About Paul Bay

  • citizenbay
    After 14 years at advertising and media agencies, and 4 years at Levi Strauss EMEA, Paul set up citizenbay in 2004 to help shake things up in marketing within organisations. We help organisations improve internal relationships (sales/marketing/finance/production), external relationships (content supplier/agency/media owner/client) and their communications strategies. From boardrooms to young talent, we help foster greater curiosity through workshops, internal conferences, one-on-one coaching, and interactive online services - curiosity breeds ideas. Clients include: Sony Music Europe, Samsung, BBC World, K-Swiss, Discovery Networks, The Economist, Twinings, start-ups and media, digital & creative agencies.
  • citizensound
    Paul set up citizensound 3 years ago. We define the sonic identity of brands, and shape their music strategy, come up with great little ideas and measure it all too. We also develop fresh marketing strategies for artists, their managers and labels.
  • left hand citizen
    Paul writes a blog for left-handers when he finds some time...

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    I think that the debate about the role of the media agency in a digital world is hugely interesting and important. Whilst media agencies say that they "get digital" what they often mean is that they know 'old media' people who know work for digital media owners.

    This doesn't invoke curiosity, understanding or even interest as many media agency people continue to see elements of digital as channels they can just buy like TV or press. Unfortunately most aspects of digital are not that simple and if media agencies continue to try and make them so I hope that clients will move away from them to use real experts... such as digital agencies.

    Digital provides the opportunity for clients to question media agencies about costs / rates and for media agencies to revise how they make money from clients - in my opinion it should no longer be from media owner commissions but rather for expert opinions, research and strategies.

    Lastly, there is a huge difference between knowing the media habits of a sample of 20,000 people vs. monitoring the Internet to really understand people (e.g. Buzz, polls etc.). Media agencies like paid-for research solutions as they make them money. This doesn't necessarily place them as the best provider to really understand a brands' consumer.

    Great points RA. Thanks for contributing. Some media agencies are investing in digital talent, but I hear too often that this talent is wheeled out in pitches only to be sent off to run a bit of tactical SEO. Others throw their digital net only so far, thus offering the online offering of a magazine dressed up as an 'integrated solution'. Glad you agree of the importance of the debate.

    Arguably agencies only really seriously invested in acquiring digital expertise because of the increased margins it offered versus 'traditional' media buying which had become commoditised and unprofitable as a skill. Now those digital advertising margins are eroding I wonder how much digital integration there will really be within large agencies. Now the higher margins exist in other places such as non-trad outdoor, events, digitsl experiences, SEO or creating IP from content, we'll be sure to start seeing more and more agencies investing in acquiring these areas.
    Everyone's chasing the almighty dollar of course. No news there...but it means that the definition and shape of media agencies will continue to change as they strive to find profitable disciplines to drive growth.

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    About Bernhard Glock

    • Bernhard Glock Media
      Bernhard Glock recently set up Bernhard Glock Media Leadership Company LLC, providing strategic media consultancy and business development advice to advertisers, agencies, broadcasters and associations. Bernhard is a P&G veteran with 24 years experience, finishing as VP Global Media and Communications and VP Media Purchases.

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