Campaign has recently published its annual school reports for 2018, the definitive listing of the UK’s most successful agencies. The Top 100 lists are collected by Nielsen based on the account and billing information given by agencies.
Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO remained at the top of the list of creative agencies for another year, despite it suffering a 17.2% loss in billings from 2017 and the high profile loss of the Sainsbury’s account to Wieden & Kennedy after 35 years as a client. Abbott Mead’s victory highlights an increasingly challenging landscape and the importance of new business to bounce back from unexpected client losses.
A 10.8% annual increase in billings led to Adam & Eve/DDB taking second spot, replacing McCann Erickson. After being named Campaign’s Advertising Agency of the Year 2017, Adam & Eve/DDB followed this up with a great year of wins, including GWR, Sky Sports and EA Sports.
VCCP, who described 2017 as its best year ever, moved from eighth place to fifth. The agency won a total of 24 accounts last year, the most notable being Cadbury and Domino’s after an intensive pitching process. The agency was also recognised by the AAR as top new business agency for the seventh year in a row. VCCP is clearly prioritising and excelling on the new business front, ranked no 1 by the AAR for their pitch success last year.
Campaign’s 2018 School Report also unveiled The Top 20 Media Agencies. Mediacom remained at the top spot, winning a total of 36 accounts last year, its biggest being PSA Group. The Agency predicts that its success in 2018 will rely largely on its biggest client, Sky, who this month is due to complete its first media review in 13 years.
PHD should also be mentioned here. It’s near loss of one its biggest clients, Sainsbury’s (who was reviewing both its advertising and media agencies) was one of the most talked about pitch processes in recent years. Despite the stress of this, and losing in total 6 accounts, the win of Argos resulted in a 52.6% increase in billings, resulting in the agency rising from tenth place to sixth. This again is another example highlighting how new business is vital for underpinning agency success.
See Campaign Live’s full school reports here
This year’s school reports allude to the fact that the current tougher backdrop is hitting the biggest and most successful agencies. Yet the ones that continue to thrive are those that put new business at the forefront of their agenda.