I have a client at the moment who refers to the agency team as ‘subject matter experts’. At first I wasn’t sure how I felt about it, but it has really grown on me. It signposts to the client’s marketing team and wider stakeholders not only that we, the agency team, know what we’re talking … Continue reading we should aspire to be seen as ‘subject matter experts’
I wrote 18 months ago about how agency account management was increasingly becoming agency project management and that the art of account handling or client service was being lost. It’s safe to say that the tide has still not turned. I’ve recently worked with an agency to deliver training not only to improve their account … Continue reading why delivering ‘What the client wants’ is a slippery slope
Back in the Noughties/2000’s, almost every big brand boardroom had a Marketing Director. That’s much less the case now, with marketing essentially becoming a ‘soft’ discipline. In 2015, only 35 of the US Fortune 1,000 companies had a marketing director on the executive board. In the FTSE100, the number was only slightly better. I could … Continue reading marketing is losing its seat at the boardroom table
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 … Continue reading creative marketing communications is not a commodity to be project managed
I had an interesting discussion with a senior Creative about propositions the other day, re how ‘creative’ they should be. Since many clients prefer to sign off on a proposition before any creative work begins they have to be well written enough to engage and excite the client – but without going as far as … Continue reading how creative should propositions be?
I’ll have been an Account Planner for 15 years this Summer. Although it’s not up there with the longevity of some planners in London and perhaps Manchester, certainly in my neck of the woods I think I’m now scarily one of the most experienced (at least in years) Planners on the circuit. So much has … Continue reading 15 years a Planner
When I went freelance nearly four years ago I promised myself that from then on I’d try to only work with nice people. Life is just too short to be bullied, harassed or otherwise made to feel rubbish by people you work with. I’m not saying that my previous life as an agency staffer was … Continue reading why being nice matters
There’s been a bit of a hoo-ha in the press today about UKIP’s new outdoor campaign, some executions of which, it’s been suggested, could be interpreted as racist. Rather than paid for by UKIP itself, the media and creative has been funded by Yorkshire entrepreneur and long-term Euro-sceptic Paul Sykes. But is the campaign racist? … Continue reading a view on UKIP’s posters
I've always struggled to understand why business owners feel that their reputation will be somehow enhanced by becoming the focus of a fly-on-the-wall documentary. BBC2's Life in the Freezer Cabinet did nothing for Iceland's positioning and made CEO Malcolm Walker look like an idiot. Which according to a mutual friend is a misrepresentation. the Chief … Continue reading documentaries – is all publicity really good publicity?
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 … Continue reading do you really need to research this?