Put your hearts into ideas-led thought processes

I do find the term ‘media-neutral’ a little odd (Design Business, DW 19 December 2002) especially given that what’s really exciting about this debate is that we’re starting to be less led by media and more driven by what’s the right idea and how it can best be realised.

In this respect we should relish the ‘media-neutral’ debate as a call to action for all of us in the design industry to think much more about design in its fullest sense. Not just in the design of ‘things’ – but increasingly about the design of the climates, teams, methodologies, mind-sets and arguments that enable truly liberated ideas-led thinking to be brought to life.

Our award-winning work on the Guinness Storehouse is a powerful example of such liberated thinking in action and a tangible demonstration of what can be achieved when the right people are working together in the right way on the right idea.

Clients should always demand the right idea for the job in hand. But as the ‘brandscape’ evolves these ideas will require new genres of solution that will become as much a challenge for the traditional marketing-led client to buy as they will be for the traditional media-led consultancy to deliver.

So for me, the media-neutral promise is an exciting one to make, but a difficult one to keep. It requires a freedom of thinking, diversity of skill-sets and genuine passion for collaboration and delivery that cannot be manufactured overnight.

In short if your heart’s not in it, don’t go there.

Ralph Ardill

Marketing and strategic planning director

Imagination

London WC1

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