It's been a couple of busy days since the conference but I really wanted to tell you all about the Guardian Changing Advertising Summit 2009.
I attended the Guardian Changing Advertising Summit 2009 on Monday the 19th of October which was held at the Hilton Tower Bridge hotel in London. The event itself was stacked with an impressive board of speakers who did not disappoint, and their frank and straightforward approaches to the presentations were not only refreshing but very insightful and interesting.
I had 2 clear favourites of the day, the first being the presentation on 'making the most out of the economic revival: Embracing new approaches, increasing ROI' which where Chief Operation officer of Billets, Nick manning took an interesting stance that creativity should be embraced to have a positive effect on ROI for clients, and not be stifled by thinking too much about the bottom line as Marketing communications are changing rapidly and new opportunities need to be creatively approached to maximise your potential in new avenues of marketing.
I also enjoyed the Afternoon Keynote by Roy Sutherland, Vice-chairman of OgilvyOne and president of IPA which talked about attracting business and maintaining the creative, commercial and competitive edge in a recession. He gave a clear and fun anecdote based talk on the subject which spoke firstly about how the companies that succeed in a recession are the ones who see that marketing is a key element in their business and will further push their marketing during times of recession, when all in all the competition is less and the prices of key advertising and marketing practices are less because of this reduction in competition. This happens as many other companies who don't understand the value of marketing will cut costs to save money, always first with their marketing budgets which in the future will only make it harder to reach your customers.
My favourite analogy from the presentation was where he spoke about two ways that companies advertise; they use the 'dandelion strategy' and the 'elephant strategy'. The 'elephant strategy' is one that many companies with less forward thinking and creativity with their marketing strategies and may be centred around older more traditional forms of advertising that they are comfortable with and where they will have one strategy, put all their time and effort (and budget) into it so that they can make sure that it works. This is much like in reproduction; the elephant will spend a long time creating one offspring which will hopefully be successful. This is not a bad strategy to take but means that you will find it harder in the future to explore the new strategies of marketing when the traditional forms don't work out to be as successful as you had hoped. The 'dandelion strategy' is an analogy of how some companies approach advertising like a dandelion approaches continuation of the species, rather than concentrate all their efforts on one single seed which may not succeed, they use many seeds to ensure that there is more chance of success from at least one of the seeds. The dandelion strategy are companies who are willing to test and try new things and will spend parts of their marketing budgets testing new areas and avenues of marketing, which could in the future be key marketing avenues for the company, so trying lots of different things will evidently in the future mean that success will be had in one of more areas. These are the successful companies as they understand that times change, markets change and consumers change, and will move with new strategies to try new things so will be an the forefront of new avenues while competitors on the 'Elephant strategy' may be left behind.
I enjoyed the event immensely, it was very well organised and the talks were interesting and engaging and I will most definitely be attending again next year!
For more information about what you missed check out the Guardian Advertising summit 2009 site.