Steve Yastrow reports a speech by John Stratton CMO of Verizon. Here are the first 4 of the 8 points he made, according to AdAge.
1. Your clients are absolutely in trouble and they are looking for you to save them.
2. What you’ve been selling for the last fifty years no longer works.
3. Major marketing money is going to be in motion in the next decade and no one really yet understands exactly where it will land, if it even will land, or if it will just disappear altogether.
4. Before they figure out where to put their money, your marketer clients will hire and fire agency after agency, seeking someone, anyone, who can tell them where they might go next.
I wasn’t there and I may be taking this out of context… but he sounds like a desperate man. More so when you get to point 5:
5. CMO average tenure, already famously brief, will get even shorter as CEOs begin to recognize how much money they are blowing on antiquated media plans.
I can’t help thinking this speech reveals what sucks about some agency-client relationships. The client’s job is just to dish out the budget, and the agency’s role is to provide the butt to kick when it doesn’t work.
I’m sure Stratton is right about the need for radical thinking, but CMOs had better not wait for agencies to do it for them. What about something a little more collaborative and less blaming?