Accenture debuted a sweeping brand campaign, declaring "let there be change," along with a new company purpose, "to deliver on the promise of technology and human ingenuity," created in partnership with Accenture Interactive-owned Droga5.
The consulting behemoth says it is tripling its annual media spend to $90 million with the launch of this campaign. It includes the 30-second anthemic spot from Droga5, "Make Change Work For You," that implores companies to embrace change both "seismic" and "small," as well as three 15-second ads. The creative debuted on Accenture's internal and external digital properties, and includes placements across TV, online and social media in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
Amy Fuller, Accenture chief marketing and communications officer, tells Ad Age that the campaign is "definitely" the largest from the company in the past decade.
"We had been getting very precise with our media buying, because we can," Fuller says. "But we found we were under-leveraging our brand, which is the reason for being in higher-profile places. That's why we're going back to TV, for example. Well, targeted TV."
While brand marketers previously could only advertise on TV through traditional means, reaching broad audiences, they're now increasingly turning to the option of running ads targeted to specific consumers on streaming TV platforms. Fuller adds that Accenture will also promote the campaign via a partnership with Wired's "5 Levels" video series, which explains complicated subjects in five layers of complexitity: first to a child, then a teenager, then an undergrad majoring in said subject, then a graduate student and, finally, a colleague.
Fuller says the development of Accenture's new brand purpose has been underway since last September, driven by the newly appointed CEO at the time, Julie Sweet. Fuller says the manifesto, "to deliver on the promise of technology and human ingenuity," came directly from an employee survey that received 28,000 responses from people "who told us what our purpose is."
She says the brand purpose comes from Accenture's new five-year plan through 2025, which involves "delivering 360-degree value" to clients and helping them adapt and respond to "perpetual change. We've started to see, even pre-COVID, that clients were selecting their professional service providers based on certain key factors, and one of them is their ability to adapt to change," Fuller explains.
Fuller says Accenture's previous five-year plan involved helping clients transform and reinvent their businesses, reskill their employees for a digital age, and become more sustainable by, in some instances, moving to the cloud. She says the reality of today is that companies can't just undergo "a digital transformation and then you’re finished," which is how "let there be change" was born. According to Accenture, the company's own business is now 70 percent in digital, cloud and security.
She says Droga5 has been involved with the planning of the campaign since it began a year ago. Since they are both in the same family, Fuller says she was able to divulge "really confidential" information to Droga5 that "clients are not always comfortable sharing."
"Accenture’s work covers almost every category of business on Earth," adds Duncan Marshall, founding partner at Droga5. "There was a great amount of groundwork and education to be had before strategy and creative began, certainly more I think than in any campaign I’ve ever been involved in. We worked closely with a wide number of Accenture’s leadership in all areas of their business to get at the heart of what makes them them. In terms of the involvement from the CEO level down, it was full and collaborative."
Droga5 was acquired by Accenture Interactive, Accenture's agency business, last April for the price, Ad Age estimates, of $475 million. Accenture said last year it invested $1.5 billion in acquisitions, plus nearly $900 million in training and development and approximately $900 million in research and development.