Advertising Could Use Some Farm-to-Table Thinking

In the first episode of “Portlandia,” Fred and Carrie order meals in a restaurant, then decide to visit a farm to find out how the animals they’re eating were raised.


Absurd? Maybe. But I’ve noticed that when I visit local farmers’ markets, I appreciate the growers and farmers, and their food, more.

I think that more clients and agencies — all members of the team — should visit each other and meet regularly. We’d get better work that way. So why doesn’t it happen?

Many agencies don’t trust a lot of their people to interact with clients. Conversely, many agency folks, particularly creatives, hate the idea of interacting with clients. But just like clients are often not trained to evaluate creative concepts, creative people are often not trained to talk business. The problems persist on both sides of the conference table.

It also comes down to money and profitability for many agencies. Time spent in meetings = time not spent making ads. While daily communication is the work of good account people, even major strategy sessions or important meetings aren’t attended by most of the people actually making the work every day. Still, building trust is key for all members of the team.

It’s the subject of my new column on Talent Zoo.



About Dan Goldgeier

Dan Goldgeier is a Seattle-based freelance copywriter with experience at advertising agencies across the U.S. He is a graduate of the Creative Circus ad school, and currently teaches at Seattle's School of Visual Concepts. Dan is also a columnist for and the author of View From The Cheap Seats and Killer Executions and Scrubbed Decks.