Jenny Chan 陳詠欣
Apr 13, 2018

Zero or hero? Industry polarised on zero-based budgeting

Clients see it as fiscal discipline. Agencies see it as short-sightedness. As zero-based budgeting makes a comeback, we assess its values and shortcomings.

“2017 for us was not a pretty year, with flat like-for-like, top-line growth,” summarised Martin Sorrell on WPP’s performance in early March, before news of his abrupt resignation broke on 15 April. He placed the blame in part on the parsimony of zero-based budgeters, alongside activist investors, private equity and the impact of technological disruption.

This comic below of a difficult conversation between marketer and CEO fits well with the current imperative around belt-tightening,...

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