Friday, February 15, 2013

10996: OgilvyCULTURE Clichés.

OgilvyCULTURE—which continues to sound like an oxymoron—kicked off the year with the Cross-Cultural Roundtable starring Soledad O’Brien and a handful of alleged thought leaders who probably have little influence regarding integrating the advertising industry. First of all, as the photos here show, the event did not even feature a round table. Second, why were no advertising agency representatives participating? People outside of agencies—including clients—are painfully ignorant about the state of affairs on Madison Avenue. Third, why is Ogilvy’s logo all over the place? The shop is so proud to sponsor others having diversity discussions while failing to hold meaningful conversations on the topic in their own hallways. The roundish-table soiree regurgitated all the standard mumbo-jumbo about the imperative for multicultural and cross-cultural marketing. BTW, doesn’t the presence of a multicultural or cross-cultural unit essentially admit that the mainline practice is mono-cultural? Commenting on OgilvyCULTURE, Cross-Cultural Practice Lead Jeffrey L. Bowman stated, “Over the last two years, it has not always been an easy path but given the changing industry landscape, it is a necessary conversation. We have a lot of work ahead of us in 2013.” Yeah, but it probably won’t be work that receives the same attention and funding as the efforts of Bowman’s White counterparts across the hall.

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