When it comes to learning more about the ad industry, modern technology (yes, YouTube, we’re looking at you) is great. A good old-fashioned book, however, is greater still.
As Wales’ #1 independent ad agency, we haven’t gotten to where we are just by luck. For all the hours we’ve put into making award-winning campaigns, we’ve put just as many into reading books on how to make them in the first place. Here are five of the best ones that have helped us along the way.
Ogilvy on Advertising – If ever there was a hotel built specifically for ad industry people, then this would be the Bible you’d find in every room. And, despite being first published in 1983, the lessons that can be found within this book’s pages are still invaluable. From ‘How to produce advertising that sells’ to ‘How to run an advertising agency’; ‘How to get clients’ to ‘How to advertise foreign travel’; this really is as comprehensive a guide to advertising as you’re ever likely to find.
Whatever You Think, Think the Opposite – Another pocket rocket from former executive creative director, Paul Arden, this book teaches us that in order to get ahead in both advertising and in life, ‘it’s about having the confidence to roll the dice’. Packed to the brim with thought-provoking anecdotes, photographs and quotes, this is a simple, quick read that deserves a place on any self-respecting ad type’s bookshelf.
Hegarty on Creativity – Arguably (although nobody’s really arguing about it) the greatest British creative of all-time, what John Hegarty doesn’t know about making a good ad isn’t worth knowing, quite frankly. A handy, pocket-sized compendium, this book delves directly into the mind of Hegarty, divulging the thought process behind everything from coming up with ideas to presenting them, Head vs. Heart, traditional storytelling to modern technology.
Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This – Another bonafide classic, Luke Sullivan’s masterpiece has inspired generations of ad students since its launch in 2003. Having worked for some of the world’s greatest agencies, this is essentially the modern-day version of Ogilvy on Advertising. We were lucky to pick up our copy from eBay for a couple of quid and, if you’re looking for ways to spend that loose change at the bottom of your pocket, look no further.
Advertising Now. Print – If you’re anything like us and love a good print ad, then this behemoth is 640 pages of pure print-spiration. And that really is all that needs to be said about this book.