See Value in Letting Go

This article from the New York Times (By STUART ELLIOTT Published: June 13, 2006) put a smile on my face. Letting agencies make strategic decisions for the company? Sounds good to me. I mean, agencies are supposed to know their stuff, so why not let them go about doing it?

Last year when I was in England, CEO of Edelman London, Stuart Smith, gave me an analogy that I've used often since. He referred to agency work as having both "arms and legs" and "brains" that are offered as part of the services. Sometimes organizations just need help with the tasks at hand, writing, creating, building things – that's the "arms and legs." The "brains" come in when an organization needs help with the strategic planning. Some companies need one or the other, some utilize both. But it has always seemed to me that a smart thing to do would be to hire an agency with proven strengths and let it do its job. Allow it to develop strategies with you, not just do things you tell them to. I mean, I would personally never hire a contractor to remodel my kitchen based solely on my design…I mean, I know nothing about…uh, buildin' stuff. That said, I would never let my contractor rebuild my kitchen without my input. I would utilize both the contractor's brain and her arms and legs to get the job done.

From the article:

One change is meant to help General Mills adapt to the new-media landscape as it tries to reach consumers using nontraditional approaches like the Internet, e-mail marketing and branded entertainment.

"The old media are alive and well, but the new media are in a very steep growth curve," said Jeffrey Merrihue, chief executive at Accenture Marketing Sciences in London, a unit of Accenture.

"You need to plan to take advantage of the opportunities and prepare for a future when the new media are more and more important," Mr. Merrihue said. 

This article shows just another way in which new media channels have allowed good companies to find ways to use them. They might not understand the medium completely, but there are those who do. And letting those people do what they know how to do is a great start for both the organization and the representative agency.

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One Response

  1. Luke,
    I’m trying to get in touch with you…whats you’re email?
    Thanks!
    Carrie Frank

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