Why do you feel the RADs remain so important to the industry?
The RADs have always been the industry’s most recognised awards event. What makes it so unique is that it’s a perfect blend of client and agency input – both from a judging point of view and the work that’s entered.
It’s becoming more and more important that creativity, strategy and execution are complemented with results and proving that the work made an impact – something the RADs is putting more emphasis on year after year.
What qualities do agencies need to succeed in this industry?
I'm a firm believer that an agency's success, and therefore a client’s success, is driven by the quality of the relationships you establish. When you build an inherent trust and a true partnership, agencies can better deliver success - not just creativity and innovation, but work that produces real results. We see that time and time again; when a client puts their trust in us, we produce great work that generates great results and even wins awards.
What packs more punch? Unbridled, daring creativity or metrics and strategy?
Creativity absolutely packs a punch - that's often the way you get people hooked in, but what's driving that creativity and its execution can, and most of the time should, be based on data these days. Not all the time, of course. But when it comes to target audience, the message, the timing and / or the location, testing, historic data and predictive analytics can all be invaluable. Not only can we test user experiences in a very agile way these days, but you can use some really new technologies like galvanic skin response, facial coding, and eye tracking which are much more accessible and affordable than they used to be. I also believe (naturally, given my role) that technology is playing a bigger part. But it needs the strategy, the creativity and the data to make it work best. Those that can blend those components well will create a well-rounded talent attraction strategy.
What’s the one piece of advice you’d give younger people looking to get into the industry?
I would say that younger people probably don't know the industry exists. They don’t know how big it is and how exciting it can be. A lot of students I’ve talked to at events, where we’re making them aware of employer branding and recruitment marketing as an industry, get quite excited about the clients that you work with, the types of projects you work on, and the scope of creativity that you have. I love that you can be working with a broader and bigger range of brands and companies that some traditional marketing agencies would be very envious of. Because of our global nature here at AIA, working with our colleagues and clients in Europe, the US and APAC is really exciting, and it means that you get to experience these different cultures and learn from colleagues around the world about what works in their world. So my advice is usually to consider the industry (and look for other niches too).