Clash Of The Titans

Most people in advertising love Wieden + Kennedy.
Most people in advertising love Starbucks.
Apparently, the two don’t feel the love for each other.
Ad Age has the scoop:

“Wieden always felt like it was a one-way relationship,” said an executive familiar with the matter. “They felt like they presented a way to drive the brand forward, and Starbucks wasn’t receptive.” The agency wouldn’t comment beyond its statement from Mr. Wieden in announcing the resignation: “There are times when it just makes sense to part ways with a client,” he said. “In this case, this seems to be the best decision for both parties.”
Executives with knowledge of the situation said Starbucks was simply a very frustrating client for Wieden, an agency that other marketers have described as unusually honest in its communication with clients. Other agencies that have worked with Starbucks have felt frustration with the marketer too. Rich Silverstein, co-founder of Omnicom Group’s Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, which did two stints representing Starbucks, said much of the fault lies with the mercurial Mr. Schultz. “He does not appreciate advertising,” he said. “Any agency that comes in has one foot out the door already.”

Can someone give me your own, or Wieden’s, definition of being “unusually honest in its communication with clients”?



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.