You’re a media man by trade. How did you get into media and
I took the media route because Haymarket wouldn’t have me.
My first job was as a media planner and buyer at John Ayling and
Associates back in 1984. I moved to Saatchi and Saatchi in April this
year from MediaCom, where I had been deputy managing director.
What does your new job involve?
I’m working with the media and integration departments as well as
Saatchi and Saatchi Vision - the new media and new communications
technology division - to develop further the agency’s through-the-line
offering to our clients.
Is this a function that already existed at Saatchis?
Not exactly. It’s a new role which reflects the degree to which Saatchis
is responding to clients’ increasingly vocal demands for fully
integrated, seamless communications solutions. Saatchis
already has a fantastic track record in this area with work for clients
like the Army, the Energy Saving Trust, Hewlett-Packard and Camelot.
Hopefully I will be helping to extend this through-the-line approach to
Why are you the right man for the job?
The combination of a media planning background and my involvement in
interactive projects over the last couple of years probably help. Media
planners have increasingly been working on a broader communications
platform, largely reflecting how media owners have developed their
products from relatively straight-forward advertising vehicles to
multi-faceted communications tools.
What did Saatchis offer which made the move irresistible?
The opportunity to help Saatchis develop its already impressive ’total
communications’ offering was too good for me to resist. This agency is
completely committed to the real integration of communications
disciplines, rather than just ’bolting on’ a string of specialist
below-the-line companies to an above-the-line agency. In terms of the
job itself, perhaps it’s a fairly logical career progression for me,
given the changing nature of the media discipline in recent years -
clients have generally become increasingly focused, and not just on pure
media efficiencies - they are also looking for a broader perspective on
the whole arena of communications effectiveness.
So how’s it going so far?
I’ve been at Saatchis for less than a month and have focused on learning
about how the agency works and what it does for its clients. It’s too
early for me to say what my priorities are, but I’m having lots of
meetings and doing a lot of thinking.
What is your long-term strategy?
Helping to move our involvement with clients further ’upstream’. Working
with more of our clients on ’big picture’ communications solutions is
also an aim. I want to see Saatchis recognised as the best
communications agency, not just the best advertising agency.
What do you like doing when you’re not being Saatchis’ communications
I spend my time on golf, cricket, Ipswich Town, gardening - and
wondering why my wife needs so many pairs of shoes.
Occupation - Communications director of Saatchi and Saatchi
Age - 35 (but looks only 34)
Lives - Between Oxfordshire and Knightsbridge
Status - Married
Salary - A fully integrated package!