Shock, horror, the death of the idea.

I was surprised in Cannes last week to hear someone say, ‘It’s not really about the idea any more’. Surprised because it was the creative director of a major London agency, and one which has been doing some excellent work recently.

His point was not, really, that you didn’t need an idea. It was that an idea is now definitely only the starting point. He believes, and I think he is right, that an idea is only a starting point for an ongoing conversation.

That agencies need to be structured like newsrooms. They need producers and listeners at the middle. They don’t need a pre-production meeting, they need a daily editorial meeting. And they need a way to make money from a conversation like this.

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