There is a small group of men who have ruined the advertising industry.
They have made it leaner and meaner. They have made it more efficient. They have made it more productive. They have squeezed all the fat out of it. They have also squeezed all the life out of it.
They have replaced ideas with data. They have replaced value with efficiency.
They are accountants and investors and financial wise guys. The one thing they are not is advertising people.
Advertising was once an industry of craftsmen and craftswomen. Industrious people would start their own agencies. There were dozens of independent, entrepreneurial agencies in every major city. The largest agency in the U.S. had a 1.5% share of market. Today four giant globalized monstrosities control over 70% of U.S. advertising.
The advertising business has been consolidated into submission. As Dave Trott says, we have become an industry of bank managers.
Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP, the world's largest advertising agency holding company, gave a talk in London recently. According to website The Drum, he told the attendees...
'The medium, or media, has become "more important" than the message...'This is the grotesque outlook of a publisher who thinks the paper is more important than the writing. It is the delusion of an impresario who thinks the instruments are more important than the music. It is the chirping of a philistine who thinks the paint is more valuable than the painting,
This is not acceptable. Sorrell and his clones who head up other agency holding companies need to find new businesses to rape. Their day is over. Their time has passed. They have been a massive, tragic failure. They have enriched themselves and impoverished an industry.
It’s time for these people to go.