EVP, Global Chief Marketing Officer, R/GA
In the connected age, no industry is safe from disruption. The same technological forces that have century-old companies looking to innovate are leaving many of the agencies that represent them behind the times. If you’re an organization looking for a partner in this climate, you not only need help creating and disseminating your brand’s message, you need help delivering on that message—to a world of consumers who demand more from the brands they choose to engage with. This often means completely rethinking and restructuring your business. Consequently, today’s agencies are being forced to look inward. With major tech companies entering the space, many brands taking their creative inhouse, and consultancies building out their own creative arms, agencies are facing unexpected competition from all sides. And with data and AI enabling hypertargeted, hyperpersonalized ads, great storytelling will take different forms and grow in entirely new ways. How agencies will adapt to meet these new challenges remains to be seen. Some are building AI and machine learning into their operational structure, while others choose to remain set in their old ways. In any case, marketing today requires an evolved strategy. In what follows, we look at how an integrated agency model can help clients stay ahead of disruption; journey through the key trends that are impacting the marketing industry; and sit down with R/GA’S Consulting team in New York to discuss the company’s approach to business transformation. Finally, we gather perspective on how an agile agency of the future should be structured. We hope you find the content in this issue both illuminating and inspiring.