PROMAX UK 2014 Conference – Part1

October 31, 2014
by Tim Rabjohns

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    dotmogo was very pleased to be invited by the organisers of Promax UK to provide some blogging support for this year’s UK conference.  As with the PROMAX Europe conference earlier in the year  – it’s pretty much impossible to cover all the sessions – however I will attempt to give you a flavour of what it was like to be there.

    Promax UK 14 - British IntitutionFirstly – a really interesting change of venue this year – to the august but gently groovy building that is the British Institution  – a place steeped in Victorian scientific history. The main Faraday Theatre is where many a  discovery has been unveiled.

    Promax UK 14 - Jarvis Cocker

    Jarvis Cocker

    Today however, it was another type of information being imparted by some speakers who all excel in their fields.  Jarvis Cocker opened the proceedings on the first day, being his funny risque self – giving pointers on how to be more creative by embracing what makes you different and “accepting your own uniqueness”

    Promax UK 14 - adamandeveddb

    adamandeveddb – John Lewis Christmas

    The next talk I saw was Ben Priest and James Murphy from advertising agency adam&eveDDB – where they explained how they came to be involved with the creative juggernaut that is the John Lewis Christmas ad.  Under the title ‘Same Shit Different Christmas’ they explained how they developed the thinking to keep creating highly impactful ads with the same brief each year.  Interestingly they said that this constraint made them more creative, also how important it was to develop a “language” for the work – the music style, the lighting , the look etc.  They also advised to make sure that there was a good mix of people who worked on the account throughout and to bring in new creative blood all the time.  I have to say it was great to see all the ads one after another – but they would not reveal the 2014 edition. #denied!

    PromaxUk 14 - Rita Clifton - Reemah Sakaan

    Branding with Rita Clifton & Reemah Sakaan

    After lunch we were treated to “Branding – Art of Business?” -an intimate conversation between two branding professionals – Rita Clifton (International ‘brand guru’ with a CBE for services to advertising – say no more…) and Reemah Sakaan (director of marketing at ITV)  Rita gave us a great distillation of what it takes to be a great brand – citing examples like Apple and Waitrose and pointing out the difference between a brand based business (like Apple) and a product based business (like Nokia).  In applying this to TV brands she observed how many non TV brands were trying to be more TV-like (eg Tesco TV and Heat TV) but not so much the other way round.  She felt that TV brands could go a lot further in finding ways to spend time with their customers/consumers.

    I also attended a talk called “You’ve Made A Right Hashtag Out Of That” – with a panel made up of representatives from Facebook (Derren Sequeira), Jamie Oliver Ltd (Subi Gnanaseharam), UKTV (Steve Hornby), Twitter (Geaorgina Parnell) and long term advertising creative Dave Bonaguidi from ACME Studio.  This great panel gave us a run down of ways of extending the reach of any given idea/program/campaign with successful examples of social media ideas.  This was especially interesting to me as I’ve heard many a TV exec toss out the phrase “360 campaign” with out backing up what that might look like.  Often these things take years to perfect with any given brand with lots of unsuccessful executions along the way…

    Promax UK 14 PUK networking drinks

    Promax UK 14 PUK networking drinks

    Apart from the seminars lots of chat in between – catching up with people you havn’t seen for ages, making new friends and discussions inspired from what you heard in the sessions.  Finally there was a welcome drink at the end of the day in the PUK networking session

    STOP PRESS – the results are in for all the categories.  I’ll put some more of these in another post, but we just have space to say that Best Channel Identity Gold was won by our recently featured FILM 4 idents by 4CREATIVE/ManvsMachine.  Silver – UKTV  GOLD  Rebrand by DixonBaxi (which you can see at the top of the page) and Bronze – E4 by 4Creative (also featured on dotmogo before)

    Finally here’s a rogues gallery of some people I bumped into:

    Promax UK 14 British Institution

    Promax UK 14 -random panel in the BI

    Promax UK 14 - Rich Thrift Channel 5

    Rich Thrift Channel 5

    Promax UK 14 - DixonBaxi


    Promax UK 14  - Kara from Kemistry & Reuben from Conran Design

    Kara from Kemistry & Reuben from Conran Design

    Promax UK 14 - Ricky from Kemistry Liz from Ravensbourne Tim from Wonder

    Ricky from Kemistry Liz from Ravensbourne Tim from Wonder


    1. |

      […] delegates in between sessions.  In case you missed it, it’s definitely worth having a look at day 1 of the PROMAX UK conference – which is a separate […]

    2. |

      […] the modern British Christmas ad – John Lewis.  As we reported before – in our post on Promax UK –  I attended a talk by Ben Priest and James Murphy from advertising agency adam&eveDDB who […]

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