Big meeting, big year ahead – The Report

Posted in Events, on January 11, 2019

Great to see so many of you – 140 in total – for our start of the year members meeting on 15th January 2019.

Our aim, as ever, is to start the year with positive momentum, a raft of useful events and some useful guidance, or at least food for thought, for your businesses in the year ahead.

We have published details of our first events of the year, including The Future of Advertising, the Tokyo London Advertising Forum 2019 and the APA Masterclass, along with meetings for our VFX, Editing, Music and Sound Design groups to fix objectives for each in 2019 and a meeting of our new Immersive Group, as we seek to support and promote the opportunities for members in VR/AR/Creative Tech.

Of course we are in challenging times, not least through political chaos but there is opportunity out there and we invited two speakers to focus on that Tuesday morning, to bring new perspectives to the membership and help you in your business planning for 2019.

Marc Nohr is the CEO of the agency Fold 7, a founder of Kitcatt Nohr and the Chair of the IPA’s commercial leadership group.

Marc presented on ten reasons to be fearful and ten reasons to be cheerful in 2019, with the greater emphasis on the many opportunities for creative businesses. Among Marc’s reasons to be cheerful, he reminded us that change was not new, explained how organisations, even organisations that have a creative output, are inherently conservative and shared his knowledge and thinking from business academics and authors, of which our favourite was from the computer scientist Alan Kay:
“The Best Way to Predict The Future Is To Invent It.”
Marc is summarising his presentation in an article for Campaign and we will share that with you following publication.

Tina Fegent is a procurement expert, Chair of the CIPS Marketing Group, did procurement in-house at O2, GSK and other clients and then worked at Grey and Lowe.

We invited Tina to present because we need to engage with procurement, since it:

  • has become increasingly influential, with it said now that procurement is taking marketing spend decisions in advertisers, rather than marketing departments.
  • represents an opportunity to win work.
  • is an opportunity to develop a relationship with a client, which is an objective for most APA members.

We discussed what we mean by procurement – the department inside a client that is charged with reducing the cost of everything the advertiser buys (they may utilise outside consultancies but this is to distinguish what they do from what a cost controller does).

We looked at the approach of procurement – increasingly to want a small roster of companies, who they can get discounts from. We discussed why we don’t think that works, how they would get the best value by using the whole market and competition across that, and when they select and engage roster companies through a series of questions that are incapable of providing any useful information they lose anything that would facilitate a useful comparison of value.

But we have recently changed our view of procurement and Tina endorsed that view – we have to treat it as an opportunity to ensure we get the work and it does not go elsewhere and whatever the defects we see in their approach, the prize at the end of the process is, in general, still worth playing for.

Tina has played an important role in helping production co’s and agencies understand procurement and vice versa.

We will be providing more food for thought at The Future of Advertising, on 6th March 2019.