J Walter Thompson's Tony Stead dies

Stead worked alongside Stephen King and is credited with inventing the term 'account planner'.

Stead: joined JWT in the 1960s
Stead: joined JWT in the 1960s

Tony Stead, who held a number of roles at J Walter Thompson, has died after a short illness.

Stead joined JWT's media department in the early 1960s, rising to group head and was involved, alongside Stephen King, in developing account planning – an idea that revolutionised the way that advertising was created.

He is credited with inventing the term "account planner/planning".

King, who died in 2006, once explained how the pair came up with the term: "We started by not knowing what on Earth to call it. We thought of brand planner and we used that as a code for a while. Then people said that 'brand' suggests small packaged things, so Tony said: 'Why don't you call them account planners?' And that was that."

In the late 1980s, as head of the account planning department, Stead played a major role in compiling and disseminating "The Thompson Way" approach across the network.

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