Sara As­saf

Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor In­ter­mar­kets Y&R

ArabAd - - COVER STORY -

UR­GENT IN­TEN­SIVE CARE NEEDED

Unfortunately, the ad in­dus­try in Le­banon is not and can­not be in a bet­ter sit­u­a­tion than the whole econ­omy in this coun­try. In a nut­shell, Le­banon needs ur­gent in­ten­sive care on all lev­els and no one is cur­rently pro­vid­ing it. The con­flicts in neigh­bor­ing coun­tries are also not help­ing, and so busi­nesses across all in­dus­tries are go­ing through rough times. This ob­vi­ously af­fects ad­ver­tis­ing spend­ing and to be frank, we feel we are go­ing back­wards in­stead of mov­ing for­ward.

NU­MER­OUS CHAL­LENGES

The chal­lenges are many. There is on one side the tough eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal prob­lems Le­banon is fac­ing. It is hence be­com­ing in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult to per­form growth on a busi­ness level, but also to re­tain tal­ents in Le­banon. On an­other side, the whole me­dia scene is evolv­ing to­wards more dig­i­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tion, while ad­ver­tis­ing agen­cies are still not cop­ing with this move in a sys­tem­atic and mean­ing­ful man­ner. Most big agen­cies have started work­ing on this process a few years ago but a lot still needs to be done on this front.

IN­TER­NAL SYNERGY A MUST

Key to­day is to be able to quickly adapt to new clients needs and of­fer them com­mu­ni­ca­tion so­lu­tions that fully in­te­grate the dig­i­tal ex­pe­ri­ence. For this to hap­pen, there is an in­ter­nal synergy that needs to be built-in within our agen­cies. WPP just an­nounced the creation of a new agency, VMLY&R, unit­ing two lead­ing brands to de­liver a con­tem­po­rary, fully in­te­grated dig­i­tal and cre­ative of­fer­ing to clients on a global scale. Y&R is an iconic cre­ative agency, while VML has deep ex­per­tise in dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing. Hence VMLY&R’S propo­si­tion will com­bine brand ad­ver­tis­ing and brand ex­pe­ri­ence, to cre­ate con­nected brands that drive value for clients. I truly be­lieve this merge is THE PER­FECT MATCH and can’t wait for the roll-out in our re­gion.

We feel we are go­ing back­wards in­stead of mov­ing for­ward

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