The Era of the Hybrid Marketing Agency is Here!

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The digital technology revolution of the past decade has produced significant disruption of established methods of just about everything business. The dynamics of consumer/marketer relationships have discarded traditional approaches of once basic marketing think. In the pre-ecommerce era, brands were built through creative advertising campaigns that presupposed the way consumers should feel about a product or service. In the digital era, brands are built through each and every contact point that brands have with customers. Today the value of an ad or campaign is measured as much by its effectiveness in bringing prospective consumers into a brand’s lair as it is for its creative and entertainment aspects. The changes in the operational landscape are generating a consolidation of two, once thought to be separate, marketing disciplines.

Historically consultants have been thought to be problem solvers and business thinkers, focused on harvesting data and formulating strategies to deliver solutions. Advertising agencies’ function was one of artistry, developing the creative path to implementing solutions. The uniqueness of personality of these two groups made for an oil and water scenario where merging the differing functions was thought to be unrealistic. The two dimensions over-played their own value to the marketing process and underestimated the impact that the new digital reality would have on traditional roles. “The big consultancies are underestimating the value of creativity [and] the agencies are under-exploiting the value of business analytics,” said Ivan Pollard, senior VP-strategic marketing at Coca-Cola Co. “Someone’s going to crack that soon because data plus creativity is the future.”

That premise appears to be bearing out. Recently four consultancies cracked Ad Age’s ranking of the 10 largest agency companies in the world. With combined revenue of $13.2 billion, the marketing services units of Accenture, PwC, IBM and Deloitte are gaining on the world’s largest and most established creative advertising agencies. A Forester survey found that 73 percent of marketers would be willing to use consultants in the future. Traditional thinkers maintain that delivering creative campaigns would remain the purview of the advertising agency. But the smart agency will need to recognize the threat to their turf and move to modify their traditional “artsy culture” to reflect the new marketing reality.

Kate Newman, Chief Marketing Officer of Leo Burnett recently said, “Business leadership is the cost of entry for any player — agency or consultant — for a seat at the table with brands. How can clients buy a creative idea without a business assessment and strategy? Clients don’t buy creative campaigns. They buy solutions to business problems. If consultants and agencies aren’t already working like this today, I guarantee they won’t be here in five years.”

Junction Creative Solutions (Junction) was founded more than a decade ago as a hybrid business model, blending business intelligence with the creative innovation of an advertising agency.  Junction founder Julie Gareleck says, “We recognized early on in the digital revolution that the future practice of marketing would be about blending the intelligence of business with comprehensive set of creative solutions. Junction has grown to be an award winning, results driven agency, focused on delivering the right marketing solutions to align with our clients’ every goal and objective.”

For more on how Junction’s hybrid approach can benefit your marketing efforts, call 678-686-1125 today.

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