Category Archives: advertising

Will driverless cars signal a new opportunity for roadside posters?

Driverless car by Maria Ly FlickrThe UK is set to allow driverless cars on the roads of Britain from January 2015. Business secretary Vince Cable said computer-controlled vehicles will be trialled in three cities next year, and the government will be making a £10m fund available for developing the technology in the UK. But what’s this mean for the out of home (OOH) industry?

Alarmists are likely already jumping at the chance to declare this the beginning of the end for roadside OOH sites. After all, if no one’s driving the car, who’s looking at the road and the adverts around it?


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Is creativity being replaced?

Creativity by JD Hancock FlickrMuch has been made about increasing prominence of technology vendors in the media sphere, with the Wall Street Journal being one among many to suggest that creativity has taken a back seat. This has been an industry-wide debate for some time, with marketers, creatives, agencies and vendors alike coming forward to defend human input within the marketing process.

In reality, we all know that machines cannot replace imagination, but could technology in fact be encouraging creative thought?

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4 reasons native advertising is exploiting brands

nativeAs content marketing continues to take over the popular marketing psyche, native advertising in particular is fast-becoming the most popular conception of the practice.

Native advertising has been billed as something of a panacea for brands who are seeing diminishing returns from traditional advertising that is blatant, irrelevant and overtly salesy. The promise of native advertising for brands has been the opportunity to access audiences that can be subtly exposed to branded content that has been published ‘natively’ and are therefore increasingly likely to pay attention. Off the back of this promise, a $44billion industry (source: Custom Content Council) has developed, with publishers, agencies, content creators and technology providers all clamouring to join the goldrush of this new opportunity.

However, whilst the spike in interest around native advertising has led to all kinds of collective back-patting, no one is able to answer the most important question of all – is native advertising making any money for the brands that do it? Read More »

The opportunities your business and brand are missing

women SheSaysIt is great to see the subject of women and gender balance has become mainstream in our industry – even The Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity significantly upped its game this year, with the launch of the ‘See it Be It‘ programme, and a commitment to increase numbers of female judges. But in our eyes this still isn’t enough.

The industry has been paying lip service to the problem of late, and appears to see it purely as an issue of equality: “We get more women into senior roles and the job is done.” Right? Wrong. It is more than this – it is actually good business. We persuaded Cannes Lions to let us host the panel discussion ‘Why 80% of your advertising budget is wasted’.

If you are reading that thinking, ‘Wow, 80% sounds huge. Surely that can’t be right,’ then let me explain something you probably don’t want to hear. The way we operate as an industry is broken, and if we don’t fix it soon, we’re in for some big trouble ahead. Read More »

Want to get ahead in advertising? Find a coach

women, by State Library of Victorial CollectionAn issue of the Evening Standard last week contained a pretty depressing piece highlighting findings from the ONS that found the gender pay gap is widening in London.

It reported that men are being paid 13% more than women, with women receiving only 86.8p per hour for every pound paid to men, a decrease from 89.1p the year before.

Talking Talent, a coaching consultancy that focuses on developing female talent, has delved a little deeper into these stats. Read More »

How going back to the source can awaken our creativity

Imperial War MuseumAll too often in the creative industry our focus rests on chasing the Next Big Thing. But what happens when we take a step back and work from the starting point of ‘old’?

As a sound designer, I am often approached with one of two challenges:

1.Make something sound new, different, unusual


2. make a contemporary voice sound like an artefact from the past, be that the 70s, 50s, or 30s. Read More »

The writing is on the wall for TV too

TV by Lubs Mary. FlickrMeasurement within print advertising has come under fire recently, criticism that online advertising has been seeing for sometime – not least from chair of Thinkbox, Tess Alps.

This is not the first time that transparency across online advertising has been compared unfavourably to other channels, and it is often TV that is held up as a shining example of an advertising model, but we often forget where it falls down and where online excels in terms of measurement and accountability. Read More »

It may be right. It may be good. But is it interesting?

Interest by Simon CunninghamDavid Ogilvy said this about advertising:

‘You can’t bore people into buying your product, you can only interest them into buying it.’

Here is the same mantra with the key word underlined by me:

‘You can’t bore people into buying your product, you can only interest them into buying it.’

As my advertising career began with Ogilvy, I have been interested in ‘interesting’ for a very long time.

In today’s world, is advertising interesting?

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Infographic: Marketing slogans over time

cokeDo you know which global drink brand’s first marketing slogan from the 1900s was ‘The Great National Temperance Beverage’? Or where the ‘Guinness is good for you’ tagline came from in 1929? In today’s infographic we look at some of the world’s most famous brands and how their marketing slogans have evolved over time.  Read More »

The one big thing media companies need to change

WillHaywardRemember back in the days of print advertising, when everything was so… uncomplicated? Newspapers and magazines offered huge scale, landing on the doorsteps of keen consumers all over the world, every day of the week. Drinking their morning coffee, husbands and wives would flick through the paper and, between reading articles, learn all about the latest products and offers advertisers promised them.

The business model was equally simple. Publishers would employ a team of excellent editors to create content consumers would find interesting, then work with the circulation team to get it in front of the target audience (and charge enough to cover the cost of printing and distribution), and then hire a large sales team to go pull in as much advertising as possible. Of course, I’m simplifying a little here, but the value proposition for advertisers was fundamentally access to audience: “We can get your message in front of these people”. Read More »