HOW TO SELL TO ... Nick Vale - Optimedia’s ’bright star’ has a penchant for dark shirts. By Lexie Goddard

Nick Vale, group account director at Optimedia, doesn’t fit the media mould. He dislikes golf, rugby, cricket and exercise generally, dons the black shirts favoured by his creative cousins and would rather wander around the Serpentine Gallery, read a Salman Rushdie novel or listen to Radio 4 than wash down a Vindaloo with 20 pints of lager.

Nick Vale, group account director at Optimedia, doesn’t fit the

media mould. He dislikes golf, rugby, cricket and exercise generally,

dons the black shirts favoured by his creative cousins and would rather

wander around the Serpentine Gallery, read a Salman Rushdie novel or

listen to Radio 4 than wash down a Vindaloo with 20 pints of lager.



But Vale is far from pretentious. In fact, he is free of airs and

graces.



Vale’s favourite restaurant is a fish ’n’ chip shop on Marylebone Lane

called the Golden Hind - but for Christ’s sake don’t try to book a table

there like one misguided ad executive did a few years back. He’s also

one of the most sarcastic blokes in the business.



Vale has just been promoted (Media Business, 6 March). Having been

singled out as ’a bright young star’ he is now one of half a dozen group

account directors at Optimedia. This is despite the fact that his

publicity photos make him look like a menacing bouncer or, as one kind

sales person told him, ’the prince of darkness’.



Vale is heading a new account group built around Go, British Airways’

budget airline whose colourful ads grace Adshels and underground posters

in and around London. He works closely with David Magliano, Go’s

marketing director, and the airline’s PR company Cohn & Wolfe, on media

strategy.



Aside from using traditional media, Vale has looked at Go’s website,

pioneered an initiative with the Ministry of Sound to publicise special

weekend flights to Ibiza during the summer, and sponsored a stage at the

Edinburgh Festival to get Londoners flying up to Scotland.



New-media owners take note: Vale and his planner/buyers Sarah Clark and

Sarah Taylor are also in the midst of drawing up media schedules for

ClickMango.com and the auction site Premier Find.com. You will need to

don your thinking caps as he is looking for something ’beyond banners

and buttons’ that will work long term. Other accounts in his group are

Yahoo!, the UK’s biggest portal, and a slice of the contract for the

merchant bank UBS.



Vale claims not to be fussy when it comes to freebies. ’Faberge eggs or

a part in any major Hollywood production will do,’ he says.





LIKES



- Black shirts



- Ad executives who admit when they are wrong



- Fish and chips



DISLIKES



- An overly aggressive telephone manner



- Laziness



- Golf.



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Digital marketing executives oversee the online marketing strategy for their organisation. They plan and execute digital (including email) marketing campaigns and design, maintain and supply content for the organisation's website(s).