If the ad industry is to grow, it will require a doubling down on creativity across four key areas of the business: Skills, Talent Pipeline, Future Working Models and Reputation. This is the rallying cry delivered by Guy Vickerstaff, the newly appointed Chair for the IPA in Scotland, in his inaugural speech in Edinburgh.
During his two-year tenure as Chair for the ad agency business in Scotland, Vickerstaff’s Creativity 2.0 agenda will get under the skin of what it means to be creative in the modern day for the advertising people, the advertising agencies, and the advertising industry in Scotland. In doing so he will highlight the ways in which creativity is crucial to the business, and work on initiatives to improve this across the board.
Says Vickerstaff: “For all the data, for all the latest tech, for all the influencers and for all the noise, it is too easy to lose sight of the substance of our business. The currency that our clients look to us for to transform their businesses, the currency that grabs consumers’ ever-decreasing attention, and the currency that attracts the brightest of minds into our business. And that is, of course, Creativity.
“Creativity underpins everything we do. Let’s face it, in Scotland alone what are our 'widows', our banks, and our very own amber nectar without our creative communication to bring them to life? It is imperative that creativity therefore feeds into every area of our business.”
In rolling out his agenda, Vickerstaff outlined how he will bring his understanding, wealth of experience and contacts to help instil and promote creativity across four key areas of the agency business:
I will create a series of events focussing on the next generation of creative leaders in Scotland. I want to create a discussion around the skillsets, the tools and the new innovations that will help them create more effective advertising.
I will engage further with the Scottish colleges and universities from where the next wave of creative talent will emerge: from Art, to Graphic & Communications Design, Animation and Marketing, not just those studying Advertising. This will help to create a much wider, more diverse and more multi-skilled pool of new talent.
I will create a focus on new working models with guest speakers, workshops and thought-leadership content to help inspire us on how we can evolve the way we work for the future, with creativity at the core.
We know as an industry we are at a crucial time. We must face into the reputational challenges we face. I will use my position to raise the profile of the Scottish advertising industry, the proud people who work in it and the work we create.
Vickerstaff’s Creativity 2.0 agenda will sit alongside new IPA President Nigel Vaz’s nationwide 'Reimagine' agenda which focuses on the role, revenue and responsibility of the ad industry at large to help assert agencies as ‘Partners for growth.’
Says Vickerstaff: “When new IPA President Nigel Vaz spoke about agencies being ‘Partners for growth’, this was a phrase that jumped out at me. Creativity 2.0 for me means: I want us to partner to help our people grow. I want us to partner to help our clients grow. And I want us to partner to help our industry grow.”
Follow Guy’s agenda on Twitter: @The_IPA #CreativityTwoPointZero
In addition to his role as Chair of the IPA in Scotland, Guy Vickerstaff is Creative Director at The&Partnership.
With over 24 years’ agency experience gained both in Sydney and Edinburgh, Guy is one of Scotland’s highest profile advertising creatives.
Five years as creative director at Story, were preceded by seven years as head of art at The Leith Agency, two years running his own agency and five years at The Union. And before all that he was at EuroRSCG (Havas) in Sydney for a few years.
He has won numerous awards and has been responsible for some of Scotland’s most iconic advertising working on brands including, NatWest, Royal bank of Scotland, Coutts, Standard Life, VisitScotland, Baxter’s, Irn-Bru, Grolsch, Coors and the Scottish Government.
Guy is married, has twin teenage sons and rides a motorbike or bicycle to work most days.