By The Drum Team, Editorial

November 11, 2021 | 2 min read

In partnership with The Drum, the 4A’s created a new content series titled Convene. Challenge. Change. Each month, 4A’s president and chief executive officer Marla Kaplowitz will lead a discussion with an agency leader and one of their marketing partners to discuss the challenges, opportunities and new ways of working in a post Covid-19 environment. The series will challenge norms, identify learnings and inspire actions that will create new standards to help drive the industry forward.

To kick off the series, 4A’s chief executive Marla Kaplowitz chats with Allyson Witherspoon, vice-president and chief marketer, Nissan US, and Scott Kavanagh, managing director, Nissan United (part of TBWA\Chiat\Day New York), about what the client agency relationship looks and feels like today.

Witherspoon and Kavanagh offer a candid look at how Covid changed the way they work together. This includes the silver linings of disrupted plans, the momentum that comes with having a “just start” mentality and the importance of prioritizing DE&I initiatives. “The shift to a hybrid environment encouraged the way we focus, simplify and work closely together,” says Witherspoon.

Kavanagh says: “Covid enabled us to achieve things we otherwise wouldn’t have. The challenge brought out a challenger’s spirit for many of us.”

Speaking to how the past two years have shifted the nature of marketing partnerships, Kaplowitz asks how they define a strong working relationship between brand and agency.

Witherspoon says: “What I want out of an agency partner, it’s about communication, transparency and stability. We need to succeed cohesively, as a brand. Challenges come up, and [when] those lines of communication are open we’re transparent with each other. The question becomes, how do we approach this as a team?”

Kavanagh adds: “Trust, transparency and respect allows for us to push each other in a good way.”

Watch now here.

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