IAA to promote London congress as a 'must'

– Organisers of the showpiece advertising congress taking place in London this summer are taking the unusual step of running a major above-the-line campaign to boost delegate numbers.

– Organisers of the showpiece advertising congress taking place in London this summer are taking the unusual step of running a major above-the-line campaign to boost delegate numbers.

A poster and press offensive will promote the International Advertising Association's London congress as a "must" event for marketing and advertising professionals.

Its importance is emphasised in a 98-sheet poster on London's Cromwell Road which bears the message: "June 6-9: the future of advertising will be decided. With or without you".

The poster is the precursor of a campaign to carry the conference message across Europe via trade press and business titles.

It was written by Simon Anholt, the founder of World Writers, and one of the conference speakers, at the invitation of Adrian Vickers, the Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO founding partner and president of the IAA's UK chapter.

Up to 2,500 delegates are expected at the conference. David Abraham, who heads the programme committee, said: "We're having to turn would-be sponsors away because we've had such a large response and all the exhibition space is booked."

Nicholas Negroponte, the internet guru; Germaine Greer; NATO spokesman Jamie Shea; Martin Sorrell, the WPP chief executive, and Elisabeth Murdoch, Sky's managing director, are included in the line-up of speakers.

Anholt said: "We decided on an above-the-line campaign because the conference will not only feature some of the most influential people in world communications but will be different to others where you listen to somebody mouthing off in a darkened room and leave it none the wiser."



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