Monthly Archives: May 2012

The Good the Bad and the Nostalgic Brand

For my branding module I was asked to look at three brands, focusing on a brand I appreciate, a brand I discourage and a contemporary brand. Here were my opinions.

When I was very young I used to play with Lego. I loved making new models with the coloured blocks and playing with the different Lego characters. I used to keep one of the Lego characters in my pocket when I went outside and play with it wherever I went including school. I remember one time, I made a tower out of Lego and it reached the ceiling, then my brother came in and knocked it over and I started crying. I used to have a big pink box (it was big to me) of Lego which I played with and my brother had a red box but I used to steal different pieces of his if I wanted to make a new model. I remember my mum used to get cross because there would always be a piece of Lego in the corner of different rooms or under the sofa, she used to have to wear slippers all the time in the house so she wouldn’t step on a piece of Lego and hurt her feet. If I ever have kids I would hope that Lego will still be around for them to enjoy. It’s a shame I was too old to play with the Harry Potter and Star Wars figures but at least I can still play the video games.

A contemporary brand that I feel a sense of respect and will always use is IKEA. As a family I have grown up with all the furniture in our house including my room coming from IKEA. The qualities of the products are far better than most companies and the fact that the quality is at fair prices is a huge bonus. Even at a young age IKEA used to be a day trip for my family and still I go with my friends for a day out. As a child the kid’s section is always a fun experience with a play area along with collecting little soft toys and as you get older you start to find certain sections to peck yours interest. Nearly two years ago I made a special IKEA trip for all my university necessities, which I’m sure a lot of students made, spending a lot of money on plates and knifes along with bathroom stuff. I love IKEA, the fact that you can pretty much always have a reason to go there whether its just for a candle or toilet brush pretty much most people love going to the café upstairs. The food is amazing, Swedish meatballs with gravy always make my mouth water and free refills on all drinks.

A brand I feel I have no trust towards is photobox the online photo printing company. Unfortunately my lack of trust stems from bad experience with them. During my art foundation I ordered a few prints for a final project, with express next day delivery and they took the money from my account and two weeks after my presentation date, my prints came through with no apology. They charged me £10 for next day delivery, which when I asked for a refund it took three weeks to get a full refund. With just one bad experience unfortunately my opinion of them has gone down and would personally not recommend them to others.

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Blog Post Six

With all the data and placement knowledge and extra research tools I have been able to understand and reflect my case study well, reaching a conclusion to my finding and was able to conduct enough primary and secondary research as possible to help in my findings. Mainly most of my research came from internet research, such as web articles relating to the areas such as the recession and new software. Along with this my primary research is the main source of this case study and which focuses towards my conclusion.

With my case study finalised and ready to submit for the deadline I was able to look back at the module in general and conclude this term.

Overall this module has been very helpful in the preparing myself for the advertising industry and what is to be expected. The main focus of this module was to create as many connections as I could with agencies from across the UK and fortunately for me I have found many interesting and helpful advertiser and creatives to help in creating a path in the industry. I was successful in finding a very successful and helpful placement along with contacting agencies in my chosen area.

 

Blog Post Five

Time to start writing up the case study in a first draft. For this case study I have decided to structure this into four sections to make the study more understandable and more legible. Breaking down my case study I will start by writing up an introduction explaining my proposal of how agencies have coped with the recession and how and where I will conduct my study focusing on the southwest area and why, looking at my ideas and ways I will collect information through emails telephone conversations and placements.

The next section will focus on the data I have collected through emails and conversations. Here I will break down this section even more into the questions I have asked agencies as subheadings and the responses in a general overview and noticeable connections and comparisons. As I have asked seven main questions I am to examine the data and see any connections from different questions and different agencies.

The third section now looks at the data as an overview and conclusion to the questions and again what patterns I have noticed, but also in this section looks at the research I have collected through internet based research and articles focusing on the recession and the changing climate in agencies and how other factors have changed the way advertising work and produce work, for example the new HTML5 coding and social media in general.

Then my final section is looks at my placement at stuff advertising and how it relates to my case study looking at the different ways they function and this is a connection to my main and final conclusion where I will conclude the study and what I have noticed from all my research and any information that I felt has helped with the conclusion and answer to this case study.

 

 

Blog Post Four

Finally the past few weeks have paid off, over this week I have received five responses from different people working at different agencies including marketing agencies. All responses have been very useful and the development of my case study can now move forward. Using the replies I can now see how the information and answers can help me understand and anaylse the data, from research and findings I have found a interesting visual to help me organise and coordinate the data I have collected.

Unfortunately this short video focuses more on the design aspects towards the visualization of data but however it has helped me recognise the right data collection from my questionnaires.

Unfortunately looking through the responses I still haven’t had a response from McCann Erickson Bristol which was the main focus of my larger agency still hasn’t answered my questionnaire so I will need to continue making contact until I receive a reaction from the questionnaire I sent out.

Blog Post Three

Placement – STUFF Advertising

During my placement I spent a lot of time working through different types of briefs from radio scripts to print layouts, sat in brainstorming sessions and attended marketing presentations, during the whole time it was a great insight into the world of advertising but fortunately for me I got to experience how a smaller agency work with only a handful of people working in the office I was able to see how each person connected and communicated with clients and each other, from conference video calls to just sat talking in the office. It was a great experience with some very helpful and useful tips and advice to further my career in advertising. Although I gain a sense of relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere from the office, I also got to see how each person’s role worked within the agency.

During the week I was able to ask questions about how the office had changed since first opening and from a conversation with one creative, the main changeable and growing difference was the development in social media, with the development of technology and cultural differences advertising needs to be careful with the accelerating revolution of the internet and use of mobile devices.

Along with the placement I continued to send out emails to agencies with my questionnaire to try and receive some useful and valuable data to aid my case study but unfortunately no luck so far. But I am still sending more in the past two weeks I have tried to contact 15 agencies in the southwest hoping for some information.

Blog Post Two

After sending out many emails to agencies in the southwest I have finally gained a placement at STUFF advertising in Bristol, with creative director Richard Spruce. After a meeting with him at the beginning of April, and discussing my case study I will be starting my placement at the end of the month. But as I wanted my case study to focus on not just one but three or four agencies I decided to produce a questionnaire that I could send out to other agencies in the southwest area, which I sent out and am awaiting replies. Here is a mock up of the email:

Dear Sir/Madam

I am a student studying BA(Hons) Advertising at University College Falmouth.

This year, as part of one of my study modules, I am tasked with preparing a case study, which will require me to seek information from advertising agencies so as to inform the choice of subject that I will research.

I was wondering if it was possible that you could spare me some time to answer a few questions relevant to my case study about how your agency has met the challenges outlined above. Below is a summary of my case study and several questions, which I would appreciate if you, or one of your colleagues, could respond to.

For my case study I will be researching how advertising agencies of varying size have met the challenge of the difficult economic climate since 2008. I have chosen to focus on 3 to 4 differing sized agencies within the south west to understand how the downturn has altered their business and marketing strategies. Have agencies altered their marketing strategies, for instance, by retreating from television and print mediums to concentrate more on the social media opportunities or has the latter been a natural progression that would have occurred anyway?

– Has the economic downturn affected your business and, if so, how?

– How have you altered your marketing and business strategies to meet this challenge?

– Has your business been changed fundamentally going forward by the economic climate of the last few years?

– Do you consider that the worst is now over?

– Has your agency increased or decreased in numbers since the economic turn down?

– Do you feel the any culture or technological difficulties have affected the way your agency works?

– Do you have any issues that I have not raised that you believe would be relevant to my study?

Thank you for taking the time to respond to this questionnaire.  Your answers will be much appreciated and invaluable for my case study. Your response will also be treated with complete confidentiality.

Yours Faithfully

Grace Hollinworth.

Blog Post One

Firstly I was asked to think of a question surrounding a practical agency that I was interested in, I decided to focus instead of the larger and more well known agencies in London but look at the southwest area mainly the Bristol area. Here I decided to focus on different sized agencies.

For my case study I will be researching how advertising agencies of varying sizes met the challenge of the difficult economic climate since 2008. I have chosen to focus on different sized agencies round the southwest and will be looking at the different ways they tackled the downturn changed over the past 5 years, choosing to look at how this has affected business within the agencies and has this altered the business and marketing strategies of that individual agency.

My aim of this case study is to explore and analyse the data I collect from the different agencies and compare the different approaches and strategies they have adopted and if they have had to change their approaches over this time period. Along with interviews I will be able to see how their agencies work for a more personal gain of an insight into the industry. Firstly sending out emails to agencies in the area to ask if I could possibly gain some work experience within their agency.

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