In a time period when there seems to be little cause for optimism, Ad Age spoke with Omnicom Media Group CEO Scott Hagedorn on where he sees bright spots starting to emerge within his agency and the industry overall.
Hagedorn notes that the third and fourth quarters of 2020 are "looking much better" than the second quarter, when the agency saw "a big dip." He says it was during the second quarter when he realized the pandemic "is much more real than we were giving it credit for.” Still, he's seeing clients becoming "more optimistic."
In this episode of Ad Age Ad Lib, Hagedorn also discusses where the company is in its return to office plans. While many employees still continue to work remotely, Hagedorn says he remains a "huge believer" of in-person collaboration. "That's why clients buy agencies; they aren't buying individuals," he says.
Hagedorn also touches on issues of brand safety, the near-term future of internship and entry-level job opportunities, the streaming boom during the pandemic and how Omnicom Media Group has responded to the racial injustice movement and the industry's push to diversify its ranks.
On the agency's diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, Hagedorn says Omnicom Group CEO-Chairman John Wren will be holding executives like him accountable for improvements. He says he certainly envisions efforts on that front to be "tied to whether or not we’re employed."