Tobi Ogundipe

Creative Strategist

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Creative strategy consultant; accidental social-entrepreneur; and native Angelino looking for opportunities with innovative brands.

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Posts tagged Account Planning

A Whole Lotta Planners

Planners, strategic thinkers, and a sprinkling of creatives made for a pretty awesome two-day mind-stretch fest with Santa Monica beach as our gorgeous backdrop.

All in all Planning-ness was amazing. My favorite sessions were both on the first day: Sharon Lee on understanding and analyzing cultural trends and Rob Perkins on how to scratch an itch. 

I love when speakers come with tangible goodies and not lofty ideas that sound/look good in powerpoint. 

Sharon Lee brought the goodies and a whole lot more as the opening number to my Planning-ness experience. Two treats in particular stand out:

  1. Her trend Analysis “How To” list 
  2. Her chart explaining how Millennials approach life and work and why companies looking to hire younger people need to be at the forefront of the current life culture shift.

Hopefully her deck will be up on the Planningness site soon so you can check out her Trend Analysis how-to but I’d like to highlight the Millennial work/life chart because I feel it’s so indicative of my life right now (see photo above this post).

Rob Perkins came with poignant insight having been a planner and a creative. I think the biggest thing I took from his session was how decks die but storytelling through images and sound has so much more stickiness. The concept of “telling your idea to a stranger” -or your computer in this case- transcribing your words; matching it with images; and then making a V.O video sounds like more work but if you think about it, it’s really just about the same as putting together a deck. Of course putting this concept into practice depends on the type of agency you’re at and the openness of the client. 

Oh…crap. Can’t forget Bud Caddell.

This guy made us play the game Go at like 8 or 9am…I don’t know what time it was all I know is that the coffee I was drinking wasn’t cutting it. But, I really want to get the game even though I sucked at it and the planner I was playing with mercilessly killed off most of my pieces. 

  1. I think the game is a great way to get your brain working and getting your brain to recognize patterns and connections where you might not initially have.
  2. It was a great opening activity to introduce us to the idea of complexity and how it’s not about running away or simplifying complexities but embracing complexities but embracing it and even going at it head-on through collaboration.

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quote’s from Planning-ness and a great article to go with it…

Governments [brands, companies] should not be afraid of informed individuals [but of] synchronized groups - Clay Shirkey, SXSW 2011

This #Riot article from the December 2011 issue of Wired Magazine not only dissects the synchronized nature of riots and protests but applies that same synched philosophy to music trends. 

For a quick round-up of this year’s Planning-ness check out Thas Naseemuddeen’s post. (I thought I had a one-up in the “cool name” dept but she has me beat).

Inspiration Station

Apparently it’s not at my screen…

I’m working on this application for a planning department at a ridiculously amazing creative advertising agency. I’ve been crazy busy running a non-profit project (which I’ll update you all on this week) and sneaking in time here and there to work on the application.

So just now I’m at my computer; convinced if I sit here long enough the answer will come to me. It wasn’t so I looked up some google images…yeaaah, not working either. Hmmm.

Maybe I can get inspired from some other amazing planners?

I happen to have this deck by Heidi Hackemer (planner/creative thinker extraordinaire) about the creative process for planners so I pull it up and skim through it since I’ve read through it before. I see wolfs…maaybe…nope. Next slide. Next slide…next slide…

feeds, back rooms and Mintel reports had become 90% of my cultural understanding

A couple of slides later

I have been living the linear, advertising life and was anxious because I wasn’t still on it but reading about dots made me question the linear

A dot life is different. It’s varied. It’s defined by the individual, not the institution. The life and mind seem to meander more, have more space.

Creativity values space, exploration.

So even though I’m still not any closer to completing the question for the application I’m working on, I was inspired to step away from my screen and work on something else; have some conversations with friends, pick the brain of my ridiculously intelligent little brother…

and see where it takes me. 

Check out Heidi’s deck for yourself.

Planning-ness 2012

Planning-ness…this week…SO EXCITED!

I agonized over which sessions I wanted to go because every time slot has two amazingg sessions and speakers competiting against each other…grrr. Clearly a well put together line-up. 

But then I realized I should just pick because I can’t be in two places at once and I would learn something new either way. I’ve never been to anything like Planning-ness that puts innovative and creative thinkers and doers in one place and asks them to “get excited and make things.” 

Of course I’ll bringing along my Moleskine but Planning-ness (so I’ve heard) isn’t the kind of conference wheere you sit in a large conference hall and take endless notes and go about your way…it’s all about the interactive learning expeirnece which is the way I learn best so I’m all for it.

I definitely dropped a pretty penny for the tickets (especially for an unemployed 20-something) but I’ll be reporting back to you all if it was worth the 2.5 Benji’s but I feeling it will be.

If you’re also coming to Planning-ness leave a comment or find me on twitter!

Here are the sessions I chose:

DAY ONE

Sharon Ann Lee: How to understand and analyze cultural trends

Rob Perkins: How to scratch an itch

Craig LaRosa: How to design a service

Daniel Berkal: How to be a social butterfly

DAY TWO

Bud Cadell: How to Play Go … And Navigate Real World Complexity

Andreas Weigend: How to leverage social dat

Fran Hazeldine/ Pelle Sjoenell: How to navigate the creative / planner relationship

Brad Haugen: How to create celebrityrad Haugen: How to create celebrity

The Nature of The Pitch

I wasn’t sure if I was going to post on AMC’s new show The Pitch. Besides the fact that I make a milli-second appearance in the show I just feel that the show didn’t not do the profession of advertising any justice. Wong Doody Crandall Wiener, the agency I was interning with at the time, came up with a total of three solid campaigns - only one of which was actually shown on the show. 

Such is the nature of television…the real story is left on the editing floor.

I did make it a point to monitor the twitter chatter from other ad professionals. Lot’s of negative which is fine but if you’re going to trash a whole agency why not check out all the material first. Totally get if you feel like you could have come up with something better but look at the whole picture before you put your two cents. But as Tracy Wong said….such is the nature of advertising. So many man hours and ideas never get recognized when it comes to pitch day.

I personally spent 9a-midnight….9am-3am days on the pitch which pales in comparison to the crazy hours our kick ass production team and creatives from LA and SEA pulled. My hats off to them. ‎

Of everything I participated in, out of everything that ended up on TV here’s what I took the greatest issue with: certain people made advertising seem like it was brain surgery. Now, I have the utmost respect for the John Jays and pioneers of the industry but, I know doctors and lawyers…advertising is NOT that hard. Sorry. I would never compare what I do to standing on your feet for 36 hours straight repairing someones vital organs. It just doesn’t compare. And that’s not to say that a world class surgeon could come have come up with the Apple Think Different campaign. Two different disciplines entirely but I think any true advertiser that doesn’t waste time mired in their own BS would admit that we’ve got it a tad bit easier than a surgeon or 1L law student. What bothered me even more is how certain made excuses about taking care of certain things at home on their profession. Maybe for that personal but I personally witnessed THREE colleagues -all in their mid to late 30s- juggle kids under 5, their accounts, and traveling for new business pitches. They came into work looking amazing every morning, full of energy, and always adding to the team, all with no excuses. Yeah sure, from time-to-time they cut out early but I didn’t bat an eye because I knew how much they added to the team…even answering e-mails into the dead of night after putting their little one’s to be: taking a page out of Sheryl Sandberg’s book and showing the young one’s how it’s done. 

That was a little rant-ish but it has been bugging me since the pre-season sneak preview. 

For the record, the pitch process was exhausting but so much fun. It’s the time where you see what your co-workers are made of, the time that the agency teams come together and bond. It shakes up the monotony of routine client work and forces you to stretch, grow, and frequently - fail. 

Also, yes…Tracy Wong is as bad ass as he looks. I mean who else wears a yellow tie and shoes to a pitch? I don’t think I could even pull that off.

So yes, bad ass yet incredibly humble and approachable for an industry vet with his name on the masthead. 

I will leave you with a quote from one of my WDCW colleagues.

Something to put it all into perspective. 

21,000 man hours
1,680 hours filmed
2,100 cups of coffee
150 subway sandwiches
84-page background deck
25 people on the team
14 days of work
8 “creative” brains
5 producers
3 Seattle team members in LA
3 campaigns presented
1, 60-minute pitch
10 minutes of “The Pitch”


Wong, Doody, Crandall, Wiener, #ThePitch

So for those of you who actually read this blog…I apologize for the lapse in posts. 

I recently started a strategic planning internship at a Culver City advertising agency with a really long MadMen style name: Wong Doody Crandall Wiener. You won’t believe how many times I have mesed up that name; after my third week I was pretty sure I had that tongue twister down.

It’s been two months since I started the internship but I hit the ground running on day one. A client meeting in Irvine for a new project on my first day, three weeks of intense late hours for the whole agency on a new business pitch, and lots of new projects being added to existing clients. I’m at the hub of rapid growth with the opportunity to learn on a bulk of interesting products. 

Just the way I like it.

For the first three weeks I’m pretty sure everyone thought I was mute because I literally did not talk during meetings. I would maybe ask one question but otherwise I would just nod from time to time. Honestly I don’t think I would change anything about that. I like the idea of coming in stupid: just shut the hell up and you’ll learn something or at least identify what it is you don’t know.

I think my favorite thing about the agency, other than the amazing agency seating map with accompanying photos I got during my first week, is all the characters who work here. Everyone has an interesting story and a genuinely unique personality. I feel it keeps things light and collaborative even during those 3am nights at the office. 

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