Separating media and creative was a “totally deranged and unnecessary decision” according to Rory Sutherland

Separating media and creative agencies was a ‘totally deranged and unnecessary decision’ says Rory Sutherland in the latest ‘Connected’ podcast by Mediacom.


Rory Sutherland said that the decision to separate creative and media disciplines was a ‘totally deranged and unnecessary decision’. He went on to say that “You can’t separate out what you say, to whom you say it, and when you say it”.

Sue Unerman says that historically the creative department within advertising agency creative departments¬† were perhaps over-focussed on making TV ads, so the media recommendations from those agencies tended to be for TV. That is one of the main reasons why creative and media disciplines were split to offer ‘independent advice’ to clients.

I have often been frustrated with creative and media being separate, but even more frustrated that it historically felt like the client would produce something with their creative agency, and only then would the output of that work be given to their media agency with a ‘plan that’ type of approach.

I remember when launching Telegraph TV in 2007, the biggest challenge I faced was not finding the demand. It was finding the demand from a client that had anything shorter than a 30 second ‘TV ad’ to run before our 60-90 second video content. Nothing shorter was made, because the creative agency had ‘made for TV’.

The the size, shape, length and format of available advertising media has never been more diverse, and so to my mind, surely you have to plan where the audience are spending their time, which media you will therefore be selecting, and then ask your creative agency to produce brilliant creative work designed to meet those consumers where they are hanging out. Things have undoubtedly improved, but it feels like we still have a way to go.

What are your thoughts?


Listen on iTunes here–mather-group–the-spectators-wiki-man

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