The Agency of the Future: Part 1


If you like what you have read, we would love to continue the conversation.


How do creative and media agencies need to evolve? This question isn’t new, and, there are a lot of innovative models springing up across the agency space. In Part 1 of a longer white paper we are soon to publish, we look at the guiding principles of the transformational change we believe agencies need to establish first.


It is disingenuous to merely listen to the cries of “agencies are dead” and leave it at that. Media and creative agencies have a great capacity for evolution, in the face of technological, brand and consumer change. Sure, some will die. This is also a normal evolutionary process. Some won’t be able to affect the rapid or adequate type of transformation required to succeed. However, many will. What’s more, is that many different types of agency models are evolving, far beyond the traditional models who have their root in Madison Avenue cliches. This generative process is a good signal.

We wanted to look a little differently at the issue of agency transformation. We spoke to hundreds of professionals in the industry and brands working with agencies. We also reviewed multiple thought pieces from organisations within the agency eco-system on paths for change. Most of what we found was, in a word, predictable. Agencies and some brands tended to look at the transformation needed from “what they should do based on what they had and needed to protect” and not from “what they needed to do to truly disrupt, and change at a cultural, structural and innovative level”. There was a degree of using the situation currently in, to define the next-step reality. We felt this was strategically limiting. It could mean agencies build their future on foundations which change, quicker than their ability to adapt.

So we took a step back and asked:

Why isn’t there a more thorough application of design and innovation thinking by the agency world in driving the transformation they need to undertake?

Your Agency of the Future. Part 1.

Below is a link to download Part 1 of our Agency of the Future white paper. It looks at what we believe the 5 guiding principles are when embarking on the transformation journey necessary to invent an Agency of the Future model. These guiding principles are not about programmatic, data, the bringing together of creative and media again nor remuneration models. That stuff is secondary. The guiding principles ask foundational questions.

  • What is relevant to ask and know about our environment when designing our agency of the future?

  • Is all change equal? What are the modes of change we should be looking at?

  • How can I truly appreciate and manage the complexity of change?

  • Change brings resistance. Is that a bad thing? How can I harness this resistance as part of the change?

  • How do I create an eco-system for change?

  • How can I make change dynamic and human centred?

In Part 1, we provide a rationale for the importance of asking these types of questions. The asking and answering, needs to live inside the agencies which are striving for change.

In the subsequent white paper, we’ll dig deeper into how an agency can move towards their transformative vision.

If you like what you have read, we'd love to continue the conversation.  Let's connect.  

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