Episode #133: Interview with Tim Williams

Ron and Ed interviewed Tim Williams, a noted author, international speaker, and presenter for major advertising associations, agency networks, universities, and business conferences worldwide. Tim is author of the books, “Take a Stand for Your Brand: Building a Great Agency Brand from the Inside Out,” ranked by Amazon as one of the top ten books on brand building; “Defining the Agency Brand,” published by the American Association of Advertising Agencies is regarded as the standard in agency brand development; and his latest book is Positioning for Professionals: How Professional Knowledge Firms Can Differentiate Their Way to Success. Tim is a major thought leader and consultant to advertising agencies worldwide, specializing in pricing, business model innovation, positioning, and strategy.

Segment One - Ron's Questions

With Hollywood about to release CHPS - The Movie, is this proof that ideas are more valuable than their execution?

In your book, you say, "In business, imitation is not the sincerest form of flattery, it is just lazy," why is that?

Every value prop falls in somewhere in following three areas: points of parity, points of relevance, and points of differentiation, please explain these ideas.

How is a firm defined by what it is NOT?

Segment Two - Ed's Questions

Click to listen to Tim's first appearance

What are the four sides of the strategic box or brand boundaries?

Other than calling which one do professional firms struggle with the most.

What is the complexity tax or diversification discount?

Explain Magic work vs Logic work. Does the line between them shift?

Segment Three - Ron's Questions

How are AI, deep learning and other technologies unfolding in the advertising agency space?

How is it encroaching on the Magic work?

Five holding companies own 85 percent of advertising agencies, are they innovating? If so, how?

Do you see agencies making progress in pricing?

Do you see agencies making progress on getting rid of timesheets?

Some of the world's best know brands were not created with the help of an advertising agency, explain the effect of this on agencies.

Segment Four - Listener Question

Justin asks, “As agency leadership, how should you balance the need for specialization (in order to grow faster) with synthesizing other disciplines to come up with greater innovation?”

Do you view more ideas coming from independent thinking or brainstorming meetings?

Do you see more agencies getting involved in behavioral economics?

What are working on?


Ed Kless

Ed Kless joined Sage in July of 2003 and is currently the senior director of partner development and strategy. He develops and delivers curriculum for Sage business partners on the art and practice of small business consulting. Courses include: Sage Consulting Academy, Business Strategy and Customer Experience Workshops. Ed is the author of The Soul of Enterprise: Dialogues on Business in the Knowledge Economy, a compendium of a few of the episodes of his VoiceAmerica talk-show The Soul of Enterprise: Business in the Knowledge Economy with Ron Baker, founder of the VeraSage Institute where Ed is also a senior fellow.