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NEWS They came, they saw, they led. As the last of the mini-burgers and veggie wraps were polished off (hands off our lunch, McKinsey), the advertising matters team ran away to report on the day’s big event, already described variously on twitter as ‘starting’, ‘interesting’ and ‘at Kings Place’. Cue the video. It was quite a morning. Keith Weed (AKA ‘king of marketing’), ‘Sweary’ Matt Brittin and Cilla ‘head girl’ Snowball took turns to describe a future for brands, media and agencies. ‘Adapt or die’ (er, we’ll adapt please Keith) was the message to brands faced with massive urbanisation, emerging markets and the necessity of sustainability. Cilla used her leaping lady’s privilege (‘accept my proposal or I can fine you a silk dress’) to ask ‘death or glory?’ Thankfully it was glory – we’d miss her greatly. Advertising has the army, the ammo and very nearly a battle plan. If we didn’t know better, we’d think she was talking to us. Finally Matt - gold medal for presentation, if not rowing - reminded us that digital is an enabler of our traditional media, not the enemy. “We’re really, truly, very good at this”, he said (ad matters has gone through pre-copy clearance). Now let’s dare to think bigger and bolder. Then it was Question Time. Or Time For Some Questions according to our copyright lawyer. A venerable - and yes Mr Vaizey, ever so slightly grumpy - panel took to discussing ad-land, Government and, well, tobacco. Our Minister declared his love for self-regulation ASA-style; his pride in the UK creative industries and sent Lord Bell off to Mumsnet for what should be the livechat of the decade. Wrap, coffee, and Parallel Panel – no more sitting around, it was time for audience participation…

Quite big. Quite clever. It doesn’t take much to get the UK’s authoritative voice on advertising reaching for their Casio, so when AA President Gavin Patterson chose LEAD 2012 to make the case that advertising’s growth is being chronically under-sold, Karen got to explain what the data show. So just how many jobs can advertising add? ‘Really quite a lot’, said Credos. ‘Hang on’, said The Work Foundation. And everyone agreed that 20,000 seemed like a very sensible place to start: spend is up 4% y-o-y and you don’t need a pointy-head to get the correlation between adspend, employment and GDP growth, right? And the President’s view? Think bigger and make the UK a magnet for a marcomms business world-wide. Like a fridge, but with better ideas and a catchy slogan. Elsewhere, the Telegraph’s Benedict Brogan talked economics and “learned a whole new language”. Not lost in translation was a sense of confidence, optimism and a desire to get


brands spending again from a room which, we’re guessing, leaned towards media and agencies. Those who prefer strategy to, erm, stat-e-gy (we were up early) should get in touch. Global growth hubs don’t make themselves and we’ve got 20,000 jobs to find.

Privacy on parade. Another day, another headline about data, privacy, cookies and such-like. Except, having asked if the end of privacy is nigh, the Guardian’s Alan Rusbridger walked downstairs and joined a debate on advertising’s role, rights and responsibilities in a digital age. “What’s advertising these days anyway?” asked Andy Hart. And if you think that’s confusing, wait until Keith Weed’s ‘connected computer on wheels’ starts printing you coupons as you drive to the shops. Lots of violent agreement on education, education, education for young and old, and the threat of dinosaurs in Brussels. Euro-lobbyists can walk the streets safely, it’s a metaphor. One thing’s for sure, a single, strong industry voice is much in demand, good news for the DMA (mammoth, but not woolly) who are leading an all-inclusive industry charge. Here, if you’re interested. Oh and Cookies? Chris Combemale doesn’t delete his. Neither does Bruce Daisley. Andy Hart uses different browsers for different purposes (Andy?). And Guy Phillipson uses InPrivate browsing…when he needs to. No. Conclusions. Drawn.

The beginning of the end of a new beginning. We know he’s statesmanlike but surely AA Chair Andrew McGuinness isn’t about to ‘do a Putin’? Erm no. No, he’s not. The man that puts the Mmmmm into BMB reminded the audience that while a Chair’s work is never done, you do at least get to leave after three years. The good news, Andrew reckons, is that he’ll be leaving the AA fighting fit, more capable and more ambitious for its industry than ever. Thanks Andrew, we love you too. And as for ‘asking more difficult questions of the industry’, could anyone tell us what happened here? Theme of the day? One story. One voice. One data-source. One vision. Once in a Lifetime. One…is the magic number. And one person really fired-out the facts that matter. Thank you CiIla. Next time we all need to make the case for ad-land, we’ll know where to start. The final word? To our President, of course, our leader at LEAD and never grumpy. “This feels like the day when advertising gets to its feet and starts selling itself just as well as it sells everything else…if you want to play a part, I swear that Tim Lefroy will take your call.” Come on, it’s good to talk. Receiving this indirectly? Want to share your industry gossip on a confidential basis? Fancy buying the editor a pint? Contact us. You can Unsubscribe here, but we recommend that you don’t. Ever. -ends-

advertising matters  

LEAD 2012 special

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