ANALYSIS: Why clients want to lure ad chiefs

Client marketing’s elite is under threat from an invasion of admen and women. Julian Lee looks at the reasons for the transition

Client marketing’s elite is under threat from an invasion of admen and women. Julian Lee looks at the reasons for the transition

Selfridges is the latest client marketer to add an adman to its ranks.

The department store has announced that Bartle Bogle Hegarty’s

international planning director Nick Cross is moving over to take the

marketing director’s role.

The top jobs in the industry are no longer the preserve of the elite

among client marketers.

Top board account directors or agency planners are parking their tanks

on marketing staffs’ lawns with regularity.

‘The old distinctions are breaking down,’ says Cross.

This is a reflection of the closer relationships that clients and their

agencies have developed. Agencies are playing a larger role in mapping

out brand strategy.

So what can agency staff offer by moving over to client advertising?

A senior account director who has worked on a brand and understands the

company methodology is in a good position to make the switch.

Cross was working on a ‘brand vision project’ for Selfridges before BBH

was awarded the account. Selfridges did not need to look further. There

are other factors. As one senior agency director put it: ‘Clients are

relying more on outside expertise, as they don’t have the numbers they

used to. So that puts the people who work on the account in a strong


Job insecurity and the recession have deterred many from making the

switch, says Steve. Ingham, managing director of Michael Page Marketing.

‘But if they have been associated with a number of big fmcg names there

is an attraction.’

‘Agency people are the exception not the rule. Clients love their advice

but they don’t always want them on staff,’ says David Pakeman, chief

executive of recruitment consultant The Lloyd Group. ‘It’s symbiotic.

They co-exist but they are not the same breed.’


Movers and shakers


James Kydd            Euro RSCG to Virgin

Charlotte Pinder      Grey Advertising to PepsiCo

Dominic Owen          Bartle Bogle Hegarty to Prudential

David Grey            Young & Rubicam to AT&T

Peter Buchanan        Saatchi & Saatchi to COI

Dave Wheldon          Lowe Howard-Spink to Coca-Cola

Neil Simpson          Bartle Bogle Hegarty to Coca-Cola



Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Oasis #springasmile digital campaign gets people doing good deeds
Coca-Cola: 'Don't approach bloggers with a fait accompli'
Tesco CMO Matt Atkinson: 'It is so important not to stereotype mothers'
McDonald's gives Ronald a new look ahead of global 'Fun times' social media push
In pictures: BrewDog opens first craft beer shop BottleDog for 'beer aficionados'
Facebook ad revenue leaps $1bn as it invests in targeting
Malteser or Maltesers? Mars takes Hershey trademark dispute to court
Apple Q2 profits top $10bn as iPhone sales soar
Lynx tells men not to leave love to fate
HBO captures awkwardness of watching sex scenes with parents
Primark to open first US stores with Boston chosen as flagship location
Marketing spend on the up but a reality check is needed before celebrating
Top 10 ads of the week: Jackpotjoy and BT Broadband fend off Kevin Bacon
Lidl beats Tesco to 10m Facebook fans
Center Parcs ad banned for encouraging parents to take kids out of school
Coca-Cola, Cadbury and Amazon named top brands for targeting youth market
Leaked document shows Nokia to be rebranded as Microsoft Mobile
Nike lays-off hardware staff in move that casts doubt on future of FuelBand
Greenpeace says save the bees or humans will die
What brands need to know about changes to VAT and online downloads in 2015
Jimmy Savile victims urged to claim compensation in new ad campaign
UKIP launches biggest  ad campaign and stirs up 'racist' accusations
Apple boss Tim Cook provides voiceover on ad touting firm's renewed green commitments
John Lewis walks consumers through its history to celebrate 150 years of business
Waitrose boosts content strategy with 'Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose' C4 tie-up
Hottest virals: Cute puppies star in Pedigree ad, plus Idris Elba and Fruyo
Amnesty International burns candles to illuminate new hope
Tom of Finland's 'homoerotic' drawings made into stamps
Toyota achieves the impossible by calming angry Roman drivers
YouTube reveals user habits to appeal to 'older' marketers