Group SCAB by The Intake of 2016/17
We started off our day bright and early making our way to our briefing point – still pretty unsure of how the day will pan out. Over a Nero coffee we came up with a core list of questions we wanted to ask whoever it was we were meeting and a list off about 8 others we’d ask quick fire to hopefully get some pretty honest answers out of them.
Our first stop was a Eldelman PR in the heart of westminster. ‘Pretty plush set-up’ and ‘Ooo they have a bar as you walk in’ were our first thoughts. We were invited into one of their meeting rooms where we were told wait for big BO the ECD.
He had a lot of gravitas and we were all very engaged in what he was saying. It was obvious he wanted us there and was more than happy to answer our questions but it did feel like you’d never know how he’d react to each one we asked. He put together a presentation about the history of the agency and showcasing some of the work they have been involved with which was all pretty interesting.
After our chat he took us for a tour around the floor and it all felt quite clinical. No bean bags and ping pong tables but everyone their seemed pretty happy and relaxed when Bo was on the march.
M&C Saatchi PR was the next stop on our journey. As a group, what stood out was the relaxed, artsy atmosphere as soon as we passed through the door. It definitely had the foundation of a creative advertising agency which was branching into PR rather than the other way around. Having seen both Edelman and M&C Saatchi PR it became clear that the divide between advertising and PR is becoming ever more blurred and thus interconnected.
This week we spoke a lot about SCA, and what we are all aiming to achieve here, but we also touched on behind the scenes passion projects and what we do in order to unwind outside this chaotic industry, therefore it was so great to see M&C Saatchi PR support their creatives with regards to their ‘Passion Away Days’. Creatives here get designated away days during the week where individuals took time out to visit cats & dogs homes, go surfing, and immerse themselves in Countryfile (whatever your passion may be), this seemed to create a very happy environment.
Lastly, it was so lovely to meet Lucy an ex SCA student at M&C Saatchi PR, she was incredibly personable and down to earth, and this gave us a lot of motivation in knowing that we too can get into top agencies.
A: It’s cool to see two guys getting along. Vibing and having a laugh as a partnership seems to crucial to making good ads. Tom and Christopher, who work at VCCP, have a real good thing going on and having a real good thing going on suddenly simplifies everything. It demystifies ‘creativity’ or the ‘creative process’. They’re just two dudes having a good time. And having great ideas. They have conversations and eat Smarties and if an idea makes them both laugh, they know it’s a good one. Their connection seems to allow them to have a gut feeling about which bits of their ideas are good or valuable or important. A big part of their job seems to be bringing out some of the best parts of each other to create work they both love. And they can do that just by talking to each other. Life with a partner who gets you is not a bad life.
K : What a day, hell, what a week. Through a combination of talks, improv, a poetry class, two agency visits and plenty of pints of Stella this has been an insane introduction – Jam packed to the brim with new faces, ideas and naturally, advertising. SCA can be mysterious at times. We don’t quite have a grasp of what we’re doing or where we’re going, but what I’ve discovered is that through connecting with people in the industry we can try and crack the code of SCA and picture our future as something a little less obscure than it was four days ago.
D: VCCP was cool as Tom and Christopher have mad chemistry and gave us some golden nuggets of advice. I’ve picked my three favourites:
When you’re fighting for an idea, do a good cop/bad cop thing in your creative team
Don’t argue with the planner and the brief if it’s shit. Have a good idea and they will retro-fit the brief to you.
Get insights wherever you can (how it feels to be an England rugby player who’s supported by the whole country; how it feels to have wifi/not have it)
Grey was also a baller agency – all in all one of the most valuable days so far. Looking at our future is such a necessary part of our time here… and it doesn’t hurt to have one day off briefs!
J: I think I speak for all of us when I say that there’s nothing more motivating than seeing the success that SCA alumni have achieved. We’ve all been taught some pretty mind blowing stuff throughout the last 3 days, but I found that because it’s so different to any teaching methods I’ve ever received, it’s hard to know how it’s relevant or what the true goal is at the end of this unorthodox year. VCCP, Grey and the breathtaking talks we’ve had from mentors have completely removed any anxiety or doubt I’ve been feeling about the coming year. It feels like I’ve taken in an entirely new breath of fresh air and I’m truly ready to start my life-changing journey. /react-text
Today was so inspirational. I loved everything about it. Tom and Christopher at VCCP had such a great energy and vibe. Both agencies are super fantastic places. After spending the day visiting VCCP and Grey I just felt so lucky being here and my advice to people who want to work in ad-land is to go visit as many agencies as you possibly can. They won’t bite and it will not hurt…probably
Only three days into the school year and we already had our foot through the door of creative agencies. Well, sort of…
Our group visited BMB and WCRS today – two agencies that were polar opposites. BMB was a cosy agency on a quiet street in Southwark with a crew of 69. They have three principles that guide everything they do: Populism, Generosity and Candour. The team talked us through the process of creating the campaign for Rubicon Spring, from creating the brief to execution.
WCRS was a large agency situated on Great Portland street with a workforce of 160. They have been around for the past 27 years and have created a lot of campaigns that we all know and love such as the 118 118 guy, “The future’s bright, the future’s Orange” and Sky’s “Believe in Better”. The focus at WCRS leans more towards finding the big idea, which is then passed on to their sister companies to execute across various channels.
What we learnt today was that working at smaller agencies offers you a greater chance to create work. There are few creative teams and everyone is able to have a fair chance.
At larger agencies the competition between creative teams is fierce, and generally the more senior and middleweight teams end up with the meaty briefs. However, the junior teams’ skills are honed and sharpened under the guidance of some very inspiring mentors. After roughly three or four years, junior teams will with any luck achieve their big break.
And to get us started on the right path, creatives, planners and accounts people from the two agencies shared their little nuggets of advice. Here were some of our favourites…
Portfolio day won’t be the be all and end all…
It’s advertising. We can do what we want.
Target the creatives you want to work for. Not just the agency.
Go to the pub. Like, actually.
Avoid unnecessary meetings.
We visited AMV and INT Works. It was great to see 2 agencies on opposite sides of the spectrum.
AMV offers great opportunity with big briefs, big clients, and big names to learn from within the agency itself. We were lucky enough to hear from all parts of the agency, rather than just the creative department. We got a real feel for the whole agency and how a brief moves from early stages to finished product.
Than we went to INT Works. A small design based agency, attached to It’s Nice That. Many of their collaborators are inspired by and organized in tandem with the publication. They are renowned for different approaches to advertising. So many of their clients come to them expecting to give them a large amount of creative freedom.
All in all what a lovely day. (oh lovely)