Its a big subject and i’m only a small person, with a limited attention span. This fascinating subject deserves more time and I hope to come back to it. In the mean time please don’t be too disappointed by how disjointed this lot is
(p.s. for the non-mathmos, the pic is a generic ‘integration’ equation, basically a pretty low quality geek joke)
Should ‘integrated’ be any better than aggregating several ‘silo’ agencies?
Its a bit of a truism, but worth repeating – great marketing relies on intuitive leaps in creative thinking.
In practical terms, it also depends on a great product, distribution and customer experience. Most of the time these things are outside the agency remit – from both the client and agency’s perspective being more the territory of management consultants than copywriters and art directors.
I believe that there is a great untapped potential here. That in fact, rapidly evolving the proposition is actually a far more powerful marketing approach than spending millions on comms – also that creative teams can be invaluable in making exactly those evolutionary jumps if briefed the right way – but that’s a different conversation.
Intuitive thinking isn’t the abstract, unworldly, phenomenon is makes itself out to be. Intuition is the subconscious working with the sum total of experiential stimuli your grey matter has accumulated. If it never got plugged into your brain – then it wont inform your intuition.
So an integrated environment should create a more broadly stimulating environment for creative minds, leading to a higher frequency and quality of creative leaping (don’t try to visualise that one!).
Having said that – the stimulus that anyone gets inside the walls of an agency, no matter how trendy and counter-bureaucratic it is, is arguably only as important (at best) as the stimulus we get outside – ambling through the real world (you know, the one where real people get on with living, loving and shopping).
So ‘integrated’ has a lot of work to do. Doing marketing well is an intuitive exercise. Doing ‘integrated’ properly and systematically is a cultural phenomenon. That means you can’t just switch it on with some magic formula.
It going to take a while for the culture to reach a tipping point – we;re not there yet. In the mean time, there’s a wonderful challenge to bridge the ‘high – low’ planning and creative gap between truly neutral concepts – and the media rooted ideas that are generally more immediately memorable and influential.