Eight manifestos for Ad Week Europe

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Industry stars warm up their stump speeches about the future of advertising ahead of London's big show

LONDON — Advertising Week Europe kicks off here next week, and Campaign Global Editor-in-Chief Claire Beale will host a star-studded session focused on the industry’s future.

"Adland 2020: Shaping the Future" will feature Robert Senior, the global chief executive of Saatchi & Saatchi; Nils Leonard, the chairman of Grey London; Tracy De Groose, the chief executive of Dentsu Aegis Network UK and Ireland; Andy Nairn, a co-founder at Lucky Generals, and Ringan Ledwidge, the Rattling Stick director.

In preparation for the event (and in recognition of the UK's imminent General Election), participants and other industry leaders presented Campaign UK their manifestos for advertising.

Maurice Lévy, chairman and chief executive of Publicis Groupe, presents his manifesto for global agency networks: "In this convergence and empowerment age, our clients stand the risk of being Ubered – in no time. It would be foolish to think that we will be able to help our clients’ transformation, and to add value, without transforming ourselves."

Robert Senior, worldwide chief executive at Saatchi & Saatchi, provides his manifesto for global creative agencies: "Creativity is only ever going to equal incremental growth to our money-driven "competitors". But ideas are our core business. And we will always care more about our core business than a company that merely sees creativity as a nice add-on."

James Murphy, chief executive of Adam & Eve/DDB, contributes a manifesto for creative agencies: "[M]aybe marketers shouldn’t be taken seriously. Maybe instead they should be seen with mystery and with wonder. Because rather than trying to be like every other profession, marketers can transform businesses with ideas that no one else at the boardroom table would or could ever dream up."

Dominique Delport, global managing director of Havas Media Group, offers his manifesto for global media agencies: "We all know that we need to move from a paid-only approach to also leveraging owned, shared and earned assets. But for agencies and other services providers, it’s more than this — it’s about making a fundamental change to the way we are structured. Intermediation without added value is dead."

Nils Leonard, the chairman and chief creative officer of Grey London, contributes his manifesto for creativity: "The future of creativity needs no security, it is the other roles I worry about. Because creativity is never sated. It will warp and contort the mechanics of production as we knew it. And only the fluid will survive."

Nigel Vaz, senior vice president and European managing director of SapientNitro, provides his manifesto for digital: "If we are to maximize the opportunities inherent in the UK’s strong creative and high-tech economies, then a change of mindset and a policy framework that brings together the creative and technology industries is paramount."

Ringan Ledwidge, director at Rattling Stick, offers his manifesto for production: "It’s tough out there now, so I understand the need of companies to bring the jobs in by cutting markup, cramming a two-day shoot into a one-day shoot and so on. We’ve all done it, but there are some incredibly talented people in production and I think we need to protect and value our craft, creativity, hard work and ability to make money a little better."

Andy Nairn, a founding partner of Lucky Generals, unveils his manifesto for planning: "My manifesto for planning would be simple. Literally. I think there’s a creeping tendency to over-complicate things, in line with our ever more complex world. We should really be stripping things back to their bare essentials."

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