I was glad to hear my friends at GCI had won the huge Dell agency review as part of the winning WPP team. I was glad on a personal level – since I’ve worked with these folks and believe they are peerless in terms of social/digital media chops – but also on a professional level. I think Dell’s bold move to have WPP build a dedicated, integrated agency team is a winning recipe. As outlined by GCI’s Paul Walker in his blog post, there are no agencies that can now bring to bear the wide range of expertise and experience related to digital media. In fact, few can claim good depth and breadth even if they include sister companies and partners. To really do the job right – leveraging all the social media tools and emerging applications to execute a coordinated strategy across retail, marketing, PR and advertising – you need a lot of brainpower and muscle. Dell has become a leader in this area by working hard to develop and implement an integrated digital program across marketing and communications, not just one-off projects. [Full disclosure, I was part of the team at Dell that developed and implemented the social network strategy.] WPP has the people and track record to deliver on this ambitious promise, at least on paper. It will be interesting to see how this account turns out. Either way, this may be the model of the future for agency relationships as companies strive to ride the bumpy digital highway to marketing nirvana.