Over the course of five days in September our account team was sent to learn from some of the smartest account folks in the city. The ask was simple: teach us how you write your briefs so that we can write our briefs that much better for the creatives within the program. However as you'll see from the comments below, our account team learned a whole lot more.
Big thanks goes out to our agency friends who took time out of their busy schedules to participate: Graham Budd / GRIP LIMITED, Jack Bensimon / BENSIMON BYRNE, Daniel Langer-Hack / TAXI2, Heidi McCulloch / MacLaren McCann, Zach Klein / BBDO.
Grip Ltd. is a fun, innovative and inspiring agency, which is shown through the people, agency and work that come from it. It seems like everyone enjoys working there and takes pride in the work that they produce. The agency has an inspirafreakinfantasmicality about it that makes me excited to be in advertising. ~ Sam Porter
Graham Budd, Account Manager from Grip provided everyone with a detailed understanding and thorough representation of how Grip works as an agency. His passion for Grip and willingness to better our understanding of how to create memorable presentations and get our creative teams excited for projects was admirable. He explained the entire process he goes through from initial client meeting to developing the brief to getting the creative teams working and finally the final pitch to the client. Graham motivated us as a group to work hard to create the best brief possible. He was a great example for how creative accounts people need to be when developing single minded thoughts for campaigns. ~ Emily Durtnall
We were fortunate enough to meet with agency founder Jack Bensimon of Bensimon Byrne. Jack presented us with a great point of view on how to find effective consumer insights and the importance of human truths in campaigns. It was great to see the insights behind the big campaigns like Wonder Bread, Molson Canadian, and Scotiabank, which all started from finding a human truth that connected with the brand. On top of a great presentation, the office itself was beautiful. The high ceilings with the mix of wood and glass created a nice juxtaposition between old and new. ~ Lisa Hart
When I left Taxi2 I had such a clear idea of how an ad agency should run. This powerhouse of creativity maneuvered their strategic development through a clever Strategic Exercise that allowed all departments to understand the product, consumer and today's culture in unity. Aside from their strong ability to collaborate effectively, what I enjoyed the most was the comfortable and relaxed atmosphere. It really goes to show that you only need a handful of brilliant people to produce brilliant ad work- as many as can fit into a cab. ~ Stephanie Aerts
The collaboration between all departments at MacLaren McCann was amazing. Everyone seemed to work together with their philosophy ‘Truth well told’ on the mind. The positivity at the agency was infectious and the visit was a great motivator to continue working towards great briefs that inspire successful creative. ~ Laura Robinson
MacLaren was great. Though there was a powerpoint up, we had to remember to use it as we kept getting wrapped up in enthusiastic discussion. An hour was not long enough! I loved how even as a huge agency, they remain very collaborative from the very start of a project to the very end of a project. I found this would be a very efficient method to arrive at ideas and rewarding to all members involved. It was inspiring to talk with such talented people so passionate about their work. ~ Rachel Swarts
The office atmosphere at BBDO was outgoing, hardworking, and fun, with an inspiring panoramic view of Downtown Toronto. We learnt how to better reach product and brand insights, as well as tips on how to really catch the attention of the target. We also recognized the importance of the accounts and creative teams working together in order to develop the best overall strategy. We feel that we really benefited from this visit, and all of the helpful hints on how to make it in the industry. ~ Jamie Taylor