An open letter to WPP CEO Martin Sorrell from a creative guy who works for him (at least, as of this writing).
At the MediaCom Beyond Advertising event in London on Wednesday you said, “The days in which creatives ruled have gone and media departments are now much more front and centre.”
Now, I’m not one of those sensitive creative types but … You hurt my feelings.
It’s tough to be a creative these days. First they took away our two-month LA production junkets. Then they took away our Sharpies – man, I miss the smell of those things.
And now you want to take away the illusion that we run the show.
Look, telling us creatives we were in charge was like telling the children
to decide where the family should vacation: A convenient pretense to keep everyone happy.Account people own the client. Media owns the budget. All we creatives own are black jeans and an attitude of superiority.
And now you want to take us down another peg? Really, our standard operating mode – deep self-loathing – wasn’t sufficient?
I ask you: Is a world run by media people truly a world in which you want to live? With spreadsheets and retargeting strategies and trading desks and people who know what GRP stands for? Although on the plus side I suppose there’d be more parties.
Anyway, couldn’t we all just go back to the fairy tale where we pretend the creatives are the prima donnas and everybody else is … secondary donnas, is that what they’re called? Then, when the creatives aren’t paying attention – which, trust me, is pretty often – the media people can ignore whatever we came up with and go and do whatever they were planning to do anyway.
As T.S. Eliot said, “Humankind cannot bear very much reality.” That goes double for creatives. You think we were moody and depressive before? See what we’re like when our friends find out we’re not even cool. Please, sir, tell everyone you were just kidding.
Mark SIlber is an executive creative director of Joule, a global mobile ad agency.
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