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

APSOTW Assignment: Turning Shit, Into Gold …

So it’s been ages since we did a planning school on the web assignment and it’s all my fault.

Well, not totally mine – Andrew and Gareth can take some of the blame too [I’m nice like that] – but still, I feel bad about it.

In a desperate attempt to make amends, I officially launch the first APSOTW project of 2017.

As usual, it’s open to anyone … people in advertising, people who want to be in advertising and people who were in advertising and never want to think about it ever again.

Seriously, everyone is invited – from any background or discipline – because the goal of the program isn’t just to help make people be better, but to help people ‘have a go’.

As usual, we will have a bunch of top professionals reviewing all the work.

We totally understand how intimidating this could be for you, but the purpose of involving some of the best in the biz is because we want to help you be better and what better way of doing that than to give you direct commentary from folks who are widely regarded as being some of the most successful or interesting.

So what’s the assignment?

Well we wanted to go back to basics with this.

There’s a lot of talk about planning … what it is and how you do it … so we decided it would be good if we put the fun and imagination back into the assignment. Get the discussion about planning to be about opening creative opportunities rather than closing them.

With that, here it is:


The tourism industry is incredibly competitive. With low-cost flights, it has become even harder for England’s seaside towns to be attractive, especially to families and especially out of the typical ‘summer season’ months.

The Skegness Tourism Authority – the local government department responsible for boosting tourism in the seaside town on the outskirts of Lincolnshire – feel this pressure more than most. For years the small town has suffered from a negative reputation.

Bad beach. Bad weather. No real reason to visit other than accessibility to a beach for people located in the middle of the UK.

With no money to dramatically improve facilities, the Skegness Tourism Authority have approached you with one simple challenge:

How can we position Skegness to appeal to short-stay* tourism, especially over winter?

* Short-stay tourism is any visit with a duration of between 4-24 hour.


Yes, I know if this was a real brief, there’d be plenty of reasons to push back on the client, but let’s ignore that for now.

Right … there’s a few ‘rules’ …

You can provide your response in any format you choose, but to guide you …

If a presentation, it should not be more than 12 slides.
If a video, it should not be more than 6 minutes in duration.

Whatever you do, your presentation must cover the rationale for your positioning idea.

Please remember this is a positioning exercise so you don’t have to provide any creative or media and all submissions should be based on Skegness’ reality, so no suggestions of ‘importing’ events into Skegness to make it topical.

In essence, if Paris is the city of love.

And New York is the city that never sleeps.

Skegness is _________________?

All submissions should be sent to this address by April 20th.

Have fun … not just because this is something where any answer has the potential to be the best answer, but because it’s a tourism assignment and going somewhere for no other reason than you want to do something different should feel enjoyable.

19 Comments so far
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if any fucker comes up with something better than the viz poster, ill personally give them a prize. watch entries fly in from all over the fucking galaxy. youre welcome.

Comment by andy@cynic

and skegness is fucking shit. truth in advertising right fucking there.

Comment by andy@cynic

A devilish assignment. It looks easy but Skegness makes Blackpool look like Rome so it is going to be incredibly difficult. Wonderful exercise.

Comment by George

An away day in Skegness is a day away from Nottingham.

Comment by John

doddsy wins.

Comment by andy@cynic

It’s a fairly compelling argument.

Comment by Rob

And one that I could back up with twelve slides of plannerly nonsense about reading Wikipedia, transport links and durations, and the value of travel as escape and perspective-engine. But we all know the world has far too many slides so I’ll just graciously accept Andy’s generous prize.

Comment by John

its good doddsy but not that fucking good.

Comment by andy@cynic

Et tu Bouche?

Comment by John

Didn’t you have that Viz advertisement in your office Robert?

Comment by Lee Hill

Yep … one of the original mock-ups no less.

Comment by Rob

It’s so bad, the Trip Advisor list of the ‘Top Ten things to Do in Skegness’ only lists four …

Comment by Ian Gee

Hahahahaha … that’s awesome.

Comment by Rob

Skegness, a destination but not your destiny.

Comment by John

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Damn. I just found this, and all I could picture was Morrissey trudging over wet sand: “Skegness: See Armageddon!

Comment by Fred McKissack

Take part next time Fred …

Comment by Rob

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