Connecting the Connected Agency conversation

Connected_agencyAbout two weeks ago, Forrester published the Connected Agency report.  As expected, the reactions have been both positive and negative; if everyone agreed about the shape of agency of the future, then the research wouldn’t have been worth writing.

I do, however, see a rough separation in sentiment between digital agencies (positive) and traditional agencies (negative).  Why is that?

Some reactions:

  • "There is an healthy pull pulling both corporate communications/marketing and agencies/vendors up to new heights, faster and faster." Ken Kaplan, Intel
  • "’Where have you been, my friend?’ to the thought that the digital guys are going to be any better: they’re also mostly tied up with old ideas about influence and information being a key driver of behaviour." Mark Earls, Independent, formerly Ogilvy
  • "When you look at this changes in context of the challenges for the CMOs — then suddenly the urgency and seriousness of the problem facing Ad and Marketing Agencies becomes quite stark." Chris Tacy, Method
  • "We’re not excusing the industry’s slow move to digital or failure to pick up on some of the changes in consumer culture, but it’s not always within our control. Trust. We wish it was." Agency Spy, Mediabistro
  • "I do think its hard to consider the future of the agency business without recognising that the media agencies (or at least some of them) are driving real change for their clients." Simon Andrews, Mindshare
  • "I’m a bit tired of constantly hearing how bad we are at what we do. the industry is changing, and rapidly. We get it. And some of us are actually trying to drive that change in ways that will help change the ways that agencies come up with solutions for our clients."  Mitch Caplan, Project Davinci (WPP)
  • "Am I crazy about how ridiculous articles like this are…especially because they are re-run every. single. week. by the trades. Is this hell? Yes."  daily (ad) biz, Anonymous
  • "Own up to the problem that most marketers are completely out of sync with the rest of the world, take some responsibility and then, just maybe, things might start to get a little better." Deb Wiseman, Crayon
  • "Boy, did I screw up." David Deal, Avenue A|Razorfish
  • "Instead of looking at what brands can tell people, we instead need to be looking at what brands can do for people." Paul Isakson, space150
  • "I  believe that within a few years there will be less distinction between digital, advertising and pr agencies – we will in turn become influencer agencies that span multiple media." Jonny Bentwood, Edelman
  • "Sometimes it sucks being ahead of the curve."  Tac Anderson, HP
  • "Sadly, most agencies still don’t get the new space, or if they do, they lightly gloss it over by saying “Oh yeah, we’ve a blog” and when I look, it’s a bunch of self-serving posts written by a variety of different folks with little strategy and few comments." Jeremiah Owyang, Forrester
  • "One major problem with advertising agencies is that they’re exceptional at believing their own bullshit." Jason Falls, Doe Anderson
  • "I would argue if you have that experience, skills and aptitudes, then transposing them into the new techniques and channels offered by social media is a lot simpler than trying to come at it from the direction of the advertising agency." Steve Ellis, Metia Software
  • "As communities & conversations become more and more important, there is a need to understand how to build analytical models around huge "conversational  databases" that will emerge." Sivaraman Swaminathan, Customer Equity Solutions
  • "How much can an agency facilitate conversations and nurture connections? I feel this is primarily a job for the brands themselves." Shiv Singh, Avenue A|Razorfish
  • "Despite the wealth of information out there, distilling it into useful, actionable insight isn’t easy, and in fact it’s one area where old-school disciplines can help new media and digital mature as a discipline." Outside Line
  • "Agency expertise has always tended to be siloed so things really become interesting when you connect media behavior with front end data for segmentation and predictive modeling with back end website analytics. Suddenly a different picture starts to form." Steven Duke, Wunderman

I’m glad we got people thinking – and this is just the beginning.