CR’s pick of what to see at Ad Week Europe

Ad Week Europe arrives in London next week, bringing celebrities, ad creatives, marketers and no doubt lots of shiny new advertising jargon to BAFTA in Piccadilly (as well as other venues around town). Here’s our pick of five talks that will (hopefully) be unmissable…

Ad Week Europe arrives in London next week, bringing celebrities, ad creatives, marketers and no doubt lots of shiny new advertising jargon to BAFTA in Piccadilly (as well as other venues around town). Here’s our pick of five talks that will (hopefully) be unmissable…

Talks and seminars will be running from Monday to Thursday next week. For those keen on seeing the famous, the conference boasts the likes of Idris Elba, James Corden, Andrew Flintoff, Zane Lowe, and, um, Gok Wan at various events during the week.

If top trends are your bag instead though, a glance through the schedule would suggest that ‘native advertising’ and ‘programmatic’ are the buzz words du jour. There are multiple talks and seminars on both subjects, so if you’re not sure what they mean now, you will do by the end of next week.

For my five picks though, I’ve gone for entertainment value as the priority. There are a lot of promising-looking talks in an action-packed line up, but these are the five that stand out for me:

Rapha: Building A Brand Through Creativity
Patrick Burgoyne, Creative Review; Angus Montgomery, Design Week, Simon Mottram and Slate Olson, Rapha
Tues, April 1, 2-2.45pm, #AWEurope Underground Channel 6 Stage

We begin, ahem, with the event that everyone is talking about (we just can’t shut them up!), where premium cycling company Rapha will talk to CR and Design Week’s editors about how they’ve used creativity in design and marketing to build a hugely successful brand. Okay, this is a bit of blatant self-promotion, but it’s going to be great, honest. Apparently there will bikes, films, clothes, and more!

2014 Spotlight Lecture: The Golden Age of Bullshit
Bob Hoffman, The Ad Contrarian; Mark Austin, ITN
Weds, April 2, 10-30-11.20am, The ITV Stage At Princess Anne

Bob Hoffman, aka The Ad Contrarian, is notorious for his provocative stance on the ad industry. We look forward to a lecture filled with some entertaining, if occasionally harsh, truths about adland.

Risk and Responsibility: 1966 and Today
David Bernstein, History of Advertising Trust; Jeremy Bullmore, WPP
Weds, April 2, 4-4.50pm, News Room Studio B

A bit of a historical perspective is offered in this talk: back in 1966, Jeremy Bullmore and David Bernstein were part of an event at the Advertising Creative Circle that discussed the risk of doing distinctive advertising versus the perhaps greater risk of doing bland and predictable ads. The duo return to the topic, as relevant today as it was then, in this talk.

An Empire Audience with Steve Coogan and Neil & Rob Gibbons
Mon, March 31, 5.30pm, The ITV Stage at Princess Anne

In my limited experience, I find that sometimes the big names at conferences such as these can be a teensy bit underwhelming. Yet Steve Coogan, who will be joined by Alpha Papa writers Neil & Rob Gibbons, seems likely to be a good’un. The trio will be interviewed by Empire editor-in-chief Mark Dinning.

Adopting The Missionary Position
Dave Buonaguidi, Karmarama; Paul Daniels, The Magic Circle
Tues, April 1, 5.30pm, The ITV Stage at Princess Anne

This talk wins the prize for the most intriguing of AWE. Is this the ‘real’ Paul Daniels? We’re not sure. Plus the blurb on the AWE site says that he and Karmarama’s Dave Buonaguidi will be joined by ‘Jack The Ripper, killer of prostitutes’. There’s also something about visionary entrepreneurs. We can’t quite put it all together but it sounds like it will tick the entertainment box – let’s hope we’re not disappointed.

This is of course just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the events taking place next week (CR’s sister brands Marketing Week and Celebrity Intelligence are involved in a number of great-looking talks for example, see more on those here). For a full line-up, visit the Ad Week Europe website at advertisingweek.eu. And see you all there!

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