Speaker: by Mrs.Lore Parker
Vice President & Copy-Supervisor, DDB(1966)
How you may ask how much does the Account Man have to say? Can he turn down a campaign Yes, he can, if the campaign does not hit the marketing objective for the product. He can not turn it down because "it just doesn't hit him right." Some years ago Bill Bernbach and Doyle jointly wrote a classic memo, setting down the responsibilities of the Creative Group and of the Account Group. In effect, account people determine what should be said. But the creative people have full freedom on how to say it.
There are, of course, many occasions when account and creative people resrch a deadlock. Then there is only one thing to do --- go to Bill Bernbach for a decision. I will come back to this subject & little later.
Next question is, how such does the client have to say? Can he tell the agency that "the campaign just doesn't hit him right?" Actually, it does not happen as often as you might think, because, our clients --- by the very fact that they have selected us as their agency -- are usually in sympathy with our way of doing things.
But of course clients do turn down campaigns. Then we ask exactly what they do not like about it. If they convince us, we will go back and do another one. If they do not convince us, we will try to win them over to our point of view.
Never, never do We turn out 2, 3 or half a dozen campaigns for the client to choose from. We think that is just as bad as a doctor who offers his patient green pills, blue pills and purple pills and asks him to pick. The client of course must give us his symptom. But we are the professionals who make the diagnosis and prescribe the treatment. If the treatment does not agree with the patient, we will try something else. But we consider it shirking our responsibility to put the burden of choice on him.
Finally, you will ask, if it is a television campaign, how much does the producer have to say?
There is, I think, an unfortunate misconception about the producer's role at DDB. The word goes that only weak producers can be happy at DDS. Because the art directors and copywriters dictate exactly what they want. I think that is dead wrong. The producer is the third member of the creative team. He can make or break a commercial. He is assigned by Don Trevor, Head of TV Production, about the same time the art director and copywriter are assigned.
Usually before the campaign is shown to the account group, it is discussed with the producer. Sometimes the producer will point out problems, and the campaign wi11 be dropped. Sometimes he will make suggestions that make the campaign beven better than it was. In any case, the execution of the campaign is largely in his hands. He is the midwife that delivers the baby.
He sets the bide, chooses a production house, supervises the casting, the accessorizing, the set designing, sets up a production schedule, masterminds everything.
At the actual Shooting, you can see the 2-member teams of Doyle Dane Bernbach expand to 3-member teams. Producer, copywriter and art director work together as a triumvirate --- consulting with each other, suggesting, criticizing. The actual spokesman is the Producer, whom you will usually find right behind the camera an, with the other 2 members of the team whispering into his ear. Tne producer gives the actual orders and, more often than not, acts as Director. We rarely hire three outside directors, because we three know ourselves just what we want.
The copywriter and art director are of course always present at the shooting. We are responsible for our campaign right through to the final detail. Perhaps that is what some outside producer object to?
But the fact is that Doyle Dane Bernbach producers, working this way, win more medals and awards than those at any other agency.
It seems to me that having superior creative material to work with would be a plus for any producer.