FutureLab has put together an interesting analysis on the communication industry, and particularly on the gap between what clients need (and expect) and what agencies can deliver. You can download it here.
I don’t quite agree with a few of the predictions, and I think it fails in reviewing the most innovative business models that a few agencies are currently exploring, most significantly the entrepreneurial experiments by BBH and the content creation by Crispin, Porter & Bogusky.
However, there are interesting considerations, among which this should raise the greatest concerns among agency leaders:
The consulting machines are coming: McKinsey, Accenture, Bain, IBM all have marketing specialists. When faced with unaccountable agency behaviour, they don‟t take prisoners. In fact, their analytical mindset and access to the C-suite puts them in a perfect position to capture premium strategy work which today still goes to agencies. As they are media and creative agnostics, their interventions are seen as neutral and efficient.
Final Burp: It’s up to the agencies to either build reliable, solid, in-house consulting expertise, or set in place partnership deals with traditional consulting firms.