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Read this: A Queen of Advertising

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A Queen of Advertising…



BBC sounds music Radio podcasts from BBC Radio 4 it looks like station shops will be reopening in time for the Christmas rush great news for retailers at least and great news for those bits of the media which depend on us buying things like my guess Annette King is one of the biggest names in advertising as the UK chief executive of publicis her clients include McDonald's ASDA Kellogg's and Disney and then has 5000iu spread over 21 different agencies including legendary names like Saatchi and Saatchi but this is being an exceptionally difficult year for advertisements even before covid-19 the industry was enormous structural threats not least from the most powerful companies in human history that Facebook and Google which are basically had companies themselves suspect or get into that.

Welcome to the media show you oversee a huge number of different campaigns of all the adverts of yours at running at the moment.

What's your favourite at the moment? Well, the thing is we have so many and having a favourite probably is a little bit unfair.

I Know Hard one of my favorites which is one of us is the McDonald's Christmas ad in a child and it's the story of a teenage boy and I could see some similarities in that he's basically grumpy teenager and his mum is trying to cheer up your 14-year old in that way live in the UK is the French giant founded in 1926.

It's now the world's third biggest Communications Group when you're doing the huge job that you're doing you're in charge of 5000 or more people.

When did you get?

The chance to be creative and when did you last it now with a pencil and come up with an actual advert that it's not really what I do all have ever done so I grew up in what we call account management which is the source side of things so you're the person management client relationship.

You're the one dealing with all the talent back at the agency to get the ads made or to get the work done.

So you have a role to play actually come up with the ideas yourself and now that I'm in a leadership position responsible for everyone does I do get to be creative in and you can be a creative leader in you go about doing things I still get very involved in in the big pictures.

So why you're not the one coming up with the actual creative ideas.

You get very involved in you know the discussion around which ones are good and great which ones are going to take into the meeting and how you going to present and bring to life so it's it's a wonderful business where you get to be whatever level you are you get to be creative in some way.

The challenges on our huge challenges that you and the industry at large phase I want to convey something of your own story because it's completely fascinating.

I'll be really up on it when you're a kid, did you dream of making efforts? No, I didn't actually I had no real idea about the advertising industry.

You know I'd seen I've seen big as I seen a couple of the rates be parking Sunday whatever it might have been but no I didn't see myself working in advertising it happened.

Slightly accidentally in nearly at college College it was it was A Close Shave between maths economics English and art but I honestly just didn't think I was quite good enough at Heart to actually make something of it other than that sort of hobby.

How much is it out later or outside away when you started cause a lot of people who have this may be slightly under pressure advertising imagine think of men in the series.

The men in suits in here someone from Italy background.

I mean Ana positive sent from Swindon who has made it to the top.

So you know how how much more hard if you like if you are from naughty background to get to the top of that particular profession well.

I didn't realise at the time and things have changed a lot of work has been done before I work and across the industry to open up the business to be more diverse across backgrounds ethnicity etc etc, but I didn't really realise at the time and I just thought I work really hard and really hard had a few times and then got hired at wunderman.

Just before you get into that box of the agency world which is a unique one of the unit 1, I read it and it's really think you mentioned it in the reason is that is that your mum died of a brain aneurysm about 15 years ago now so and then you found that you had one too and you took the decision to get it treated which meant.

Ended up saying goodbye to your husband and baby you have one child but then before the operation.

Just in case one extraordinary thing to do amazing well.

Yeah, I mean what happened.

Just short story is my mum died tragically young 16 years ago have an aneurysm she didn't know she had and then when I have health check about a year and a half later the Doctor when they saw that that was in my records insisted that I an MRI and I thought it was just one of those things so I kind of promised her that I would and had the MRI shortly after my son was born in factory weeks after my son was born because it's convenient candles on mat leave and there it was and so it was a big shock and it was very frightening at the time but because of what happened to my mum.

I was determined to get it elected to have it treated so I was never ill.

So I went and had the treatment and as you're having that kind of treatment.

I don't know if you've ever been into the National Hospital for neurology and neurosurgery, but it says it's an experience and if you're having that.

You sign all sorts of films with all sorts statistics as to what the odds are that you're going to come out.

Ok good that I was going to come out and I'm probably hadn't slept very much.

How did the experience change you quite frankly cos if you can handle something like that and be ok, which I did and I am then really everything else isn't anywhere near as important as literally walking out the hospital knowing that you've taken control yourself fixed and you're fit and healthy and ready for anything.

Let's talk about your remarkable crazy work your way up through Ogilvie ended up running it your boss was Sir Martin Sorrell when I know Martin a bit down quite well too many times to work for well, but pretty pretty straightforward pretty black and white you hated and it was he was pretty Direct it wasn't too pleased when you left to join publishers.

He doesn't like it when when he was awp.

He didn't like it when anyone left to go to arrival.

So it's concerning the bottom line given your eminence and that I'm giving me adverts love it listening to consume every day.

I think it'll be really nice before we talk about the challenges faced by the industry to get an insight into your creative brain and spend a few minutes going inside if you like the the mind of a producer of an advert off at listeners will come across adverts of social media on TV on YouTube but they never thought what's going through the most people are trying to persuade them to buy things with you.

I think one of your colleagues.

What your favourite advert obviously to give us time to find it.

Could you just introduce us to that Choice please? What did you say? I don't have a favourite because many different forms of creativity long time ago, but which has been.

Greatest in which is also been very defining business for me.

I've worked on the account a few times that have a listen to it.

This is British Airways this my lad from 1989.

What do you like about the advert and what makes an effective I like about that is at the time and it was made before I even join the industry, but at the time.

It was a really ambitious production.

So if you remember it's got people swimming at the sea people coming from all different directions to make this big smile and it was really really ambitious on a production level but it also that music which has survived these years and is still used a lot not not all the time at a lot by British Airways in a lot of what they do is iconic and it's probably one of the most iconic pieces of long-lasting pieces of music in advertising.

And also the ad was really really simple.

It was when I could claim to be the world's favourite airline which was the tagline for a long time and also and really importantly it use people as it's props.

So it was all about using people and British Airways is a people business if moves people around the world and it's crew and it's staff or some of them as well.

Try people in the world have emanated from quite different parts of your vast advertising and this is from McDonald's and I suspect some of our listeners may recognise it down at the sack.

Could you take us inside the mind of The Creator the producer of the advert? What are you doing with the advert? What's the emotion narrative story you're trying to tell producer that we produce for them.

It's about bringing again.

It's about bringing people together with food and with a wide range of food and an increasingly balanced type of food so that's why they're talking about the full range there in all the different ways that you can get it and also what's happened.

It was happening before kovid but what happened even more throughout covid the delivery capability like a lot of companies McDonald's had to pivot around how it does business, so when the restaurants have to close and then delivery was was allowed really really took off ASDA drive-thru, so it's really trying to get through that that that narrative around a different ways that you can consume McDonald's forever turnover second if you wouldn't mind at that.

I'm launching a row.

Let's say a cricket bat new cricket back and I come to you and acting with £1000000.

I've got to spend on advertising.

How will you get people to buy my back? What's a person go through your mind thing? We would do is we will try and understand the mindset of people who might be in the market for buying your particular cricket bat because we wouldn't necessarily know that just off of that so we do we go into all sorts ways of funny that out through research that you can access online.

That's already that already exists and we probably do some of our own research as well with people that focus groups or quantitative groups or whatever and we try and understand the size of the market the flavour of the market and importantly what matters to those people and where to find them ok, and would you recommend some of the money on TV adverts read the newspapers and magazines all those forms of advertising now that actually irrelevant and lots of people products and in most cases it depends on the size of the budget and here it is you're trying to reach.

Budgeting of the lot and you'll be trying to different things in different channel so if the if we could if TV was appropriate for that then that would be about really getting a big brand message across to many many people all in one go at the other end of the spectrum in a digital channel saying social we be trying to get people much more personally much more specifically based on the data available to help us find them online on Amazon that's a trend.

That's been obviously supercharge during the lockdown during 2020.

What's your relationship with Amazon like we work closely with such a huge part in many of our clients ecosystems that we've got people that we've actually hide from Amazon we've got people that partner with Amazon to help our clients.

Best relate to them best get their products sold through Amazon and you know get the best return on investment they possibly can so it's in our interest to be good partners with them at the moment in the advertising ecosystem is release date Amazon where publicis and a big group or you person as a CEO gets involved reason to be quite simple you come up with an idea.

You said my TV is a lot of people don't ctv2 and away is shot was changed when we want something we had Amazon type it in and it's at that point that the first stuff first thing that comes up as such I found in at what point do advertising companies get involved in trying to arrange search results such that the product they want to sell is at the top Media practice and in all commas practice the common practices something that's grown significantly over the last couple of years that are their expertise is specifically in that in dealing with.

And other partners as to exactly how you get as high up the search till the bladder as you possibly can Amazon Google Facebook confronting at the moment is the extraordinary dominance of companies like Google and Facebook which are really fundamentally changed at advertising 2020 the they are at the company's 2020 is the year when spending on digital advertising on platform such as Google and Facebook overtook witold spending on traditional Media for the first time and that's calling to group him at the buying agency wpp so I talk to you about that.

What has the total dominance of those American companies done to your industry and its created more opportunities for us to get to consumers or businesses with the advertising messages that we've got so we got so many more choices now and so many more ways and I said before you know.

Still trying to get a very broad message across and sometimes you're trying to be very specific and Direct and you know looking for more immediate return on investment which returned to get through those kinds of digital channels if you're not being so constructed.

What's this morning's been on it? I mean you know they it's about trying to exist and living ecosystem together that the benefits of clients, so I really haven't got anything on Facebook motor which made virtually all their money from ads the over there mate.

Is that they've got infinitely better data on users and their in Stan printed TV channel and if I want to sell cricket bats to people in at home.

So Yorkshire of south Asian descent.

I can really micro target those people on Facebook and go to itv or something.

What's the response? What what the argument of traditional advertisers to Facebook when Facebook so we just got much better data than you and that's why people on our product.

Quite whole of its used you know could be discussed but load of data mountains of data, and so yes, they can get much more specific at a much more tightly targeted audience but if you're trying to create an emotional connection to your new cricket brand then the chances are that that will be easier to do also got some kind of broadcast message out there where you can tell a bit more of a story to a wider population all at the same time trying to create and water cooler moments which obviously not watercolours, which one to create the moments with what we do in the more broad brand advertising that we do so what's what's the different types of I've got the cricket, bat.

You know I could have a local paper in Yorkshire they might be very interesting playing cricket their local side.

There's advertising on TV stations in.

Their communities all these Facebook what's the relative merits of TV what was TV got the Facebook hasn't got in terms of credit at the same time so we could all see the same in our area of the country in Britain's Got Talent or whatever.

It is that we watching so it gives us something to talk about the next day.

So you're trying with an advert through TV to create a common point of connection.

We're different people shared experience almost so TV is a way of creating shared experiences of people that don't live in it might buy your cricket bat really structural change to the visit you have you tried in your time.

Is is the boss to pay it or change the company to deal with his normal structural trends.

References about Sapien received any other businesses that does a sort of consultancy is required to your mum's.

It's range of services.

Have you had to adapt to these enormous in normal structural shifts really good to bring up so it's a huge business and it's in the ass in the business of Digital Business Consulting which means it helps clients to transform from a business perspective what we talked about it all the other thing I do creative media PR etc is about marketing transformation so we got both ends covered with soap in about 1500 people and safe in here.

We helplines literally transform their business, so the infrastructure of their business and digital perspective and then with our marketing transformation capability we help communicate to the to the customers offers businesses the complexity of this works is completely mind-boggling and a million miles away from the days of the nostalgic over and the other is quite simple so this week Charlie the Emilio a 16-year old.

I'm glad you're smiling has become she's become the 16-year old American has become the first person to gain 100 million followers on tiktok a platform on the show quite a bit she could make one post recommending a new product and it's done the work of a TV campaign billboards the lot Earth you compete with her.

Can I haven't heard of her? I have to confess Charlie the Amelia I mean that's pretty that's that's competition to use it it is in a way, but I'm sure we'll work out how to wear with her at some level as a partner.

I mean that's the point with all of these developments in the Co-op do you have to work out how to partner how to work alongside each other and how to make the most of it rather than seeing everything as a threat?

Members of staff are working hard to make sure you can optimise your message to tiktok tiktok something exciting if you're in the world of advertising look at these young influencers.

You think here are people with 100 million followers that you should use to try and get a message out absolutely one of our clients.

What they like to work system, so we help them with the various things and we use them for various things to go back to my cricut dog very vigorously I've got an implant.

What's the relative appeal or lack of what if you like the risks or exciting possibilities of a platform that tiktok so with an influencer like that.

You can't control that person.

Yeah, they might subsequently causes that you feel uncomfortable with but there's also huge following said how do you weigh the balance in the opportunity when it comes to something like that?

And you have to see what's used to have to see what's happening.

I don't want to close it down completely because you know that could be a bad mood but by the same token you have to be very diligent and always on your clothes with all of these digital partners for what might be going on then make sure that you protect your clients brands at all costs exactly I know you got the food business and the governors.

Just launched a six-week station ever junk food ads blanket way and I not really paying much attention to the details of the latest development, but this is the hfs testing which is around trying to get any kind of food that you can buy in a fast way to not be advertised in certain channels that those brands rely quite heavily on advertising.

Noseband on all advertising is it for products high in Salt sugar and fat online worked to make sure that what they sell is significantly healthier than it was before and as healthy as healthy as it needs to be and sew blanket banning.

Just feels like a particularly considered way of going about it.

Not which you know on one level you type the government would be trying to help and support particularly now.

What was hurting businesses, is it that actually is punishing some business that have tried pretty hard or that having this kind of blanket bannercross, so we businesses that are actually coming so many different is just a bit unsettled to generalize.

You'll like it has been given an assault to and an awful.

Lot of work has been done by many different parties and the brands and companies involved to make the case that the government and don't seem to be listening.

I know they're busy with other things right now, but they just don't seem to be listening.

We talking about those big big big programme Saturday night programmes in particular from your point of view advising clients.

How long is linear channel at ITV got as he loves you know as a destination for eyeballs Neville for adverts ITV fantastic job of evolving over time and while the TV channels have taken a big hit during the last 7 months as have the most companies things do start do look like they might starting to get better and I think it's their evolve and some of the programme that they develop and the way that they deliver it.

I think there's no sign of them going away anytime soon now you mentioned.

To talk about what happened at your business, you know I've read that you've taken pay cut at senior level people on a big favour of taking small haircuts for still significant ones.

What is the situation she made battery done season April I think I might and saying like most companies companies like most agencies in the advertising business.

We do to make some cuts earlier in the year.

We tried to make sure that we did it in that movie considerate way, but also early on in the process so that it wasn't something that dragged on over the course of the of the effects of the pandemic, so we acted pretty quickly and we have most of it done by the end of May hopefully, but I know what's going to happen in the coming weeks and months is it doesn't doesn't know what they're talking about because you know none of us can predict so but at the moment.

No will ask you what the beach.

20-21 I mean where we may be covered and pandemic aside.

I mean I'm talking about the about the growth of the California to talk about what are the other btn-secondary changing advertising in the year will I think it will be more about the kind of advertising that is done in the year ahead.

I say that in a hopeful way if the vaccine really has taken hold of most of us by Easter that leaves us with two-thirds of the year to get back to doing what we really fabulous out which is bringing joy in emotion and impact through the work that we do and it's been much harder to do that lockdown and over last 8 months and just a sort of being free to just get back to doing what we do.

I think is going to be the biggest driver of the business next year whatever else happens.

If you just look at Christmas ads which people have managed to pull off in his last few months of being free to make actually to make Productions it's really quite an impressive body of work.

Just very quickly ask you it must be very difficult making adverts in those circumstances.

Are they advertising agency on TV this Christmas and have a slightly different tone about them out by now and most of them are about kindness of one form or another most of them have got sort of you know big big sense of humour to them and most of them are just really focused on family being together a lot of them a focus on family being together either immediate family or an extended family and you look at most of it out.

There one order of those qualities existing them and hopefully families not been together and liking CEO of publicis groupe, UK thank you so much for your time.

Thank you same time next week at XO John Boland studio engineer today and thank you for this.


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