I’m not keen on people who get on their soapbox and declare that
their way of doing things is the only way to do things. So, when I was
asked to give my views on how integration was working at BMP DDB and,
indeed, how Arthur, Roddy and myself were working out after six months
at the agency, I decided to look back on a few excerpts from my
11 July 1997. My first day at BMP. I meet a lot of very nice people,
drink countless cups of very strong coffee and then get shown to my new
office in the planning department. Shock, horror. It’s not big
Storm into the chief executive’s (not much bigger) office and
immediately decide to keep schtum.
That afternoon I get a call from the planning director. A major client
is about to relaunch and how would we like to get involved. Nice easy
way to get some business. Or so we thought.
It actually turns out to be a pitch, and we’re told upfront there’s only
an outside chance of success, but the client is prepared to see us.
Nine days later, it’s the wee small hours and the studio boys haven’t
seen many eight-page brochures before but, hurrah, we win the business
and are officially blooded. Return to my office in slumping mode (only I
realise I didn’t get a couch to slump in.)
August. We’ve been doing a lot of internal presentations to the various
departments, explaining what direct marketing is and isn’t. It sets
people thinking about how it can be embraced into their client’s
You’ve got to meet this client, they say. And this one and this one
and ... too many meetings I think, but hey, it’s not a bad problem to
October. The biggy. A major new-business presentation to an important
BMP client. Nerves all round. Client applauds our approach to direct
marketing, in particular, our proposed method of working with the
Likes us, but says it’s too much of a high-risk strategy. Two weeks
later, the same client calls. ’I’ll give you a project.’ Off to the
Prince of Wales to celebrate.
December. Look back on what we’ve done and realise we’ve used up a lot
of paper. The lads have worked on a lot of things: brand TV campaign,
direct response advertisements, brand/off-the-page press campaign,
direct mail packs and oh, an integrated launch campaign with the other
creative teams that covered everything from television, press,
off-the-page, posters, direct mail, taxi cabs, internal posters and
point-of-sale. Our satisfaction is that no one communication is inferior
to the other. You know, this integration thing might just work.
Stuart Archibald, a director of BMP DDB, joined the agency in July 1997
from Evans Hunt Scott, together with Roddy Kerr and Arthur Parshotam,
the award-winning creative team from Craik Jones Watson Mitchell