Kraft Foists Illogical Idiocy on Agencies


If it weren't bad enough agencies have to deal with needless agency consultants making money for doing what clients are too lazy to do themselves, now they have to deal with the illogical idiocy common sense-challenged companies like Kraft are now foisting upon them. Kraft, in twisted logic not seen since CareerBuilder fired its agency because the agency's add didn't make the USA Today Top Ten, is requiring agencies participating in a review to not only cede ownership of pitched concepts (a not so uncommon practice) but also to accept liability for those concepts if they end up being used and cause legal problems in the future ( a new and extremely stupid practice).

Someone please help us here. We'll say it again. Kraft wants agencies to give up ownership of any presented idea. Then it wants to be able to sue the agency that presented those ideas if they cause legal trouble in the future...even though the agency doesn't even own the idea any more! We have a headache.

by Steve Hall    May-14-07   Click to Comment   
Topic: Agencies, Brands, Opinion, Worst   

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Steve I'm willing to bet money that some agency is dumb enough, desperate enough and greedy enough to still pitch under these conditions. It'll never change until agencies stop kissing ass and take a stand.

Posted by: kaza on May 14, 2007 12:04 PM

Throw in performance-based creative while they're at it. That's what they're headed for with moves like this. Ads do well, I'll take some Kraft stock options please, but if not...

Posted by: makethelogobigger on May 14, 2007 12:45 PM

Just another glaring example of how blue-chips abuse their influence and shirk accountability. Equity and rev share deals aside, what these companies fail to realize with this stupidity is that empowered agencies produce powerful work.

Posted by: Gunther Sonnenfeld on May 14, 2007 3:25 PM

This is big boy agency stuff for when your shifting billions. But its when some up-start client trys to pull the same stuff on a small agency - these ideas are so open to abuse by time wasters... that said Kraft look unreasonable in what they are asking for and it looks wrong at any level....

Posted by: Asa Bailey on May 14, 2007 3:35 PM

What strikes me is the tremendous amount of arrogance this demonstrates on the part of Kraft. I have worked in packaged goods and have seen ideas that seem possible in business school theory taken to absurd levels many times. Just remember that fear drives everything. And anything that mitigates fear is good in corporate environments like these. I would love it if as a consumer I could ask Kraft to assign all gains to the agency if the ad works. Or maybe as a consumer I could ask Kraft to sign a notice of liability before I eat their Mac and Cheese.

Posted by: Tod Rathbone on May 14, 2007 6:10 PM

Any agency folks who would still pitch business under these terms should probably find a new line of work, because they're clearly so bad at their jobs it's made them insane with desperation.

Posted by: True on May 15, 2007 10:35 AM


Posted by: Markus Roder on May 16, 2007 12:54 PM

Refreshing to see a major corporate client take responsibility for the consequences of its marketing efforts, even if the creative is extorted under pressure.

But seriously, I can scarcely believe that this is legal! Why not just go the whole 9 yards and ask for the agency CEO to sacrifice his/her first-born should a campaign go wrong....

Posted by: Paul Zink on May 17, 2007 11:12 AM