Agency leaders share where marketing inspiration comes from

Marketing’s ability to inspire is more important than ever – members of the Big Minds Collective on how to fuel big ideas

May 24, 2021

Agency leaders share where marketing inspiration comes from

Marketing has many roles to play in 2021. The return to growth for businesses depends on identifying and responding to shifts in demand, dealing with a new digital landscape and new buyer preferences when it comes to navigating it, balancing the need to build brands with the requirement to rebuild revenues. However, running through all of these different facets of the marketing agenda is something that’s arguably even more important.

Marketing isn’t just about execution. It’s also about inspiration. It connects a business to the world around it; taking events that can seem disorientating and disruptive and translating them into a vision for the role a business can play – and the ways in which it can grow. Marketing animates the business strategy, keeping it fresh, keeping it relevant and keeping it real. In a post-pandemic world finding new thinking to help marketing play this role matters more than ever.

The Big Minds Collective is a forum for marketing agency leaders that provides a space for such marketing inspiration to take shape. LinkedIn created it to help generate and share new ideas, often by bringing in perspectives from outside the marketing profession itself. We’ve heard from architects, academics, economists and more. However, much of the most exciting new thinking comes from the interplay of ideas between agency leaders themselves.

We asked our Big Minds Collective members about where those ideas come from – the best sources of inspiration that they’ve discovered to help them navigate the new marketing landscape. We also asked them for their views on why such inspiration matters and how a marketing-informed vision can make a difference for any business. Here’s what they had to say:

Setting out a vision for the long-term is part of marketing’s role:
 

Setting out a vision for how we can drive growth is incredibly important. Long-term value creation is the sole purpose of marketing.”

Thiago Correa
Head of Performance Media, Zenith

 

I would say it is critically important, it’s what marketing is all about today. Growth is not only about bottom line; it’s about growth in your strategic and operational approach to new market realities.”

Gordana Buccisano
EVP, Global Clients Transformation, Havas Media Group
 

Stepping up and setting out a vision is extremely important. I think we've shrunk back with the pandemic and need to get our groove back and be confident about what we can do for business. We need to talk about culture and how brands can help drive that (positively). Also, we need to focus on how what we do opens up commerce opportunities.”

Chien-Wen Tong
Managing Partner, Head of Client Development, Wavemaker
 

Inspiration often comes from the fundamentals – in marketing, but also in life:
 

I find the best source of inspiration is going back to fundamentals. There is a natural tendency to grow in complexity as we grow in understanding, so I try to spend a good deal of time trying to distil and simplify.”

Thiago Correa
Head of Performance Media, Zenith
 

I’ve been finding inspiration in a lot of books at the moment: Advertising for Skeptics by Bob Hoffman, Digital Darwinism by Tom Goodwin, Eat Your Greens by Wiemer Snijders, Atomic Habits by James Clear, D&AD and APG annuals. I’m also reading quite a bit of Marcus Aurelius and Haruki Murakami. I try to engage in some form of art every day. A poem is my go-to. Poets would make great strategists.”

Neil Godber
Joint Head of Strategy, Wunderman Thompson
 

The value of informed conversation has never been higher:
 

I'm loving roundtables and immersive webinars, I have had enough of being spoken at rather than having a conversation.”

Catherine Chappell
Global Paid Social Strategy Lead, iProspect
 

The best sources of inspiration are my peers and work we collectively do for our clients. But the forums like BMC is just what I need as they are engaging and relevant to issues we face day to day ”

Gordana Buccisano
EVP, Global Clients Transformation, Havas Media Group
 

LinkedIn has a key role to play:
 

Frankly, these Big Minds Collective sessions with LinkedIn are one of my best sources of ideas! And just following LinkedIn to keep a pulse on the topics leaders are talking about.”

Chien-Wen Tong
Managing Partner, Head of Client Development, Wavemaker

 

LinkedIn has been a great source of inspiration as an agency leader. It feels like the long-form of Twitter.”

Neil Godber
Joint Head of Strategy, Wunderman Thompson

 

LinkedIn has obviously done a great job when it comes to hosting roundtables and interesting conversations. The groups I’m part of on WhatsApp and LinkedIn are a constant source of information too. I’ve been able to share some great insights with my network and peer set.”

Catherine Chappell
Global Paid Social Strategy Lead, iProspect

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