Category Archives: Ideas

Creative. It’s good thinking.

Creative. It’s good thinking.

Cannes Lions, touted as the “Oscars” of the marketing industry, is a real showcase for the sort of work every agency would love to do. However, like a fashion-show, it touts the sort of work that – in the real world – not every business or charity would wear. A lack of budget is the most common complaint (or balls, some would say). The reality is that clever ideas, and clever use of media, don’t need to cost the earth. What’s needed, instead, is an understanding that unless an organisation embraces the type of creative solution that makes people think

Read More
If only we were superheroes

If only we were superheroes

Change your Luck blog series – Article 5 Guest author: Martin Hill, former International VP of Marketing, Epicor Until recently, I was in the kind of senior marketing job where time seemed to be the one thing that was impossible to enjoy. It was always moving so fast and there was never enough of it. Straight from meeting to meeting with barely enough time for proper planning before the urgency of execution, rinse and repeat. If only I’d known a superhero with the ability to turn back time. Yes, of course we analysed performance, refined and reviewed tactics, but there

Read More
Can you fix the odds?

Can you fix the odds?

Change your Luck blog series – Article 4 Guest author: Martin Hill, former International VP of Marketing, Epicor I was able to enjoy watching a lot of sport this summer and even though I’m not a betting man, autumn sporting events like the Invictus Games, the UK Masters Golf, a whole host of Rugby Internationals, and of course, the upcoming Ashes, have started me thinking about the similarities between marketing and gambling- and how alike gamblers and marketers sometimes are. However much we attempt to predict outcomes, carefully researching, planning, testing and measuring changes we make to our marketing plans, sometimes

Read More
The joy of the happy accident

The joy of the happy accident

Change your Luck blog series – article 3 Guest author: Martin Hill, former International VP of Marketing, Epicor One of the best parts of my recent career break has been the opportunity to develop my (limited) skills with watercolour. It’s been a long time since I picked up a paintbrush and it isn’t proving easy. Satisfying, yes. Easy, no. With the luxury of time I’ve been able to explore the vast resources of the web, absorbing advice from much more accomplished artists than me. The advice is varied but there are common themes. Don’t just start, first prepare to start.

Read More
Surfing the next wave

Surfing the next wave

Change your Luck blog series – article 2 Guest author: Martin Hill, former International VP of Marketing, Epicor   Lately I’ve had the previously unknown luxury of time – and with this came the opportunity to revisit some of the magnificent coastline, towns and villages in Devon and Dorset. I’ve been able to enjoy great weather and explore new things without the pressure of deadlines and targets to return to. class=”alignleft On my latest trip I was struck by the behaviour of the huge number of surfers also enjoying the conditions. They sit on their boards patiently waiting and watching

Read More
Watching the world go by

Watching the world go by

Change your Luck blog series – article 1 Guest author: Martin Hill, former International VP of Marketing, Epicor   class=”aligncenter This year I decided to take a break from work and bring a bit more life into my work-life balance. I’m getting the time to relax and rediscover my natural curiosity and creativity, and to take a much more objective view of the pressures and practices of marketing that governed my career. I’ve worked through a period of massive change since leaving university in the early 80’s. Watching from the outside magnifies how much the pressure, pace and pervasiveness of

Read More
You make your own luck

You make your own luck

Guest blog post by our good friend, Dr Mark Mason MBE. Originally posted on LinkedIn, September 2014   Dr Mark Mason​, lately CEO of Mubaloo, received an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2017 for services to the Digital Economy.   In July, I was honoured to receive an honorary degree from the University of the West of England. Now, I am officially a doctorate of technology. As with those bestowed the privilege of delivering a speech at graduation ceremonies, I spent a long time considering the best thing to say to inspire a new group of people going

Read More
Challenging the norm

Challenging the norm

Our commentary on the Cannes Lions 2016 By Creative Director Jim Thomas, Summer 2016   A creative idea exists for one reason and one reason alone: to out think your competition. Creativity isn’t something that comes from the sort of books that break things down into a formula. The 8 truths, or the 12 principles, or the 10 essential thoughts. It comes from a different place. Understanding customers’ thinking. Then changing their behaviour. It’s thinking that comes from art schools and salesmen. Both know they have to stand out. Award winning creative should do just this. There’s simply no point in being

Read More
Why does a lot of small business marketing not work quite the way you’d like it to?

Why does a lot of small business marketing not work quite the way you’d like it to?

And how can you change it? (First presented to Reading’s RG1 group at Artigiano Reading on Thursday 24th September 2015) To answer these questions, we need to go back to the start of a business. When the business owner – let’s call him Nick – sets up the business, he has a number of things, but the two that I want to focus on here are that he has a really clever, unique idea, and a “little black book” of contacts. When the business starts, it is likely to go through a period of rapid growth, as Nick really works

Read More
The impact of brand on business growth and marketing ROI

The impact of brand on business growth and marketing ROI

You could probably write a whole book on the subject of brands. But as it’s a Friday afternoon, I thought I’d keep this short and sweet. “Brand” means different things to different people. To many, it’s all about logos, colours and typefaces. For others it’s about reputation. But a great brand is much more than that. After all, how many established market leaders do you know, that don’t have a strong sense of their own identity. Something that people can relate to,  and that they will choose to interact with (and buy from) almost regardless of the product? Brand: in a

Read More
Immediacy, “omnichannel”, creativity and brands

Immediacy, “omnichannel”, creativity and brands

Highlights from the Festival of Marketing #FoM14 Last week, we spent two action-packed days at Tobacco Dock, and my mind is buzzing. There were some strong themes that came out, and so I thought I’d share some of what we found out. Theme 1 – Immediacy I blew it. I admit it. I meant to publish this blog last Thursday, but work got in the way. The only person that’s really bothered about this (if I’m honest) is me. But for brands, the ability to respond quickly and appropriately is never more important than now. Alastair Campbell (and other speakers, such as Mike

Read More