Applied Thinking

Applied Thinking for 2017

We invited some of the biggest thinkers, sharpest comms planners and best writers in advertising to apply their intellect and streetwise savvy to the crucial issues facing marketers. The result is what we call Applied Thinking...

Just as Applied Mathematics is all about solving problems, compared with its Pure Maths compatriot, so Applied Thinking asks contributors to avoid inward-facing analysis of ad-industry (or their own agency’s) structure and to focus solely on examining the challenges that greet marketers every morning. 

Traditionally, we’ve had agencies do all the thinking and writing. This year, for the first time, we’ve asked two marketers for insight from the other side of the brief. 

The gulf between them is of one oceanic proportions. Mondelez, with its global portfolio of billion-dollar brands stretching from Cadbury and Oreo to Milka and Trident, is first up. Then Lonely Planet – a single brand, but one that carries the trust of travellers across continents.

When these disparate marketers’ viewpoints are added to an eclectic mix of agencies, one thing becomes abundantly clear: strategic thinking is a key differentiator between organisations that, otherwise, essentially do the same thing. It’s the lever that unlocks the creative freedom provided by a tight brief.
And the reason to hire.

The eight pieces of insight that follow are themselves eclectic, with subject matter chosen in isolation. 

But the interesting thing is this: flowing through every one of them, to a lesser or greater degree, is the same guiding philosophy of simplicity of thought, condensing brand truths to their purest form.

Proof, if any were needed, that, while great minds may think alike, there is more than one way to skin a cliché.


More Applied Thinking...


How to buy integrity


More is apparently more


How to do VR well, in two steps


Humans crave the human touch


Keep it simple, stupid