The Wonder Years of Advertising

Three Cities: Part Two

I began my career in London in the late 80’s. They really were the “Wonder Years” of advertising. Advertising went from being a trade to becoming a science. The industry was full of 25-year-olds driving Ferraris and was — and still is to an extent — quite fearless.

We worked hard for our clients and helped them meet their goals. But above all, we worked for awards. We were obsessed with them. Awards for creative, media, interactive … whatever.

We wanted to get awards because the Awards ceremonies were the best parties in town. Awards meant doubled salaries every year, and clients generally went with the agencies who won them most.

It encouraged a lot of pioneering work.  But, as they say, pioneers also get arrows in their backs. Sometimes, the work can be weak, suffering from too much focus on ‘style over substance.’

However, the willingness to back risk and innovation means that some of the best agencies and work will always come out of London.

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