So, why then, would a management consulting firm like Accenture want to move “down-market” into programmatic ad buying to play in a lower-cost arena and potentially devalue their brand?

One possible reason might be that this move helps consultancies to execute on the strategic direction they put forth.

It’s insights, strategy and execution across targeting, optimization, channel-planning, metric selection and more.

Perhaps the consultancies believe executing programmatic actually is highly strategic when done right and that it’s just not being done right often enough.

These two reasons present good rationale for the move into programmatic, however, consultancies may be repeating history if they’re not careful in how they approach this new practice.

Moving down-market is a mistake the holding companies made 20 years ago as they took valuable brands such as Leo Burnett, Y and JWT and spun off media-only agencies Starcom, Mediaedge and Mindshare.

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