Clients and procurement are exploiting the passion ad agencies have to create work for less than it is worth, says ECD

Richard Morgan


Clients and procurement departments are taking advantage of the passion agencies have to create advertising for less than its value, a senior creative said in a video hangout with Mumbrella’s Australia site today.

Richard Morgan, the executive creative director of 303Lowe, called on clients to consider that “cheaper is not always better.”

In response to a question from Mumbrella reporter Miranda Ward on the challenges ad agencies now face, Morgan said that one of the major pressures facing the business overall is the squeeze on margins – the “race to the bottom”.

He said: “At the end of the day you need the revenue in the door to be able to get the agency on the front foot, get good people, and service clients the way they should be. So with all of those things, there’s a trickle-down effect.”

“It’s a huge issue. I would encourage clients out there watching to consider that cheaper is not always better. You do at the end of the day get what you pay for.”

“I think advertising is a business that people are very passionate about. A CFO a while ago said that advertising is a business where people – especially creatives – are so passionate about it that they pour their heart and soul into something for less than what it might be worth financially – just because they care.”

“I think unscrupulous people – clients and procurement agents – can possibly take advantage of that. So it’s up to us as an industry to reaffirm our worth and really partner with clients and show them the value of a good relationship,” he said.

“The 80s are gone. Yes, there was probably too much fat around the edges, but the pendulum has swung too far the other way now, it’s too fragmented and there are too many cost pressures.”

Morgan’s comment come 11 minutes into the video in which he and M&C Saatchi group strategy director Ross Berthinussen discuss the latest creative work from Australia.

Morgan joined 303Lowe Sydney in January 2013 after a brief stint at DDB Sydney. Previous to DDB Sydney he was a creative director with Holler and has also worked for BMF. He’s also worked overseas for the likes of Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO London.

The work discussed in the hangout is as follows:

The Meat & Livestock Association’s Australia Day lamb campaign from The Monkeys

The Meat & Livestock Association’s beef campaign from BMF

Honda’s HR-V Lucid Dreaming campaign from Leo Burnett Melbourne

Woolworths ‘Cheap Cheap’ Samantha Jade campaign from Leo Burnett Sydney


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