One Year in the DDB Worldwide Network: AGAMA Agencies’ Experience
- Visage DDB has been the official representative of DDB Worldwide in Ukraine for a year now. What was particularly memorable during this period?
I think that the most important moment in the year was the merger of the two agencies. The digital agency Tribal and Visage, the creative one, began to work as an integrated team. They now provide services for each of their clients in their respective areas of focus, and at the same time they act together to implement complex special projects.
- At the start of the partnership, the agencies paid significant attention to integrated communications and decided that the creation of new digital-creative products and services would be a priority at the initial stage. Is this focus on integration a requirement for today’s audiences?
Of couse, we have always been oriented to meeting clients’ business needs, and the work of the integrated team helps to get a grasp of the whole picture faster, it simplifies many processes and even facilitates the work for the clients themselves. And all these factors together mean that it is then easier to focus on the main thing – getting results for our customers— rather than on coordinating the processes of the individual teams.
And what are modern business tasks? Just as they always were— effective solutions. According to the latest Facebook analytics, the user scrolls through an average of 100 meters of content daily on a device's screen. In one day. Only on one platform.
Can you imagine that 100 meters of content in height? Can you imagine the intensity of that information noise for the audience, and how easy it is for brands to get lost in it? And now, if you look at it from the standpoint of the opportunities that open up to those who work with communications? This is where the value of integrated communication solutions lies – they allow us to capture the attention of the audience in these circumstances.
- Tell us about the most recent successful projects.
The first thing I would like to note is the success of our colleagues from OMD Media Direction Ukraine in the Terra Food tender. In preparation for this purely media tender, the resources of both Tribal and Visage were used. We helped the team correctly predict everything on the digital end and correctly submit a history, attracting creative services. The client fell in love with the project. If this idea is implemented, it will involve media, digital and creative agencies, and even the Sunny7 editorial office. It would be a really standout project; we are all looking forward to the client confirming the readiness to invest in this project.
This is, in my opinion, is, "one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind": only the beginning of integrated work, but a very good example of what we are capable of together.
The second important point is the beginning of cooperation with the network. Now this is basically project work, but there is something, and for me it means the beginning of something more.
- What, from your point of view, are the difficulties of working with integrated projects, and from what do you take inspiration?
The agencies’ direction on integration is something that is relevant now, and will be relevant in the future. Clearly, this is a difficult process. It is necessary to develop it in such a way as to take into account the interests of each side. At the same time, everyone needs to give up part of their ambitions, so that the goals of the whole group are embodied in the best way possible.
To progress beyond the start of the road and to not lower your hands at the moment when everything is just starting to take shape, when there are no ready-made schemes of work, is very difficult. It requires maturity, centeredness, and a clear understanding of why you are doing it. In the DDB Group, I see a lot of dedicated people who understand why they need it all. I, as a leader, am interested in managing the process, expanding my experience in new directions, and achieving a qualitative result on a fundamentally new level.
- By the way, about the leadership. Give us your top tips on how to effectively manage two agencies at the same time in an international group.
If you meet a person who claims to know some top five best pieces of advice on managing a company, run away as fast as you can.
There’s only one way to do something effectively: first, you determine where you are, then understand where the point at which you want to arrive is. Next, create a plan, gather a team, and then roll up your sleeves and work. That’s it. One simple piece of advice: there are no magic formulas.
- And finally: what, from your professional point of view, will be the main trend of the market in 2018?
The world around does not stand still, which is quite expected. The industry is not just changing, it is changing every year, and it's no secret that the whole advertising world is looking for a new model that will not only keep up with consumers, but will always be ready to be where the audience of our customers is, regardless of how we can get their attention – through a six second video in public or through interesting social media content.
Therefore, I believe that the main trend— not only in 2018, but in recent years in general— is curiosity. Today, it is important to understand not only how technology works and what to do with it, but also how to do what has already been done more efficiently. People do not have enough of these skills. It is not just necessary to search for new opportunities, but to apply our brains to what already exists, to develop and retain in oneself curiosity about everything. Do not stop thinking and trying new things.
Andrew Bain, the President of the Atlantic Group Holding Company, also commented on the DDB Group’s yearly results.
AGAMA Group agencies continue to prove their worth, following on a 25 year long tradition of designing effective campaigns. This is confirmed by both our clients and by the awards the group’s agencies have been winning for many years for effectiveness in various areas of marketing communications.
All of this is the result of the team work of the industry’s top professionals.
The changes that occurred in the DDB group of companies last year, and the results we see today, only confirm the importance of integrated teamwork. And the best argument in favor of the fact that we made the right decision is the positive feedback from our customers.