I like Campaign magazine. (The weekly advertising trade paper in the UK if you don't know.) I like it a lot.
Like any old friend, it makes me laugh . (Sometimes intentionally, other times accidentally.)
On occasion I feel it can be a bit pompous, old-fashioned, bossy and indignant. (But then can't we all.)
Yet in the main, I look forward to it every week, just as much as when I was a trainee copywriter nicking into the creative director's office to half-inch that pristine, shrunk wrapped Thursday morning copy before he arrived. Creative Review too every month illicited a similarly kleptomanical streak in me. (Though I'm not too wild about the recent re-design. Typical, now I'm paying for my own copies.)
The Bearded Prophet however is no such sentimental fool. Being an out and out digital animal he much prefers NMA. (Oh dear.) He still claims Wired to be the dogs. (Double, oh dear.) And, conversely and perversely to his print consumption, he goes on to claim that he gets 95% of his industry news today from rss feeds.
And his sandwich board comment below?
Well the story behind that is my fault. I related to the BP that it was a quote I picked up from a creative director I was trying to impress back in the days of flared trousers, tank-tops and kickers. (First time round.)
So the line; about Campaign getting two things right on the front page. The date and the price. Is alas not mine, but David Abbott's.
I was showing him my book and in the course of the conversation I asked what it was like to be front page news on Campaign, what seemed like very week. (He'd just started Abbott Mead Vickers, AMV to you youngsters of today. He and his agency were constantly in the news.)
He was/is one of the most awarded, admired and emulated copywriters in the history of British advertising. (And the US come to that, see OneShow archives.)
His work for Volvo, The Economist and Sainsbury's was/is awesome.
But he carried his greatness lightly, and as his Campaign quote testified, good humour and good nature were hallmarks of his work.
So, in a way Campaign is for me, not just a link to the past but a bridge to the future. A glance at recent copies and you'll see the way it rightly gives the appropriate amount of coverage to the ever-growing digital world as it unfolds around us and we endeavour to latch on/understand it. Yet this illustrious organ also gives a platform to a writer that preceded even David Abbott, in the shape of Jeremy Bullmore.
And whose writing is as fresh and vigorous as anything you'll read anywhere today.
Which sort of brings me I suppose to my fundamental point:
With the relentless rise of digital, we keep hearing about how traditional advertising is dead, that creativity is increasingly becoming the domain of the young, and how the older ad-fuddy-duds, have had their day.
However I think that those who claim this is a game primarily for youth of today are getting there adjectives muddled.
Digital as the domain of the young? No. The youthful? Yes.