The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]


(M)adland …

So I’ve been asked to speak at a McKinsey conference.

No, I’m not exactly sure why either.

Anyway, while they want me to talk about creativity, my goal is to cause debate and conflict among these highly paid, process driven, business brains which is why my presentation will be called, “You Wouldn’t Understand …” and I’ll be focusing on the magic of chaos.

Now I’m under no illusion the audience will regard me – and the industry I represent – as a bit of a joke, which is why I will do my usual 8 Mile strategy of owning all the prejudice and negativity they could throw against me so I rob them of their ammunition and force them to listen rather than judge.

And that’s where I need your help.

Of course there’s a bunch of stuff I could say, but I’m interested in things that go beyond just the process or thinking of creative development, but the ridiculous ways adland conducts it’s business.

To start you off, I want to leave you with a quote from a friend of mine, a new business guy at a super-successful agency’ that said this to me:

“I will travel miles to talk about myself to someone for free”.

When you see it like that, it’s pretty insane … ignoring the fact many management consultants do exactly the same thing except they call it a ‘business audit’. [Though to be fair to them, they then charge a fee that makes this sort of cold-calling pay for itself]

Anyway, any other suggestions or examples will be very, very welcomed and remember, you’re fighting for creativity here. And my personal vindictive satisfaction.

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55 Comments so far
Leave a comment

you dont need any fucking anecdotes, just a fucking big machine gun.

Comment by andy@cynic

but giving our ideas away for free so we can make a bit of green on the fucking process has never made any fucking sense to me.

Comment by andy@cynic

And I didn’t think my opinion of McKinsey thinking could get any lower.

Comment by John

planners.

Comment by andy@cynic

having all the fucking answers before agencies have met any of the client fuckers.

Comment by andy@cynic

Ask then if they ever enter effectiveness awards?

Comment by John

cannes.

Comment by andy@cynic

any agency that thinks theyre inventing the fucking future with a product that no one needs and will never be fucking sold.

Comment by andy@cynic

i want paying for this before you get any more gold campbell.

Comment by andy@cynic

Agencies develop unique solutions to individual clients problems and it is a total coincidence the answer is always an ad.

Comment by DH

Well that’s because they call themselves ad agencies and not marketing agencies.

Comment by John

That’s because they are ad agencies even when they say they are communication/innovation/creative agencies.

Comment by DH

TV viewership is down so to keep making what they’re most interested in, agencies just call TV ads, films.

Comment by DH

Please let this conference be available to watch online.

Comment by DH

Insomnia back again?

Comment by John

The new business quote is a good one. The others on here have already highlighted some of the ad industries most fantastic idiocy so I will just say I feel sorry for McKinsey. They have no idea what is about to hit them.

Comment by George

thats the fucking truth.

Comment by andy@cynic

almost makes me want to start an agency again to show the fuckers how it can be done. but i cant be fucking arsed.

Comment by andy@cynic

Compared to how much McKinsey charges, the amount of money advertising agencies are willing to value their work shows they don’t get business.

Comment by Wayne Green

Because the amount Mckinsey gets paid shows business is stupid?

Comment by DH

Dan Wieden and Deutsch prove that point.

Comment by DH

👍🏻

Comment by Wayne Green

Wow, this is a lot of comments for so early in the morning.

They’re excellent – except the ones slagging me off, of course.

Thank you.

Keep them coming, I’ll blitzkrieg them with adlands craziness before I blitzkrieg them with how we can make things happen they only dream about.

[Excluding the small amount of cash we get for it]

Comment by Rob

send your fucking cash to the usual address you never send your cash too. fucker.

Comment by andy@cynic

If you want his cash, you need to set up a ridiculous wi-fi enabled Kickstarter project.

Comment by John

Is this going to be similar to the time you took on Insead?

Comment by Lee Hill

definitely freelancing: the cycle of it. the money in it, and how it can range from highly efficient to terribly illogical from a business perspective.

Comment by charleseharrison

You should definitely have a go at proprietary process because that will be a dig at management consultants too. And if you could ask Mckinsey to explain why they did what they did to the railway industry that would be interesting.

Comment by John

Oh that’s a corker. Yes … it will be like that time I asked a question at a conference in India and that guy tried to shut me up and then you found a quote he said in a book and it allowed me to destroy him when I did my presentation after him.

Yesssss …

[BTW, I mean this: http://tinyurl.com/y748c2cz%5D

Comment by Rob

I appreciate that you understand that there are so many times I have saved your ass that I might not be able to keep track of them, but yes I remembered this without clicking the link.

Comment by John

If you’re looking for agency cliché, here’s a few that spring to mind…

We give away our most valuable asset, ideas, for free.

We win the business with our most experienced staff, then staff the process with the most junior, and wonder why we struggle to retain it.

We invest more in winning new clients than retaining/growing old ones.

We pay a premium to our suppliers, because our output is commercial.

We value emotional response over rational effectiveness.

We think we’re intellectually superior to the people paying us.

We preach business innovation, but fail to innovate our own business.

We provide the same solution to every problem.

We care about our industry, but real people couldn’t care less about it.

We care about our agency’s brand, more than we care about our client’s brand.

If we were good at what we did, we’d do it for ourselves, not someone else.

Comment by David

Nice ones !

Comment by Anais Guillemane (@MsSiana)

We endorse the role of psychoanalyst for free for the sake of doing great work afterwards.

This one seems to me fundamental:
We work on the brand purpose, a.k.a the “Why” of brands … eventhough we could go for quick wins and without having any concrete proof of the efficiency of having a why. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/brand-purpose-does-evidence-stack-up-richard-shotton

Comment by Anais Guillemane (@MsSiana)

The IPA Databank – a niche, biased research sample taken as gospel

Comment by northern

Well said.

Comment by John

Disruption

Comment by northern

Media Arts

Comment by northern

Content

Comment by northern

Arguing over the right metaphor how brands work these days as if it was like trying to link general relativity and quantum mechanics

Comment by northern

The death of this and the age of that

Comment by northern

Planners who don’t know the basics of research

Comment by northern

Art directors who can’t draw

Comment by northern

Youtube not being able to guarantee you ad won’t pre-roll someone being beheaded

Comment by northern

Did I say Media Arts

Comment by northern

The fact that some of the most awarded campaigns didn’t sell a bean, the most effective stuff didn’t win an award

Comment by northern

Creative directors who thinks showing the product ruins their ad

Comment by northern

Creative directors

Comment by northern

welcome back northern casanova. now keep the hate fucking flowing.

Comment by andy@cynic

Bloggers

Comment by northern

That agencies think they can ‘buy’ culture by putting a pool table in the middle of the office and handing out warm beer once a week.

Comment by Oli

Assumption. So. Much. Assumption.

Comment by Oli

Everyone outside London isn’t relevant.

Comment by Oli

We put one picture on a chart to make a point.
They write a 500 word treatise on every chart. And put a complicated diagram on it involving multiple arrows. And clip art.

Comment by Chutchie

Thank you for all this … some great stuff.

And Northern, it’s great to see such vitriol … especially as you’re right on so many, with ‘art directors who can’t draw’ being one of my ultimate fave whatthefuck habits.

Comment by Rob

“Old” people being pushed away from Agency X/Y/Z for not being digital enough, subsequently stealing bits of business from said agency by dealing with the very same client on their own – and for a better price.

“We have to become more digital. That’s why we’re sending our leaders to the Silicon Valley, for a week”

Workshops – especially when used as substitute for research

Influencers.

Workshops about/with Influencers.

Award ideas, merely to reassure yourself that your ‘creativity penis’ is still long enough, by industry standards.

The fact that someone invited Kanye West to do a talk at Cannes.

Comment by Ste




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