Category Archives: trends

shoppers are changing faster than the shops are

Every possible media outlet has run some kind of piece recently about how the big supermarkets are dinosaurs and, basically, deserve every bit of ill fortune they might experience. But I’ve yet to read a piece which compares the speed at which shopping habits are changing (i.e. very quickly) with how much time it takes [...]
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Planner or Strategist?

I don’t know what it’s like Inside London, but Outside London the Planning scene seems to me to have changed quite dramatically in the last 18 months. After agencies limped through the recession on a minimal headcount they’ve now staffed up again.  And Planning/Strategy is one of the specialisms that is in growth.  But in many [...]
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on allowing good people to work where and when they work best

There seems to be a movement in the marketing community towards better work-life balance. Whether it’s Chime’s Amelia Torode championing flexible and part-time working for Mums or what seems to be a massive increase in senior staff switching to freelance, it feels like the traditional 10+ hours, 5+ days a week agency model is under [...]
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it’s geting easier to recruit – but will they play along?

While moderating groups to cover off the qual for my own projects I’ve noticed that research attendance has gone up a lot in the last 9 months. I know we’re supposed to be coming out of recession, but attendance at my focus groups is now so enthusiastic that I think I’m going to have to [...]
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do you really need to research this?

There’s been the odd occasion over the last few years when I’ve felt like I’ve been researching something in order to get that box ticked on the client’s project plan, rather than to use fresh insight to move things forward. There’s simply no point in spending money on research if the answer is staring you [...]
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why are so many Planners not doing ad agency Planning anymore?

I’ve been thinking about Planners Who Do Other Things Now. These fall into several subcategories, there’s Planners Who Now Do Something Totally Different But Use Their Planning Skillset, like the Chief Exec of an NHS Trust and the Life Coach I know. Then there’s Planners Who Don’t Work In Ad Agencies Anymore, but instead work [...]
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Style can’t have it both ways

We get The Sunday Times delivered at home and reading their Style section usually results in me ranting over the breakfast table. Style tends to focus on  £100 face creams, the latest exercise crazes, outfits that less than 0.05% of the population can afford and fad diets – the latest being sugar-free, so kale smoothie [...]
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why agencies don’t value the modern meet up enough

I’ve been making an extra effort recently to spend more time catching up with fellow Planners and Strategists (of all types) – and I’ve never come away from a coffee shop, cafe or restaurant without a post-it note full of scribbled ideas and To Dos.  Notes of websites to visit, books to read, new business [...]
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more green shoots but also gatecrashers

I posted a few weeks ago about what I hoped were the first green shoots of recovery I’d spotted.  And since then I’m pleased to report that the local firm who are fitting our new bathroom tell me their enquiries and orders have doubled over the past two months and they’ve had to take on [...]
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retail winners and losers in a heatwave

images via the BBC online and TV forecasts I love all the weather-related retail stories that come out whenever there’s the slightest sign of a heatwave in the UK. It’s a gift for PRs (who are probably sitting on a load of Royal Baby press releases they can’t send out yet) and a fun way [...]
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