Publicom Could Cause Major Media Wealth Re-Distribution

For years marketers have grumbled about rising TV prices for smaller audiences. But the Publicom merger could reverse the trend. With a large chunk of the buying community in fewer hands, media analyst Brian Wieser predicts that media inflation will ease significantly, perhaps causing a $15 billion decline in equity value for big media. That’s a lot of ads, the value of which will be reclaimed “by agencies and the marketers they work for, who will be in a better position to receive the same quantity of media for less money in the future,” Wieser said in a just issued report. That will occur in part because Publicom is expected to embrace the GroupM model of merging the buying functions of all the Publicis and Omnicom media agencies to optimize pricing leverage in the marketplace.  “Media owners will face two dominant players,” Wieser predicts. The added clout will enable marketers to spend less—between 1% and 3%--but achieve similar results. To what degree the media owners can counter that leverage remains to be seen. One tactic, reports Wieser, might be to bundle “scarce inventory (football for example) with that which is not.” That’s not new of course but it’s a technique that has helped keep prices climbing as audiences have fragmented.

Kiwi Chowda

Hill Holliday is a global agency, for sure. But it’s also a Boston shop. And now, a bit Down Under, since brand and strategy planning vet Graham Ritchie has joined  as Chief Strategy Officer. Ritchie joins from managing partner of sister shop Publicis Mojo Group Australia and New Zealand.



He began his career at Publicis Mojo Auckland in 1992 and within a half dozen years rose to the senior ranks of the Melbourne and Sydney offices too. In 1999, he left briefly to found the ironically named Nonstop Partners, before stopping and rejoining Mojo in 2004 as head of planning in Sydney.

He brings a decade of  Down Under brand experience, including Qantas, Cadbury and international food giant Goodman Fielder to Hill Holliday's mix of familiar American brands, you know, Cadillac, Verizon Wireless, Bank of America, Liberty Mutual, Dunkin’ Donuts, Major League Baseball, John Hancock, Chili’s, etc.

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