WHAT 3 SKILLS SHOULD EVERY GOOD PLANNER POSSESS?
Being ‘agile’ or ‘empathic’ are pretty much fundamental to the industry and to the role, respectively.
Also, I don’t believe character traits exist in a vacuum, so I’ve gone a little broader...
Courage & curiosity - You’ve been hired to bring a fresh perspective. To spot that sparkling nugget of truth that’s imperceptible to the naked eye. Don’t conform to the norm. Madness can be the winning ticket. The best planners are able to transform the crazy into the only sensible option.
Brevity & timing - Give yourself this one rule: you have one chance to get your idea across. If it works, you’re a hero, if you mistime it, it’ll get lost in the mix. Wait for the right moment to pounce. Good planners choose their words wisely, and should be masters of timing.
Realism & longevity - We are in constant flux. We know this. But that doesn’t mean people aren’t people anymore. The best planners I’ve worked with know how to adapt to new environments, but they always keeps things relevant and grounded in humanity.
WHAT ARE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE PERFECT AGENCY (IF YOU COULD CREATE IT FROM SCRATCH)?
1. A realistic consideration of behaviour change.
Want to truly create meaningful conversations between your brand and your customer?
Start here. Give them something they actually need. Add positive value to their everyday. Be the active agent because, ultimately, we are among the few with that power.
2. Giving a voice to each person in the room.
We all talk about being collaborative and, ultimately, that means truly accepting that good ideas can come from anywhere. Planner has a great copyline? Use it. Account handler unearths a blinding insight? Go with it. Don’t restrict yourselves to your roles. Be flexible, and embrace diversity.
3. Personality over process.
I think it’s important for an agency to understand what they do - and why - and to develop that to the core. Building an integrated campaign is great, but what’s important is for people to spot your mark on the work. The videos, the copy lines, the look-and-feel, and even the music selection. Build your own, consistent brand.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR CAREER HIGHLIGHT SO FAR?
Contributing to an already fantastic office culture at Forever Beta. It’s incredibly pleasing to create ideas that stick, and that become household activities in the long-run.
I guess it’s one more way for us planners to show our creativity.
WHAT MAKES YOU CRINGE WHENEVER YOU THINK OF IT?
Buzzwords like “phygital”. I have no problem with the theory, but the expression gives me the chills. Brrrr...
IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT YOUR JOB, WHAT WOULD IT BE?
Choose the music that goes into all our work. I’m a bit of a freak in that department. My A&R days have stuck with me, sadly.
WHICH BOOKS ARE MOST IMPORTANT TO YOU AND WHY?
I’m going to restrict myself to three here…(ouch!)
Michel Foucault - Madness and Civilization: A History Of Insanity In The Age Of Reason
Foucault’s account of madness is a truly inspiring example of someone thinking outside the box and, especially, of a human being asking the right questions about themselves and society. What is madness? Why is someone seen to be mad? What is the norm, and why should it be so?
Robert Cialdini - Persuasion: The Psychology Of Influence
The not-so-hidden tactics of persuasion that we all use on each other...all the time. It’s particularly relevant to marketing & advertising, but most people usually cite Thinking, Fast And Slow. This is a much more pleasant read. I’m surprised more planners don’t mention it.
Umberto Eco - The Name Of The Rose
Essentially, this is a Sherlock-style murder mystery set in an Italian monastery during the fourteenth century. The story is endlessly surprising, but what is most interesting about it is how it sheds light on the cyclicality of man. It gives the reader a reassuring or terrifying feeling - depending on your view - of how life and cultures are on a constant repeat. Or is that just me?
POKEMON GO OR A NICE WALK IN THE PARK?
A walk in the park to try and understand why people are using Pokemon Go.
Check out more from our Planners Unmasked series