Interesting video via @tim_nolan.
What’s striking is that Karsten’s ideas are probably perceived as “cutting-edge thought leadership” in the agency world. In fact, I heard many of the same points in the mid-oughts from agency-world “thought-leaders.”
In the past five years the world has completely changed two or three times over (2.0, social media, gaming, mobile), and it continues change at a RAPID pace. However, agency world decision makers AND THE AGENCY BUSINESS MODEL have not changed.
Why is the agency world still trying to come to grips with “digital” and what it means in 2010 and beyond? The industry is stuck in an information-decision making loop where they know the business landscape is continually changing, they mime all the right buzz words and theories, but when push comes to shove they can’t commit to or foster real change.
Why? It’s partly generational. It’s partly knowledge. It’s partly experience.
For instance, because ad industry decision makers aren’t digital entrepreneurs, they can’t embrace change. Pivoting business models, products, creative campaigns via testing/refining/optimization, production models, etc., in mid-stream is second nature to digital entrepreneurs. Collaboration that involves everyone is a simple strategy for success. Why wouldn’t you involve a developer or the lowly PA in a strategy session? Great, creative ideas can come from anyone and everyone. I’ve seen it happen time and time again.
Smart, smaller start-up agencies are doing it.
For digital start-ups though, all of this isn’t “thought-leading.” It’s just part of our digital DNA. Either you get it, or you don’t. The most interesting people I like to work with understand/are skilled in design, marketing, social media, strategy, P/L, production management, AND development. However, all of this comes second nature to us and that’s why we’re entrepreneurs.