"In advertising you stay young, I say that from my own experience".

Urs Schneider, founder and owner of Mediaschneider, faces our "13 Questions".


1. what inspired you to enter the communications industry?

Actually, I wanted to become an accountant. So I looked for a job through an ad. The ad never appeared. Publicitas hired me right away, and that was my first step into advertising. I've never regretted it, the communications industry is fascinating.


2. how has advertising changed since you started?

The most impressive change has been in the media. The first TV commercial was broadcast on February 1, 1965. 18 years later, the first local radio stations went on the air. Without the courage of Roger Schawinski, the SRG monopoly would have lasted for a long time. In 1998, Google was founded, followed by Facebook in 2004. The digital revolution has changed media usage and created new advertising opportunities. But the most important thing has not changed: creativity remains crucial to success. Creative ideas and their media implementation provide the decisive competitive advantage.


3. what distinguishes the advertising and communications industry from other industries?

You can experience the success of your own ideas. New challenges are on the table every day. Advertising moves with the times and reinvents itself again and again. You stay young in the process, I say that from my own experience. Hardly any other industry brings this spirit.


4. does the advertising industry receive enough appreciation for its work?

No! The communications industry creates over 22,000 jobs, generates 6.6 billion in net sales - and deserves more recognition. The reputation of "advertisers" among the public is not overwhelming. Perhaps it's because people perceive advertising as dumb, boring and annoying. Too sweeping a judgment, considering that today's media offerings would not be as diverse without advertising. It's up to us to improve this image through ingenious, entertaining campaigns.


5. what do you see as the biggest challenge for advertising at the moment?

Advertising must arouse interest, and that includes the younger generations. Fortunately, there are always campaigns that deserve attention and acceptance. But from my point of view, the industry still has a lot of room for improvement in terms of creativity.


6. what do you think about advertising bans in general?

They are problematic in various respects. On the one hand, they hinder competition, and on the other, they patronize consumers. As long as products are legally available on the market, they should also be allowed to be advertised. I make an exception for children; here, self-restrictions work very well in practice.


Why aren't there more women in the top echelons of the Swiss advertising industry?

From experience, I really enjoy working with women because they often have a different and, in many cases, better perspective. It would be desirable if there were even more women in the top echelons of the advertising industry.


8. Does the classic agency model have a long-term future?

Yes! Those who can't keep up with digital development will have difficulties. Agencies must not only use the latest technical possibilities, but also be able to develop and implement integral strategies. Advertisers are primarily looking for investment security and customized solutions for their individual marketing. The optimization of online and offline campaigns using real-time data is becoming more important. The competencies in data and analytics will be even more decisive in the future for targeting, budget allocation and forecasting.


9. what do you think about owned media?

Today, an absolutely important channel for many companies. I think you also have to look at the significance in a broader sense, in the sense of "converged media". A strategy that includes paid, earned and owned media is more effective and brings the necessary reach to address new customer groups.


10. what does your private TV consumption behavior look like?

I don't watch TV every day. So my TV consumption is far below average. My favorite shows are news, discussion and documentary programs, and on Sunday evenings "Tatort" or other thrillers and selected films. Otherwise, I prefer to read newspapers or listen to the radio.


11. a buzz word that gets on your nerves?

"Agile!" The Agile Marketing Manifesto (2012 San Francisco) is already eight years old and still looking for followers. I think successful marketing has always been customer-centric and flexibility is and remains an indispensable success factor. Countless experiments in advertising, however, hardly contribute to brand value, but rather create confusion. Agile is nothing more than old wine in new skins.


12. what was the best decision of your life?

Professionally, it was the founding of Mediaschneider AG almost twenty years ago.


13. what do you regret?

That I didn't start my own business much earlier.

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