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Posted by
Julian Gratton
December 7th, 2014

My thoughts on the current state of British Copywriting

by Julian Gratton

DMA CopywritingAccording to Tony Brignull, Copywriting is dead. As the DMA points out in this section of their site dedicated to Great British Copywriting, the statement is a bold and contentious one. But is it a fair one? As part of their campaign for Copywriting, the DMA recently held a number of events throughout the UK, where they screened the ‘Madmen v Mavens’ film that kicks off the debate about the state of Copywriting.

I was asked to Chair the event held in Manchester, and as part of the evening I was also asked to write an opening address and share my thoughts on the current state of Copywriting. Which you can now read below.

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Posted by
Amy Chetwynd
November 20th, 2014

The darling and the damned Brand Extensions

by Amy Chetwynd

Launching a new product to your already large and loyal customer base sounds like a recipe for success, right? Well, sort of.

Brand and line extensions can be the easiest and most beneficial way for a brand to enter a new market. It means the new offering is born backed by a name that’s recognised and trusted, allowing it to capitalise on the establishment of its parent brand.

However, there are important things to consider which can be the difference between whether your new product sinks or swims. For example, consumers aren’t likely to buy their healthy salad from a luxury chocolate brand.Yet, they’d be more than happy to buy cake from a company that specialises in coffee. There’s a method to this madness, and it’s a case of working out what products and services will sit logically together under a brand umbrella.

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Posted by
Azania McFarlane
October 21st, 2014

Five stand-out speakers at TedxSalford 2014

by Azania McFarlane

CaptureLast weekend I attended TedxSalford, an independently organised TED event held in The Lyric Theatre in The Lowry, Salford Quays. The “festival of the mind” featured an array of live speakers, great thinkers and innovators. The only brief given to each speaker was “deliver the best 18 minutes of your life” – a time chosen specifically as this has been proven to be the extent of most people’s attention span (a statistic I wish to dispute as I could have listened to many of the speakers for hours!)

I walked away with what felt like an adrenaline rush of knowledge and inspiration. The day was brimming with amazing speeches, but I’ve picked out my top five speeches of the day to tell you about.

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Posted by
Georgie Hallgate
October 17th, 2014

Social media: Brands we want to be buddies with

by Georgie Hallgate

Whether it’s an acquaintance, a brand, or someone you stumbled across through (innocent) stalking, we all follow someone on social media who we keep a look out for as we scroll. It could be because they consistently post something we find funny, interesting, or even better, completely scandalous. Either way, we can’t wait to see what they’re going to post next.

Last year I found myself following brands and celebrities simply because of their down-to-earth tone of voice on social media, rather than because of what they’re selling or who they are. However, as a result of enjoying reading what they have to say, it has led to me reading their promotional posts – which normally don’t register with me from brands with a boring social media.

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Posted by
Georgie Hallgate
October 9th, 2014

Twitter loving brands who love a re-tweet!

by Georgie Hallgate

With more than 271 million monthly active users and 500 million tweets sent each day, it’s not surprising that brands are increasingly using Twitter as a platform to promote themselves. Quite frankly they’d be stupid not to! Whether it’s to create a buzz around a brand or to launch a new product, there are huge benefits to be reaped by creating a campaign on social networking sites. Essentially, everyone loves a freebie, but many can’t really be bothered to do a lot to earn it. So giving something away for a simple re-tweet is a recipe for success!

To see how well the brands I follow are trying to grab my attention on Twitter (and if I’m missing out on a chance of getting my hands on some freebies) I scrolled through my timeline to see who pops up with anything interesting.

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Posted by
Julian Gratton
August 14th, 2014

7 strategies for dealing with difficult online conversations and feedback

by Julian Gratton

Broken_conversation_iconWe’ve all seen them. The Mr. or Mrs. Angry reviews that litter places like Trip Advisor, Twitter and Facebook etc. How we answer these people online is massively important, especially as a large proportion of people judge a company on how they handle online responses.

So to help you handle negative reviews and comments online, I’ve compiled together 7 tips to help you construct a response. Check them out below and feel free to suggest any others in the comments box at the bottom of this page.

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Posted by
Charlotte Baker
June 23rd, 2014

My placement year: salt cod Tuesday, I’ll miss you!

by Charlotte Baker

Charlie Baker's Student Placement YearThree years ago my college business tutor advised myself and the rest of the class that if we were to choose a business degree it would be a wise decision to take a placement year out. She was right and it’s safe to say that it was one of the best decisions I’ve made. I’m just glad I was in college that day!

I was over the moon when I got the placement at Red C but never would’ve thought my year at the agency was going to be such a rewarding experience. I was welcomed with open arms and although often referred to as ‘the student’, I always felt like a valued part of the team.

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Posted by
Nicole Mathews
December 18th, 2013

Five brilliant examples of Goodvertising

by Nicole Mathews

ChipotleCreative advertising with a conscience, that’s Goodvertising in a nutshell. Consumers are becoming more ethically minded; increasingly attracted to brands that demonstrate they want to have a positive impact on the world, beyond just selling stuff.

People are also taking more of an interest in what goes into the products they buy. Are the ingredients ethically sourced? Do the workers who produce them get paid a decent wage? These are the questions being asked, and people want the truth.

It used to be that an ad agency’s job was to tell the world their client’s brand was good. Now it’s also about showing that the brand is doing good too.  Here are five campaigns I have found that show just that.

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Posted by
Wayne Pretl
November 13th, 2013

Implementing Responsive Email Marketing Designs

by Wayne Pretl

responsive_email_designResponsive web design (RWD) has been around for a while now, but the techniques are still relatively new in the way we design and code our content, enabling it to be viewed across the many different devices and platforms our audience use. There are already lots of blogs on the internet that discuss RWD but in my post I’d like to focus on the design and implementation of responsive email marketing designs (RED). I’ll first take a look at the background to RWD/RED, discuss the current state of the web and then finish up with some thoughts on design, coding and testing.

Background

The term ‘responsive web design’ is credited to Ethan Marcotte who first used the term when he wrote an article featured on A List Apart (25th May 2010). The article discusses the transient nature of the web and looks to architecture to see what we may learn from its longevity. Continuing with the architectural metaphor, Marcotte writes about an emergent discipline known as ‘responsive architecture’ where physical space responds to the people passing through it. He takes this knowledge and applies it to web design and suggests ways in which we might take our content and instead of creating bespoke tailored designs, the design and content should respond to the way in which it is consumed. In this way, more people can access our content  where ever they are and our content should have a longer life span.

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Posted by
Andrew Campbell
October 4th, 2013

Newsjacking and Advertjacking both get a new lease of life thanks to social media

by Andrew Campbell

Marketing people love their buzzwords. And the latest that seems to be doing the rounds is ‘Newsjacking’. Which basically involves a brand, product or service responding to news events in ‘real time’ and can result in social media gold or a social media backlash… depending on which end of the ‘taste stick’ your execution is at.

Winslet fire

For example, would you associate A-list actress Kate Winslet with London’s FireBrigade? Me neither. But, last year, Kate was staying at Sir Richard Branson’s private retreat in the British Virgin Islands when lightning struck his home. His place set on fire and Kate had to enter the building to save Branson’s elderly mother.

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