NABS’ annual Fast Forward training programme came to a nail-biting finale at the end of last week as the winning team was announced. Team Canning scooped the award in a fiercely fought contest responding to a fictitious government brief based on increasing the level of voter turnout at a general election.
A week earlier, the eight teams had delivered ten-minute pitches to client Wendy Proctor, deputy director, Cabinet Office Shared Communications Service and a team of high profile judges.
The NABS’ ten-week Fast Forward training programme gives the industry’s hottest young talent the chance to learn directly from advertising’s most respected figures, who give their time to deliver bespoke sessions on a range of key industry skills. Working in multi-disciplinary teams comprising of delegates and mentors, the groups then apply the skills learned over the weeks in a night of high tension, quick fire pitches.
Winning team Canning wowed the judges with a strategic approach that appealed to a broad target audience and attempted to reframe voting as an act of social conscience. This led to an emotive advertising campaign asking people to vote in order to benefit the people they care about most. Team Canning enhanced its proposal with strong social and traditional media buying. Mobile proximity targeting on voting day to show nearest polling station was one suggestion that impressed judges.
Team Canning was mentored by Ed Booty, global strategy director at BBH and Matt Tabb, managing director at Wax Communications. The team consisted of:
- Verity Williams, planner, DLKW Lowe
- Chris Bullen, advertising director, Haymarket
- Meera Sanghvi, account manager, JWT
- Sylwia Kucharska, account manager, Last Exit
- Elizabeth Brennan, account manager, Mindshare
- Jane Woodhead, account manager, Mindshare
- William Moore, planning fellow, Ogilvy & Mather
- Toby Fairlamb, client assistant, Posterscope
- Jamie Buchanan, senior account manager, Publicis Chemistry
- David Ryan, WPP marketing fellow, WPP
Fast Forward was set up 14 years ago by legendary industry godfather Jeremy Bullmore, described by Campaign as "quite possibly the most admired man in advertising" and is currently run by Mark Collier, founder of Dare who will be handing over the baton next year to Mark Lund.
The judges consist of some of the biggest names in the industry; John Bartle, chairman of the judging panel (BBH), Mark Collier, (EDC), Wendy Proctor, (Cabinet Office), Claire Beale, (Campaign editor), Mark Lund, (Now), Graham Duff, (Coolpink and Miroma), Zoe Osmond, (NABS).
Participants were chosen by their employers and hail from adam&EveDDB, Cheil, Dare, DLKW Lowe, Google, Haymarket, JWT, Last Exit, Maxus, MediaCom, Mindshare, Ogilvy, Posterscope, Publicis, Rufus Leonard, TBWA\London, The7stars, Vodafone, Walker Media and WPP.
If you missed out on being a delegate on Fast Forward, the next NABS event is on 4 December when Stephen Haines, UK commercial director, Facebook, will be speaking about “How social is changing our behaviour.” His talk is part of the NABS Tuesday Club event held exclusively for NABS Partner Card holders. The Partner Card scheme offers holders a range of fantastic monthly talks, high street offers, career development guidance and one-to-one mentoring schemes with industry heavyweights, for a charitable donation. Launched in July, the card has now been distributed to over 6,000 industry employees.