Advertising flashback

-By Luke Davidson

I was updating my bio recently for an agency document when I realised that come December I will have been working in the industry for 15 years. It got me thinking back to my early days in the industry and how much things have changed.

My first job was at a large agency (that shall remain nameless). Originally I was just meant to be doing one week’s work experience, but when that went well I was kept on. It was a good introduction to the industry – they had some big clients and I was given some great briefs to work on.

My first major brief was creating a campaign for a large ski resort. The senior team pitched a fun idea that was going to prove very expensive, whereas I put forward what was (in hindsight) a fairly predictable, safe idea that could be achieved for minimal cost. Not surprisingly, the client went for the safer option and I got to make my first TV ad.

Looking back, I now realise that by pitching such a safe idea I probably destroyed any chance the senior team had of getting their ad made. Thankfully, they didn’t hold a grudge (or at least kept it well hidden). They simply said they’d hopefully get to make their idea the following year.

The second thing that triggered this particular flashback was that I recently saw the latest ad on TV for this ski resort and was surprised to see they’re still using a variation of the ad I wrote almost 15 years ago! I guess I really owe that creative team an apology – it doesn’t look like their ad is getting made any time soon!

Perhaps the thing I find hardest to believe when looking back on those days is that the agency I was at didn’t even have a computer with the internet. Times certainly have changed.


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