Category Archives: agencies

Want better diversity? Embrace the Power Part-Timers

I’ve blogged before about how marketing agencies are very light on diversity, particularly in senior positions. I’ve also blogged about why agencies should be embracing #PowerPartTimers. But the two rants are connected. An agency-standard 50 hour week plus nightmare commute simply isn’t do-able for many Mums, for the carers of elderly parents or for the […]
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creative marketing communications is not a commodity to be project managed

In the age of Prince2, Basecamp, Slack, Trello and so on, the client facing role in agencies is increasingly merging with that of Project Manager. Clients are emailed, not called. Work is briefed, reviewed and presented back with minimal (actual) face time. Now this might be very handy if you’re in Leeds and your biggest […]
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Marketing, your #TimesUp

The advertising industry last week joined the #TimesUp movement with #TimesUpAdvertising. I’d respectfully suggest that it should read #TimesUpMarketingAgenciesAndTheirClients. Over the last 19 years (!) I’ve worked for four different marketing agencies and freelanced for many more and I’ve ended up with a love-hate relationship with the marketing industry. I love the speed at which […]
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six months in

After six and a half years freelance I’m coming up to six months in at Bloom (I started at the beginning of January but couldn’t announce it until February for various reasons). I’ve been rather lax on the blogging front since I joined Bloom because there’s loads of things I’d like to write about but […]
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diversity = better ideas

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about diversity in the marketing world recently. Agencies in particular (and particularly outside London) seem to be staffed predominantly by youngish middle class white people, which isn’t terribly reflective of the diverse Great British Public that we’re supposed to flogging stuff to. There’s also lots of research that says that […]
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the Planner’s 12 days of Christmas

On the 12 days of Christmas, the Planner gave to the Agency: twelve propositions, eleven customer journeys, ten creative briefs, nine internal meetings, eight marcoms workshops, seven big brand pitches, six brand personas, loads of PowerPoint, four brand positionings, three focus groups, two conference calls, and a client away-day by the sea.

*everyone* really is totally just winging it, all the time

In May 2014, Guardian writer Oliver Burkeman wrote an excellent article titled Everyone is totally just winging it, all the time. It was a very reassuring piece for anyone who suffers from a touch of imposter syndrome from time to time: We’re all mini-New York Timeses or White Houses, energetically projecting an image of calm proficiency, while […]
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Planning needs to go back to the Old School

I increasingly feel like Planning as a discipline/specialism within agencies is over-complicating things. Never mind thinking about what’s changed since Planning’s inception in the 1960’s, so much has shifted in the UK even just the last 20 years. Back in the 90’s (yes, I’ve been a Planner for that long), clients liked seeing the thinking behind the Big Idea – in pitch […]
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why is Northern AgencyLand flying Down Under?

To fanfare, a Leeds agency officially opened their Sydney office last week. Another Leeds agency has had an office in Sydney for a while and according to my sources a third is thinking about it. Meanwhile, nearly every agency bod I meet seems to know someone who has moved down under in the last 18 […]
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deja vu watching The Gamechangers

Last Tuesday BBC2 aired their new feature-length drama The Gamechangers, about the 2003 legal feud between Rockstar who make Grand Theft Auto and an evangelical moralising lawyer who believed that violent games were poisoning a generation of teens. Writing in last weekend’s Sunday Times, Matt Rudd gave the drama a pretty rubbish review, with what he called a hilariously […]
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