Earlier this year I attended an “integration” meeting. In the room with the client were representatives from its many roster shops: the AOR, consumer promotions, public relations, trade, digital and media. Advertising creative was presented so, clearly, lots of work had been done before integration was undertaken. Our team assignment was to brainstorm the target psyche and ways to translate the AOR’s creative to our various disciplines.
This is new world stuff here. The lead agency who sponsored the session even agreed they had not done anything like this before – asking each participating shop to provide feedback as to the process. Prior to the meeting we shared an experiential assignment and, so, had common ground upon which to share (and bond). In addition to clients, the disciplines represented in the room were creative, account planning, account management and media. The latter had a few minutes to walk us through target consumer media habits.
I liked it. Lots of really smart people sharing from across disciplines; no one afraid to speak up. This is progress people! We all got along. No darts tossed. Lot’s of good, dedicated people caring about the assignment rather than their agencies and asses. It was quite harmonious. The “go dos” after the meeting were to be compiled by the lead agency, and turned over to all attendees to move forward. Not perfect but a very good start at integration. It takes a recession. Peace!