I am Jerome Courtial, Head of Strategy
As you may have read in Campaign or The Drum, I have joined We Are Social as Head of Strategy in London.
For someone who has spent their career in more traditional creative and digital agencies it was, admittedly, not the move that many expected. So, why We Are Social?
Firstly, scale – We Are Social is already the global market leader in social media and is growing quickly. It has built a hugely impressive client list in a short space of time (many of whom have been plucked off the rosters of agencies I used to work with).
More importantly, the future of advertising is now intrinsically linked to social media. I wanted to work with an agency that would allow me to take my ideas and apply them in a way that was actually going to make a difference in the evolution of marketing. And when you get the chance to do this for brands like adidas, Jaguar, Heinz, Danone and Unilever, it was an opportunity too good to ignore.
There’s also the creative potential offered by We Are Social. The attitude that social media offers less opportunities creatively and strategically is completely outdated – some of the most innovative campaigns are now executed on social platforms. Fortunately, we naturally attract the type of clients who are ready to do great social stuff and they want to push the limits of what we can do with the medium.
We Are Social will become a truly social creative business and the strategy team will be a big part of this, bringing better insights to the agency’s content machine and driving high level editorial content combined with first-class creative work. We’ll be producing better quality, more efficient work and our clients are going to notice a big difference – as will the industry as a whole.
I’ve noticed a few things about the agency since I first joined last year as Strategy Director. Firstly, this is probably the only time I have ever been one of the oldest people in the office. I’m learning new things every day from people a good few years younger than me, which is unnerving and inspiring at the same time. It’s also made me realise how old-fashioned certain attitudes and business structures are within the advertising industry.
I think I’ve got a pretty good feel for the agency now. It’s dynamic, energetic and collaborative – which may sound like a cliché, but I can’t think of a better way of describing it. People here have confidence and trust in the agency and the way it’s managed, which makes for a happy work environment (though the annual ski trip and regular socials don’t hurt either).
I don’t really enjoy blowing my own trumpet (much) so I’ll leave that to our Global Managing Director, Robin Grant:
Jerome is one of the most respected strategists in the industry and he will be a huge asset to us at this pivotal point in our international growth. He’s known for delivering insight that helps create genuinely engaging ideas and has a track record that’s second to none. We’ve now built the foundations of a strong and experienced strategy team in the agency, with plans to grow it even further in the coming months. Our clients are really going to see the benefit of these investments.