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Sir Martin Sorrell

Sir Martin Sorrell

Posted: May 6, 2010 11:33 AM

WPP Turns 25

What's Your Reaction:
We're delighted to be celebrating our 25th anniversary... and, by happy coincidence, the HuffPost's 5th anniversary. Ours is a silver anniversary, I guess, but it's difficult to digitize silver, certainly by voice, so we turned to somebody who has followed the company virtually since its inception, since it was a wire basket manufacturer 25 years ago, when we started out as two people in one room in Lincoln's Inn Fields in London.

We've asked Professor Joe Bower, professor at the Harvard Business School, who has been writing about WPP, using video digital case studies for 15 or so years. And Joe's done a little retrospective on the company, and we thought that the readers of the Huffington Post would be interested in reading his thoughts on WPP.

I think WPP's halfway there; our objective is to be the best marketing services company in the world, and by best we mean the natural choice of both clients and people; the natural choice of clients when they select an adviser or a partner in the area of advertising and marketing services and of people when they select brands or companies to go to build their careers in advertising and marketing services.

We think we're there in some parts of the world and in some functions, but we have a long way to go, and our strategic focus remains the new markets, the fast-growing markets of the world (the BRICs and Next-11), the new media, the new digital opportunities (in personal computers, the internet, mobile, video content, social networks) and last but not least, consumer insight. By consumer insight we mean understanding how consumers are changing their purchasing habits for products and services, how they're changing their media consumption habits and how we can apply that data through technology to improving the return on investment for our clients in their industries. So I hope you enjoy Joe's thoughts, and we're delighted to celebrate our anniversary on May 9, 2010.

And here's the video case study on WPP by Sonja Ellingson Hout: