From an industry perspective, advertising has really changed a lot. Agencies have somehow come full-circle from the days when they offered 360-degree all-encompassing services that included marketing consultancy, creative, PR and media. Over the years, their roles have been continuously redefined and repurposed as the industry itself witnessed several paradigm shifts; and theirs has been a roller-coaster ride. In the old days, agencies predominantly acted as partners that were highly invested in the client’s business; creativity was, first and foremost, directly tied into sales. Then, it took on a life of its own to become more measured in its ability to build brands and connections with the end consumers. Entered the era of the digital boom that was marked with the rise of hot shops that highly fragmented the industry into specialized siloes and pressured multinationals’ large operations; followed fierce competition that was centered on cost and budget cuts and an even tougher period in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. This was coupled with the rise of digital that promised increasingly granular and precise targeting and re-targeting of consumers; media took over creative advertising in some ways and the focus was geared toward data and technology. With all these changes having shaped the industry, advertising is, today, much more complex than it used to be. The advertising landscape in Qatar, for example, is evolving rapidly with this global trend as digital and technology take over as a preferred medium for advertisers to spread their messages. But nonetheless, it remains centered on people – a fact that many in the industry seem to sideline with technical jargon. What is more interesting is the next evolutionary stage with clients’ businesses now being challenged by newer alternative models. So, in more ways than one, advertising agencies are regaining their role as brand and business custodians.