Tuesday, July 10, 2007

'New York' mag loves small agencies

You may have noticed that New York magazine has had their way with the ad industry again, this time with a story extolling the pubescent virtues of agencies like Amalgamated, Deep Focus and Droga5 over their big, old, boring predecessors. Essentially, we all know the story. I remain a bit skeptical about some of the claims of viral-a-bility. This part I didn't know—the story's lead is about the Rap Cat from Amalgamated, and, hey, I've been busy and all, but this feline friend who has been allegedly taking the nation by storm is one cat I've never heard of. The story also fails to mention—or maybe the reporter didn't even know—that Droga5 is part of Publicis Groupe, while it goes on for quite some time about Tribal DDB's relationship to DDB, and by extension, the Omnicom Group, which is fittingly described as "like it was invented for a movie about an all-engulfing, soul-crushing corporation." The best part of the piece, without a doubt, are the visuals. The magazine asks Deep Focus, Amalgamated and Tribal to come up with campaigns for Maalox and Blcockbuster. (Amalgamated comes up with a campaign called "Regretflix.")


Alan Wolk said...

That article managed to encompass all the reasons I no longer read New York magazine.

It read like a press release for Amalgamated: I mean Catherine, you are in the business, you know that some flack from Amalgamated pitched it to New York.

Brilliant move on their part though-- it's what launched Kirschenbaum and Crispin- getting all the non-ad press.

Funniest line, in my circles, was the one about how much creatives are getting paid these days. All everyone's been talking about the last few years is how salaries at the upper end have dropped like a proverbial stone these past 2-3 years. Group CDs at big agencies used to pull in $400-600K a year. Now you're lucky to get half that unless you're an Eric Silver. I'd done a post on it and the consensus was that holding companies were using convergence as an easy way to bring creative salaries in general agencies down to the same level as direct and interactive. The only upside being that those disciplines might now get some respect, since the old thinking was "if they were any good, they'd be getting paid as much as we are."

Alan Wolk said...

PS: The major downside to the salary drop - and I realize that $200K is still a damn good living- is that it's driving juniors away from the business. Given the number of hours one needs to put in, they're looking at what the future may bring and deciding that there's better picking elsewhere. People get into advertising to get rich- or at least very very comfortable. If that's no longer an option, then we're no longer getting the "best and the brightest"