Martin Sorrell — Sir Martin to you — would get the media world’s attention just for being CEO of the largest marketing services company, WPP.
He’s the guy every publisher wants to meet: the $100 billion man, presiding over roughly a third of all global ad spending, everything from Super Bowl spots to sponsored search results and promoted tweets.
But for extra points, he also walks the walk of someone who took a million-dollar war chest and built it into a $30 billion market-cap juggernaut, incorporating everything from David Ogilvy’s fabled flagship ad agency to the maths men of modern media buying and a nice chunk of Vice Media.
In other words, he says what he thinks. Which is why we invited him to join us in December at IGNITION for a deep dive into the intersection of money, technology, creativity, and ambition that powers the global mediasphere today.
Ad-supported publishers hoping for salvation? “The problem was created by people giving stuff away for free, so you just become used to getting it for free. And to get them back out of that is going to be very difficult.” Ouch. But then again there’s another elephant in the room: How will massive juggernauts like WPP reinvent themselves for ever more digital future?
Of course it wouldn’t be Martin Sorrell without a bit of swagger. “People say, ‘I don’t want to be the biggest — I want to be the best,'” he remarked recently. “That’s because they’re not the biggest.”
We can’t wait.
Act now — early-bird tickets are available for a limited time!