The reinvention of reinvention
I’ve ended up speaking to a lot of event companies recently. Well, ‘event companies’ can be a pretty confining term. They put on events, but more than one has told me about how they are now moving further upstream to help clients conceptualise and plan everything from their presence at trade shows to their in- mall activations. This on top of their more traditional role of being suppliers to agencies.
Having said that, I’ve spoken to another experiential shop that told me it believes in sticking to what it’s good at. Sure, it could do branding or produce a print ad, but that work wouldn’t be as good as its core bread- and- butter of encouraging consumers to experience brands.
The other magazine that just fell out of the same bag as this one is our Power Essays supplement. There are worse and less productive ways to spend your morning than reading it cover-to- cover. It too serves to emphasise the change that agencies are going through. Nadim Samara from OMD addresses the reinvention of the agency model head- on. Others, including Wavemaker’s Tamanna Moolchandani and Magna Global’s Lara Abid address the changing skillsets that are finding homes in all sorts of agencies today.
On page 23 of the main magazine, the CEO of Guardian Media Group talks about how he has taken a newspaper and tenderly steered it back to the verge of turning a profit ( don’t worry; I’m not going to go on about the fate of print again).
And when Omar Johnson, the ex- Nike, ex- Beats by Dre marketing chief addressed OMD’s OMD Predicts conference last week, he spoke about how closely he has worked with media agencies to amplify their buys through earned media. That was never something a traditional media- buying unit would have got involved in.
The whole industry is reinventing itself, then reinventing itself again, then reinventing itself some more. Those among us who aren’t reinventing are suffering or already gone.
Even podcasts are being reinvented. Or rediscovered. Or re-somethinged. Reading Hanisha Lalwani’s examination of them on page 8, I realised I’d been listening to them more, recently and talking to people more about them. At this stage I don’t know if podcasts are seeing renewed interest, if they are finally being discovered, whether their ability to capture our ears ( and marketing budgets?) is cyclical or novel or retro or high-tech or low-tech.
But I know that plugging in to a podcasts as I drive is a good way to think without thinking. Listening to people talking about their ideas sparks ideas within the listener. And so does reading about them. So read on.