If you haven't read Dan Kennedy's great book, No BS Direct Marketing, you're missing a terrific learning opportunity!
One of my favorite parts is on page 6. It reads:
Big Company's Agenda for Advertising & Marketing
1. Please/appease its board of directors (most of whom know zip about advertising and marketing, but have lots of opinions).
2. Please/appease its stockholders
3. Look good, look appropriate to Wall Street
4. Look good, appropriate to media
5. Build brand identity
6. Win awards for advertising
7. Sell something
1. Sell something. Now.