Essential Planning Skills

Next Courses: Autumn Course Starts 30th October 2019

(Waitlist Only)

This is one of our most popular courses. Course tutors are the experts in each field and include Shekhar Deshpande of Facebook, Zoe Scaman, David Wilding of Twitter, Neil Godber of JWT, Phil Barden and Julian Saunders.  This is a course with a difference. We want to focus the course on practising the Principles of Planning rather than just learning them. Our ambition is to arm you with ‘cheat sheets’ that will help you put the principles into action the minute you walk out the door.

Who is it aimed at?

This course is ideally suited for Planners and Strategists with 2 years+ of experience in the industry. It is designed for Strategists from a variety of disciplines – be it brand planning, digital planning, channel planning, engagement planning. It is also suited for Strategists with specialist experience who would like a more well-rounded view of Strategy, even though they may have spent more than five years in business.

What will you learn?

As with any APG training course this modular course mixes the theory and and practice of planning and is highly interactive, enabling you to take away tools and approaches and use them immediately in your day-to-day job.


Our ambition is that rather than blow you away with awesomeness, we will arm you with ‘cheat sheets’ that will help you put the principles into action the minute you walk out the door. We daresay you should remember (at least) the best bits a year after we have finished with you.

How have we chosen our modules?

We have drawn upon a panel of industry experts across Planning disciplines (in other words, old and classic ones as well as young and cool ones). With their help, we have identified the core areas that would be relevant to all strategists, across disciplines.

Course Content & Modules
Week 1 - 30th October 2019

Module 1: Getting to your one big marketing objective

Tutor: Zoe Scaman

Module 2: Identifying the basis for your strategy

Tutor: Zoe Scaman

Week 2 - 6th November 2019

Module 3: How to have powerful and enduring Brand Ideas

Tutor: Shekhar Deshpande, Facebook

Module 4: Unearthing and profiting from insights

Tutor: Shekhar Deshpande, Facebook

Week 3 - 13th November 2019

Module 3: 21st century Brand thinking

Tutor: Julian Saunders, Joined-up Company

Module 4: The practical side of Behavioural Economics

Tutor: Phil Barden, Decoded

Week 4 - 20th November 2019

Module 7: Writing a creative brief without writing one

Tutor: Lucy Jameson, Uncommon

Module 8: Briefing and working with creative people: as told by somebody creative

Tutor: Dave Masterman, VCCP

Week 5 - 27th November 2019

Module 9: Effectiveness

Tutor: Neil Godber, JWT


Module 10: Channel Planning: The principles of getting your idea out there successfully

Tutor: David Wilding, Twitter

Week 6 - 4th December 2019

Module 11: Understanding people through (quant) data

Tutor: Sam Fowler, Craft Media

*Modules are subject to change


"Great overview of the Planning process – great for highlighting room for improvement and getting inspiration.  Helped put all of the pieces together."

- Planner, Integrated Agency


"Really well thought out structure and outstanding teachers – covered all the areas I had questions on as a planner."

- Planner, Creative Agency


"Incredibly useful – especially when putting our newly learned skills to the test with practical applications."

- Planner, Digital Agency


"Great breadth of content brought alive by a multitude of approaches and models, and made accessible through carefully thought out practical exercises."

- Planner, Digital Agency
Course Details
When is it?

Next session: Starts 30th October 2019 (Waitlist Only)

Where is it?

adam&eveDDB, 12 Bishops Bridge Road, London, W2 6AA

What are the hours?

The course will run for 6 weeks. On Wednesday afternoons. You will need to allocate time between 1.15pm and 6pm, please note our early start on Xth November (See Below). There will be 11 modules in all.


22.5 hours – MRS CPD accreditation 18 hours


What is the Cost?

£985+VAT  (APG Membership required)

Course Tutors

David has spent over 20 years in the creative discipline and has previously worked at agencies such as JWT, BBH, Fallon and DDB UK. This gives him the unique insight of having received many briefs from planners over the years.

Dave Masterman

Creative Director

David is one of the best media planners in London. He has a particular interest in behavioural theory, a fascination with neuro-marketing and a mild obsession with trying to catapult brands into the heart of popular culture. He has recently jumped ship from PHD to run planning at Twitter.

David Wilding

Director of Planning

Julian Saunders has worked as a strategist in most disciplines and recently in The Zoo at Google, where his role was to advise clients about effective marketing on digital platforms. He works directly for clients and specialises in running strategic workshops for them. Previous roles include: CEO of Red Cell, Non-Executive Planning Director of Good Technology, Executive planning Director of McCann-Erickson and Planning Director of Ogilvy. He publishes regularly, mostly in Market Leader (the quarterly journal of The Marketing Society), blogs at and was editor of The Communications Challenge (APG 2004) a pioneering textbook for planners about the impact of the digital revolution”

Julian Saunders

The Joined Up Company

Lucy read History at Oxford, before starting work in advertising for BMP DDB. Over nearly 20 years, she worked her way from grad trainee to Global Head of Strategy for DDB. She then joined Grey and was promoted to CEO in 2015. Under her tutelage Grey became IPA Effectiveness agency of the year for the first time and the agency got 9/9 in Campaign’s School Report. In 2017 she co-founded Uncommon, a creative studio that builds brands for clients as diverse as WWF, ITV, Ovo, Habito, Ecover, Nike to William Grant & Sons. Uncommon also create brands themselves including their sustainable coffee pod business,

Lucy Jameson


Neil is a top planner, formerly of BBH and now running Planning in JWT London. He is multi-awarded for at APG Creative Strategy Awards and a winner of the Grand Prix for Dixons in 2011 and an expert in all things effective.

Neil Godber

Head of Planning

Phil has over 25 years client-side brand management experience. After 16 years with Unilever, rising to Marketing VP, he worked at Diageo and T-Mobile. Whilst responsible for T-Mobile’s brand positioning and development around Europe he became a client of decode marketing consultancy and first encountered 'decision Science‘. He is now one of very few experts to combine a practitioner's perspective with a profound knowledge of decision Science.

Phil Barden

Owner and Managing Director
Decode Marketing Ltd

Sam Fowler has previously worked atVizeum, Goodstuff Sommunications and has recently joined Craft Media from MediaCom where he was Associate Strategy Director. Across his career he has worked with clients such as Coca-Cola, Sky & Spotify.

Sam Fowler

Craft Media

Shekhar has led local and global Planning roles for JWT in three continents. He is passionate about mentoring and developing young talent.

Shekhar Deshpande

Head of Strategy and Global Accounts, EMEA

Zoe is all about variety and never sitting still - having been a digital planner, a brand strategist and a business consultant, she has also worked on opposite sides of world in London, Sydney and New York. In 2011, she was named in the Top 50 worldwide emerging talent portfolio at Cannes and has gone on to work with a multitude of global brands. She now freelances outside of the agency world but remains plugged in through mentoring, teaching and the odd special project.

Zoe Scaman

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