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UK Creative: How Do We Measure Up and How Do We Market Ourselves?

Awards and Events 106 Add to collection

The APA's Steve Davies joined LBB's Matt Cooper and Alex Reeves at the UK Creative Festival in Margate to talk about how the UK's collaborative spirit has created an international success story

UK Creative: How Do We Measure Up and How Do We Market Ourselves?
Kicking off the inaugural UK Creative Festival in optimistic fashion and setting the mood for the day, LBB’s own Matt Cooper joined the APA’s Steve Davies to discuss UK advertising and how it fairs internationally with LBB Europe editor Alex Reeves.

The festival, held in the seaside town of Margate on the Kent coast, is the brainchild of the organisers of the UK’s Creative Circle. Across two days, they’ll be hosting a range of talks and panels on craft, creative inspiration and the business of creativity. The first talk of the day focused on the strengths of the UK creative exports and imparted insight about how creative businesses can market and sell themselves internationally. 

As an export-heavy market, the UK has built a reputation internationally - but that, argued Matt and Steve, has been built on a culture of cooperation - even between competitors.

“Historically brits have always worked together incredibly well, it’s a village,” said Matt. “There are great alliances in businesses from creatives to directors to post houses and that doesn’t happen everywhere.”

“They compete against each other but they respect each other. They can work together with competitors to make the industry better and some markets don’t get that,” said Steve. Within the production side of the industry, the APA is an example of competitors coming together to raise standards and market the sector internationally."

It’s not just warm bonhomie and camaraderie - that cooperation means that the UK advertising sector has been generating huge revenues. At £26bn a year in revenue, advertising is the third biggest service sector in the UK and pulls in £11bn in exports a year.

Brands like MPC, The Mill and Framestore have spread across the world, are winning Oscars, working on major Hollywood titles and creating software.

The UK government has come around to the argument that UK exports are not just about manufacturing and have been supporting the Advertising Association-led efforts as part of the UK Export Group. These efforts mean that both big brands and small businesses can pool resources and maximise impact.

Matt urged the audience to understand the art of selling - it’s not a dirty word and any creative company needs to bring in work and sell talent in order to thrive. Thinking carefully about who you’re selling to, being targeted and considered in the work you present and really listening to people’s needs and concerns are paramount.

Speaking to the audience of assembled students, Matt urged them to pick up that baton of collaboration and community to carry the UK industry into the future.

“That’s been forged by an older group of people and I hope that’s taken on by you younger people.”

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LBB Editorial, Thu, 09 Sep 2021 09:33:25 GMT