Making Magic

Kevin Roberts
Saatchi & Saatchi

Exactly one year ago the CEO of Unilever, Mr. Niall Fitzgerald, stood before you and attacked creativity and big ideas. Mr. Fitzgerald suggested that advertising creativity and advertising-driven ideas are outdated, mass-market concepts. Advertising ideas and creativity won't contribute value in this new media age of fragmentation, accelerating consumer choice, and one-to-one interactivity.

Advertising agencies, the argument went, are dinosaurs — sad, lumbering structures stuck in a mass media desert, clinging to 30-second TVCs, blinded by the asteroid called “new media” that has crashed on our planet. Too big, too middle-aged, not hip enough, and peopled by the digital homeless. Extinction is at hand. I feel like I'm a Jurassic Park dweller!

We are, Mr. Fitzgerald implied, suffering the death of a thousand cuts delivered by management consultants, brand consultancies, design groups, direct marketing agencies. new media agencies, and small marketing communication hot shops.