Monday, February 20, 2012

To The 1% Of Creative Agencies. It's Up To You.

There’s a lot of talk about the 99% versus 1% these days.

My question is, which agencies should be included as the 1% of agencies that will actually agreed to be paid based on engagement?

Last time, we discussed how CIMM (Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement) has defined engagement as “The amount of attention and involvement a viewer gives to an advertisement.”

“Gives to” are the key words of that definition. What it says is that engagement is something that comes from the viewer, not from media.

Which means, whether the viewer decides to give his/her attention and involvement to a spot is dependent on the creative itself.

It’s apparent that advertisers consider engagement to be something of value. So it should be assumed that they would be willing to pay more to the agencies that help to deliver engagement.

So, which agencies would be willing to be paid on this basis - that the longer they engage a viewer the more money they make?

The lament from good agencies has always been this - why can’t we be paid based on how good we are rather than how big?

Being paid based on engagement gives them this opportunity.

Obviously, this means they have skin in the game.

If they don’t engage the viewer, they make less money then they would normally. If they do engage the viewer, they would make substantially more.

Because they have skin in the game, it’s only fair that they ask for one stipulation from the advertiser. Stipulation? Yes. And, it's not an easy one for the advertiser to give.

Here it is.

Once the advertiser approves the script for the creative, making sure it’s on strategy, etc, then the advertiser is hands off.

From approval of script, the advertiser lets the agency do what they do well.

Create magic.

The advertiser can't say I need the logo to be bigger. Or, the music to be slower. Or, the casting to be different. The agency now has skin in the game. The objective is to engage the viewer. The advertiser has said the script is on strategy.

From this point on, the advertiser steps down.

Let the agency create engagement. If they do, both the advertiser and agency win. If they don’t, both the advertiser and agency lose.

Not every agency will play this way. Nor, for that matter, will every advertiser. But for those that do, imagine how much better the commercials will turn out.

How much more watchable.

How much more engaging.

According to CIMM, The greater the attention and involvement, the more likely that viewer will retain memories and will feel more predisposed to that product that is advertised.

In other words, the greater the attention, the involvement, the engagement, the more likely the advertiser will make a sale.

If so, then why don’t advertisers pay their agencies for this?

So to the Goodbys, the Wiedens, the Butlers, the BBDOs, the TBWAs, it's time for you to stand up.

To speak out.

To say you want to be paid well for what you do well.

To claim engagement as your own.

To put your ass on the line.

Because this business needs to be save. (You did see the Super Bowl spots, right?)

It's time.

And, if not you, who?

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