DDB hasn't forgotten the word consumer.... The agency's executives
reiterated that point at the 2005 AdForum Summit in New York, where
they reminded consultants that they still hold true to the original
guiding light that made them a longstanding creative powerhouse, while
making room for changes to keep pace with new client relationships.
Ken Kaess, CEO of DDB Worldwide, spoke of the old Doyle Dane
Bernbach agency being unleashed in a new way, but with old principles
in tact. "We are preserving our core values of creativity and
humanity," he said. "However our new product for clients is not simply
ads but entire creative business solutions."
Such an important step in DDB's client relationships is aimed
at reawakening an industry some say is napping. According to Paul
Price, DDB Director of Network Operations, the industry is guilty of
being unproductive. "We must empower people with a process, a
playbook," he said. "Our clients' challenge is putting a brand
experience in front of their consumer. We want to make those
connections with consumers!"
Bob Scarpelli, worldwide Chief Creativity Officer, took that
consumer attention a notch further. "Creativity is the most important
thing," he said. "We have got to be media proactive!"
To meet the challenge, DDB has worked to achieve alignment
within its organization. Thousands of employees have gone through 'DDB
University' and every year since 2001 they have increased the training
budget, even though training budgets are often slashed at other firms.
According to Kaess, DDB has had a wholesale management change and
developed a 3-year plan. They utilized agency roundtables and aimed to
redefine the creative product while also taking advantage of working
with Omnicom, one of the most powerful holding companies. A major goal
was to balance independence with accountability, and focus on retaining
The outcome? In a Gunn report, DDB won more creative awards than any
network. In addition, the agency produced the popular 'Red Men of
Genius' radio spot for Bud Lite and an entire campaign for a relatively
unknown Argentinian jeans company that became a superstar overnight.
As stated by Kaess, "I think we are truly a world-class agency!"