The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Hurrah, I Don’t Have To iPod Sing The Smiths: A[P]SOTW Feedback. Finally.
July 30, 2010, 6:30 am
Filed under: Advertising [Planning] School On The Web

So it’s finally here and about time too.

I can only apologise for how slack I’ve been because all other excuses are basically out-the-window or out-of-date.

I feel particularly bad because this challenge required you to make a greater effort than some of my previous assignments – so for me to take so long to get back to you is pretty fucking disrespectful, as I have been told by every one of the fellow judges, especially Mr Mean – also known as Northern Groper.

So here we are, decision time.

First of all I want to thank everyone who had a go … it was in essence, a double assignment, as you had to not only develop an idea that would help Head & Shoulders be the shampoo of choice for men, regardless of dandruff issues, but you had to present it on video, as if you were pitching to judges in the flesh.

The bad news?

No one would have got the business.


Because you either didn’t present your idea clearly enough or we didn’t buy your idea … especially those pitches that sounded suspiciously more like an execution than a strategy that could encourage a change in behaviour and/or attitude.

Of course we could have ignored the ‘idea’ element of the assignment and just gone with whatever we deemed the best presentation – however that would be wrong because even though in the real World some sad/bad/mad clients [delete as appropriate, but if I were you, I’d leave it exactly as it is] choose style over substance, we absolutely, wholeheartedly and fundamentally believe that is wrong … not just interms of overall professionalism but in terms of doing the right thing for your business, be it agency side or client.

Saying that, each of the entries had good points in them and so what I’ll do now is go through everyone’s submission one-by-one and then announce the ‘winner’ … but only of the assignment, not of the pitch, ha!

Oh, hang on, I should just do some housekeeping before we get to that.

First of all the brief:

“How can ‘Head & Shoulders’ shampoo be seen as the brand men [18-35] should use every day, rather than just on the occasions they think they have a dandruff issue”

[No additional supporting material was allowed to be entered and the video could not exceed 10 minutes in duration]

Now the judging criteria:

Quality of thinking

Quality of strategy/core idea

Clarity of presentation

Infectiousness of idea

Magnetism of presentation

Finally a little note about the videos …

Normally on the A[P]SOTW we put the submissions up for everyone to see however because this assignment was a bit more intimate, we gave people the chance for their ‘pitch’ to be kept private.

Because all this happened mid-move to Shanghai, I have lost the emails that told me who was OK with showing their preso and who wasn’t … so to be on the safe side, I’m not putting any up … however if the people who made their videos are kind enough to say they can be shown, I’ll put the links up at a later date.

Got all that?

Cool … OK, enough of this annoying waffle, let’s get to the good stuff.

Ladies and gentlemen … boys and girls … please welcome, MADISON

Before I get to your evaluation, I have to say your commitment to the cause [doing the assignment mere days after giving birth to your wonderful bundle of cuteness] was universally applauded.

Infact one of the judges was so impressed, that he wondered out loud whether he should use that strategy in his new business pitches – however after it was pointed out that he sounded like a callous bastard, we decided that regardless of the result, we wanted to send you a little pressie to congratulate you on your baby, so if you send me your address, I’ll get something sorted.

OK .. so now to your presentation/submission.

So the approach of your presentation was rather unique given you included your new born in the ‘show’ … however we ignored that brilliant piece of guilt-tripping strategy because we felt it wasn’t exactly feasible to have just born babies attend every presentation.

Interms of the delivery and quality of your strategy …

We all felt your thinking was clear – with good male grooming insights and category clichés – and by putting key messages on boards, you ensured the audience understood your thinking every step of the way … however no one really felt the concept of ‘wingman’ was going to deliver the change the brief required because no one felt it was quite right for shampoo, so whilst we found the whole experience entertaining, you didn’t win the pitch.


We all felt there was some good stuff in your presentation, but your delivery had a lot to be desired.

Overall it felt like a nice chat, rather than clear, well thought-out and structured argument and while there’s something to be said for the informal approach, yours was bordering on feeling like a night spent consuming hashcakes in Amsterdam.

If you want to hold an audience’s attention, it is vital you find a hook –that might be creating an overall theme for your presentation, using props or just delivering it in a more dynamic style.

In terms of strategy, we liked how you framed the competition as tough, but you didn’t really indicate how you were going to turn their strengths into a weakness and we struggled to see what the big strategic idea was within all this..

We did find your thought of ‘owning the shower’ as an interesting objective but you didn’t explain your strategy to achieve that – at least not in our mind.

Overall we’re left not being quite sure what your key strategy is and part of the reason for that is – like this blog – you went off on a bunch of tangents and never really gave an explanation for some of them, at least in the context of your idea.

We’re not sure if you do/did this, but we think it would help if you mapped out the story of your presentation before hand and spent time really evaluating what information will help ‘sell’ your strategy and what are superfluous, regardless how interesting they may appear to be,


From a very shaky start – ie: all the judges HATED rap music – you ended up impressing many of the judges,

Bad music aside, your introduction got our attention and whilst your delivery was quite Keanu Reeves [ie: stiff], the use of the TV prop really helped as it allowed you to structure and communicate your presentation into bit sized pieces

We liked that you got to the heart of the problem – make Head & Shoulders about more than just dandruff – and you were very clear about the different kinds of bathroom experience.

There were some statements that the judges felt were ‘obviousness expressed as insight’ and you didn’t clearly articulate who specifically you were talking to and their lifestyle/circumstances, but overall we got a good impression that you were not only genuinely tackling the brands problem, but wanted to address it in a way that changed behaviour.

If this was a pitch, you would certainly get into the 2nd round as your entry raised only positive comment, with a couple of the judges saying the idea – even though it may not increase sustained usage – was definitely very interesting and worth a much closer look.


It was very interesting – and a bit worrying – that after watching your submission, a number of judges said “there was no way you were in advertising”.

The reason for that was that they felt your presentation and strategy was expressed in a way that didn’t feel like it was leading up to an execution but a clearly defined strategy focused on the business issue [which is worth remembering for all planners out there]

Overall the judges felt your ‘pitch’ was very clear and measured and by addling a number of examples, you ensured what you were trying to say was understood and relevant,

Infact it was all going so well until you got to explaining your ‘big idea’ … because it just seemed pretty flat after such a simmering build up.

It is these occasions that adding some drama to your pitch could make a huge difference.

Whether that is through the use of props or simply voice control is open to debate – but having had all the judges listen intently to what you were saying, it was here where you started to not just lose them, but also their interest.

We felt you uncovered a really good that led to you being able to articulate an interesting problem to focus on, however one of the judges did say Head and Shoulders had done that before with a campaign that said, “I didn’t know you had dandruff? I don’t”

The ‘Sleeper Cell’ idea is interesting but it was around this time you made your 2nd mistake.

Talking through average scripts is a big no-no.

Actually, talking through any script is a big no-no fullstop.

While the idea in your scripts had some merit, most of the judges also said that “there was no way you’re a copywriter”.

From having people in the palm of your hand, the articulation of your core idea and the decidedly average scripts let you down.

People felt you appeared smart and trustworthy and with your thinking and insight, you would definitely get into the 2nd round, but whilst you were very clear about your objective, you were sadly less clear about the solution and it was made worse by trying to sell an ad that was obviously not developed by someone who actually writes ads for a living. [More than one judge said it was basically a bad AXE ad, just for hair]

Know what you’re bad at … and either collaborate on those things or avoid them in your presentation.

Do that and you could be very strong indeed.


This is one of those things that probably sounded like a good idea at the time, but you’ll wish you hadn’t done it in the future.

The problem lies purely in one element: you tried to pull off the sort of presentation that only the highly accomplished and experienced can embark on. And even then, many fail.

We all felt that if we met you in a bar and you presented to us in your natural manner, we’d like you … but for all the bravery it takes to try and pull off a ‘really there, when you’re not’ video performance, you shouldn’t have done it because we spent more time watching your stilted acting style than listening to what you said.

Interms of the actual content … we liked how you summed it all up as “unbelievable, exaggeration, trying to be something it’s not” … however when you started talking about the solution we got a bit confused [especially Rebecca because she was actually involved in the making of ‘Fight Club’] because we weren’t sure exactly what you were trying to say was the opportunity for Head & Shoulders.

All in all, presentation style aside, you raised some interesting points – but the thinking flow was not as clear as it should/could [think props or key heading boards next time] and the solution left us scratching our heads as much as dandruff would.


One judge said of your submission that it was “more of a filming of a presentation than a filmed presentation” … and whilst the visuals certainly helped make a stronger connection, there was the feeling it was the sort of thing you’d watch late at night on BBC 2 rather than sit there and experience in the flesh.

That sounds harsh – especially as so much of it was at a very high standard, including the overall film quality – but there was this feeling you were holding back from showing your true personality, or as one judge said, “Why is she acting like a politician?”

As for the content, well the thinking was good – we all liked how you looked outside the core category and into the culture of men – which is much more interesting to hear and much more fertile for possible solutions.

We liked that you had obviously done your background (“Head and Shoulders: Above The Rest”) and expressed it in a relevant way for today, we liked your use of slides as a support rather than a crutch and we LOVED that you talked about things like packaging rather than bloody executions, but some of your references to convey your idea felt like they’d you’d just spent the day reading trendwatching and wanted to get in the new stuff you learnt come hell or high water.

Without doubt you showed great analysis of their current communications as well as great thinking/understanding on what it means to be a man today … so overall it was a very, very well received pitch but with your talent, experience and standards we should not expect anything less. [Ha!]


On one side, we loved the way you interrogated the brief and really got under the skin of the audience … but on the other we felt you didn’t actually answer the brief, despite taking us on a journey.

The other issue was the presentation energy. In short, there wasn’t any.

Given I know you, I can only assume you had just got back from a very longwinded flight because the overall feeling was you were a little “sleepy”.

You did identify a behaviour that could unlock new opportunities for the brand and we’d of loved to see that explored and exploded, but you don’t actually suggest an idea, you just seemingly point out opportunities and/or insights.

The general consensus was that you had something to say, you just hadn’t worked out how to do it and so instead, decided to adopt a strategy of throw a bunch of things at us and hope to impress us with variety.

Sadly that didn’t quite work.


So there you go, 7 entries, 7 judgements.

As I said at the start of this looooooooooooooooooong post, if this was a real pitch, no one would get awarded the business though a few would get into the 2nd round and the others would be thought of as having snippets of intrigue, but not enough to lose sleep over it.

The key issues for our view is that :

1/ Very few of you built your case in relation to the brief. Yes we all knew what it was, by highlighting how certain elements address certain aspects of the brief can go a long way.

2/ Even fewer gave any form of evidence to back up your assumptions.

Many clients starting point is – sadly – “we don’t believe you”, so don’t give them any more ammunition in this view.

3/ There was very little personality coming through in the presentations – or it was so over-the-top as to be distracting.

Being engaging isn’t about flash or ceremony, it’s about being charming, interesting, enthusiastic and real. [read: human]

4/ This was a brief about changing behaviour, yet no one really spent any time examining why the behaviour of today exists or what we need to do to change the fundamental behaviour to achieve what we want. Some touched on it, but not as much as they could have or should have.

I know this all sounds quite tough – and maybe it’s come across a bit harsher than we mean – but we approach A[P]SOTW with the view to help you be better and so the comments are hopefully constructive rather than destructive.

[Saying that, I was quite disappointed that the ‘A[P]SOTW lite’ assignment put together by Mr M was so poorly embraced. I know it was the World Cup and all, but it was a great challenge to sink your teeth into]

So after a lot of consideration and quite a lot of debate – especially on those pitches that we felt were very strong bar one or two things – we felt the best overall pitch was Rob.

By an inch.

So well done Rob… but don’t get too cocky because it’s worth remembering the judges didn’t feel it was good enough to actually win the pitch, just to get through to round 2 and even then, they’d tell you to re-do the ads. With a real creative.

Still, you’re a worthy winner and as I am seeing you in a week or 2, I will give you your prize [probably copious amounts of beer] when I see you.

Again, huge apologies for the delay in getting this back to you – I realise that when I set the assignment, I was living in another country and working in another company so it’s really been way too long – however if the lovely Northern [Groper] and Gareth Kay ever allow me to do one of these again, I promise I will not let there be such a long delay between submission date and response.

I’m not sure who is doing the next one – maybe Northern – but I hope you find these assignments useful because, whilst none of us would claim to be the best ‘role models’[hahahaha, I can’t believe I typed that] I think there’s the odd bit of common sense that comes out our mouths. Well Northern, Gareth and the judges.

Whilst the old adage says ‘practice makes perfect’, there are some tricks to aid in the development of your presentation chops.

1/ Go and see other presenters.

This could be at conferences or on things like TED – but look and listen at what they do and see if you can identify the elements that helps hold people’s attention beyond just the content of their pitch. [Which obviously is also vitally important]

2/ Study the great monologue actors.

For me, one of the greatest ever film speeches is delivered by Al Pacino in Oliver Stone’s ‘Any Given Sunday’. It’s not because of the subject matter per se [It’s about American Football – a sport I can’t be bothered to even try and fully understand] it’s because he tells a story that is dramatised through his inflections and pauses.

Sure, he is one of the World’s greats, but that doesn’t mean you can’t pick up some tips in how to ensure people keep their eyes and ears on you.

If Al Pacino is too much for you to handle, look for any movie with a high court element – mainly because in my mind, barristers are some of the greatest presenters you could ever hope to emulate.

3/ Go to acting class or improv.

As some of my planners are about to find out, acting class/improv can make a huge difference to the quality of your presenting skills.

While many people say you should always ‘be yourself’ I disagree.

Well, let me clarify that … I believe we all have multiple expressions of our personality and the secret is to always choose the one that best matches your audience … or as my Father – one of the great communicators of our time – said… “always make sure your approach matches your audience.”

That doesn’t mean you start talking in an American accent if you’re presenting to an American client … it means you alter your delivery and language to best suit the characteristics of the audience … so if you’re talking to a room full of bankers, you’d probably use more technical expressions and a firm, authorative voice, however if you’re talking to a room full of models [I wish], you’d use monosybalic words and snort coke between sentences.


The thing is, for some people, doing a presentation is one of the scariest things they can imagine doing – so the secret is to pretend you’re someone else.

Maybe you’re a lawyer about to make your final analysis.

Maybe you’re a football manager at half time.

Maybe you’re just your friend who always seems to be confident in what they do.

Don’t laugh, it can help and acting class can not only help you do this, but can give you the confidence to know you’re not making a fool of yourself at a meeting.

However even if you quite enjoy presenting, acting class and improv can make a difference.

It can teach you the skill of voice control … the power of the pause … the warmth of emotion … in short acting class and improv can help turn you from speaker to presenter in the best sense of the word.

I know it might sound weird, but the reality is if you can present well, it not only can make a good bit of thinking come across as an amazing opportunity to grasp [as Steve Jobs does with skill and panache, especially when he describes iPhone features that have been available on competitive products for years, as if they’ve literally been invented by Apple] it can help further your career so whilst the thought of some short-term embarrassment may sound horrendous, it can’t be nearly as bad as a long-term period of disappointment.

Yep, I honestly believe the ramifications have the potential to be that serious …

On that bombshell, I’m going to bow-out disgracefully so have a great weekend and I’ll see you on Monday … though if you have any sense you’ll keep well away.

38 Comments so far
Leave a comment

fuck it, he did it.

get these videos approved campbell, what s the fucking point having this if we cant see the fucking goods.

well done everyone who did this, even those who didnt do so well. dont get down, being told you have stuff to do by rob prostitutes for fucking research campbell is hardly career limiting is it.

Comment by andy@cynic

and what rob failed to mention is acting class keeps your boss afuckingmused for months.

and campbell, can we give the any given sunday references a rest. in the history of fucking film are you saying there is not one other fucking reference that could be used? you fucking are arent you. you stubborn shit.

Comment by andy@cynic

Sorry Andy [and NG/Marcus etc] but the threat of iPod singing The Smiths was more of a motivator to finally get off my arse and finish this than having GMTV’s Mr Motivator, Chuck Norris and a drill sergeant all going off at me at the same time.

And ‘going off at me at the same time’ is not nearly as sick as it sounds.

And Andy’s right folks, if you think our feedback is harsh:

1/ Remember it’s me who has written it up so it’s hardly something that should strike the fear of god in you.

2/ It is meant as constructive, not destructive.

3/ You can get in touch and argue or discuss any point in person.

[Preferably “discuss” points please, ha!]

Thanks for doing this, I would love to get your feedback on our feedback as well as hear how your next presentation goes, regardless of whether you use any of our advice or not.

Comment by Rob

Still think you should do it as punishment for general slackness

Comment by northern

Well done to everyone. It was a tough assignment with tough judges.

Hope you’ll let us see your submissions.

Comment by Pete

rob, i think this is one of the most valuable assignments and subsequent critiques i have read on this APSOTW. in fact, i don’t wanna see the videos, the principles are there, regardless.

i’m not in advertising, so i’m just comin’ from an outsider’s perspective, but no-one talks about developing real presentation skills.

the main task of planners and adland is making people believe your idea and your process. having passion helps, but if you can’t muster it (which is probably kinda normal), learning how to fake it could go a long way.

much food for thought.

Comment by lauren

Thanks for the comment Lauren but obviously it all stemmed from the guys who did the assignment.

To be honest, I’d love to get your perspective on what makes a good presentation given your background and role is quite different to us in the playground of adland.

Comment by Rob

…but YOU set the task to be on video only. you introduced the real-time presentation aspect of the outcome.

and i don’t know if i actually know, but i do know that actors and directors probably do.

Comment by lauren

Thanks for this Rob. And thanks to all the other judges. Very helpful feedback as always.

To be fair, I had warned you about the absolutely pathetic delivery on my part in that video. And yes I was sleepy as I recorded it in front of my shitty webcam, during a particularly busy work period, in the middle of the night. on deadline day. But that’s no excuse as I had a month or so to complete the assignment. I’ll happily take the blame and try to have my shit in order for next time and maybe, maybe not leave it to the last possible instant.

I probably shouldn’t want to subject more people to that video, but if someone really wants to look at it you can post the link.

Thanks again man.

Comment by Rafik

You did warn me Rafik and I am very glad that despite your hellish recent schedule you went for it, but I suppose the issue is that if this were a ‘real pitch’, you wouldn’t walk in looking like you needed a months worth of sleep.

Again that sounds harsh, I know how much these things take to do [and judge, ha] but the purpose of these things are to hopefully improve people and if we were all Paula Abdulesque, there’d be little point to do it.

Thanks for your openness to comment as usual and should anyone want to see what Rafik looks like when he hasn’t slept in weeks, you can see it here:

Comment by Rob

By the way, because you gave my wife some of her beloved Canadian Maple Syrup, she voted for you – but she’s an easy touch, I just lent her my jumper on a cold day and she agreed to marry me.

Comment by Rob

I regularly have to help Eva with presentations. She doesn’t work in advertising but she does tend to have to present a lot. She’s got rather good at it now but it has taken me at least three years to help her see that, when she is herself, then she is really very good.

I can understand your thinking around acting classes because presentations are an absurd form of performance and it’s always good to learn how to physically and mentally deal with a performance situation (especially with smaller audiences, which I happen to think is way, way harder than doing something in front of 300 people). A word of warning however…

Don’t try and be someone else.

Eva’s main problem a couple of years ago was that she was trying to be someone else; she was trying to be the person who was good at presenting. But it didn’t work. We’ve worked on that and now her personality shines through; she is incredibly good at what she does, she makes funny little mistakes that she can laugh about; she’s cheeky and she’s tough. People come away from the presentations and think “that’s the woman I want to work with”.

My advise for presentations is that you have to practise being you – but in a way that people can actually see it.

Good morning.

Comment by Marcus

case. in. point.

Comment by lauren

Wise words Marcus, wise words

Comment by northern

That is awesome advice Marcus, even though you have more ‘characters’ than a Monty Python sketch 😉

Nah … being serious, it’s very good, when I said you could think you were someone else, I didn’t mean literally, but in how you think they would act in a meeting, hence your personality may change, but your accent shouldn’t.

Comment by Rob

Hey Rob –

You can post my video. I often struggle between bringing real Heather into presentations. Bitchy business Heather always sneaks in and steals my seat. But this year I managed to win a pitch to P&G/Gucci after saying an example of “like peeling a banana with no hands.” Now that’s certainly more me. I didn’t have a camera operator and filmed mine at 11.30pm (I think after hashcakes in Amsterdam!) so would love to see how other people filmed theirs. And good to know I have a career as a politician if adland stops paying. 🙂 All good fun.

Comment by Heather

But you’d be an awesome politician, not one of those lying scum versions. Ha!

Comment by Rob

Hi Rob & The Refs

tnx for the feedback, really useful and makes me keep learning and trying to improve.
You can put my as well so folks can learn … from failing in my case:))

Comment by zeljko

Thanks mate … and for what it’s worth, Jonah @ ThinkOrSwim thought you were the ‘Don Simpson’ of the submissions. But don’t be alarmed, he meant that as a compliment …

{A bigger compliment is Rebecca – who worked with Don Simpson – said you were nothing of the kind, ha!]

My comment to Jonathan below is also applicable to you and I’d really like to hear how you go in the future with this and of course, should there be any specific questions you have, just shout.

Comment by Rob

Thanks to all for the enduring my video and for your feedback.

Do you think it would’ve worked if Rebecca hadn’t worked on Fight Club?!
No, in the light of you comments, going for effect totally killed my idea:

Which was: When you use H&S to hide dandruff, you use it when it occurs. (which I saw as the core problem of the brief and it is caused by the ads mentioned)
By turning the dandruff issue into a fight to win everyday, it should become more rewarding for men to “beat” something and well, do so on a daily basis.
God, this still sounds stupid. But maybe someone gets the idea.

In all honesty, I had spent the two hours before the deadline on this and obviously decided to go for effect over substance. Silly me. Your comments were spot-on.

And have fun laughing and pointing at my video!

Comment by Jonathan

Thank you for taking it all in good grace, I really hope we’ve not upset you – but we do want to give you tips that we think might help. Of course if you choose to ignore that, it’s your perogative, but the intention is genuine and I really appreciate you doing it and I hope you’d do it again if the challenge was set.

Comment by Rob

Well done to everyone. Every single video had some really positive points and some great observations and thinking.
All I’d say n presentations is write the end first, then write the start…then decide what key points you need to include to get us there, every presentation should key theme or plot. Try and work out what that is.

Comment by northern

…and out of interest, the current Head and Shoulders strategy is around aromatherapy..and copying Lynx without the wit (fit nurses)

Comment by northern

Excellent point NP/G … the goal of a preso is to work out/decide what thought/opinion/idea you want the audience to be left with which is why working backwards is far more effective in creating a streamlined, well articulated story than the other way round.

Comment by Rob

Well everyone else is green-lighting the video links so I feel bad not doing so. Go ahead and post it…apologies in advance to anyone who watches it, though. Thanks to Rob and the judges for both the (limited) praise and, more importantly, constructive criticism. To clarify, I’ve never worked in advertising (just brand consulting, which I know is a favorite topic of everyone here).

Eventually I may post a link to the PPT I used to organize my thoughts, as well. It’s less frightening to look at.

One comment: this was a great assignment, but for me and probably most participants it may not be representative of what we’d do in “real life.” Mine too was prepared shortly beforehand and recorded at midnight while my wife was sleeping in the next room (really curious to know what she thought I was up to!). The flip-side of that, though, is that because it’s not “real,” we get to go out on a limb and try some stuff we’d never do with a client. Hence my scripts and strapline…I didn’t think they were great so much as I thought…”eh, why not?”

Thanks again, and enjoy!

Comment by Rob Meyerson

First congrats … and secondly, I know exactly what you mean about being able to go out on a limb when there’s ‘nothing to lose’ [so to speak] but I find that also quite sad which is why one of the most enjoyable elements of starting cynic was our ability to ‘play’ and ‘try’ though whether W+K like the fact that in my first week I said:

“How can we say we solve clients specific problems when we use a standardised creds deck” is still open to debate.

For the record, W+K no longer have a standardised cred deck.

Comment by Rob

what is a standardised cred deck?

Comment by lauren

It’s wrong and lazy Lauren … where agencies talk more about themselves than listen to their audience.

I’m quite old school in this regard which is funnily enough, quite new school these days.

Comment by Rob

The very kind people who embarked on this horror assignment have kindly [except Jacob, but I’m sure he’ll be OK with it and if not, too late] said they will allow their ‘pitches’ to be viewed online.

And if there’s any sarcastic comments, be prepared to be called on your presentation and strategy chops.

Jonathan //

Heather //

Madison //

Rafik //

Rob //

Jacob //

Zeljko //

Comment by Rob

Being me has brought me no success whatsoever.

Comment by John

That’s funny because pretending to be you has brought me 27 credit cards.

Comment by Rob

* applause *

Comment by lauren

That then explains all these letters from the obscene publications division.

Comment by John

What I learned, and has helped in past lives, is to build up presentations around clifhangers that clients like:

now dealing with real estate and mortgage lenders, that tended to be stuff like, sales turnaround, budgets, margin etc, legalities of advertisig. but it also prevented me/us from talking about stuff from the “us” pov and forced me/us to always bring it back to one simple question:

How am i better than my competition at taking away the pain of the pressurepoints the clients are most receptive to..?

That is my one issue with the presentation i have watched.

Granted the brief did not specify it, but taking such basic elements as job security, ego of deciders and margin and money making are clifhangers that matter, if only to grab someone attention back (“let us now turn to profitmargin” always gets people’s backs straightened out).

While you may think and speak advertising, clients view this as one (smaller getting) tool on their belt. Speak client talk and you might get along better than expected.

perhaps it has been said before, but watching the tv show Dragons Denn is very usefull. if only because you get to see how investors think, and what they want out off potential investments.

Planners need to know how to reason back to a strat from seeing an ad, so why not apply that same thinking to other pitches and see what pitch strats worked or not.

but as with all things from Holland, take what you think can be used and is legal in your own country.. 😉

well done once again to all who participated.

Comment by niko

Thanks so much Rob for the opportunity!

Being as far away from the ad land as Lindsay Lohan is from getting n Oscar I am overall happy with my attempt. As it is popular to say in the US, it’s a learning experience.

The Discrediting Dennis in me says ‘Never ever try to do anything close to planning’. The Cheerleading Chelsea points out that neither Beyonce nor Justin T. had won on US’s Star Search 😉

Comment by Madison

Madison, you have to send me your address [rob dot campbell @ wk dot com] … and for what it’s worth, the fact you have a go says more about justifying your desires for planning than many of these guys that have that ‘official’ title but sit on their arse doing nothing but reading blogs or quoting “desk research”.

Fuck ’em … you did just fine and with practice and perserverence, you’ll do much more than that.

Comment by Rob

As mentioned above, here’s a link to the PPT I used to organize my thoughts and structure my presentation:

Comment by Rob Meyerson

[…] tallied up, Rob and the other judges determined that I’d provided the best submission “by an inch.” They liked the setup, as it’s described above, but hated my creative execution ideas, […]

Pingback by “By an inch” | Semantic Argument

Leave a Reply