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Chip Shops judge Adrian McNamara: clients don't see agencies as their business partners anymore

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By The Drum Team | Editorial

February 17, 2012 | 3 min read

Adrian McNamara, former senior art director at Euro RSCG Sydney, tells The Drum why the client agency relationship has gone the way of master and servant. McNamara, now freelance, will judge this year's Chip Shop Awards - the international creative awards scheme with no limits or rules.

Adrian McNamara

Why do you think events like the Chip Shop Awards are important?

Sure there are a shed-load of Award Shows these days, but what intrigues me about the Chip Shop Awards is that it’s – anything goes. For me, I see it as an outlet for all those bottom drawer ideas that before, never had a hope of seeing the light of day. There’s some great thinking behind those ideas and it’s nice to reward that thinking whenever possible.

What do you think makes the ultimate Chip Shop Awards ad?

Well, I’ve never judged such an open slather of work before, so I don’t know what to expect. I guess I’ll know what makes the ‘ultimate’ Chip Shop Award ad by the end of the process.

What criteria will you apply on the judging panel?

Personally I’m not one for making ads, for the sake of making ads, so whilst I’ll have an open mind, I’ll still be looking for that piece of work that has some type of purpose to it.

What’s the greatest barrier to creativity today?

In my past experience, clients don’t really see us as their business partners anymore. The whole relationship thing seems to have gone in favour of a more master and servant type arrangement.

We’ve all gotten lazy too. The client buys the media and we fill it with a message, a message that’s becoming more and more retail biased.

There’s a lot more hand holding needed to get the good stuff through, the stuff that will actually have an impact and make a difference.

The Chip Shop Awards are open for entries until 16 March. For more details and to submit your entry visit the Chip Shop Awards website.

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