the day-to-day work can be innovative in very small ways too... incremental innovations, not big-idea innovations. But your leaders would disagree, because it is easier to have it separated - so you can tell the client, now you have 15 people in your meeting vs 5, so I'm charging more. Should innovation be exclusive to just one team? It is inefficient... but do agency leaders care? Not really. In a small/medium shop, this function cannot be limited to a select few. Everyone needs to do it because you wear multiple hats. Once again, it's economics.... and well, maybe to some extent... lazy leadership or inability to shake up the model.

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I want everyone on my team looking for what’s new and next. If you’re not, I don’t think you’re going to be a very successful planner—you’re just an execution person.

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If you're asking this question, how do you propose we get the right answer here? Is there a way to quantify everything a media agency has done and put all agencies on a bell curve? It is pretty subjective, no? I would say the smaller shops tend to do better work. Boutiques or medium sized. The main attraction for large agencies is because they can deliver better RATES. Aka cheap media... if you want to sell yourself on quality, not quantity... ask yourself: why would clients opt for a smaller shop instead of chasing the volume discount offered by larger shops... and you will see smaller shops can only differentiate themselves through quality. There's no subjectivity here - it is economics.

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I think almost every agency does SOME innovative work. And every agency does some cookie cutter work. Tends to be more about the team than the agency overall imho.

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That is true... there are benefits with having a dedicated team to it. I do feel, however, there are some folks who swing to extreme ends and not let the day to day folks touch the more interesting stuff. And yes, I did come from mindshare/groupm, in case you're wondering :) I partially think I'm also quite done with agency life. So, there's that.

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Not in mine. Not on my watch. I tell them to GTFO my meetings - also, because my team is well-rounded enough to do this. We have a structure to explore new territories. I only bring these 'consultants' when extra hands are needed to execute. If you're there only to talk, get out.

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First step is to define innovation and the purpose it plays on your business.

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Your local Invention Studio team member is crying over this question.

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Just bringing something new isn’t innovation (although too many people, who like to chase shiny objects think it is). The client is more likely to appreciate an innovation if it ties into and directly solves an already identified challenge. Don’t bring solutions that are looking for a problem.

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Agencies don’t do good work; people do.

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