It appears the agency-consultancy stand-off is set to get even uglier with news today that WPP will soon refuse to be involved in pitches that involve its bitter arch-rival, the consultancy firm Accenture.
For a long time now, traditional agencies have feared being audited by the consultancy firms’ accounting arms.
Adland argues that it gives the consultancies too much insight and intelligence into their business model and, in turn, allows the consultancies’ media arms to undercut agencies during the pitch process.
So concerned is WPP by Accenture’s influence, the world’s biggest media company has reportedly announced it will stop participating in any media pitches supervised by Accenture starting in 2020, Didgiday UK is reporting.
Digiday cited an email from an from an unnamed ad executive who works closely with WPP’s GroupM buying arm. The email reportedly states that WPP is threatening to withhold cost and qualitative data from unspecified global pitches that have been overseen by Accenture auditors.
The email reportedly read: “It’s due to Accenture Interactive acting as both an auditor and a media agency of sorts with its pitch to help advertisers take their ad tech in-house.”
Neither WPP or Accenture have verified the claims made in the article. Nor is it clear if other holding companies plan on following WPP’s lead.
However, for WPP’s plans to work, it has to get the clients on side to agree to remove Accenture from the process.
Many media clients use auditors to ensure that their spends match what has been promised by the media agency.
The practice is particularly common in Australia where a media agency acts on behalf of a global client who may not have the appropriate local staff to perform the due diligence themselves.
Any audit can allow access to information such as cost per gross rating points on TV, display CPMs, viewability rates and how the reach of any ad equates to how many times it has been seen.
Agencies argue it gives consultancies unprecedented access to the inner workings of the agency and then allows the consultancy’s media arm to undercut the traditional model at the next pitch.
This is particularly alarming due to consultancies’ strength in things like tech and programmatic.
Didgiday then goes on to quote another unnamed media executive who said of WPP’s mooted boycott of Accenture: “This decision comes from the people at the top of WPP, but it’s hard to see how it plays out at global and local levels.
“A stance like this suggests WPP will say no to being audited as there aren’t many auditors outside of Accenture currently that global advertisers are going to want to use. WPP needs to have a compelling argument to justify the boycott to advertisers as I doubt many will share the same conflicts of interests concerns as agencies.”
Verizon Media’s talent program has come to an end for the third year, closing with a hybrid pitch-off event for Musicians Making A Difference (MMAD). The Verizon Media Academy class of 2021, made up of 44 emerging leaders from across Australia and New Zealand media, advertising and marketing industry, were given just one hour to […]
Social purpose organisation UnLtd’s Big Games competition has raised a combined $85,000 for children and young people at risk. Running over five weeks, the competition involved 32 teams from across the advertising, marketing and media industries battling it out virtually for a chance to qualify for the Rocket League final. The tournament culminated in a […]
Stan has announced that the Stan Original Film Transfusion commenced filming in Sydney earlier this week and will premiere on Stan in 2022. Transfusion is a taut, muscular thriller starring Sam Worthington (Avatar) as Ryan Logan, a former Special Forces operative, who is battling to cope with life after the loss of his wife and is thrust […]
According to a decade of data collected by iStock, Australian brands turned to imagery depicting outdated gender stereotypes during the pandemic. Tracking the keyword ‘women’, iStock by Getty Images found that in 2020, ANZ brands and businesses reverted to gender stereotypes. Images of mothers home-schooling were used at almost twice the rate of images of […]
Schwartz Media is congratulating Maddison Connaughton on her three years as editor of The Saturday Paper. Connaughton has decided to finish up her editorship this month. “It’s been an honour to edit the paper,” Connaughton said. “The Saturday Paper is one of the brightest voices in Australian media and I have been happy to see […]
Research from EdBbirdie using Spotify data has identified the most popular songs to study to. After analysing thousands of studying and homework playlists on Spotify, American singer Olivia Rodrigo’s ‘drivers license’ came out as top song to study to. It featured on 48 study playlists, while other top songs included ‘Ophelia’ by The Lumineers, ‘Falling’ […]
Dayna Stewart is the Business Director – Digital Marketing, Media & Creative Services at The Nudge Group. Here, she discusses the challenges that come with building a successful marketing team when working remotely. Before COVID-19 changed the way businesses work, most marketing teams spent their days together in a meeting room collaborating on the next […]
The line-up for the 2021 iHeartRadio Music Festival has been announced as the legendary event returns live in Las Vegas in September. This year, the epic two-day lineup for the iHeartRadio Music Festival main stage will feature performances by Billie Eilish, Cheap Trick, Coldplay, Dua Lipa, Florida Georgia Line, Journey, Khalid, Lil Baby, Maroon 5, Nelly, […]
Shop! ANZ is calling on shopper and retail marketing professionals from all retail related disciplines to participate in the first ANZ Shopper and Retail Marketing Industry Survey in four years. This important research provides a guide of where the retail marketing industry in Australia and New Zealand has come from and what is anticipated to […]