Post Office to establish in-house creative agency

The Post Office is in the process of building an in-house creative agency that will handle all branch collateral, the brand’s chief marketing officer Pete Markey has revealed.

Speaking at Advertising Week Europe on the integrated agency model, Markey said the move to build its own creative team was about simplifying the focus for agency partners.

"My remit covers everything from customer experience and digital to all above-the- line campaigns. I’ve not yet found a solution that can cover everything I need. There isn’t an agency that can do great in-branch collateral for me and great content," he explained.

The Post Office’s in-house creative group will run in tandem with its agencies, such as DLKW Lowe, with Markey adding it might also extend to in-house media buying in the future.

“I have some media partners that want to talk to us directly as a brand which I’m open to. But I don’t want to be stopped from talking to media agency owners as well.”

It comes after Markey revealed that in the past he has been oversold to by agencies which claim they can do everything.

“A media agency suddenly says, ‘I can do your social media’. Can you? You get this strange blurring of ‘we can do it all’. Hasn’t there got to be a specialist in what [agencies] do? I’m yet to see an agency that can do it all and do it brilliantly without losing focus somewhere,” he said.

Markey said he could be “convinced” on integration if it made his job easier.

"With fragmentation you get that specialism [...] but as a client it means you have to take on a lot of responsibility for marshalling.

“To be the person in the middle of a media and creative agency to create harmony is hard and challenging,” he said.

Also on the panel was TBWA/London chief creative officer Peter Souter. Alluding to the agency’s owner Publicis Groupe potentially bringing all of its services into one building, Souter said a positive outcome would be that “it’s like being in a gang”.

However, Markey responded: “My argument on gangs is – do you need them all to sit together in the same agency for it to work. I’ve seen different agencies work brilliantly together and they don’t need to be in a gang. They don’t need to be in the same building or part of the same network. Where I’ve seen it work less well is when you have to come in and marshal it.”

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