What do I see replacing the standard ad agency model? Tons.
The trouble for Madison Avenue is, these replacements are being invented by people other than the ad agencies.
Google Adsense wasn’t invented by Young & Rubicam. Movable Type wasn’t invented by Leo Burnett. The Cluetrain Manifesto wasn’t written by John Hegarty. I could go on for pages…
It’s the old biz school maxim: the railroad companies didn’t get into airlines. The horse and buggy companies didn’t get into automobiles.
What will replace the monolithic agency model? Another monolith? Or lots of different little new models?
Not all ad agencies are doomed tomorrow. But even the good ones are concerned by the way the industry is heading- of course, they won’t state this publically.
Some agencies will re-invent themselves successfully and thrive. Others won’t. Life is unfair.
How radical this re-invention will have to be in order to make it through the shredder is hotly contested. That’s what makes Cluetrain-Lovemarks Deathmatch so interesting to participate in.