Jul
24

How to sell your agency

Maybe the days have gone when communications groups paid big money for ad agencies. But I’m guessing that the money men will always chase the talent that’s chasing the next dollar… so today, it’s maybe interactive agencies which gain any mass who will be wooed. In the future, who knows – any IP business model […]

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Jul
10

Monkeys and cameras

Why stock photography is making me snap. There’s an old saying that, in an infinite universe, an infinite number of monkeys with typewriters will eventually type the works of Shakespeare. Despite a great deal of blogospheric evidence to the contrary, a similar sort of idea seems to have sprung up among advertising clients regarding photography. […]

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Jul
05

When ads go bad

So how do advertising campaigns fail? Was reminded today, as before, of how things really can go Pete Tong. If you’re honest, you look back and find that the only truly consistent factor in every less than spectacular success you’ve been involved with is… you. That’s how it always strikes me, anyway. And yet I […]

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Jun
28

My Tony Kaye Story

I’m a big fan of continuous professional development and ‘advancing my craft’ and learning new stuff. But, most of all, as a professional creative and commercials director, I like the random nature of inputs. Even with the best-laid plans, you often get something different from what you expect – and that, like many creative projects, […]

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Jun
14

Awards!

Was listening to the Scottish director John Doyle talking to Janice Forsyth on the Radio Cafe. What a top bloke. He’s here to direct Lucia di Lammermoor for Scottish Opera. (And, starrier still, I think he’s my neighbour’s brother too.) Anyway, it was good to hear him talk so much sense and so modestly about […]

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Jun
05

What is a good ad?

Before I tell you what I think makes a good ad, there’s something we ought to sort out first. And that is – what is advertising? Is it ‘the art of arresting the mind long enough to pick the pocket’? The economist JK Galbraith thought so. And, since the publication of Vance Packard’s ‘The Hidden […]

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May
18

Ding dong, the pitch is dead II

What’s wrong with pitching these days? Plenty, I think. And here, I hope to explain why the classic ‘speculative creative pitch’ is becoming unhelpful for both agencies and clients, and suggest a simpler, more sensible way for communication partners to come together. Creative pitches are the most exciting part of the business. Anyway, that’s what […]

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May
06

Home

Pete Martin is a writer, director, adman, sometime skimmer. Ah, the Mars Bar at the bottom of 2nd Avenue in the heat of a New York summer noon. Really quite far from Loch Lomond as the sun sets in Scottish spring. Skimming, I find, is a bit like creativity. It felt so easy when you […]

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May
06

Vote Scotland

As everyone in Scotland knows, the election results on May 3 were a disaster for Labour, and a serious blow for Scottish democracy. As creative director at SMARTS, I was closely involved in the campaign to publicise the election and to try and explain the new voting system to the electorate. Partly for my own […]

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May
05

Call me paranoid

Did a pitch recently to a firm with a good budget but a bad rep for dealing with agencies. However, the pitch was being run by a consultant and, contrary to my cynical expectation, the client seemed like very nice people. Subject to the inevitable haggling over projected fees, we got through the long list. […]

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