Agencies Compete As Product Developers And Pop Culture Engineers

AdAge discusses the shift we’ve been seeing at several agencies – both digital and full-service – that are recognizing and capitalizing on the opportunity to use their creative resources to create offline and online products.

In a recent article, AdAge discusses how agencies are recognizing and capitalizing on the opportunity to use their creative resources to create original products.

The potential upside for these entrepreneurial agencies is significant: demonstrating digital and consumer engagement prowess and creativity to current and prospective clients, compelling top talent with the indication of an agency’s innovative culture, and adding a client-independent revenue stream to the agency’s business.

Miami Ad School contributes additional insights into this sort of creative innovation at agencies.  Creating products and services can be informed by the perspective of a pop culture engineer, whom “sees the culture from the multiple perspectives of the designer, the producer, the philosopher and the consumer.”  This role would help bridge strategy and inform execution, based on insight into the collective mood of the day’s culture and an understanding of supply/execution parameters of the agency, company or brand in question.

AdAge sourced a lengthier list of several agencies that are delivering on this shift, and the respective products they’ve created; we’re recapping some of our highlights below:

  • Fallon’s Skimmer; a free Adobe AIR desktop tool to aggregate a user’s social networks
  • Gigantic Marketing’s BrandFlux; a monthly-subscription based brand-management platform that culls data from real-time sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube as well as legacy data from Forrester Research and other reports. A team of strategists curates the data and are on call for around-the-clock questions.
  • Taxi NYC’s Food Content Alerts; free online and mobile service that helps consumers with food allergies and diseases manage what they eat.  While the app is free, Taxi NYC seeks brands to integrate into the actual service, as opposed to display advertising.

One of the key advantages to this strategy is the ability to compete as strategic, insightful product and content creators for both private and branded application – and not just as creators of communications and promotional executions.  Meredith’s development of a full-service marketing shop is an example of the increased competition agencies are experiencing to their traditional business model.  Creating products and content differentiates an agency as having the resources and knowledge to ultimately engage with customers and individuals.

[via AdAge and Miami Ad School]

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