EDITORIAL: Media takes its place at the marketing top table

It is rumoured that several of the big communications groups have shown more than a passing interest in the Added Value Group. With a list of clients which spans the likes of Unilever, Levi’s and Coca Cola and an annual fee income of around pounds 30 million, perhaps that’s not so surprising.

It is rumoured that several of the big communications groups have

shown more than a passing interest in the Added Value Group. With a list

of clients which spans the likes of Unilever, Levi’s and Coca Cola and

an annual fee income of around pounds 30 million, perhaps that’s not so

surprising.



What is surprising is that Added Value decided to sell to the media

company, Tempus, a predominantly European media group with a track

record which barely goes beyond the business of planning and buying

spots and space.



But unlike the recent spate of mega mergers, the reasoning behind last

week’s tie-up is not one of volume but one of influence. Added Value

works with its clients at the top end of brand management, while

Tempus’s CIA Medianetwork, like most media companies, generally comes in

at the bottom of the marketing food chain.



The argument goes that as media becomes more fragmented and reaching the

right consumers more complicated, media needs to come a little higher up

the decision-making process.



What Added Value potentially gives Tempus is an invitation to the chief

executive’s office, a seat at the table and the ability to offer a

coherent service from strategic marketing advice through to the

implementation of the brand communication. Actually delivering on this

promise is a major challenge and some might argue that Tempus should get

the basics of its media operation right before it aspires beyond its

core business. But as a strategy for growth which also has some true

relevance to the way clients work, the Added Value deal gives Tempus a

USP in an increasingly amorphous communications marketplace.



As such it establishes a new model for the communications agency of the

future and lays down a challenge to media agencies which talk about

offering strategic advice but whose specialism extends no further than

the business of media.



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