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Account director for Ogilvy, Muriel Benitah has +12 years experience turning briefs into strategies and anchoring the client’s brand over the long run.

How does your job fit into the marketing process? I’m the main contact with the client. I take the key business objectives established during the client brief and transform them into a strategy. I coordinate with creative work, measurement, production, measurement and optimization for the upcoming advertising campaigns. I also anchor the brand over the long run.

What’s a misconception clients commonly have? Some people think that advertising agencies are lying to them and just want you to consume more. Some clients think that ad agencies purposefully overestimate the budget and that their creatives who design the advertising campaigns just want to win awards and don’t care about the needs of the client. This does happen, however this isn’t always true.

Trust is key. The client needs to know and trust that the advertising agency is serious and truly understands the client’s business. The client needs to feel like the ad agency is a partner working at the same company, not like some external consulting company.

What’s an important lesson you’ve learned from your experience? The industry isn’t static and you must always adapt to changing technology and the way you do business with clients. Content strategy and building a narrative that is adopted, tailored and expanded by your audience is key to create the community that fits the brand. It needs to be inspiring for the audience, in line with the brand values, feel organic and seamlessly adjusted to each of the interfaces used.

Where do you go to for ideas/inspiration? I dig into surveys and discussion boards to to get the sense of conversations and see what people are think and about my clients.

You cannot have one source for inspiration, you must have many exchanges. The people you follow on your social media profiles share things with you andgive you ideas. The people you associate with determine your level of creativity. I wouldn’t say select the people you follow, I’d say expand. Choose wisely and meet as many people as possible.

Advice for someone who wants to do your job?

  1. Observe people. This gives you more added value and feeds your thinking.
  2. Have a wholistic vision of your client. If you don’t know their needs and problems, then you can’t take care of them effectively.
  3. Your job is defined by your own identity. Always put your uniqueness and personal vision into the given job to tailor it and make the most of it for yourself, the brand you work with and your company.

What’s your favorite ad campaign? Pretty much all of the advertisments for Canal Plus. Here are two:

I have a small advertising budget, any advice? Focus on earned media and your keyword search results. This is minimal cost for visibility. Secondly, connect with the right influencers and group of people who can give you the best visibility.

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