on our first visit CEO jenny biggam explained how the 7 stars differ from bigger media corporations. by having smart planners and a highly trained team of negotiators both of which are very team-led, they have the opportunity to be more involved with the client's business and to cover all media channels. as an independent company they can keep up a high level of diversity both in terms of the clients they work with and the media space they buy. there are no group deals and deals are done on a client by client basis.
jenny handed over to rachel eagles who talked about a media planner's role, which is to establish the media mix for a project i.e. where the budget goes. rachel covers everything non-broadcast, so everything except TV. rachel went on to talk about the pros and cons of different media, interspersed with facts about how they keep their prices down.
oliver brown then spoke to us about digital (or dij), stating that the main advantages of this media are the the flexibility it allows; ads can be changed extremely quickly, and also the accountability; everything is trackable.
i learnt about BARB and RAJAR as well as CPT/CPM, SCC, TVR, CPC, CPA, CPE, CPV, DSP, ROI, ABC, COI and many other acronyms, some of which i failed to keep up with but rachel and oli's knowledge and passion for their subject was enough to keep the afternoon extremely interesting.
we just had enough time at the end of the day to present the first of our two projects to anuschka and catie. it was nerve-wracking but the feedback was really kind, we probably could have taken a few more knocks but time was not on our side by that point.
on our second trip, tom haskell hosted us and we presented to rhiannon and liam, both of whom patiently listened to all of our presentations and offered helpful feedback at the end. we then had a talk from dave counsell about mobile media. dave talked us through the different platforms within m-commerce used for advertising, many of which are so integrated that i hadn't distinguished between them until they were all listed and described - naïve i know. dave also spoke about his predictions for the future of mobile, the main progression being with dual screening applications.
both days were massively informative. i was particularly impressed by how ambitious and driven everybody we got the chance to meet was. they are constantly monitoring analytics, are each brimming with facts and figures and all seemed very on the ball (almost intimidatingly so for a newb such as myself). i got a sense of the really strong personalities that each and every employee at the 7 stars has and an idea of how successful a company can be when so many driven people are allowed the space and opportunities to shine.