Valérie Henaff, CEO, & Patrick Lara, General Manager — Publicis Conseil

Valérie and Patrick talk to TheNextGag about their new Publicis Loft initiative and how brands and agencies should collaborate to create brand content.

Valérie Henaff is CEO and Patrick Lara is General Manager of Publicis Conseil in France.

Publicis Loft is a new space dedicated to brand content. The Loft fosters a new always-on collaboration model between agency staff and clients. The aim of the Publicis Loft is to be multi-disciplinary, open, agile and data driven.

The Loft works this way: for one month, in a dedicated space, a whole team from the agency works together on the same subject, thus creating a dozen of creative concepts every day. The client is involved daily in the creation process and can approve ideas quickly. A legal team is kept at hand when needed. A production team is also part of the Loft and can produce all ideas internally.

Three types of briefs are being handled in these assignments: timeless briefs, timely predictable briefs and timely unpredictable briefs.

So far, three clients of Publicis Conseil (Renault International, BNP Paribas and Garnier) have being using the Publicis Loft.

Valérie Henaff, CEO (Publicis Conseil)
Patrick Lara (General Manager), Publicis Conseil
Neil Tamzali (Digital Strategic Planner), Patrick Lara (General Manager), Valérie Henaff (CEO), Gurvan Prioul (UX Design Creative Director), Julie Régis (Deputy Chief Client Officer) & Eric Forest (Deputy Managing Director) — Publicis Conseil

THENEXTGAG: HOW WOULD YOU DEFINE THE PUBLICIS LOFT ?

VALÉRIE HENAFF & PATRICK LARA: First, the Loft is a new state of mind. It is a space dedicated to creating brand content to be used mainly on social networks. It is a celebration of agility, flexibility, creativity and diversity. It is also a new way of working, ideating, creating and producing.

TNG: DOES IT ANSWERS A NEED MADE BY CLIENTS ?

VH & PL: It is at the same time answering a need made by our clients, a need to transform ourselves, a challenge to invent new ways of working that respond to the evolutions of the industry and of technology.

TNG: HOW WILL YOU EVALUATE THE SUCCESS OF THE LOFT ?

VH & PL: On its longevity. On the creative work. On its capacity to always reinvent itself. On its capacity to keep bringing in more talent.

TNG: IS THE LOFT ONLY RESERVED TO CLIENTS OF PUBLICIS CONSEIL ?

VH & PL: No. The Loft is currently expanding to a number of different agencies of Publicis Groupe all over the world. That’s the strength of a network like Publicis: good ideas can easily and quickly be exported. And, of course, we are completely open to sharing this tool with all the clients that want to use it.

TNG: WHAT ARE THE CAPABILITIES THAT ADVERTISERS NEED TO ACQUIRE IN ORDER TO CREATE BRAND CONTENT ?

VH & PL: None. All they need is to be a bit more responsive to be able to act in real time to the propositions that will be coming from the Loft. You know that social networks don’t wait!

TNG: ARE CREATIVE AGENCIES THE BEST SUITED TO DEVELOP BRAND CONTENT IN BEHALF OF BRANDS ?

VH & PL: In brand content, there is brand. Which means that all brand content has to be created from a strong editorial line in sync with the brand platform. And an agency like Publicis Conseil that strategically leads the brand platforms of its clients is definitely the best suited to develop content.

TNG: I SAW A JOB OFFER OF LINKEDIN FOR THE PUBLICIS LOFT WHERE IT WAS MENTIONED “NO ADVERTISING REFERENCES”. IS IT A COMMITMENT FROM THE AGENCY TO BRING IN NEW TALENT ?

VH & PL: Absolutely. The agility of the Loft also holds on the diversity of profiles that we bring in. These can be Viners, YouTubers, journalists, screenwriters, …

TNG: IT TURNS OUT THAT PUBLICIS LOFT WAS ALREADY THE NAME OF AN INITIATIVE IN NEW ZEALAND SEVEN YEARS AGO. DID YOU LEARN FROM THIS EXPERIENCE ?

VH & PL: Not all all, as it was a very different thing. But they did find a cool name !

TNG: HOW WOULD YOU SAY THAT PUBLICIS CONSEIL IS DIFFERENT TODAY THAN IT WAS TEN YEARS AGO ?

VH & PL: Just come and see for yourself !

Valérie Henaff

Publicis Conseil

CEO

Linkedin | Twitter

Patrick Lara

Publicis Conseil

General Manager

Linkedin | Twitter

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