We're looking down the barrel of a new year of AdNews Agency Rankings, and we've made some changes this time around.
The more we try to define and narrow down, the more difficult it becomes to know where things sit. So we've combined what was previously a standalone category for Direct agencies and folded it into the Advertising category.
We believe that the three broad categories – Advertising, Media and Digital – offer the right scope to benchmark this writhing, wriggling beast of an industry. OMD, M&C Saatch, Saatchi & Saatchi and Leo Burnett have topped the charts this time around.
Follow the links for the full leage tables to see where each agency has ranked:
If you asked 100 people working in advertising, media, or any creative industry, to define any one of those categories, you'd end up with 100 different explanations – so we know that we can't please everyone. But the rankings offer a way to benchmark agencies, and the definitions have to be drawn somewhere.
This year at Cannes, the president of the direct jury, Judy John, CEO and chief creative officer at Leo Burnett Canada, said one of the biggest challenges the jury faced at the start of the judging was how to define ‘direct’.
“People are pushing the boundaries of direct, and we were faced with the situation of having to come up with a definition for what direct is. It's a changing category right now, and we saw that in the entries … that really challenged us. It's an exciting time in the category and the business,” she explained.
She's not wrong. If the judges at the world’s biggest industry awards are having that conversation, it got us thinking about our categories too.
By combining what we previously would have set apart in the Direct category into the Advertising category, we're not minimising the importance of direct work. We’re merely recognising that those campaigns and activities that have traditionally been direct are now much more broad. So is the scope of work that traditional 'direct' agencies are doing. As John noted, it's an exciting time for direct.
But why stop there? We also talked about bringing the Digital rankings into the fold too, and having just one mammoth league table – because what work isn't, in some way, digital these days? Despite that element, we felt that for now at least, it stacks up to keep those three core pillars.
You might disagree – and that's fair enough – but we go into the first round of the 2015 rankings with an interesting landscape.
There's some change in the Advertising rankings. Clemenger finished the 2014 rankings in the top spot by Office for Melbourne and by Network, but has been eased back down the table in the first outing.
Thanks to gaining recognition far and wide on the global stage for its Optus Clever Buoy shark detecting technology innovation, M&C Saatchi is riding the crest of a wave that has propelled it to the top of the boards in both Digital and in Advertising.
In Media, a new year means all change. UM, which reigned supreme throughout all three rounds last year, has slipped back to fourth place in the rankings as Penny the Pirate wreaks havoc.
As a result, Saatchi & Saatchi has also given some traditional media players a run for their money, continuing the trend of creative agencies earning points in the Media category. OMD, Saatchi & Saatchi and M2M take out the top three spots, largely thanks to the OPSM campaign.
Penny the Pirate has given OMD and Saatchi & Saatchi an early push, and the agencies will be pushing to stay in the lead for the rest of the year. For the full and updated methodology for the 2015 rankings, and the points allocation system,
see the online charts. www.adnews.com.au/rankings
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