Agencies are great ones for inventing things that don’t need it – think of the tangle they get into when trying to define creativity.
There’ve been some real winners across the ages – JWT’s attempted revamp as “cultural anthropologists” being one of the most notable. You kind of knew the venerable agency – the world’s first according to some – was on the skids when this popped up.
In the many years since media agencies have picked up the baton. Publicis Groupe’s Spark Foundry (once the rather less punchily named MediaVest) says it brings “HEAT to brands: Higher Engagement, Affinity, and Transactions.” What’s transactions got to do with it – apart from beginning with ‘T’?
Differentiation in an overcrowded market is obvious a driver but it’s probably better if your bright new(ish) identity means something in practical terms, ideally helping clients.
Goodby Silverstein’s Brand Camp seems to be one such. Originally devised for start-ups, it promised 48 hours of brand development, as explained here in an early video.
Now it has a new leader in (Dr) Eric Solomon who seems to be a boffin’s boffin with a background in psychology (whoops, not more anthropologists) and a track record including CMO of Bonobos (a menswear company) and YouTube, Instagram, Google and Spotify.
But Brand Camp is growing: clients include finance giant Blackstone Group’s largest portfolio company, Link Logistics; Kraft Heinz, Frito-Lay Rold Gold; and Alder Fuels. And, crucially, perhaps, messrs Goodby and Silverstein are still around, ad pros to their fingertips and hardly likely to promote something just because it sounds good.
Solomon (above) says: “One thing I’ve learned across all the places I’ve worked is that it’s the people who make a place what it is. GS&P has always been an agency that puts human beings (people, not just consumers) at the center of their business, which is what I believe has helped them thrive for nearly 40 years.
“Now, as we enter a new phase of growth, I could not be more excited to build on the success of Brand Camp and bring new thinking, new offerings and new innovation to our clients and to the industry at large.”