How many sales promotion agencies does it take to change a light bulb? This is very important to me. I work in a submarine, and while submarines are perfectly adapted to working below the line, right now I’m completely in the dark. And a submarine is a scary place to be in the dark. I need somebody to change my light bulb, the one that’s fixed to my periscope and helps me to navigate my way through the mysterious waters that used to be – sometimes still are – called sales promotion, but might also be called direct or digital marketing or even marketing communications. That would be good, particularly as the industry body that represents us is called the Marketing Communication Consultants Association and a fine body it is too – particularly Matthew Hooper’s – but then again where would I fit, in below the line?
Anyway, I was reassured when I read your Agency Reputation Survey (MW September 26) that all is not lost. That, despite the economic downturn, agencies have adapted well and are moving towards a more integrated approach. Clearly they know exactly where they are going and I, alone, am slightly lost. More exciting than this, there are also some “movers and shakers”. These are an interesting species of agency, far superior to the rest of us (well me, actually). They not only know where they are going, but do it rather better than anyone else. So it’s these people I want to come and change my light bulb. The first agency I spoke to said they couldn’t, because they were media-neutral and wouldn’t associate themselves with light bulbs alone. The second agency said they could, but wanted to change my periscope and portholes as well. Then I tried calling BDP, Promotional Campaigns and Team LGM – which all have great reputations and would probably have done it very well – but apparently they don’t exist any more. In desperation, I searched the tables of the survey for the answer. Then it came to me, like a light out of the darkness. Ranked second for strategic planning ability sits Black Cat. Surely, with such ability it must be able to change a light bulb (and I like the name). I know that KLP were ranked number one for this, but it sounds like a crisp brand. Anyway, at Black Cat they have a man called Marcus Quigley who not only knows how to change a light bulb but has the answer to everything else as well…
The Yellow Submarine