Sir Martin Sorrell: Don Draper wouldn't recognise adland now

Sir Martin Sorrell has reflected on the changing face of the adland ahead of Cannes, saying Don Draper from 'Mad Men' would not recognise many of the disciplines that are now vital parts of the marketing mix.

Speaking to Dan Roth, executive editor of LinkedIn as part of its Influencer series, the WPP chief executive pointed out that for the first time Cannes had awards categories for data and data visualisation.

He said: "Cannes is expanding into areas that Don Draper wouldn’t recognise. This balance of Mad Men and Maths Men, of art and science, left brain right brain is really very important and we have to understand it.

"It applies across the board so everybody inside the organisation can be creative in different ways."

Turning to the move by American Express, a WPP client, to shift its online media spend to programmatic buying, Sorrell said programmatic would become "more important".

According to Sorrell, Amex was a "very good example of a company that’s been extremely sophisticated in the online area and the development of data and application of technology into their business."

He singled out its CMO John Hayes and chief executive Kenneth Chenault as being in the "forefront of building their reputation online".

Become a member of Campaign from just £45 a quarter

Get the very latest news and insight from Campaign with unrestricted access to ,plus get exclusive discounts to Campaign events

Become a member

Looking for a new job?

Get the latest creative jobs in advertising, media, marketing and digital delivered directly to your inbox each day.

Create an Alert Now

Partner content


1 Why creative people have lost their way

What better way to kick off the inaugural issue of Campaign's monthly print offering than with another think piece on the current failings of our industry, written by an embittered, pretentious creative who misses "the way things used to be"...


1 Job description: Digital marketing executive

Digital marketing executives oversee the online marketing strategy for their organisation. They plan and execute digital (including email) marketing campaigns and design, maintain and supply content for the organisation's website(s).