Editorial: Creativity should remain as the ultimate yardstick

Visiting the new Lynx website is likely to get any bloke with a pulse who works in a traditional agency excited. And not just because of the gorgeous girls and the tips on how to pull them.

Titillation aside, lynxeffect.com is not only outstandingly art directed, it is also the work of what we would normally class as a traditional agency, not a digital specialist.

Bartle Bogle Hegarty would doubtless bridle at being labelled as such. Although part of adland's establishment, BBH has never thought or acted in a conventional way.

The Lynx site, the first digital work on the brand by BBH since it took over the assignment from a roster of Unilever digital agencies last year, is significant because it's an excellent example of what can happen when technology is augmented by some mainstream agency magic. Of course, it would be an over-simplification to claim that traditional agencies have the exclusive on creativity. But by their very nature, it is these agencies that have attracted the best creative brains. Digital shops were often preoccupied with what they could do, rather than asking why they were doing it.

As a result, the demarcation lines were clear. Now, they are blurred. Only a couple of years ago, the prospect of a digital agency such as glue London vying with mainstream shops for the £10 million Eurostar creative assignment would have seemed inconceivable. Just as unlikely would have been the idea that an above-the-line shop such as VCCP could net eight dedicated digital accounts in 2007.

Above-the-line agencies are acquiring the extra firepower to compete for digital business; the best of the digital specialists are broadening their skillsets, enabling them to move into contention for big mainstream accounts. And it's only a matter of time before one of them is successful. In doing so, those digital agencies will morph into broad-based communications operations, and grow apart from smaller specialists not wanting to stray beyond their digital comfort zone.

And the lesson to be learned? Surely, for any agency, whatever their roots, technology must take second place to creativity that works - regardless of medium.