McCann Bristol MD takes IPA Chair role
Agencies must capitalise on the growing success taking place beyond the M25, said Andy Reid, managing director of McCann Bristol, in his inaugural speech to the IPA following his appointment as its chairman.
As IPA Chairman for England and Wales, Andy will represent and galvanise 81 UK advertising agencies (based outside of London, Northern Ireland and Scotland) that collectively employ almost 5,000 people and bring in over £200million in revenue per year.
Speaking in Manchester, Andy said: “Location outside of London is no hindrance to delivering national and international success. It can also be a real advantage when working with local clients – as a recent piece of proprietary research from McCann revealed: 60% of Brits said that they prefer a local and nearly a third of Scots would refuse to buy a brand that holds different political views to their own.
“In my role as Chair, I think it is imperative that we capitalise on this increasing power. We must use the opportunity to assert our value and to showcase to clients and to new talent that we are a credible alternative to a London agency.”
To achieve this, Andy explained to the packed industry audience, requires a new identity – uniting under the collective term ‘Outer Circle’ agencies, coupled with a three-pronged action plan to demonstrate effectiveness, advance commercial acumen, and attract and retain the finest talent. Specifically:
1. Demonstrable Effectiveness – Double the number of entries into the IPA Effectiveness Awards from Outer Circle agencies, which currently stand at 5% of total entries. The IPA Effectiveness Awards are the most prestigious and demanding in the industry in which agencies must provide compelling evidence that their work has met its goals, and has created measurable financial value for the brand. Entering will provide a greater bank of tangible evidence of Outer Circle agency success. The IPA will therefore be running workshops for these areas to help them navigate the process.
2. Commercial Excellence – the IPA will bring highlights from its Business Growth Conference to Manchester where leading commercial experts will equip Outer Circle agencies with the knowledge and practical steps to demonstrate they are commercially successful, sustainable, well-run businesses.
It will also encourage Outer Circle agencies to complete the annual IPA Commercial Behaviours Survey, which brings to light the practices of the agencies with the greatest revenue per head, per year, and the IPA Census.
Moving forward, as well as detailing the make-up of the employed base of agencies, the Census will include questions regarding charge-out rates, overhead costs and operating profits, which will make the research even more powerful for regional agencies.
3. Professional Talent – the IPA for England and Wales will promote the industry to the most talented individuals no matter where they live and give them a better understanding of the great agencies operating in the regions. This will be achieved by encouraging member agencies to partake in Advertising Unlocked – taking place across the UK on 29 September - by opening up their doors to anyone curious about a career in advertising.
Equally, once in the industry, the IPA for England and Wales will encourage more agencies to sign up to the IPA’s comprehensive MIPA scheme - a learning-based personal membership programme, designed to put advertising on the same professional footing as accountancy, architecture and the law.
Says Andy: “We are a diverse, fragmented collection of ‘Outer Circle’ agencies, and so by branding ourselves collectively we have a clear identity, united through the IPA, where we can work together to celebrate our creativity and the difference it makes to our clients’ businesses, the commercial and sustainable success of our agencies, and to our people.
It is an exciting time to be taking on the IPA Chairmanship for England and Wales; I really do believe that agencies get the clients they deserve. We are now beginning to see our Outer Circle agencies actively demonstrating that through the exciting work and successful businesses we have built over recent years, we deserve the best clients and talent.”
Andy succeeds the Chairmanship from Ben Quigley Group Chief Executive, Everything Different.