Analysis: Agencies can help brands get closer to their customers

Ad agencies should live long into the future even if clients can take ad programs in-house, because agencies are able to reach into the mind of consumers without getting bogged down with a brand's history, writes Al Ries. "[C]orporate platitudes" are becoming intertwined with ad campaigns, stifling an agency's ability to serve as the customer's perspective, Ries writes. "The problem with advertising today is not in the advertisements themselves. ... The problem is in the marketing strategy."

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