Mediaweek held its inaugural Power Lunch in October, celebrating the successes of the media industry and the people who make it.
Marcelle Gomez, managing director of iProspect, reached the #23 place on the Mediaweek Agency 50 list.
Mediaweek caught up with Gomez as she reflected on her team’s momentum and drive, why she believes TV is far from “dead”, and her optimism for the future of the dentsu agency.
Mediaweek: Congratulations on making the #23 spot on our Mediaweek Agency 50 list. What was your reaction to your placement?
Marcelle Gomes: It was a nice surprise and completely unexpected! It was lovely to be recognised by the team at Mediaweek, amongst so many of my friends and industry heavyweights. And more importantly, it was great recognition of the momentum we’ve driven in the new and evolved iProspect – I see it as recognition of the team’s efforts, not just mine.
MW: How does your position on the list reflect the achievements made by iProspect?
MG: The growth we’ve experienced as a business and the journey that we’ve been on is absolutely the result of a team effort. Of course, you need clear leadership and a vision, but that is nothing without a team to make it all happen. I have a wonderful leadership team surrounding me in iProspect that I partner with to drive this business forward. They challenge me, inspire me and have made the last few years some of the best of my career.
We are all aligned in our ambition to make iProspect an amazing place to work – our people are our #1 priority. I know a lot of agencies say that, but we truly deliver on that promise, day in, day out. It is reflected in our retention rates and our engagement scores – we are the happiest agency in NSW based on the latest media-i survey. And the result of having a high performing team who are all empowered to shape the future of our business, is that we have motivated and engaged people partnering with our clients to drive growth for their businesses. We have amazing client retention which is testament to that.
MW: What are three industry issues on your mind, and in your opinion, how can they be solved or achieved?
MG: 1. Pricing and the race to the bottom in pitches, the win at all costs mentality. We all know it isn’t sustainable for us as an industry, especially when you consider we are all commercial businesses and have growth targets that we need to deliver. I would love for us to value ourselves better as an industry, to say no to cost driven pitches, charge clients for our time to pitch. This requires cohesion across the industry as well as support from pitch consultants and clients, as there is always someone who needs a win and is willing to do whatever it takes, perpetuating the cycle and devaluing the media offering.
2. I am sick of the “TV is dead” narrative. It is not dead. Consumption habits have just evolved faster than we as an industry have been able to keep up with. I would love to see that buried once and for all but that can only happen through industry collaboration and education. Collaboration across the industry to make transacting, optimising and reporting easier. We’re making progress but it isn’t fast enough. And we need to educate all the digital natives in our industry to understand and appreciate the role that TV plays in customers lives and equally in building brands.
3. Over time as we’ve become more digitally focused as an industry, I think we’ve lost some of the focus on educating our people on the importance of marketing theory. This is something high on our priority list to ensure we are skilling our people to better enable them to partner with clients to build out growth-led marketing strategies.
MW: What is your outlook for iProspect in the year ahead?
MG: I am really excited for the future and what lies ahead for us at iProspect – this is just the beginning of our journey. We are clear on what collective success looks like and how we will get there, and we are all working towards that shared goal.
I’m always a cup half full kind of person, so I see the positive in most situations and relish the opportunity that comes out of challenges.
We all know about the multitude of macro-economic headwinds we are facing as an industry that are beyond our control and that are compounded by the talent shortage. But these aren’t new issues facing us as an industry – we’ve seen them all before. Or at least you have if you’ve been around as long as I have!
For me, this is an opportunity for us to be creative, approach problem solving in a new way and be true to our brand heritage as the largest performance agency in the world. Clients need to do more with less, so who better to help them than a performance first team of media experts who know how to deliver real business outcomes for clients?
MW: What are your hopes for the industry in 2023?
MG: This is an amazing industry that we work in – it is fun, dynamic and brings so many diverse people together to create, ideate and experiment together. My hope for us as a collective is to bring that magic to life through collaboration and to have a good time while we do it.
Top image: Marcelle Gomez