Letters, May 18, 2009

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Smaller, Agile Shops Will Win The Battle

RE: Jonah Bloom's "Mr. Sorrell, Big Agencies Are Not Outpacing Smaller Rivals" (AA, April 27). Sir Martin Sorrell's belief that Goliaths will fare better than the Davids fails to recognize that a new kind of agency has emerged -- one that is global, independent, integrated, media-neutral and, more important, has one P&L. This is a model that can offer ambitious and commercially astute clients the value, quality, investment and commitment they deserve.

The real benefits of scale and independence over the apparent benefit of just scale gives this new breed the ability to build depth, attract talent, and win and retain good clients. Independence means being agile enough to offer true "client-centricity" and allows a level of teaming and dynamism that cannot be replicated in traditional networks. It also fosters a culture that drives interest, understanding, loyalty and collaboration.

Sir Martin's recent failure to make Enfatico work highlights the traditional networks' struggle to respond positively to the changing market conditions and the demands of their clients. I'd argue that independents can better meet the demands of clients looking to consolidate thanks to three strong elements that work in harmony: agency agility, strong culture and discipline alignment.

So as the big networks (lacking in these vital ingredients) look to cope with more dynamic trading conditions, we believe there is a huge opportunity for the emergence of a new way to be a global marketing agency. This will see a new commercial model built to offer agency agility -- the ability to respond effectively to changing and challenging market conditions and client needs. It needs to be real-time, consumer-led, and offer both multiple specialism and the ability to blend it effectively around a client need.

These new agencies need to have a strong and authentic vested interest in the client's business. This creates an empathy and understanding that the networks cannot re-create. The arse is falling out of the network market, and it's time for Sorrell to own up and stop trying to buy his way out of trouble.

Ian Millner
Iris Worldwide

Anger over cuts to Chrysler's budget

RE: "Obama Halves Chrysler's Planned Marketing Budget" (AA, May 11). This is sick. If Obama wanted to be a CEO of a business, he should have gone into the business world. According to his supervisor at the law firm he worked at in Chicago, Obama had a hard time grasping the "big picture," and this was on cases that involved rents, furnace repairs, etc. Maybe that is why he has run up unsustainable debts, i.e., he really doesn't know how much a trillion is. This is clearly unconstitutional and a blatant abuse of power.
Richard Cowart
Dubuque, Iowa

Obama's cut of Chrysler's marketing budget is a bald-faced violation of the First Amendment. A suit should be brought immediately and driven as fast as possible to the Supreme Court. The suit should be joined by all media since it is a direct assault on them, as well.

Fred Johnson
Savannah, Ga.

Barry is an absolute idiot. When the auto industry needs more advertising, he unconstitutionally "cuts" Chrysler's budget. He is a tyrant, and he needs to be taken down a notch. We are dealing with someone who has never run a business, owned a business, or ever had to make sure to meet a payroll.

William Goodman
El Paso, Texas

No one cares about paper-towel patterns

RE: "Brawny and Bounty in Legal Squabble Over Paper Towel Patterns" (May 12, Adage.com). Seriously?

No one cares. Folks are concerned about jobs, families, kids, the economy. Does the paper towel work? Good. Make one that is good for the Earth, that doesn't have a lot of chemicals or dyes in it and that will disintegrate quickly in a landfill. As far as design, I couldn't care less and more important, couldn't tell you the imprinted design in the one I use.

Karen Baglin
Rochester, N.Y.


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