December 11, 2008

Some Change

Change is the moniker of our generation. We no longer classify our times with the single letter X or Y.

We have grown past the one dimensional descriptions that limits us to a single marketing demographic.

We are now about change. Change is good. Change is a modification, an adjustment and in some cases even a revolution.

Today, one of the the oldest ad agencies still lingering, a throwback to the days of scotch and cigarettes, JWT (founded in 1864), has made an announcement.

Typically when ad agencies make an announcement its heard "round the world" because ad agencies are designed to be the loudest voice in the room.

Its what they do, they advertise. So when a directorship position is announced, especially one that oversees a world wide operation, its pretty big news.

These announcements are typically saved for creative directors or the traditional roles that have made up ad agencies since that founding year of 1864.

However today marks a notch in the belt of a new age. It signifies the recognition of the tectonic shift that has been taking place in the ad industry over the last few years and it has also signified the rapid change that is taking place everywhere.

The Digital Revolution.

Joe Mandese over at Online Media Daily writes:

"With the pomp and circumstance that it might have announced a new creative director in days of old, one of Madison Avenue's best known full-service ad agencies, WPP Group's JWT, this morning announced that David Eastman has been named its worldwide digital director, responsible for the strategic oversight and management of digital advertising campaigns within the agency, and all its subsidiary companies. "

This paragraph so succinctly states that what "was", now isn't, and what "is", is.

The words World Wide Digital Director reads like music to my ears.

Its a recognition that digital has fully arrived and is here to stay.

That the digital revolution has overcome the traditional resistance and assisted by a faltering economy and the rapid advancement of technology, is becoming the main cog in the advertising and entertainment machine.

Upon anointing this new royal appointment, Sir Martin was quoted, saying:

"I think there is a little bit of a misunderstanding over our digital businesses," Sorrell told analysts, investors and journalists attending UBS' Media Week conference in New York this week. He said that digital marketing services now account for about $2.8 billion of WPP's revenues, or about "23% of group revenues," and said that WPP currently is about "three times the size" of its next closest agency competitor - Publicis - in terms of "digital prowess."

This is going to really change the landscape in terms of who will be left holding the reigns.

Bravo Sir Martin, Bravo!

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