Sean Corcoran [Posted by Sean Corcoran]

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We’re in the process of pondering a very important question in the industry today: what is the future of agencies? Agencies have played such a crucial role in helping companies market their products and services for more than a century. Names like McCann Erickson, Young & Rubicam, J. Walter Thompson, Ogilvy, and Saatchi & Saatchi (among others) are practically household names. There’s even a massively popular and critically acclaimed television show capturing life in the golden age of legendary agencies on Madison Avenue.

Yet the agency model was built during a time when there were only a handful of channels in which they could push one way messages en masse. Does that model still work in a time when nearly a quarter of online US adults now create content online? Many more questions begin to arise as we open Pandora’s Box: Can one agency do it all? Are holding companies the answer? Can digital agencies compete with them and lead brands? Do marketers rely on agencies like they used to? Should marketers consolidate their agencies or de-centralize to dozens of agency partners? Are technology providers and crowd sourcing legitimate threats? Where is this all going?

To conduct this research we’re speaking with some of the most influential agencies, marketers, and service providers. However, what better way to get a feel for the pulse of the industry than to crowd source it? So we’re reaching out to get your take on the space. Please give us your thoughts in the comments section on the question: What is the future of agencies?

We’re looking forward to your input (and please try to keep it to one or two paragraphs)! Since this research is a collaborative report across roles, this post is also cross-posted on the Marketing Leadership, Customer Experience and Customer Intelligence team blogs.